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How To Spend A Day In Fort Lauderdale?

Image of Fort Lauderdale City

Are you eager to explore all the exciting things Fort Lauderdale has to offer, but only have one day? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Our 1 Day Ft. Lauderdale Itinerary is designed to give you the perfect balance of fun and relaxation during your visit to this beautiful coastal city surrounded by lush greenery and tons of things to do. We’ve put together a simple plan that highlights some of Ft. Lauderdale’s best attractions, like its stunning beaches, cool historic buildings, lively nightlife, delicious restaurants, and more! So grab your sunglasses and beach towels – it’s time for an awesome adventure in sunny South Florida!

Morning scenery of Fort Lauderdale

A Morning Surrounded by Nature

Hugh Taylor Birch State Park

A great spot to kick off your morning is Hugh Taylor Birch State Park on Sunrise Blvd, between the Intracoastal Waterway and Fort Lauderdale Beach. It opens at 8 am and costs $6 if your car has more than one person, $4 for just you, or $2 if you’re walking or biking.

Imagine the sun rising slowly, painting the park in warm colors and making everything look even more beautiful. You’ll love the towering trees and sparkling rivers – this park is like a hidden treasure in South Florida. The best part? Morning is the perfect time to explore because it’s peaceful and quiet. You can take your time walking along the paths and trails, soaking in the natural beauty. Whether you want to escape the city noise or just start your day with something refreshing, Hugh Taylor Birch State Park is the place to go.

And don’t miss the coolest part of the park: the Beach Access Tunnel in the southeast corner. It’s a tunnel just for pedestrians that goes under A1A and leads you right to Fort Lauderdale Beach.

Nanou French Bakery & Café

After exploring the park for an hour or two, you might be feeling hungry or in need of a coffee break. When you leave the park, turn left onto Sunrise Blvd and then take the second right onto Sunrise Lane to find Nanou French Bakery & Café.

Nanou is a popular local spot where you can experience authentic French flavors right here in Fort Lauderdale Beach. The staff is friendly and always ready to serve you, whether you’re grabbing a quick coffee or enjoying a relaxed brunch. Their breakfast menu is perfect for starting your day, featuring freshly baked croissants, Pain au Chocolat, and other tasty pastries. And if you’re craving something heartier, you can’t go wrong with their classic French toast or savory crepes. Nanou French Bakery & Café brings a touch of Parisian charm to Ft Lauderdale.

If you finish your delicious breakfast around 11 am, you’re right on track for the next part of your day.

Bonnet House Museum & Gardens

Just a short walk from Nanou, you’ll find one of the coolest places in Fort Lauderdale: Bonnet House Museum & Gardens. They open up at 11 am, so you’ll be among the first to check it out!

This old-timey spot by the water is awesome for both art lovers and nature fans. It was built a long time ago, back in the early 1900s. Inside, you’ll find a bunch of cool stuff collected by the Bartlett and Birch families who used to live here. Outside, take a chill stroll through the gardens and check out the cool plants like orchids, water lilies, and tall palm trees. You’ll also learn about the guy who started it all, an artist named Frederic Clay Bartlett. With its beautiful gardens and cool history, Bonnet House is perfect for a calm and interesting visit.

After spending an hour or two at Bonnet House, our next stop is downtown. Just head east on Sunrise Blvd, then turn right onto A1A (N Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd), and drive a few miles until you hit Las Olas Blvd. On your way there, enjoy the awesome views of Fort Lauderdale Beach. Turn right onto Las Olas Blvd, and follow it for a few miles until you reach SE 2nd Ave. Then, turn right and look for the Riverwalk Center Garage on your left (it costs $3 per hour to park there). This garage is super central to all the stuff we’re doing, but you can park anywhere nearby if you prefer.

A cottage alongside Fort Lauderdale waters

A Relaxing Afternoon by the River

Historic Stranahan House Museum

This famous building was constructed in 1901 by Frank Stranahan, who was a well-known banker and businessman in the area at that time. Nowadays, the house has been turned into a museum that tells the story of the local culture and history. If you visit, you can take a tour inside the house to see its interesting design, old-fashioned decorations, and enjoy the beautiful views of the New River. Whether you’re into history, like cool buildings, or just want a fun and educational outing for your family, the Historic Stranahan House Museum is a great place to check out.

Once you’re done exploring the Stranahan House, head over to 4th Street and walk along the Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale.

Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale

This renowned destination isn’t merely celebrated for its breathtaking vistas overlooking the New River; it also boasts an exceptional shopping and dining district that is truly unparalleled. Nestled along Las Olas Blvd, this area offers a diverse array of upscale restaurants and charming cafes, catering to every palate. Whether you’re craving a gourmet dining experience or seeking a cozy spot for a casual meal, you’ll find an abundance of culinary delights to satisfy your cravings.

Moreover, if you’re a fan of shopping, Las Olas Blvd is a paradise waiting to be explored. Dive into a world of boutique shops, specialty stores, and designer boutiques, each offering a unique selection of fashion, jewelry, artwork, and more. From chic fashion finds to exquisite artisanal goods, there’s something to capture the attention of every shopper.

Strolling along the boulevard, you’ll be captivated by the vibrant atmosphere and eclectic mix of shops, creating the perfect ambiance for a leisurely day of retail therapy. Whether you’re searching for the latest trends or seeking one-of-a-kind treasures, Las Olas Blvd promises an unforgettable shopping experience.

So, indulge your senses, immerse yourself in the charm of Las Olas Blvd, and treat yourself to a day of culinary delights and retail indulgence. It’s the ultimate destination for those seeking a memorable blend of scenic beauty, gastronomic delights, and shopping adventure.

NSU Art Museum

Right next to the Riverwalk Center Garage is the NSU Art Museum, a cool spot if you’re into checking out some of Fort Lauderdale’s awesome art scene.

They’ve got all kinds of art here, from modern stuff to Latin American pieces, so there’s something for everyone’s taste. You can see exhibitions by local artists, join in on fun art activities, and explore the quiet galleries. Whether you’re a big art fan or just like looking at cool stuff, the NSU Art Museum is a chill place to hang out and enjoy some art.

After you’re done at the museum, take a walk through Huizenga Plaza and check out the fountain before heading to the New River. Turn left and follow the Riverwalk North pathway. It’ll take you along the river, under the 3rd Ave Tarpon Drawbridge, and eventually to the Stranahan House Museum.

Bluefoot Pirates Adventure Tours

For a unique adventure, consider a cruise with Bluefoot Pirate Adventures! Glide through Fort Lauderdale’s canals, admiring lavish mansions and yachts. Our One Hour Family Pirate Ship Adventure offers interactive fun and storytelling about famous pirates. Experience a magical Private Sunset Cruise or celebrate a special occasion with our Private Birthday Adventure. Join us for an unforgettable day on the water!

An above view of Fort Lauderdale at Night

A Night on the Town

After your boat tour ends and if you didn’t eat earlier, you might be hungry for dinner. A great nearby place, even though it can be a bit expensive, is Eddie V’s Prime Seafood.

Eddie V’s Prime Seafood

If you want a fancy yet friendly place to eat, you’ve got to check out Eddie V’s Prime Seafood in Ft. Lauderdale. They’re famous for their amazing seafood and top-notch service, making it a night out you won’t forget. The restaurant has a classy vibe with beautiful decorations, and they often have live jazz music playing, adding to the cool atmosphere. They really pay attention to all the little details to make sure you feel special as soon as you step inside.

But hey, if you’re not feeling up for a big meal and just want to grab a few drinks, or maybe have a light bite, you might want to hit up one of the bars downtown. They’ve got great cocktails and some tasty snacks to munch on.

Broward Center for the Performing Arts

Another great idea, but one that you’ll need to plan ahead for, is catching a show at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. It’s just a short walk west along the Riverwalk.

This place is amazing! They have all kinds of shows there, like plays, concerts, ballets, operas, and even comedy shows. And the theaters are top-notch, with lots of cool stuff to make your night out awesome. So don’t wait! Get your tickets now and enjoy a fantastic time at the Broward Center!

Rooftop @1WLO

This rooftop hangout is the perfect spot to chill out and relax. It has amazing views and serves up tasty cocktails, beer, and wine. If you’re hungry, the chefs here make delicious dishes that are great for sharing. The coolest thing about Rooftop @1WLO is that you get to enjoy all of this while being outside and checking out the awesome city views.

 

Whether you’re into nature, shopping, or enjoying the nightlife, Fort Lauderdale has something for everyone. Exploring this beautiful city will make your trip unforgettable. From its parks and riverbanks to its amazing restaurants and bars, there’s excitement everywhere you look. But before you go, do some research – talk to locals, read about other people’s experiences, and check out Bluefoot Pirate Adventures for an unforgettable marine adventure! With so much to do and see, one day in Fort Lauderdale won’t be enough! Start planning your trip now and make memories that will last a lifetime!

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