What to do and see in Florida, United States: The Best Scenic Drives

August 23, 2021 Fernanda Pittenger

Not just for retirees and theme park enthusiasts, the Sunshine State offers beautiful beaches, pristine diving conditions, and sizzling nightlife. Salsa the night away in a smokin’ hot Miami club, or swing away at one of Kissimmee’s many premium golf courses. An airboat tour of the Everglades is an unforgettable adventure – just look out for alligators! For the risk-averse, a lazy day spent on the soft sands of an Emerald Coast beach is as rejuvenating as a spa treatment.
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1. Atlantic Flyway

New Smyrna Beach, FL
Excellent
100%
Good
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5.0 based on 2 reviews

Atlantic Flyway

Drive down this "biological highway," where over 250 species of birds have been spotted.

2. Emerald Coast

FL +1 850-565-0051 http://www.emeraldcoastfl.com/
Excellent
90%
Good
6%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 31 reviews

Emerald Coast

The towns along Florida's Panhandle--Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa and Destin-- comprise the Emerald Coast.

Reviewed By cdrossio - Macomb, United States

Captain Tony was the absolute right choice for a great fishing trip. He communicated with us often. He took us to a great spot where we caught our limit quick. Captain Tony is personable but professional. He made us feel very much at home on his well-maintained boat. He won't make you feel like a novice. We'll be back.

3. W Ozello Trail

Crystal River, FL
Excellent
100%
Good
0%
Satisfactory
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5.0 based on 3 reviews

W Ozello Trail

4. Loop Road, Big Cypress National Preserve

Loop Road Inside Big Cypress National Preserve, Miami, FL 34141 +1 239-695-2000 https://www.nps.gov/bicy/learn/historyculture/loop-road.htm
Excellent
90%
Good
3%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
0%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 31 reviews

Loop Road, Big Cypress National Preserve

Reviewed By eileenk94 - Urbana, United States

The day we visited we were fortunate to see numerous birds and alligators. We basically drove the loop and stopped many times along the way. We walked a couple of short hikes into the preserve, as well. The cypress trees with epiphytes were impressive. Bird varieties included snowy egrets, great egrets, great blue herons, and anhingas. How glorious to get away from civilization and enjoy nature.

5. Old St. Augustine Road

Tallahassee, FL https://cms.leoncountyfl.gov/Home/Departments/Public-Works/Operations/Canopy-Roads/Visit-the-Canopy-Roads/Old-St-Augustine-Road
Excellent
80%
Good
20%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
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5.0 based on 5 reviews

Old St. Augustine Road

Reviewed By Caldoria - Tallahassee, United States

I have driven down this road a lot in the last 20 years and I'm always struck by the beauty of its oaks. My car has also been struck by a branch after a heavy rain, but I never resented the trees (They're maintained fairly well, so I'm sure it's rare). Apparently, this was a road that linked this area to St. Augustine and it could date to the 1600s. The best times to see the road are in the mid morning and late afternoon, when the trees will filter through golden colors from the sun. Season isn't as important when viewing our canopy roads, though late spring and late fall may present extra interest with the non-oak plants. I highly recommend a good soundtrack while driving (Bach's always pretty good). This road was something I missed when I moved to Central Florida and it makes me happy to be back to it. I hope visitors enjoy it, too.

6. John Ringling Causeway

Sarasota, FL 34236
Excellent
75%
Good
25%
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5.0 based on 4 reviews

John Ringling Causeway

Reviewed By 490irinag - Illinois, United States

John Ringling Causeway is an excellent way to get from St. Armands Circle to the Bayfront Sarasota, that'll take approximately 5 to 7 minutes driving. The causeway has a long history, going back to 1925 when it was first open, then to 1959 when it was rebuilt as a four-lane drawbridge, and since 2003 it's been a modern, high-span bridge, that handles heavy traffic on a daily basis. It is also a walking bridge, good for those who like to exercise and enjoy scenic views. And the views are really wonderful, even if it is just Sarasota Bay all around! ... I think, John Ringling Causeway is also a perfect way to get to downtown Sarasota, say from Lido Beach , via St Armands circle. Very convenient, very practical, very quick drive.

7. US Highway 98

FL http://www.floridabigbendscenicbyway.org
Excellent
59%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
6%
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4.5 based on 17 reviews

US Highway 98

A scenic drive is to be found along US 98.

8. The Overseas Highway

Key West, FL http://www.fla-keys.com/the-highway-that-goes-to-sea/
Excellent
62%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
2%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 6,886 reviews

The Overseas Highway

A charming 110 mile highway running the length of the Keys.

Reviewed By A3444WAmartinp - Malmö, Sweden

It was really like a dream when we drove to key west. Weather was perfect so many stops you can make on the way I would recommend to stop by right after 7 mile bridge bound key west and walk onto the old bridge and also Irie island eats as it’s one of the best food trucks we have ever eaten lunch at and we have tried many world wide!

9. State A1A

FL
Excellent
67%
Good
17%
Satisfactory
17%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 6 reviews

State A1A

Reviewed By Shawni_and_Buck - Dubuque, United States

Fun way to drive the east coast of Florida if you can stay on it. The hubby and I attempted this drive and were on A1A part of the time but ended up going off a few times way sooner than we wanted and then needed to try to find our way back. This is mostly cause we were attempting to just follow the ocean and not necessarily the signs, so this was our bad. We would definitely do it again if we had the option with some better navigation in place. You need to make sure you stop and check out the beaches to get the full experience. The ocean views were breathtaking.

10. Sanibel Causeway

Causeway Drive, Sanibel Island, FL http://Iloveshelling.com
Excellent
60%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
2%
Terrible
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4.5 based on 1,344 reviews

Sanibel Causeway

Reviewed By thaward - The Villages, United States

Driving over the Causeway bridge heading towards the island of Sanibel, you get this amazing elevated view of the bays and surrounding waterways. It’s beautiful and tranquil any day of the year. Once on the narrow causeway, you will find sandy beaches and places to park along both sides of the road. Picnic tables and grills as well as restroom facilities are located near the second, lower bridge before arriving on Sanibel. This is a popular area for locals and day tourists to swim, paddle board, fish, kayak, and have a relaxing time and a picnic meal!

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