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Vero Beach | © dcwriterdawn / Flickr
Vero Beach | © dcwriterdawn / Flickr
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The Most Underrated Towns in Florida to Check Out

Picture of Aisha Moktadier
Updated: 2 March 2017
Florida is home to some of the most beautiful beaches and stunning sunsets that you will ever see in your life. There are also plenty of sleepy beach towns all along the east and west coasts of Florida. Here are eight hidden gems that you need to know.
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St. Augustine

Located on the northeast coast of Florida, St. Augustine is America’s oldest city, imbued with a rich history. The architecture here is beautiful, and there are tons of historical attractions for visitors to see, including the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, Flagler College, and the Lightner Museum; they can also take a St. Augustine tour.

St. Augustine, FL, USA

The Lightner Museum | © David Gutierrez / WikiCommons

The Lightner Museum | © David Gutierrez / WikiCommons

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Naples

If you’re looking for a place to visit that has gorgeous beaches and sunsets and a slower pace of life, Naples should be at the top of your list. This Florida town on the Gulf Coast is known for its beautiful ocean views and fine “sugar” sand that is incredibly soft beneath your feet. Here you can visit the Naples Botanical Garden and Naples Pier, as well as go kayaking and take a boat tour.

Naples, FL, USA

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Pensacola

Pensacola, a Florida town located in the panhandle, is brimming with fun and exciting things to do, including visiting the National Naval Aviation Museum and Pensacola Naval Air Station, as well as seeing a game at the Blue Wahoos Ballpark. Take a trip to the Pensacola Lighthouse and Museum or Johnson Beach for beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

Pensacola, FL, USA

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Sanibel Island

Sanibel Island is another fan favorite, filled with small restaurants where you can sit back, relax, and have a few margaritas in the sun with some good friends or your sweetheart. This beautiful Gulf Coast town is home to The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum and Bowman’s Beach, which makes this spot a shell collector’s paradise. The beach is beautiful and quiet, just like the rest of this sleepy seaside town. Rent bikes and cruise through the island, which features bike lanes and lots of room to roam in the sun.

Sanibel Island, FL, USA

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Seaside

This small town is located in the Florida panhandle near Panama City Beach and boasts Seaside Beach, a gorgeous spot to sail out on your boat or to go for a swim in the ocean. Seaside is also home to some unique shops, such as Sundog Books and Fusion Art Glass Gallery. Get a great massage at Beach Ready Spa or learn to surf at Austin Magee’s Surf School at Seaside. If those options don’t pique your interest, head to SandCastle Lessons on 30A to take a workshop on making killer sand sculptures.

Seaside, FL, USA

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Cocoa Beach

If you and your sweetheart are looking for a romantic beach to head to that is not Miami, you’ll want to check out Cocoa Beach. This spot is known for great kayaking, boating, canoeing, jet-skiing, and all other kinds of fun sports for the adventurous couple. Sunsets are beautiful here and are sure to win you Instagram gold by all of your followers. Take a walk on the Cocoa Beach Pier while the sun goes down for a stunning view of the beach, and if being pampered is on your to-do list, head to one of the many spas you can find all over this town.

Cocoa Beach, FL, USA

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Vero Beach

Heading to Vero Beach? Take a boat tour and be sure to stop at McKee Botanical Garden at some point in your day to see beautiful, dreamlike flowers and foliage. The McLarty Treasure Museum is another fun spot to see, and head to the Riverside Theatre to catch a show. This quiet town is perfect for those who love the environment and being out in nature, as it also boasts the Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge and its own Environmental Learning Center.

Vero Beach, FL, USA

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Crystal River

Save this spot for when you’re looking to go scuba diving or snorkeling, as you will not be disappointed. Beautiful Crystal River is where you can see all kinds of marine life (including manatees) and also enjoy a ton of water sports, including stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, and canoeing. Looking to get some sun while you’re here? Head to Fort Island Gulf Beach for some waves and a quiet place to soak up some sun so that you can go home with a beautiful Florida glow.

Crystal River, FL, USA