Are you looking for a way to surprise your kids with a spontaneous day trip but aren’t sure where to go? If you live in St. Augustine, Jacksonville, or any of the surrounding areas, there are so many incredible attractions within driving distance that your family would love. Here are five places you can go with children less than three hours away from Northeast Florida.
1. Disney World and Universal Studios (Orlando, Florida)
Disney World and Universal Studios are about two hours away from Northeast Florida, and you can’t get much better than that! They’re essentially a paradise for children, teenagers, and adults, offering days’ worth of endless fun, rides, and activities. And if you live close enough, you won’t have to pay for airfare, hotel accommodations, or any other fees people accrue when they aren’t from this area.
2. The Kennedy Space Center (Titusville, Florida)
The Kennedy Space Center is another world-famous attraction two hours away from Northeast Florida that is perfect for the entire family. They offer exhibits, displays, historical memorabilia, and giant spacecraft. You can spend hours just looking at the fantastic galleries, learning about space travel, and even catch a show in one of the two IMAX theaters located within the complex!
3. Ichetucknee Springs State Park (Fort White, Florida)
Located just over two hours from Northeast Florida, Ichetucknee Springs State Park is an amazing place to take the entire family. The park is situated on 2,669 acres, full of hiking trails, beautiful water, and astounding wildlife, including gar, beaver, wild turkey, softshell turtle, otter, limpkin, and wood duck. Park activities include hiking, birdwatching, snorkeling, paddling, swimming, tubing, scuba diving, and much more!
4. Gatorland (Orlando, Florida)
After just a two-hour drive, you and the entire family can find yourselves in Gatorland, a theme park and wildlife refuge, home to alligators, crocodiles, wild cats, birds, snakes, tortoises, and other reptilian critters. They have alligators of all sizes, ranging from babies to fully grown gators measuring 14 feet long. They also have the largest collection of white leucistic alligators in the world!
5. Silver Glen Springs (Silver Glen Springs, Florida)
Silver Glen Springs is the primary attraction of the Silver Glen Springs Recreation Area in the Ocala National Forest. It’s located just an hour and a half away from Northeast Florida, offering crystal clear waters that are perfect for snorkeling. You and the kids can spend the day picnicking, hiking, canoeing, and swimming in the most beautiful body of water in the entire state!
Want to Extend Your Stay? Check Out Some Short-Term Rentals
If you want to turn that spontaneous day trip into a weekend getaway, consider short-term rentals in or near these areas. There’s nothing more fun than an impromptu family trip that turns into a grand adventure. If none of the above options sound right for your family, be sure to check out our list of fun family vacation spots within driving distance of Jacksonville.
Looking for a Home in Northeast Florida?
Northeast Florida is optimally located just a short drive from all of these beautiful attractions, making it the best area to live in Florida. If you’d like to find homes for sale in St. Augustine, Jacksonville, or any of the surrounding areas, contact the Welch Team today!
And don’t forget to grab a copy of our free buyer’s guide, which includes tips from the experts, a list of our most trusted vendors, and a comprehensive walkthrough of the home buying process.