Friday, March 2, 2012

Fort Lauderdale beach and vacation

Fort Lauderdale has a fantastic beach and is a great place for a vacation.  In fact, it makes an ideal 'vacation combo' with Key West.  If you're going to do this then I would definitely start in Fort Lauderdale and then travel to Key West rather than the other way round.

This post is about Fort Lauderdale - let's start with its beach and then afterwards look at the other attractions Fort Lauderdale has to offer.

Fort Lauderdale beach
Welcome to Fort Lauderdale beach - in orange
Welcome to Fort Lauderdale beach - in pink!
These pictures are all taken within 2 miles of eachother.  We start with the very southern end - where the road is South Fort Lauderdale Boulevard, a few hundred yards south of the Elbo Room.
Fort Lauderdale beach.  The entire length of FL seaside is like this - beach, white wall, then wide sidewalk, the road, then sidewalk then shops/hotels/bars.
This is the south end and the beach at about 5pm. You can see the shadows caused by the tall buildings over the road. The sun sets behind the beach.
Fort Lauderdale beach at the very south end at about 4pm.  Nice and quiet.  This is the quietest end.  It gets very busy in the middle, even more so at the weekends. This is looking north.
Same place as above but to the south.
The sun setting on another fine day.  The distinctive white glossy wall and 'turret' which runs for miles all the way along the sea front.
Always something to see on Fort Lauderdale beach.  These good looking seagulls - not sure of the type - with their yellow bills and crazy hair.  Of the hundreds of seagulls I only saw 4 of these guys.
'Outch the water's cold.'  Actually it's lovely and we swam lots. 
Only a small surf.
Lovely fine sand on the FL beach
North end of the beach looking north.  Not too busy - it's middle of the afternoon on a week day.
Now we switch just over a mile north and the other end of the FL beach.  And we also switch to morning rather than day time.  This was about 8am - my morning walk by the sea - lovely and peaceful.  

Just me, a few other walkers, and a man in a wet suit in the water with a metal detector looking for his fortune.  Yes, there are some strange ones!
Early morning tracks.
Early morning it's peaceful.
Bird's eye view of the northern section of Fort Lauderdale beach.

Other things to do in Fort Lauderdale or using Fort Lauderdale as a base

Kayaking in the Everglades is an unforgettable experience.  Especially navigating the alligators.
Fort Lauderdale is a party town and has it's share of part places and branded bars.
Fort Lauderdale also has excellent big name hotels.  This in the bar at the  Ritz Carlton.
Fort Lauderdale's large Barnes and Noble.  It's easy to get around in Fort Lauderdale.  And the shopping is great with loads of stores like this.  Also you are 45 minutes away from Aventura and Sawgrass Mills malls.
Fort Lauderdale's Whole Foods Market.

If you like big name hotels - Fort Lauderdale is great for you.  This shot taken from the 22nd floor of the Hilton looking out to the W next door.  And then other big hotel chains in the background.
Escape Fort Lauderdale and you're in the grip of the Everglades and fantastic wildlife.
Cypress trees with spanish moss by the visitor center in Loxahatchee preserve.  We were the only people there!
Impressive Fort Lauderdale sunrise to start the day.
Everglades alligators are close by FL!

If you've got any other suggestions for cool things in FL, I'd love to hear them.  Please leave a comment in the comment box below.