Fort Lauderdale, Florida is a vibrant city that offers something for everyone. Whether you are looking for sun, sand, culture, or entertainment, you will find it in this coastal paradise. Here are some of the best things I like to do and see in Fort Lauderdale when I there.


Best and Restaurants

Fort Lauderdale has a diverse culinary scene, with options ranging from casual beachfront eateries to fine dining establishments. Some of the best restaurants in the city are:


    • Coconuts: This waterfront restaurant serves fresh seafood, salads, sandwiches, and burgers, with a laid-back vibe and stunning views of the Intracoastal Waterway. Try the coconut shrimp, the lobster roll, or the fish tacos, and enjoy the live music and happy hour specials.We been there many times for years and never be disappointed. Only one time when they chnanged the recepie for their famous scoobies, which is a Coconuts’ specialty consisting of blue crab fried in oil with lots and lots of garlic we got a little bit sad.

    • Casa D’Angelo²: This upscale Italian restaurant offers authentic dishes from various regions of Italy, prepared with high-quality ingredients and paired with an extensive wine list. The menu features classics like pasta, pizza, risotto, and veal, as well as specialties like lamb shank ossobuco, grilled octopus, and roasted duck. The elegant dining room and attentive service make this a perfect spot for a romantic date or a special occasion.

    • S3³: This trendy restaurant and lounge is located at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, and boasts a spectacular oceanfront setting. The name S3 stands for sun, surf, and sand, and the menu reflects that with a variety of dishes inspired by coastal cuisines from around the world. You can find sushi, ceviche, tacos, burgers, steaks, and more, as well as creative cocktails and craft beers. The outdoor patio and fire pits are ideal for enjoying the sunset and the nightlife.

Best Bars

Fort Lauderdale has a lively and diverse nightlife scene, with bars to suit every taste and mood. Some of the best bars in the city are:


    • Elbo Room: This is a legendary and iconic bar that has been open since 1938, and is known for its live music, cheap drinks, and friendly crowd. The bar is located on the corner of Las Olas Boulevard and A1A, and is a hotspot for locals and tourists alike. The bar has two floors, with a stage, a dance floor, and a balcony that overlooks the beach.

    • YOLO: This is a trendy and upscale bar that stands for You Only Live Once, and is known for its cocktails, food, and ambiance. The bar is located on Las Olas Boulevard, and is part of a complex that includes a restaurant, a lounge, and a courtyard. The bar has a sleek and modern decor, with a fireplace, a fountain, and a large bar. The bar also hosts events and parties throughout the week, such as ladies night, happy hour, and live music.

    • Tap 42: This is a casual and fun bar that is known for its craft beers, burgers, and brunch. The bar is located on Andrews Avenue, and is part of a chain that has several locations in South Florida. The bar has a large and rotating selection of beers on tap, as well as a menu that features gourmet burgers, salads, sandwiches, and more. The bar also has a popular brunch on weekends, with bottomless mimosas and bloody marys.

Best Hotels

Fort Lauderdale has a wide range of hotels to suit every budget and preference, from luxury resorts to cozy inns. Some of the best hotels in the city are:


    • The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale: This is a five-star hotel that offers the ultimate in comfort and elegance, with spacious rooms and suites, a spa, a fitness center, a pool, and a private beach club. The hotel also has a restaurant, a bar, and a lounge, as well as a rooftop terrace that offers stunning views of the ocean and the city skyline.

    • The Atlantic Hotel and Spa: This is a four-star hotel that offers a boutique and intimate experience, with stylish rooms and suites, a spa, a fitness center, a pool, and a sun deck. The hotel also has a restaurant, a bar, and a cafe, as well as a beach service that provides chairs, umbrellas, and towels. The hotel is located on the beachfront, and is close to many attractions and amenities.

    • The Riverside Hotel: This is a three-star hotel that offers a historic and charming experience, with cozy rooms and suites, a pool, and a fitness center. The hotel also has two restaurants, a bar, and a lounge, as well as a courtyard and a garden. The hotel is located on the Riverwalk, and is within walking distance of many museums, galleries, and theaters.

