10 Best Scenic Drives In Florida, USA

scenic drives in florida
Kanika
Kanika
Published

Florida is a vast, flat peninsula that has everything that a traveller seeks. From wild beaches to untamed wetlands, the bountiful nature is yours for the taking! What makes Florida so intoxicating is its warm weather and rich mangroves, golden seashores and calm seas, auburn sunsets and a wide range of wildlife! It is the diversity of its landscapes that continue to attract people from all over the world. If you want to take home an exotic tan that reeks of a vacation well spent, then Florida is the place to be. But most of all, you must come here for its fun and fabulous panoramic road trips from Miami to Key West, that will leave you begging for more. With more than a hundred charming routes, here are some of the best scenic drives in Florida, USA, that you must experience on your trip.

1. Indian River Lagoon National Scenic Byway

Scenic highway
Source: PX Fuel

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The Indian River Lagoon National Scenic Byway is surrounded by flourishing natural habitat that is rich in flora and fauna, as well as jaw-dropping scenery. This scenic route meanders through state and local parks, national seashore, and wildlife refuges. There is never a dull moment in this long and panoramic route. The Indian River is home to more than 4,000 species of plants and animals, the largest in the country! You will not only enjoy the lavish countryside, but you can also engage in activities like boating, fishing, biking, hiking, and swimming along the way!

2. Florida Keys Scenic Highway

Florida Keys 2007
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Dominika Durtan used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Known as one of the best scenic drives in the world, Florida Keys Scenic Highway is 110 miles (177 km) of completely natural beauty that spans from Mile Marker 110 all the way to Marker 0 in Old Town Key West. This highway corridor is accompanied by clear water on each side. It truly encompasses the state’s natural beauty and wonders. If you are looking for a picturesque drive through the heartland of Florida, then this one will not disappoint you.

3. Lemon Bay/Myakka Trail Scenic Highway

Highway through nature
Source: Pixabay

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

This 47-mile (76km) Lemon Bay/Myakka Trail is a magnificent drive that cuts through the southwestern Florida coast and gives you the best of Old Florida. Myakka State Forest is not only picturesque but also a perfect pit stop along the way for cycling and hiking. Don’t forget to stop by the Butterfly Farm at Lemon Bay Park. The Manasota Key beaches offer an idyllic setting for a leisurely swim, boating, and relaxing. This route is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in Floridian culture and slow travel through one of its most panoramic routes.

4. A1A Scenic & Historic Coastal Byway

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<i>A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway - Scenic A1A</i>
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Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Unknown author or... used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

A1A Scenic & Historic Coastal Byway is North America’s most historic and scenic routes. This 72 mile (115kms approx.) stretch navigates through history, scenery, and nature. You will be accompanied by verdant plains and crystal clear waters on both sides that have been a crucial part of American history for nearly five centuries! It gently snakes through the country’s oldest city, St. Augustine, finally terminating at the Gamble Rogers Memorial Park on Flagler Beach. On this highway, you will cross many National Monuments, State Parks, nature trails, and charming beaches. If you are a history lover, then this is the best excursion for you amid nature and beauty.

5. Scenic Highway 30A

Highland scenic highway
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Squashpup used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Looking for one of the best beach spots in Florida? Look no further! This 24-mile (39km) corridor snakes along the Gulf of Mexico in Northwest Florida’s Walton County. Apart from its stunning landscape, you will also get to see pristine white sand beaches and rare coastal dune lakes. For this reason, Scenic Highway 30A is a major attraction for beach lovers. Don’t just come here for the sun and sand because there are plenty of other fun things to do as well. You will especially love the traditional 2-3 storey Floridian homes and seaside cottages that dot the landscape.

6. Tamiami Trail

Tamiami Trail Construction Photos
Source: Photo by Flickr user JaxStrong used under CC BY 2.0

If you are in South Florida and want to experience the Everglades, then Tamiami Trail will be one of your most scenic ways to do it. Spread over miles and miles of marshland scenery, don’t be surprised if you see alligators lounging on the side as you zip past them. But most importantly, Tamiami Trail brings you closer to nature with some outstanding stops along the way. You will drive across a mile-long (1.6km) bridge with stunning views of the Everglades and nature.

7. Pensacola Scenic Bluffs Highway

John A. Latsch State Park overlook
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user McGhiever used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The Pensacola Scenic Bluffs is an 11-mile (18km) highway that crosses through miles and miles of wetlands that supports the diverse flora and fauna in the region. As a visitor on this byway, you will be able to witness a large variety of natural resources, including massive trees, waterways filled with fishes, and clay deposits that were historically used to make bricks. You will also get to experience the rich history of this region, complete with sprawling ocean views. This is the perfect place for a family picnic on a Sunday afternoon!

8. Big Bend Scenic Byway

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Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Kharker used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The 220-mile (354 km) Big Bend Scenic highway needs at least two days to fully explore. But once you are on the road, you will be transported to a whole new world of wilderness, waterways, woods, and wildlife. This highway is incredibly popular amongst nature seekers who would want to get lost in the verdant greens of the forests. This is an all-season highway with April being the best month to travel for its wildflowers and songbirds. Some people also prefer the fall season to witness the bird migrations. Want to see some wildlife along the way? Plan a trip in winter when you can spot alligators basking in the sun and eagles nesting!

9. Old Florida Heritage Highway

Paynes Prairie State Preserve-2
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Mistoffeles used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

As the name suggests, Old Florida Heritage Highway, is the best place to experience the cultural heritage of Florida. This rustic corridor passes through Paynes Prairie State Preserve, forested countryside, and University of Florida’s Lake Wauburg. It is perfect for recreational activities such as birdwatching, bicycling, hiking, and canoeing.

10. Florida Black Bear Scenic Byway

FL Scenic Hwy 19; Black Bear Ends
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user DanTD used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Want to go into the Floridian hinterland? Florida Black Bear National Scenic Byway is a treasure trove of the state’s wilderness with a wide range of natural sites and a distinct ecosystem known as the Big Scrub. The Big Scrub is the largest and one-of-a-kind pine forest created from ancient sand dunes that adapted to the lack of water. Surrounded by Ocala National Forest, Lake George State Forest, Tiger Bay State Forest, and Heart Island Conservation Area, this byway will take you the closest to untamed Florida. You will also find the highest population of Black Bear in this region, hence the name.

Explore Florida through its scenic byways

Florida is known for its rich cultural diversity and stunning natural landscapes. Even though this flatland doesn’t rise above the sea level, its 1350-mile (2,100km) highway offers you plenty of opportunities to experience its diverse landscape through its scenic routes. If that sounds like your kind of holiday, then do check out these 10 best scenic drives in Florida, USA.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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My name is Kanika Gupta and I am from New Delhi, India. I am a passionate traveller because I believe in learning as much as I can about this world in my lifetime. I am also a voracious reader. So...Read more

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