Sometimes known as the ‘Venice of America’ due to its extensive and intricate system of canals and waterways, Fort Lauderdale is a former college party town that has grown up and found more refined ways of recreation.
A major yachting centre on the South East Atlantic Coast, the city is home to over 42,000 resident yachts with all the high end facilities and entertainment you’d expect of such an exclusive place just 23 miles from Miami.
Named after a series of forts built by the United States during the Second Seminole War, Fort Lauderdale came to the nation’s attention during the first half of the 20th Century when it became popular with college students celebrating Spring Break. As these events became more boisterous, the city passed laws to curb their rowdiness, leading to the city slowly becoming more known as a yachting destination than a party town.
Despite the change in atmosphere, Fort Lauderdale is still a city dedicated to recreation and enjoyment – with over 4,000 restaurants and 120 nightclubs entertaining the city’s many guests.
Culture is an important to people in Fort Lauderdale. Indeed, the city has created an entire district dedicated to the arts and entertainment. Known as the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District, the area runs all the way east to west along the Las Olas Boulevard from the beach itself to the centre of downtown.
Home to around 13 cultural attractions, the district includes the Florida Grand Opera, the Museum of Art and the Museum of Discovery & Science before concluding at the Broward Centre for Performing Arts in central Fort Lauderdale. The district even has its own five storey high Autonation IMAX Cinema.
Given the exclusive nature of the city, excellent shopping facilities can be found all over. From malls to designer boutiques, Fort Lauderdale has something for everyone. Of course, the city’s most famous shopping experience is not a mall or high end store at all – but the largest daily flea market in the world! Based in Lauderhill, the Fort Lauderdale Swap Shop is an enormous market selling everything you can imagine - and many things you never could.
Now, this is a city that thrives on entertainment, so it should come as no surprise that when the sun goes down the flea market becomes America’s largest drive-in-movie theatre with 13 screens showing everything from the latest movies to the classics. Now that’s entertainment!