Best Music Festivals 

Fort Lauderdale is a great destination for music lovers, as it hosts several music festivals throughout the year, featuring local and international artists from various genres. Some of the best music festivals in the city are:

    • Tortuga Music Festival: This is a three-day country music festival that takes place on Fort Lauderdale Beach in April, and attracts over 100,000 fans. The festival features some of the biggest names in country music, as well as rock, pop, and folk artists. The festival also raises awareness and funds for marine conservation, and has a conservation village that showcases various organizations and initiatives.

    • Riptide Music Festival: This is a two-day alternative music festival that takes place on Fort Lauderdale Beach in December, and attracts over 40,000 fans. The festival features some of the best and emerging artists in alternative, indie, rock, and pop music, as well as comedy, art, and food. The festival also supports various charities and causes, such as the Broward Education Foundation and the Surfrider Foundation.

    • Jazz in the Gardens: This is a two-day jazz and R&B music festival that takes place at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, about 20 miles south of Fort Lauderdale, in March, and attracts over 70,000 fans. The festival features some of the most acclaimed and legendary artists in jazz, soul, funk, and blues music, as well as local and international talent. The festival also offers a variety of food, drinks, and vendors, as well as a pre-party and an after-party.

Best Cultural Attractions

Fort Lauderdale is not only a beach destination, but also a cultural hub, with many museums, galleries, and theaters to explore. Some of the best cultural attractions in the city are:


    • NSU Art Museum⁴: This modern art museum showcases a diverse collection of over 6,000 works, spanning from the 19th century to the present day. The museum features works by prominent artists such as Pablo Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Andy Warhol, and Cindy Sherman, as well as exhibitions by emerging and local artists. The museum also offers educational programs, lectures, films, and workshops for all ages and interests.

    • Broward Center for the Performing Arts⁵: This state-of-the-art venue is the largest performing arts center in Florida, and hosts a variety of shows and events throughout the year. You can catch Broadway musicals, concerts, ballets, operas, comedians, and more, in one of the four theaters that make up the center. The center also hosts festivals, community events, and educational initiatives, and has a scenic riverfront location.

    • Bonnet House Museum and Gardens: This historic estate was built in 1920 by artist Frederic Clay Bartlett, and is now a museum and a botanical garden. The house is filled with art, antiques, and personal belongings of the Bartlett family, and offers a glimpse into the life and style of the early 20th century. The gardens are a tropical oasis, with exotic plants, wildlife, ponds, and fountains. You can take a guided tour of the house and the gardens, or explore them at your own pace.

Best Beaches

Fort Lauderdale is famous for its beautiful beaches, which stretch for 23 miles along the Atlantic Ocean. The beaches offer a variety of activities and amenities, such as swimming, surfing, boating, fishing, volleyball, biking, and more. Some of the best beaches in the city are:

    • Fort Lauderdale Beach: This is the most popular and iconic beach in the city, with a wide and sandy shoreline, clear blue water, and a lively atmosphere. The beach is lined with hotels, restaurants, bars, and shops, and has a promenade that is perfect for walking, jogging, or rollerblading. The beach also hosts events and festivals throughout the year, such as the Fort Lauderdale Air Show, the Tortuga Music Festival, and the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

    • Lauderdale-by-the-Sea: This is a quaint and charming beach town on the outskirts of Fort Lauderdale, with a relaxed and family-friendly vibe. The beach is gorgeous and serves as one of the busiest sea turtle nesting sites in the world². Additionally, about 300 feet from shore, visitors can swim to discover a dazzling coral reef below – one of the few in the world you can access directly from the beach².

    • Hollywood Beach: This is a fun and vibrant beach that is located south of Fort Lauderdale, in the city of Hollywood. The beach is famous for its 2.5-mile boardwalk, which is filled with restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops, and offers entertainment and activities for all ages. The beach is also ideal for water sports, such as kayaking, paddle boarding, jet skiing, and parasailing.


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