Port Guide: Fort Lauderdale, Florida

florida port guide

Port Guide: Fort Lauderdale, Florida

23 October 2018

Fort Lauderdale offers all the beauty and excitement of Miami, without the raucous crowds. Discover the wonders of nature at the world-famous Everglades. Savour craft beer and dine on the freshest seafood at an array of fantastic eateries and bars. There’s plenty of glamour too with designer boutiques and fabulous fashion stores. And art lovers will get their culture fix at a number of galleries and scenic museums.


1. Where exactly is Fort Lauderdale Florida?

Fort Lauderdale's port, Port Everglades, is located on the south east coast of Florida 50km from Miami. This huge port is the second largest in the state and a very popular start and end point for cruises going to the Caribbean.


2. Official language (and will I need a translator?)

The official language in the US is English. But due to the large immigration of people from various Spanish-speaking regions, Spanish is spoken by 60% of the population.


3. Weather in Fort Lauderdale Florida

Florida lives up to its nickname the ‘Sunshine State’ with a warm, subtropical rainforest climate. Summers are hot (July and August), but frequent afternoon thunderstorms cool things down a bit. Winters are mild and dry, making Fort Lauderdale a perfect beach destination all year round.


4. Getting around

On foot

Fort Lauderdale is criss-crossed with many canals that make getting around on foot a bit difficult. It’s best to use another form of transport.


For shorter trips around the city, renting a bicycle is the way to go. Florida is very flat, so cycling is easy. There are dedicated bike lanes in most places, and points of interest are close enough that cycling is a quick way to get around.


Florida's new Brightline train system makes it possible to travel from Fort Lauderdale to West Palm Beach and Miami without a car. Rides take about 30 minutes and leave regularly.

Trolley & Bus

Broward County Transit offers convenient commuter buses that travel throughout the metropolis and surrounds. They can be a bit slow though. An alternative is Sun Trolley that offers routes with stops downtown and along the beach – it’s very affordable and a great way to see the city.


Taxis are available in most places at any time. You can call ahead or hail one on the street. They can be fairly expensive. Uber and Lyft are also readily available alternatives.

Water Taxi

Navigate Fort Lauderdale’s winding waterways on a water taxi. It’s a great way to see the city as you travel along the Intracoastal and downtown canals. They operate daily between 10am and 10pm with extended hours on Fridays and Saturdays.


The easiest way to get around Fort Lauderdale is by car. Especially if you’re planning to spend more than a day. You can hire a car from a range of reputable rental companies at reasonable prices.

5. Eating out in Fort Lauderdale Florida

Fort Lauderdale has plenty of restaurants serving an array of cuisines. For a taste of Italy, head to Dolce Salato Pizza & Gelato. Enjoy delicious Spanish-inspired dishes at Café Seville. Sample popular American favourites at Laspadas Original Hoagies and Gilbert's 17th Street Grill. Go for the freshest seafood dishes at Wild Sea Oyster Bar & Grille and OCEAN2000. And pop into Primanthi Brothers for one of their famous French fry sandwiches.

6. Best Bars & Cafes in Fort Lauderdale Florida

Fort Lauderdale is renowned for its craft beer breweries. Don’t miss LauderAle, Khoffner Brewery, Funky Buddha and Craft Beer Cartel for a pint or two. Premiere Cafe and Bar is a stylish wine bar and gastropub that also serves delicious Argentinean fare. Tequila and craft cocktail lovers won’t want to miss ocean-side Lona Cocina Tequileria. The Riverside Market is great for adults and kids alike with its selection of 550 craft beers, specialty wines and over 50 gourmet soft drinks.

7. Events in Fort Lauderdale Florida

Day or night – there's always something exciting going on in sunny Fort Lauderdale. From beach concerts and big parades to sporting events and cultural festivals, you’ll find a way to celebrate all year round. The Las Olas Art Festival takes place in early January with over 350 artists exhibiting their best works. The Sistrunk Parade and Festival in February is fun for the whole family with colourful floats, marching bands, performance artists and loads of fun activities. Epicureans will love the Wine & Culinary Celebration in March featuring fine vintages from international wineries and some of South Florida's top restaurants and chefs. Sunfest in April/May never fails to impress as the state’s biggest music, art and waterfront festival. The Fourth of July sees the waterfront light up with fireworks in celebration of America’s independence. Don’t miss the Seminole Hard Rock Winterfest Boat Parade in December. And that’s just to name a few.

8. Activities in Fort Lauderdale Florida

Activities abound in this sunny ocean-side state. Wander through the Riverwalk art and entertainment district. Browse the many shops and boutiques along Las Olas Boulevard. Brush up on your history at Stranahan House Museum, a historic home in Broward County. For some high-energy entertainment, take the whole family to the Funderdome indoor playground with tightropes, rock walls, laser mazes and more. Stretch your legs and bask in the sun at Lauderdale Beach Park. On a rainy day, head to the Museum of Discovery and Science. If you have time, venture farther afield to the incredible Everglades to hike, canoe, cycle and explore this unique wilderness area.

9. Fort Lauderdale Florida Beaches

Without doubt, Fort Lauderdale's biggest attraction is its pristine beach. Far less crowded than Miami and breathtakingly beautiful, Fort Lauderdale Beach Promenade offers 5km of sun-drenched beachfront dotted with boutiques, eateries and entertainment.

Set sail to sunny Fort Lauderdale with a cruise from Cruiseabout. Take a look at some of our best cruise deals here.

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