It’s the shortest month of the year, and its cooler temperatures mean lots of fun outdoor events that make February one of the best months to travel to and around Florida. From music festivals to Mardi Gras to manatees and more, let’s take a look at a handful of the best places to travel in the Sunshine State in February.
Blue Spring State Park
The cooler air and water temperatures mean that manatees will be making their way into natural springs all around Florida, and one of the most popular spots is Blue Spring State Park (northeast of Orlando) with its 72-degree water year-round. The boardwalk that skirts the springs provides a terrific vantage point for spotting manatees in their natural habitat.
The 12th annual Charlotte Harbor Regatta is ready to set sail February 4-6 on the Florida’s Southwest Gulf Coast. About 45 boats will hoist their sales and race for the first time since 2022. Volunteers are needed, and it’s a fun way to be a part of the action out on the water.
The Florida State Fair returns to Tampa February 10-21 and with it its fair food — funnel cake taco, anyone? — fun-filled rides and plenty of exhibits to keep you busy. There’s the Robot Zoo with its larger-than-life robotic creatures; Cracker Country, a recreation of a 19th century Florida homestead; and Creative Living exhibits featuring glass blowing, quilting, baking and more. There truly is something for everyone at the fair!
Hawks Cay Resort in the Florida Keys kicks off its three weekend-long concert series Keys to Country on February 19 with headliner Joe Nichols. Additional dates and musical acts are to be announced for April and August, so stay tuned. Oh, and you may be wondering, “just where is Duck Key?” Easy… it’s in the middle Florida Keys, roughly halfway between Key Largo and Key West at mile marker 61.
Even more music will be playing when the Gasparilla Music Festival takes to many stages in downtown Tampa February 25-27. The festival’s three days and nights will feature music from all different genres, with headliners including Black Pumas, Gimafunk, The Revivalists, Band of Horses, Margo Price, Mavis Staples, Trombone Shorty and plenty more. Tickets are on sale now, so don’t miss out!
This city on the Panhandle is Mardi Gras central… in fact, it’s where some of the first Mardi Gras celebrations took place in the U.S., thanks to its French roots. On February 26, the Pensacola Mardi Gras Grand Parade sets out at 2 p.m. in historic downtown Pensacola and will go for about four hours. The night before, the Krewe of Lafitte Illuminated Parade takes to the streets at 7:30 p.m. for some nighttime fun.
Where will your Florida travels take you in February?