We all need a little help from our friends. But when it comes to Florida tourism, wouldn’t you rather trust the experts?

It’s a big state with a lot to do. Things are constantly changing. You want to be as informed as possible in the land of endless beaches and theme parks.

We compiled eight of our favorite Florida travel tips from eight of our favorite travel bloggers.

If you’re looking for more from these incredible writers, follow them on their blogs or social media accounts. You’ll be glad you did!

I Love Shelling: Beach Shelling

Question: Where would you suggest we go shelling while we are there on our vacation?

Answer: The beaches change every day. I wish I had a crystal beach ball to know exactly where and what time the very best shells will appear in the future… but then again, different people like different shells. Just remember that it’s a treasure hunt! Enjoy the whole experience of the hunt so keep an open mind and a good attitude. For me, the best time to go shelling is… Any chance I get! If its high tide, low tide, morning , noon or night- any time to have an excuse to get to the beach is a good one. So here’s a few shelling tips for different times and beach conditions to use as clues for your treasure hunt for your favorite seashells…..

#1 Shelling Tip- Look at the tides for the days you will be here. I have 3 tide charts to choose from. An hour before and after low tide is a great way to start your shelling trip.

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Kara Franker: Happy Hour in Miami

There’s nothing better than the happy hour scene in Miami. Whether you’re in the mood for comfy and casual or upscale and trendy, there’s plenty of excellent happy hour bars and restaurants to try that will have you and your wallet feeling very happy.

Ted’s Hideaway in SoFi

Located in the South of Fifth neighborhood, Ted’s Hideaway is an unassuming dive bar where low-key locals, late-night club-goers, and just about anyone else can drink in harmony. Its giant, neon-purple sign leads the way to a dark, smoky interior, which boasts classic elements like a pool table, a juke box, and of course, the bar. Go there during happy hour, which runs from noon to 8 p.m. daily, and get 2-for-1 drafts, wines and well drinks.

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Orlando Informer: New Disney Restaurants

The dining, shopping, and entertainment district formerly known as Downtown Disney may have finished its transformation into Disney Springs nearly two years ago, but that hasn’t stopped the area from continuing to unfurl new experiences and recruit new tenants. As of today, a whole swath of them are now open, representing something of a mini-landmark for the newly-reborn district.

The Edison, a venue which was initially announced all the way back in 2015, is currently in the midst of its soft-opening period (after having already thrown a grand New Year’s Eve gala over the weekend). The neighboring Maria & Enzo’s Ristorante and Pizza Ponte are now open, while Enzo’s Hideaway Tunnel Bar is expected to bow sometime within the next week. These last three represent more modern Italian concepts, and they were only revealed by Disney a few months ago. Taken altogether, all four properties are operated by the Patina Restaurant Group (which also manages Disney Springs’s Morimoto Asia and Epcot’s twin Italian offerings, Tutto Italia Ristorante and Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria), and all four will feature an interesting interrelationship in terms of location as well as narrative.

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Tasty Chomps: Orlando Street Food

Had a truly delicious lunch today at Sticky Rice Lao Street Food!

Located on the first floor of Bikkuri in Mills 50, the owners of Sticky Rice has transformed the small restaurant into something resembling an outdoor Laotian night market stall with dark ceilings and low, wooden tables.

The menu is very affordable with most dishes ranging from $4 to $5, perfect sizes for sharing over Laotian beers with friends if one chooses. You’d be tempted to order the whole menu. It reminded me of places my uncles would go to enjoy grilled meats and beers (they serve BeerLao here!) late into the night growing up.

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Miami Nice: Key West Scooter Tour

my parents pulled a Parrot Head move and spent the summer in Key West on their boat – we went to visit and I finally got to tick a visit to the Hemingway House off my list. More on the marina life in Key West later. The only mode of transportation you need, and the only kind you can find parking for, in Key West is scooter – available for rent just about everywhere on the island and surprisingly easy to learn how to drive, even for someone who rarely gets behind the wheel like myself (perks of working from home in my pajamas every day).

