Ways to Spend Your Days in Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale is a destination where visitors, from near and far, come for a beach vacation. But it’s not only about the beach. There is so much to do, see and experience that it’s almost impossible to fit it all in one vacation – which is why you’ll want to come back for more. Whether you are looking for a relaxing day, an exciting adventure or a bargain, here are some great ways to spend the day while visiting the beautiful city of Fort Lauderdale.

yellow boat water taxi sails across the open water

Water Taxi
Looking for a relaxing day? The water taxi is a hop-on, hop-off boating experience that takes you all around the city via the Intracoastal Waterway. They have open air, double-decker, and enclosed boats. Some even have bar service! Take in the views of the beautiful mansions and mega yachts that line the waterway.

Eggs Benedict with crab meat on a white plate.

My first favorite stop is at Shooters Waterfront. Try their brunch buffet that is available on the weekends. There are so many choices on their menu. If the full buffet sounds too filling, try the Crab Cake Benedict it is delish! Don’t forget the Frosé. My next favorite stop is Las Olas Boulevard – enjoy the dining, galleries, shopping and nightlife in this fun area. Grab dinner at Louie Bossi’s, they have a great vibe and their garden seating makes you feel like you are in a small Italian Village. An all-day ticket on the Water Taxi allows you to sightsee for the day and stroll the city streets in the evening. Definitely worth the price!

Professional horse Racing in Fort Lauderdale

Gulfstream Park
Feeling lucky? Gulfstream Park hosts thoroughbred racing year round and is the host to the annual Florida Derby. Watching the horses zoom by the guardrail is exhilarating. At the Village in Gulfstream Park, there are restaurants, bars, nightclubs, shops, and activities for the whole family. Challenge your friends or family to a bowling match at Strike 10, browse the shops throughout the village including Z Gallerie and West Elm. Worked up an appetite? Head to one of the many restaurants located in the Village. My favorite place to hang out is definitely Yard House. Between their beer selection and happy hour specials, this is the place to be. Bonus – from the Yard House patio, you can watch the jockeys and their horses as they trot around the paddock prior to their race.

Boat tour surrounding the Fort Lauderdale waters

Everglades Holiday Park
Nature lover? For a fun day outdoors full of adventure, Everglades Holiday Park is located west of Fort Lauderdale. With airboat rides and alligator shows, this place does not disappoint. The airboat ride is an hour-long tour through the Everglades with multiple alligator sightings (ranging in size from 3ft to 12ft) and tons of birds native to the area. After the ride, head over to the animal encounter area where you will have the opportunity to hold a gator! Not to worry, the handler is never out of reach.

Sawgrass Mills Mall
Bargain hunter? With over 300 stores and restaurants and over 2 million square feet of retail space, Sawgrass Mills is my favorite shopping destination. They have every outlet you can imagine. Prada, Versace and Gucci – “Oh my!” You can find anything in this mall. And if you’re worried about everything fitting in your luggage, there are multiple luggage stores throughout the mall to accommodate your purchases for safe travels home.

Blue and White Yacht sailing near the dock

This is just the beginning of ideas for how to spend your days in Fort Lauderdale. Whether you are here on vacation or here for business, this is a great area to explore. Come down and play in our sandbox without getting sand in your shorts!

To access more information about local restaurants, unique attractions, and special offers in Fort Lauderdale, visit our Destination Guide, or explore Hilton properties in Fort Lauderdale below.

Know Before You Go

  • Fort Lauderdale is known as “The Venice of America” as well as “The Yachting Capital of the World.”
  • Fort Lauderdale boasts more than 4,000 restaurants making it a haven for foodies.
  • Visit between June and August to enjoy the warm summer weather.
Brown haired woman posing for a picture.

This post was written by Hilton Suggests Team Member, Tracy N. Are you interested in traveling to Fort Lauderdale? Let us know if we can help you with any other recommendations. Tweet us for more great local travel tips!

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