What to Expect When Moving to Florida
Florida (FL), nicknamed The Sunshine State, was the 27th state in the U.S., admitted on March 3, 1845. The capital of the state is Tallahassee, and 19,552,860 Floridians call the state home, plus a huge influx of “snowbirds” who add to the wintertime population significantly. In addition to the capital city of Tallahassee, the state's largest cities include Miami, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Orlando, Hialeah, and Ft. Lauderdale.
The state is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the north by Alabama and Georgia, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, and to the south by the Straits of Florida and the sovereign state of Cuba. A unique and special feature of Florida are the Florida Keys, a coral cay archipelago located off the southern coast, forming the southernmost portion of the continental United States. They begin at the southeastern coast of the Florida peninsula just south of Miami, and extend south-southwest and then westward to Key West, the westernmost of the inhabited islands, and on to the uninhabited Dry Tortugas.
This southernmost state’s major industries include tourism, agriculture (oranges, grapefruit, tomatoes), and electronics. The state is home to several national parks, monuments and regions: Big Cypress Swamp, Biscayne, Cape Canaveral, the Everglades, the Dry Tortugas and others. Major rivers in Florida include St. Johns River, St. Mary’s River, and the famous (in song and in venue) Suwannee River, and sizeable lakes include Lake Okeechobee, and Lake George. As you would expect, water sports, beaches, SCUBA diving and fishing are the stars in this warm-weather locale. Residents and visitors alike enjoy the recreational pleasures of visiting Walt Disney World, Kennedy Space Center, Daytona International Speedway, beaches, golf courses and more, all while enjoying locally grown produce, and fresh fish and seafood. The official state flower of Florida is the orange blossom and the state bird is the mockingbird.
Institutions of higher learning based in Florida include: University of Florida, University of South Florida, and Florida State University, among others. In addition to being a mecca for Major League Baseball spring training for the Grapefruit League, regular season Florida teams include: Baseball’s Miami Marlins, and Tampa Bay Rays; basketball’s Miami Heat, and Orlando Magic; pro football’s Jacksonville Jaguars, and the Miami Dolphins.