Now’s The Time for a Spring Staycation

It’s spring staycation season! And if you’re looking for an amazing spring staycation, you don’t have to look too far. We’ve got all the fun right here in our own backyard. Stay and play locally at Orlando’s attractions, golf courses and savor the flavors of a variety of dining options nearby, or explore some of our favorite places just a short drive away for a fun springtime escape.

Here’s our list of places for you to enjoy a spring staycation!

Sarasota County

Travel time: 2 to 2.5 hours

Sarasota County is a diverse destination full of various beaches, community activities, events, attractions and restaurants that keep the area alive and active. The arts and culture spread throughout the county are second to none, and many can find themselves experiencing a highly acclaimed art show or getting a chance to gawk at some of the inspirational and breathtaking artwork done at different museums and studios.

The Ringling Museum of Art is a place full of beauty and wonder on the grounds of The Ringling campus. In 1925, circus showman John Ringling decided to build an art museum, both as a legacy meant to outlast his business interests and as a memorial to his wife Mable and himself. As a platform for education, exposure and experimentation, the Sarasota Art Museum is a staple throughout Sarasota County. The Sarasota Art Museum partnered with Ringling College of Art + Design to transform the historic Sarasota High School into an art museum and visual arts educational center.

Of course, Sarasota is also home to Siesta Key Beach, Lido Beach and St. Armand’s Circle. Right around the corner is Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, where you can become environmental stewards and meets some otters, manatees, sea turtles and more!

Come see why the destination has been labeled Florida’s Cultural Coast.

Crystal River Outdoor Adventures

Travel Time: 1.5 to 2 hours

Crystal River is the perfect place to partake in the popular pastime of recreational scalloping. Scalloping season runs through September and is a safe and fun underwater opportunity for the whole family.

There is no shortage of tours available in the area, and most require you to bring only a swimsuit and a towel. However, check with your tour operator before you go to find out if you need to bring your own equipment. Additionally, some seaside restaurants will cook your catch when you get off the boat.

The warm water of the area’s springs draws manatees throughout the year. Tour companies offer guided manatee swim experiences to provide an up-close look at these gentle creatures in their natural environment. While you can see manatees all year-round, the cold winter months of December, January and February are ideal and provide the most opportunities for a manatee encounter.

Devil’s Den

Travel Time: 1.5 to 2 hours

Take a step back into prehistoric North America with a trip to Devil’s Den, an underground spring and dry cave right here in Florida. Devil’s Den, which dates back 33 million years, is home to many extinct animal fossils and ancient rock formations that will transport you to another time.

The spring’s clear waters are 72 degrees year-round — the perfect temperature to cool you off on your scuba diving or snorkeling adventure. A certification level of open water or above and a dive buddy are required for scuba diving admission. No certification is required to snorkel.

The Devil’s Den property has onsite lodging options, including cabins, an RV park and tent campgrounds. While you’re there, you can prepare a meal on one of the charcoal grills, swim in the onsite pool and play a selection of lawn games.

Treasure Island

Travel Time: 1.5 to 2 hours

Just a short drive from Orlando, this West Coast beach town near St. Petersburg and Tampa is the perfect place to go for a relaxing getaway. While there are plenty of places to explore during your trip, many local resorts have so much to do on property that you’ll never have to leave.

The Bilmar Beach Resort, located on Gulf Boulevard, has 167 guest rooms in which 90% are beachfront. Not only will you have beautiful views from your room, but you can also kick back and relax on 500 feet of Gulf of Mexico coastline and participate in several beach activities while you’re there.

Stroll along a mile-long beachfront walking trail, kayak or paddle board in the clear-as-glass water or go on a parasailing adventure during the day then enjoy beach fire pit areas as the sun dips below the horizon. Even more, all guest rooms come with two beach chairs per day, so you don’t need to wake up too early to claim your spot.

Cypress Cove

Travel Time: 1 to 1.5 hours

When planning a staycation, you’re often looking for a relaxing resort, complete with a selection of amenities, fun things to do on property and comfortable accommodations.

Cypress Cove, a 300-acre, family-owned resort in Kissimmee, has all of this and more. Complete with 84 luxurious villa hotel rooms and apartments, a modern RV park and campsites, this clothing-optional resort has something for everyone.

While the resort is just a short drive from the area’s theme parks, there are plenty of on-site activities to explore as well. The property’s 50-acre lake, with its white, sandy beach, is perfect for a scenic boat ride or lounging on the shore. Two sparkling pools offer a relaxing area to soak up some sunshine, and the tennis and pickleball courts are a place for some friendly competition. There are also weekly entertainment, themed weekends and annual special events scheduled for additional fun things to do.

Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center

Travel Time: 20 minutes to 1 hour

Located in Central Florida, Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center offers an array of family-friendly activities. From March through May enjoy spring events and activities including the interactive live show Paint Me A Fairytale, a spring-inspired scavenger hunt, cookie decorating, and more.

If you’d like to spend some time in or near the water, the resort also features Crystal River Rapids, an action river, and Cypress Spring Water Park. But wait, there’s more! Enjoy the four-and-a-half acres of indoor garden atriums, nine award-winning restaurants, bars, world-class Relâche Spa, and state-of-the-art fitness center.

A bonus: The resort is only minutes away from Orlando’s theme parks and attractions.

Rosen Shingle Creek

Travel Time: 20 to 30 minutes

Spanning along 255 acres of Shingle Creek, Rosen Shingle Creek is a luxury hotel wrapped in Spanish revival architecture. Located on Universal Boulevard, the location is just a short drive from the Orlando International Airport and the Orange County Convention Center.

Ease your mind as you enjoy any of the four seasonally heated pools or stroll around the hotel. As a foodie you can explore dining at top-rated restaurants including A Land Remembered and Cala Bella.

As a golfer you can visit the Shingle Creek Golf Club designed by the Arnold Palmer Design Company. The golf club offers a handcrafted, championship course for golfers of all levels to enjoy. You are guaranteed to feel a challenge, but the reward will be worth it.

What a joy it is that options for a spring staycation are endless in our community! So now’s the time to decide. Where and how will you choose to spend your spring staycation?

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Written by Staff Writer

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