Taking a vacation during the fall in Florida is an experience that you don’t want to miss. In Florida, the fall season will show you and your family how to enjoy the warm sun with a cool twist. With warm weather and a cool breeze, you can put your toes in the sand and enjoy a unique Florida atmosphere. Going on a Florida fall vacation is an adventure that every traveler should experience.
Florida fall vacations are a favorite among travelers thanks to cool, dry weather and less crowded beaches. In addition to enjoying the cooler weather, many vacationers choose to enjoy other popular fall activities. These include visiting pumpkin patches, fishing, late-night fire pits, and more.
Our guide below provides you with helpful information for planning your ideal Florida fall vacation. We’ll cover what the weather is like, where to go, what to do, and more.
Where Should I Go in Florida in the Fall?
Looking for a destination to visit during the fall in Florida can be difficult. Maybe you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, or perhaps you want to sit back and relax. Thankfully, Florida in the fall has something for every type of traveler to enjoy. From gorgeous state parks to stunning beaches and exhilarating water sports, there are many reasons why fall in Florida is fun-tastic!
Some of the most popular cities to visit in Florida during the fall include:
- Destin: Located in the Northwest Florida Panhandle, Destin is a favorite Sunshine State destination for many. The area is known for its Gulf beaches with emerald-green waters.
- Fort Myers: Fort Myers is a Southwest Florida gem also known for its Gulf beaches. The bustling historic downtown area offers nightlife, art galleries, and all the amenities you might expect on a Florida vacation.
- Sanibel Island: Sanibel Island is a perfect destination for a fall Florida vacation. Why? The island’s natural beauty offers breathtaking scenery you won’t find anywhere else.
- Captiva Island: Known as Sanibel’s sister island, Captiva Island is another perfect place for a fall Florida vacation thanks to its location in the Gulf and beautiful surroundings.
- Key West: Looking to spend your vacation on island time? Key West is truly unlike any other Florida vacation destination thanks to its eclectic culture.
- Cape Coral: Green golf courses, beautiful beaches, and family-friendly fun make Cape Coral another popular spot for Fall vacations in Florida.
- Fort Lauderdale: South Florida is a unique destination for a number of reasons. Take a gondola ride through local canals, enjoy high-fashion designer shopping on Las Olas Boulevard, and take in the arts at Fort Lauderdale’s many galleries.
- Naples: Naples is a sophisticated Southwest Florida vacation destination known for its fine dining, high-end retail shopping, lush golf courses, and fresh Gulf breeze. Naples is home to a number of beautiful vacation rentals, making it the perfect place to spend a week or even spend a season.
The warm sunshine, combined with the perfect cool breeze, is hard to miss in Southwest Florida, especially in towns like Fort Myers, Bonita Springs, and Punta Gorda. With just the right amount of sun and the fall season, the beaches and coastal waters are a must.
What To Do in Florida in the Fall?
Florida has many activities year-round, but in the fall, activities are enhanced by arguably perfect weather. Looking for what to do in Florida during the fall can turn into an endless hunt. Walking down the beach in Miami, attending a food and wine festival in Orlando, or even going to see wildlife like manatees at Manatee Park in Fort Myers are just a few of the activities you might enjoy. However, if you enjoy cruising on the water near Miami or fishing at J.N. Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge in Sanibel, then taking a Florida fall vacation is something you won’t want to miss.
Fall activities are a great way to experience the season, and Florida has many different ways to do this. Having a vacation rental to stay at during Oktoberfest in Cape Coral, Florida, is a great place to start enjoying your time in Florida during the fall. The fall season brings everyone together with a wide range of flavors in food and drinks, especially at the many local breweries. Sitting on the beach relaxing and looking for shells in Naples, Florida, is a great way to spend time while on your fall vacation.
Festivals to Enjoy During Your Fall Vacation in Florida
Fall brings many seasonal festivals to Florida. From festivals celebrating seafood to fine arts events, fall is the season to live it up and have a ball. Let’s look at some of the most popular family-friendly fall festivals you can enjoy across the Sunshine State.
Ocala Arts Festival – Ocala
Ocala is a friendly city in the north-central part of Florida. It might be best known for its equestrian culture as the “Horse Captial of the World,” but it doesn’t stop there. The Ocala Arts Festival takes over the city’s charming downtown area every year at the end of October. Artists from around the country come to show off their creations. You’ll see blown glass displays, paintings, jewelry, sculptures, and a variety of other artists’ best works.
Ocala is a great destination for a fall family vacation. Browse Ocala vacation rentals now.
Chalk Festival – Venice
Venice, Florida, is more than just a beach town. This city is located right on the Gulf about an hour north of Fort Myers. Chalk art comes to life each year in late October in Venice at the annual Chalk Festival. Here you’ll see some of the largest chalk art installations in the nation, ranging from fine art finessed on the pavement to 3-D illusions from artists around the world. The event also features fall fun like pumpkin carving, food trucks, wine and spirits, face painting, and other more.
McIntosh 1890s Festival – McIntosh
McIntosh, Florida might be a one-stoplight town between Ocala and Gainesville, but it comes to life each fall with an annual festival that attracts visitors from around the state. You might see festival participants wandering around in 1890s clothing with Florida cracker displays. But the festival’s main draw is the arts and craft booths that line the small town’s streets. This McIntosh 1890s Festival usually takes place the first weekend in November.
