With new routes from Norwegian Airlines joining BA and Virgin on our Florida flights itinerary, Kenwood Travel’s fly-and-stay prices to the Sunshine State are even more competitive than ever this year. Tampa and Miami are now being served by direct flights, opening the door for quick transfers to Bradenton and Anna Maria on the west coast, and the Keys to the south. Time to re-assess your Florida holiday options? Here’s a quick refresh from the Kenwood team on what’s hot for 2019.

A taste of Tampa

The Norwegian Airlines service touches down twice a week in Tampa. So there’s a selection of new Florida flights available if you’re looking for Gulf Coast holidays. Busch Gardens is the big draw round here of course. And, as the only theme park in the vicinity, that comes as no surprise. Look out for the launch of Tigris, its ninth rollercoaster, this spring. Away from the adrenaline-fuelled fun, Tampa is alive with soul food restaurants, Cuban culture and the cigar factory heritage of Ebor City old town. Getting around is a doddle too, thanks to the reintroduction of Tampa’s much-loved old tram network, which is free to passengers for the next three years.

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Epicurean Hotel, Autograph Selection
For a rooftop bar, sumptuous spa and handy South Tampa location, this new, contemporary-chic hotel is just the ticket for slick city stays.

Cigar rolling in historic Ebor City, Tampa

Cigar rolling in historic Ebor City, Tampa

Awesome Orlando

What is there to say about holidays to Orlando that hasn’t been said already? World travel’s theme park capital needs no intro when it comes to thrills and spills. But you know all about Disney and Universal. What you might have overlooked however are some of the lesser-known attractions in Orlando. Kennedy Space Centre anyone? Real intergalactics time their visits with a real rocket launch (the next one is mid-February 2019, so the countdown has almost begun – Ed), but year-round this affordable family favourite offers lots to admire. From IMAX Theatre shows to Space Shuttle Atlantis and Journey to Mars, your mission starts here. Time to get those Florida flights booked?

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Bahama Bay Resort
Catching some of that Caribbean flavour that permeates Floridian beach life, this 70-acre Kissimmee condo resort promises upbeat family fun in the Disney area. The beach may not technically be real, but there are plenty of palm trees, karaoke singalongs and happy-hour cocktails to fulfil genuine holiday spirit.

My Miami

As a gateway to classic Art Deco style and sizzling South Beach glam, Miami holidays ooze effortless cool. Rock up for hotel pool parties, Ocean Drive bar crawls and glitzy club nights, all wrapped up in that famous tropical climate that is more akin to the Caribbean than mainland USA. Everywhere is bathed in pastel shades and the nostalgic hue of summer, so prepare to put your Instagram poses to the test during your visit #travelgoals.

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Red South Beach Hotel
A classic Miami pied a terre: deco building, courtyard pool and footsteps from the beach. But this hip hideaway breaks the mold with its vibrant red colour scheme and foodie-favourite restaurant, Barok Miami Beach. Don’t miss the seafood risotto…

Miami

Miami is awash with pastel colours, even at night

Keep it Key West

The ‘Tamiami Trail’ (Tampa to Miami) is an epic drive, taking in ‘Alligator Alley’, acres of orange groves and some wistful stretches of Atlantic coastline. But for Florida’s best road trip, don’t stop there; continue south from Miami to the sunshine state’s most southerly city, Key West. The route takes you on the famous Overseas Highway – 110 miles of sapphire sea views, with the Gulf of Mexico to the right and the Atlantic on your left. The road network is an engineering marvel and comprises 37 bridges, including the impressive Seven Mile Bridge. It’s inspirational stuff, but you won’t be the only driver taking it all in. Traffic does build up in peak times but Kenwood has discovered a hack: beat traffic jams by downloading the local sheriff’s app. We also recommend ditching your wheels when you arrive. Key West’s Duval Loop Bus is a free hop-on, hop-off service.

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The Inn at Key West
Follow the artists and writers who drew inspiration from Key West’s lyrical scenery at this timber-fronted inn where lofty palms sway above the island’s largest fresh water pool, cosy rooms have private balconies and tiki bar tipples bring cooling respite from the south Florida heat.

Seven Mile Bridge

Road trippin’ on Seven Mile Bridge to Key West, Florida’s most southerly city

*Featured image courtesy of Lance Asper, Unsplash.com

About The Author

Since leaving a role in local broadcasting, Ken spent six seasons working on cruise ships before turning his experiences into a popular travel blog and pod cast. But it wasn’t long before wanderlust came calling again, and after travelling extensively throughout Asia and the Americas, the time has come for this roving writer to tell the tales of his adventures once more.

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