By Terry Ward

Oh, how much fun would it be if all cities had a Water Taxi like Fort Lauderdale! What better way is there to get to know a beautiful Florida place than by boat?

When in Fort Lauderdale, leave your car at the hotel, and take a water taxi into the Intracoastal and New River instead. These bright yellow boats are as much about getting you from point A to point B as they are about entertaining you along the way.

As the captain pilots you past millionaires' mansions and super yachts that have given Fort Lauderdale its moniker as the Yachting Capital of the World, the skipper fills passengers in on area lore. Keep an eye out for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz's former digs along the Intracoastal. And see the place where Sonny and Cher used to live. You'll learn about the curious owners of some of the yachts you see - and the even more curious ways in which they've made their fortunes.

Some people use the Fort Lauderdale water taxi just to get from place to place (it runs from the beach to the shopping and dining district along Las Olas Blvd., the Convention Center and Riverfront, down to Hollywood). Other folks catch a ride as a way to tour Fort Lauderdale while enjoying watery views and interesting commentary. And still others hire out the boats for bachelor (-ette) parties and private events. Either way, it makes for a really fun outing.