Spring is one of the perfect times of year to create wonderful family memories in Greater Fort Lauderdale. With sun-drenched days, light breeze, and comfortable ocean temperatures, the weather couldn’t be more refreshing and inviting.
Families looking to socially distance in nature can take their pick of parks, swamps, sandy shores, and ocean adventures. While you're enjoying the great outdoors and all the fun activities with the family, rest assured knowing that the Greater Fort Lauderdale hospitality and business community has your wellbeing and safety top of mind. The entire destination is committed to ensuring you and your loved ones have a beautiful vacation here and are stress free. Don't forget to wear your mask indoors, as well as outdoors when social distance can't be maintained, and to have your mask on hand and available at all times. You can learn more about safety guidelines on the Visit Lauderdale Travel Advisory page.
Whether you prefer to bask in the comfort of an activity-packed, kid-friendly resort or would rather hopscotch around the seemingly endless attractions the area has to offer, we have four ideas for things to do in Greater Fort Lauderdale during spring break that are sure to get the entire family on board.
Take a Beach Day
Greater Fort Lauderdale encompasses an impressive 23 miles of sandy shores, and while you can’t go wrong with any of the beaches here, one that tops the list for spring break is Fort Lauderdale beach. Get your bearings strolling along the palm tree-lined Beachfront Promenade, where the iconic, white wave wall divides the beach from the buzzy restaurants and bars along the boardwalk. Rent bikes from Fun Center Fort Lauderdale and sightsee while cycling along the coast, or pop by Sunrise Paddleboards and arrange a tour of the Intracoastal Waterway’s yacht- and mansion-filled canals, which helped the city earn its nickname as the “Venice of America.” For a more interactive experience along Fort Lauderdale’s waterways, climb aboard Bluefoot Pirate Adventures’ hour-long cruise of face painting, pirate tattoos, treasure hunting, and water cannons for a South Florida version of “Pirates of the Caribbean.”
When you’re back on land, pause for spicy crab guacamole and butter-poached Maine lobster quesadillas along Fort Lauderdale beach at newish Mexican eatery Lona Cocina & Tequileria at The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, or dine along the Intracoastal at local institution Coconuts. If you’re arriving on your own boat, raft right at the restaurant’s dock and time your arrival for sunset—the views here are some of the best. Order a few of Coconuts’ house specialties for the table, like conch and shrimp fritters, coconut shrimp, and smoked fish dip. Then, just sit back and watch the boats go by from seats along the deck, where even pets (on a leash!) are welcome to join for lunch or dinner.
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Adventure with Alligators
When it comes to family activities in Greater Fort Lauderdale, a trip to the Everglades on a swamp safari is a must. The “slow-moving river” of coastal mangroves, sawgrass marshes, and pine flatwoods sprawls across nearly 1.5 million acres and is considered one of the world’s most diverse ecosystems. Experience a sliver of this preserved natural paradise on an hour-long airboat tour gliding across the smooth, glassy water at Sawgrass Recreation Park or Everglades Holiday Park. Hang on as the boat hits speeds of up to 60 mph and the captain and “gladesman” expertly wind through the lily pads and sawgrass on the lookout for alligators. While group sizes are now capped as part of social distancing measures, families can plan around their own busy spring break schedule by booking a private airboat tour. After spotting a few alligators in their natural habitat, learn more about the unofficial Everglades mascot while watching Animal Planet’s Gator Boys perform a live show back onshore at Everglades Holiday Park or visit the wildlife sanctuary at Sawgrass Recreation Park. Thrillseekers can also enjoy an exclusive nighttime airboat adventure with Sawgrass Recreation Park.
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Relax at a Resort
Greater Fort Lauderdale is a jumping off point for cruises and flights to the Caribbean, but the region boasts resorts just as swanky and tropical as what you’d find in the islands. Case in point: Margaritaville Beach Resort in Florida’s Hollywood, where adults can lounge with a frozen libation at the rooftop pool overlooking the Atlantic as kids test their surf skills on the FlowRider simulator.
Further north up the coastline, call it a night in a bungalow oceanfront suite at Plunge Beach Resort in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea. Lined by low-rise, mid-century modern buildings, you won’t find a skyscraper in sight in this charming little beach town. It’s the perfect place for strolling and shopping—especially around Anglin’s Square—but the real draw to Lauderdale-By-The-Sea is the reef that sits just 100 yards offshore. Nicknamed “South Florida’s Beach Diving Capital,” visitors and residents can snorkel or scuba dive right off the beach, taking in sights of sea turtles, nurse sharks, and 19th century shipwrecks that now serve as part of Florida’s “Museums in the Sea.”
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Hit the Park
Greater Fort Lauderdale’s parks stretch in all directions, from the sea to the swamps. If you’re out west, spend the day strolling around C.B. Smith Park, pausing to picnic by the water or fish off one of the three piers. The waterparks are temporarily closed, but families still have plenty of ways to keep entertained, from tennis and volleyball to miniature golf and batting cages.
Further east, in Hollywood, cycle or skate along T.Y. Park’s two-mile loop of paved pathways to the northern corridor, to the unofficial butterfly garden; or, for the more adventurous, hit the mountain biking trails or go cable water-skiing at Quiet Waters in Deerfield Beach where even Fido will have a dedicated dog park to play in.