Homosassa Art, Craft, and Seafood Fest – Homosassa
Homosassa, Florida, is another small town known for a big festival. This fishing town on the Gulf celebrates every November with a festival honoring local artists and local seafood. Artists and vendors from around the state come to show off their wares and skills. Seafood lovers truly take delight in the festival’s good, featuring everything from scallops and stone crab fresh from the sea to the region’s famous smoked mullet. Looking for more seafood sensations? Consider checking out the Stone Crab Jam, held annually in September in nearby Crystal River.
Island Hopper Songwriter Fest – Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, and Captiva Island
Southwest Florida sings every fall at the Island Hopper Songwriter Fest. This annual event, taking place in September, features nationally known songwriters showing off what makes them great. You can hear some of your favorite songs performed by those who know them best — the actual songwriter who penned the lyrics. The event takes place at some of the most beautiful beach-front venues across Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, and Captiva Island.
Local festivals offer a great way to enjoy local culture. Make attending a fall festival and living like a local part of your best fall vacation yet!
What is the Weather Like in Florida During Fall?
With the average temperature in Florida reaching the mid 80’s during the day and the mid 60’s at night, who wouldn’t want to be in Florida during the fall? Even though this temperature is lower than the typical Florida standard, you won’t be uncomfortable. The near-persistent sunshine acts as the perfect complement to the slightly cooler weather.
If the water is where you need to be during the fall season, you can count on Florida with water temperatures around the low 80’s. While in Florida during the fall, you won’t need that heavy-duty coat. Instead, a comfortable, light jacket will keep you warm as you get closer to winter. Of course, the weather will change in Florida but knowing that the beach is always an option or even taking a nice relaxed walk on a trail enjoying the Florida wildlife and nature. Visitors from all over come to Florida to feel the warm weather. Even during the fall, this is still true on the sandy white beaches in Fort Myers, FL.
What is the Coldest Month in Fort Myers, Florida?
January is the coldest month in Fort Myers, Florida. During January, temperatures range from the 70’s to the low 50’s. Yet, even as the weather cools, visitors and residents alike stay warm thanks to the year-round Florida sunshine.
Can You Go to the Beach in Florida in October?
Believe it or not, yes! October is one of the best months to go to the beach in Florida. Why? Storm season has passed and you can expect warm temperatures and dry weather as you enjoy fun in the surf and sand.
The average high temperature in October in Fort Myers is 86 degrees. The average low temperature is 69 degrees. It only rains 5 days a month in October, so you’ll likely enjoy sunshine most of the month.
What Beaches are Warm in Florida During November?
Lighthouse Beach Park, located on Sanibel Island, will be nice and warm during November while you are on vacation. During November, the beaches in Naples, especially by the pier, are another great spot to see the breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. Down in Key West, Smathers Beach is the largest public beach that will have enough room for you and your family for that summer warmth during November.
How Do People Enjoy Fall in Florida?
Everyone can enjoy the fall season in Florida in many different ways while on vacation. Having ideas about enjoying the fall season can be different, but choices are endless in Florida. Enjoying life as a Floridan during the fall can be easy with some of these ideas:
- Attend a Fall Festival, like those mentioned above
- Nighttime walks on the beach
- Visit a pumpkin patch
- Visit a haunted walk
- Enjoy seasonal drinks at a local brewery
- Play a round of golf
- Get a suntan
- Go fishing
Winter doesn’t stop the outdoor fun in southwest Florida.
Many people enjoy visiting one of the many local waterfront restaurants on Sanibel Island. To learn more, check out our article on the top Sanibel Island Waterfront Restaurants.
What to Pack for a Fall Vacation in Florida
Visiting Florida in the fall is a perfect way to extend your summer vacation. The weather here is still warm and balmy into the fall months. This might mean packing for your fall family vacation in Florida is a little different than other destinations.
Here are a few things you’ll want to bring for your fall vacation in Florida:
- Sun protection: Sunscreen, sunglasses, a sunhat, and UPF clothing are all essential when it comes to protecting yourself from Florida’s sun.
- Swimwear: Hitting the beach or pool on a warm day or relaxing in a hot tub on a chilly evening requires swimwear. You might want to spring multiple swimsuits!
- Golf attire and gear: Hitting the links in streetwear isn’t a good idea for comfort and style reasons. If you plan on taking advantage of Florida’s pristine golf courses during your fall vacation, you’ll need golf attire, golf shoes, and your golf gear.
- Light jacket or sweater: Florida weather is warm in the fall, but cool morning breezes from the Gulf can make you appreciate a light jacket or cozy sweater.
- Summer or transitional clothing: It is still warm and sunny in Florida in the fall, so you’ll likely be comfortable in sandals, shorts, and sundresses in the Sunshine State. However, fashionistas might prefer a transitional wardrobe that features lightweight clothing in fall colors to help them feel seasonably appropriate.
- Favorite things to do: If you’re a reader, you’ll likely want to pack a few books or Kindle for your Florida fall vacation. If you like doing puzzles, consider packing a new challenge to enjoy in your vacation rental. If you’re a tennis or pickleball player, it might be a good idea to pack your racquet or paddles!
Packing the right clothing and gear can help ensure you have your best fall vacation yet! And if you forget something, keep in mind that Florida has some of the best shopping in the nation!
Plan Your Fall Vacation in Florida
Make the most of the fall season on your Florida vacation that matches everything you and your family need. Warm winter weather is why Royal Shell is here in Southwest Florida. Royal Shell has beautiful vacation rentals all along the coastline from Sanibel and Captiva Island to Naples. For over 25 years, our vacation planning advisors have been providing options for the best properties to meet your dream vacation needs and desires. We’ll even help you stay safe and avoid vacation rental scams.
Please check out our availability today or give us a call at (866) 341-7799 to speak with our vacation planning specialists to plan your perfect Florida fall vacation.