When I tell people that I live in Tallahassee, Florida, their response is usually something pretty close to, “Oh, I think I’ve heard of that. . . Isn’t it the capital or something?” Yes! I do live in the state capital, but my hometown is so much more than that. We have a rich history, beautiful natural attractions, two universities and a state college, plus a lively local music scene!
QUARTER FINALIST 2013 FTF TEEN TRAVEL WRITING SCHOLARSHIP
Not many people know that Hernando DeSoto and his fellow explorers celebrated the first Christmas in the new world in Tallahassee in 1536! Visitors can start their historical adventure by touring his encampment, and then heading over to Mission San Luis. The Mission was the one of Apalachee Indian's largest villages in the area, but later became a Spanish missionary settlement. Consequently, there is a huge mix of artifacts and experiences to be seen and had there! After learning about Tallahassee’s Indian and Spanish history, a quick drive downtown can help you to both travel back in time, and to look at more recent events in a new light!
The Museum of Florida History offers glimpses into all periods of Florida history, with a special focus on The Space Race of the 1960’s, and the various industries that bring revenue to Florida! Walking up one of Tallahassee’s many hills will lead you to the State Capitol, Supreme Court, and Governor’s Mansion. Tours at each of these historic buildings is an amazing way to learn about the history of the state’s government! With Tallahassee’s many opportunities to learn about our state’s unique yesteryear, someone could spend a whole trip only learning!
Tallahassee is considered one of the most athletic cities in the nation. It’s easy to understand once you see all of the beautiful places to spend time outside! The Lake Overstreet Trails offer a winding path through local woods, where outdoor enthusiasts often see all sorts of wildlife, such as deer, rabbits, and even the occasional horse and rider! Tallahassee is also within driving distance of St. Teresa Beach, and St. George Island. Spending an afternoon laying in the sun or cruising around on a rented boat is a great way to experience the area’s beauty!
Another local attraction is the clustering of higher education institutions. Florida State University, Florida A&M University, and Tallahassee Community College help to give Tallahassee a unique culture that would be hard to find anywhere else! The students offer the city an incredible amount of artwork. The colorful pieces can be found at Railroad Square Art Park, just a short drive from campus! In addition, Florida State University has an event every year called Seven Days of Opening Nights. Performers from all over the world come to show the city their gifts or to tell their stories! In the past, Anthony Bourdain, Bill Cosby, Joan Rivers, and the Julliard School have descended upon Tallahassee for a week of cultural experiences!
But, my favorite part of Tallahassee is definitely the performances from local bands! On any given night, one could go to a city park, restaurant, or auditorium to hear local artists play their new pieces. Every Thursday night, food truck vendors and a local band make their way to “Food Truck Thursday” downtown. Crowds of people eat delicious food and enjoy hearing the band’s music as it sounds through the city.
I know that you will enjoy your visit to Florida’s capital city and to the Sunshine State! There is truly something for everyone here, whether your interest lie in history, music, the great outdoors, art, or higher education! I can’t wait to see you!
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.