Come explore the Sunshine State, from the Moorish architecture of St. Augustine and Space Coast of Cape Canaveral to the excitement of Epcot and warm beauty of Florida’s Gulf of Mexico.
1 Arrive in Florida
Arrive in Jacksonville, Florida today and transfer to you hotel. Meet your Tour Manager and traveling companions for a welcome dinner at 6:00 p.m. Meal: D
2 Augustine Trolley Tour and Columbia Restaurant
Begin the day with a narrated trolley tour of
historic St. Augustine to learn of its exciting past. See the
Fernando-Lambias House, built in 1763 and Our Lady of
La Leche Shrine. Visit the Castillo de San Marcos, the
Spanish fortress which dominates the beautiful bay area.
Lunch is at the exquisite Columbia Restaurant in the
heart of the historic district.
Enjoy award-winning Spanish/
Cuban cuisine in the comfort of hand-painted tiles and
Spanish-style fountains. Later, board the Victory III
a relaxing cruise of Matanzas Bay. Take in the beauty of
the red-tiled city roofs and maybe even catch sight of the
many dolphins which inhabit the bay. Meals: B, L
3 Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach
Venture to the small town of Fernandina Beach on quaint Amelia
Island. Board the vessel for a cruise to Cumberland Island,
home to one of the nation’s last herds of wild horses. See
shrimp boats and historic Fort Clinch from the water.
Later, stroll the streets of Old Towne Fernandina Beach where an
old-fashioned ice cream parlor and Florida’s oldest saloon,
The Palace, await. Meals: B, D
4 Kennedy Space Center
Depart St. Augustine today and make our way south along the coast to the Cape Canaveral area. Our destination is the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Here we tour the birthplace of American spaceflight to see launch pads and the iconic Vehicle Assembly Building. Our Behind-the-Scenes tour shows us the restricted areas of the historic Launch Complex 39 and see the launch pads used by SpaceX and ULA. Meal: B
5 Full Day at Epcot
Today we spend the day at Epcot, one of the nation’s premier attractions. First opened in 1982, Epcot was the second theme park opened in Florida by Walt Disney. Spanning 300 acres, Epcot is dedicated to the celebration of human achievement namely technology, innovation and international culture. The park is divided into two sections: Future World, made up of eight pavilions, and World Showcase, themed to 11 world nations. Meal: B
6 Bok Tower Gardens
Depart Orlando today and
venture west across the state stopping at Bok Tower
Gardens. This National Historic Landmark features
250 acres of ferns, palms, oaks and pines which are
highlighted by the 205 foot neo-Gothic and art deco
“Singing Tower.” The tower’s carillon consists of sixty
cast bronze bells that are precisely tuned and arranged
in chromatic progression. Enjoy the gardens and the
tower’s “concert” before traveling to your hotel. Meals: B, D
7 Tarpon Springs and Hellas Greek Restaurant
Today we pay a visit to Tarpon Springs, a legacy of the Greek sponge divers who settled here is the early 1900s. Stroll the historic sponge and fishing docks and shop in the stores which are reminder of the once booming industry. Lunch today in included at Hellas Greek Restaurant which gives us a taste of the unique Greek culture of the area.
Back in St. Petersburg, visit the Salvador Dali Museum, the art museum dedicated to the work of Dali which houses the largest collection of his works outside Europe. Meals: B, L
8 Ca’ d’Zan Mansion and St. Armands Circle
We travel to Sarasota today for a visit to Ca’ d’Zan, the dazzling palatial mansion of the John and Mable Ringling, built as a tribute to the American Dream, reflecting the splendor and romance of Italy. Described as “the last of the Gilded Age mansions” to be built in America, Ca' d’Zan has 56 incredible rooms filled with art and original furnishings.
Later, we spend time in St. Armand’s Circle located on lushly landscaped island of Lido Key. Along with the superb exclusive shop, galleries, boutiques and restaurants, there is also the Circus Ring of Fame, a "sidewalk of circus stars." Before returning to our hotel, we stop at Der Dutchman Restaurant for a hearty Amish-style meal. Enjoy their Barn-Raising Dinner Buffet, bountiful salad bar and Amish pies and desserts. Meals: B, D
9 Homeward Bound
After breakfast, a group transfer to the Tampa International Airport is included for flights out after 11:00 a.m. Meal: B