Rent a scooter and make a few pit stops at these nice places:

Louie’s Backyard + Dog Beach

Louie’s Backyard is a classic Key West bar/patio where there’s a chatty bartender and a cold beer waiting for you. The nicest part about this chill spot is the very, very cute view of the dogs playing and swimming in the water at the dog beach right next door. Louie’s backyard is basically a platform overlooking the beach where dogs of all sizes are having a better time than you will all weekend – and I always have a really good time in Key West.

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Authentic Florida: Close Up Look at Stuart, FL

The charming and historic town of Stuart is whimsically known as the “Happiest Seaside Town.” Located on Florida’s East Coast in Martin County, Stuart is an authentic weekend escape that delivers a quaint vibe, endearing inns, sidewalk cafes, art galleries and boutiques.

Stuart is also known as the Sailfish Capital of the World where anglers vie for the sports fish in the deep blue Atlantic waters. The ocean, along with the St. Lucie and Indian Rivers, sets a breezy waterfront vibe for the community.

Stuart was once a thriving hub for growing Chrysanthemums, where they were often shipped by rail. Local trains still pass through town, adding historic ambiance to an era when locomotives shipped flowers, pineapples and other goods while bringing the first wave of tourists to Florida’s east coast.

Martin County may not be as well known as some of its east coast neighboring counties. That might be a gift for this south Florida destination that lacks the urban congestion and has miles of open beaches, parks and conservation lands reminiscent of Florida’s past. And Stuart is not only a prime place to enjoy your stay but also a launching point to discover the surrounding area.

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Travel Taste Click: 11 Reasons You’ll Fall in Love with Anna Maria Island

The first time I hopped out of the car, walked through a sand dune, and onto a beach on Anna Maria Island, I knew I had found something truly special. The small stretch of sand was dotted with a handful colorful beach umbrellas, the water was calm — a bright, clear shade of turquoise reminiscent of the Caribbean — and a gentle breeze was coming off the gulf water.

Since that first visit several years ago, I’ve visited numerous Florida beaches, but none quite match the charm or magic of Anna Maria Island.

While I’d love to keep my paradise a secret, that’s just not my style. I love this beach and want to share it! Here are 11 reasons I fell in love with Anna Maria Island, and why you most certainly will too.

11 Reasons You'll Fall in Love with Anna Maria Island

The sunrises and sunsets are incredibly beautiful.

The sunsets at Anna Maria Island are some of the best I’ve seen in Florida. Even cloudy sunsets are prettier than most! But the great thing about Anna Maria Island is that it’s an island, which means you can catch both the sunrise AND the sunset if you’d like. The Rod and Reel Pier located at the north end of the island is a great spot to catch the sunrise, and The Kokonut Hut is perfect for catching the sunset while you sip on a beachy cocktail.

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Natural North Florida: Suwannee River State Park

Located just off US90, between the towns of Live Oak and Madison, in Natural North Florida, Suwannee River State Park isn’t one of our largest parks, but it certainly is one of the most scenic.  It’s upstream of the confluence of the mighty Suwannee River and the lesser “upper” Withlacoochee River, right where the highway crosses the Suwannee River.

In addition to a boat ramp and excellent river access for both power boats and paddle craft, the park offers camping (RV and tent), cabins, and lots of hiking trails.  There are also restroom facilities and picnic areas overlooking the river.

Camping at Suwannee River State Park

Cabins and Lodging at Suwannee River State Park

“Located along the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail, each of five riverside cabins accommodate up to six people. These spacious two bedroom cabins have heating and cooling, an electric fireplace, screened porch and kitchenette. They are fully equipped with linens and kitchen utensils. Picnic tables and grills are conveniently located at each cabin. One cabin is ADA accessible. On weekends and holidays there is a two night minimum stay unless only one night is available between two confirmed reservations. Pets are not permitted in cabins. For the guest’s relaxation, televisions and phones are not provided. Reservations may be made up to 11 months in advance through ReserveAmerica . Book Online or call (800) 326-3521″

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