Florida - Landmarks and Points of Interest | Travel | Smithsonian
Current Issue
September 2014  magazine cover
Subscribe

Save 81% off the newsstand price!

Florida - Landmarks and Points of Interest

Florida - Landmarks and Points of Interest

smithsonian.com

For visitors who want to soak up the Florida sunshine on foot, there is no better place to do so than along the historic streets of Fernandina Beach. 55 well-preserved blocks define the city's historic zone. From Romanesque to Victorian to Mission-style, many of the architectural touchstones of American building can be seen here.

Travelers looking for a quirky destination should stopover in Gainesville at the Historic Haile Homestead at Kanapaha Plantation. Built in 1854, this 1,500-acre cotton plantation was originally owned by Thomas Evans and his wife, Serena Chesnut Haile. One of the last remaining antebellum homes still standing in Florida, the homestead is also exceptional because of its "Talking Walls." The entire Haile family made a practice of writing on the walls of their home. More than 12,500 words grace the walls of almost every room.

Called America's Stonehenge by many, the Coral Castle in Homestead is a must-see for visitors in the area. Originally called Rock Gate Park, this site is where a diminutive man named Edward Leedskalnin hand-carved and sculpted over 1,100 tons of coral rock into a variety of objects, including a rocking chair, fountain, heart-shaped dining table, sundial and obelisk. The monumental project took almost 30 years to complete and was, according to Leedskalnin, a tribute to his ladylove, who left him at the altar the day before their wedding.

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus