Things You Need to Do If It’s Your First Time Visiting Fort Lauderdale

First time visiting Fort Lauderdale? Well, you’re in for an experience of a lifetime! Across the Sunshine State, you’ll find a variety of diverse cities with different atmospheres and vibes, but Fort Lauderdale is unmatched. From stunning beaches to luxury yachts to vibrant art and culture, you’ll never forget your time spent in the “Venice of America.” For an easy guide to all of the best attractions, restaurants, shopping, and more, unlock your free Travel Guide!


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Things to Do During Your First Time Visiting Fort Lauderdale 

Lounge on the Top Beaches in South Florida

24 miles of pristine, white-sand beaches means you have plenty of room to spread out, lounge, people watch, swim, and get fresh air! Here are some Broward County beaches you need to bury your toes into for a relaxing spring break or summer vacation experience: 

See Fort Lauderdale from an Ocean Point-of-View on a Sightseeing Cruise

Exploring Bahia Mar Marina is a must for anyone searching for beautiful scenery, luxurious activities, and posh shopping. 

While exploring the marina, you might hop aboard the Jungle Queen Cruise for a daytime sightseeing cruise along the coast. You’ll be able to see some of Fort Lauderdale’s top attractions from the water, as well as some of the most extravagant, world-class mega yachts in the United States! 

Wine, Dine, and Shop ‘Til You Drop on Las Olas Boulevard 

Known as Fort Lauderdale’s “style mile,” shopaholics will be in paradise exploring Las Olas. Popular boutiques, restaurants, cafes, and bars decorate the ritzy boulevard. 

And, when you get tired of walking, have a seat on a water taxi or gondola and travel by water on the Intracoastal Waterway. 

Learn Something New at One of These Fort Lauderdale Museums 

NSU Art Museum 

For a peaceful day of discovering art pieces and getting your daily steps in, visit the NSU Art Museum. This downtown Fort Lauderdale attraction features fine Modernist art pieces, rotating exhibits, and a café with food, beer, wine, and cappuccinos for an afternoon pick-me-up! 

Museum of Discovery and Science 

Explore a top family-friendly attraction in Fort Lauderdale when you visit The Museum of Discovery and Science. The kids will have so much fun checking out the two floors of interactive exhibits, IMAX theater, and “Explore Store.” 

Historic Stranahan House Museum

The Stranahan House on New River is the oldest surviving structure in Broward County and a must for the history buff in your group. Immerse your mind in history lessons about pioneers Frank and Ivy Stranahan as you tour the historic Fort Lauderdale house.


bonnett house


Bonnet House

Art lovers, history buffs, plant people, and Instagram influencers can all agree that the Bonnet House Museum and Gardens is a must during your first time in Fort Lauderdale. The grounds serve as a last native barrier habitat with five distinct ecosystems on the property! Explore the pretty gardens, take pictures, and tour the historic Bonnet House itself for a glimpse at architectural history. 

The Best Place to Stay for Your First Time 

fort lauderdale vacation rental

A full day of exploring leads to the most restful night of sleep, and Fort Lauderdale Stays makes it that much easier with comfortable top-notch amenities in vacation rentals near all of the best Fort Lauderdale attractions.

Browse our stunning waterfront properties, choose your favorite heated pool or Intracoastal view, and book your ultimate Florida vacation now!