Your Guide to Florida’s Scenic Highways

    By Dalia Colon

    There are scenic highways, and then there are Scenic Highways.

    Florida has no shortage of beautiful drives, from the canopy roads of Tallahassee and Ocala’s rambling horse country, to Miami’s glittery cityscape and more than 825 miles of beaches.

    But only 25 of Florida’s roadways can claim to be Scenic with a capital “S.” These roads are more than just a pretty face.

    “There are six types of resources that can determine eligibility for a scenic highway,” said Wanda Maloney, coordinator of the Florida Scenic Highways program. An official scenic highway or byway (there’s no difference), as crowned by the Florida Department of Transportation, must have at least one of these qualities:

    • Scenic (obviously)
    • Historic
    • Cultural
    • Archaeological
    • Recreational
    • Natural

    For instance, an untouched river is a natural resource. A river lined with boat docks is a recreational resource. Of course, any road labeled “scenic” had better be easy on the eyes. And Florida’s Scenic Highways don’t disappoint.

    Scenic Lemon Bay/Myakka

    Scenic Lemon Bay/Myakka

    Luis Santana for VISIT FLORIDA


    “People want to get off the beaten path,” Maloney said. “They don’t want to see the interstate; they want to see the real Florida where people live and work.”

    This real Florida includes stories of Native Americans and astronauts, palm trees and potato chips.

    All with a stunning view.
     

    The A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway crosses Matanzas Inlet in southern St. Johns County as the setting sun casts its colors on the clouds.

    The A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway crosses Matanzas Inlet in southern St. Johns County as the setting sun casts its colors on the clouds.

    Daron Dean for VISIT FLORIDA

    Scenic Big Bend

    Scenic Big Bend

    Colin Hackley for VISIT FLORIDA

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