Check out these family-friendly Florida malls with plenty to entertain (and distract) the kids.

By Jill Martin

These days, there’s much more to malls than just shopping – way more! Check out these Florida shopping areas that offer plenty of ways to keep the kids (and you) entertained.

Westfield Countryside, Clearwater

Westfield Countryside mall really caters to moms with a family lounge complete with everything a new mom and baby would need: bottle warmers, changing tables, microwave ovens and even private feeding rooms. When you need to relax, recharge, or just catch your breath, the Family Lounge provides a comfortable area where you and your little ones can take a break from shopping. Located on the Lower Level near the Play Area, between Journey’s and Hollister, it features toys, kid-friendly TV programs, private nursing areas, and baby changing stations.

Westfield Countryside also offers preferred up-front parking spots for families. They’re close to entrances and make it easier for expectant mothers and families with small children to visit our Center. Family Parking spaces are conveniently located close to mall entrances near JCPenney / Dillard’s and JCPenney / Macy’s, giving families easy access to our Family Focused Shopping Areas.

Disney Springs, Lake Buena Vista

With Disney in the name, you know it’s family friendly. Disney Springs features a mix of boutique stores, unique eats, and over 50 brand name and Disney-themed stores to meet you and the family's shopping needs. 

International Plaza, Tampa

International Plaza, Tampa provides families a dazzling destination loaded with upscale stores like Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom. But what kids love the most is the Tampa Bay Rays Looney Tunes Ball Park play area. This indoor playground is nice and big and lets kids play and pounce with the likes of Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck. There’s also a large TV that runs baseball highlights.  The Plaza also offers private nursing rooms in the restroom in the Food Court and in the restroom on the lower level, near the Grand Court.  

Melbourne Square Mall, Melbourne

Melbourne Square Mall has a nchildren’s play area called KidsX that covers nearly 1,500 square feet of space. This kids program boasts events, exclusive discounts and more. Kids are drawn to its brightness and fun, interactive stations. There’s also a library and reading area for kids, seating for adults and a baby-changing station. You’ll find it near Dillard’s South.

Shoppes at Sunset Place, South Miami

In addition to Game Works and Cool-De-Sac Play Café (which has seven interactive stations such as crafts, costumes and computers), you’ll find Splitsville Bowling, 24 movie theatres including an IMAX with stadium seating, ice cream and a huge candy shop. And mom will find all her favorite shops including specialty boutiques like Armani, along with covered and valet parking.

The Shops at Wiregrass, Wesley Chapel

This new mall offers something really unusual -– a ranch house with smaller houses on the side -- in the middle of center court that kids can play in. (The Shops at Wiregrass was originally part of the Wiregrass Ranch land.) Its open-air, tree-lined streets make strolling a breeze, and the shopping center has lots of family events, such as Wiregrass Wednesdays complete with face painting, bounce houses, entertainment and giveaways. Bring $2 to take a ride the train -– and this one’s not on tracks! It goes around the entire mall. 

The Village at Baytowne Wharf, Sandestin

You will love shopping at Baytowne Wharf, period. And your kids will thank you for bringing them. You’ll not only find specialty boutiques, award-winning restaurants (serving up fresh local seafood) and one-of-a-kind shops, kids can zipline across the water on North Florida’s only zipline, challenge themselves on the rope course, feed the fish, play on the playground, chill out at the ice cream shop and attend candy-making demonstrations.

So next time your kids are whining because they have to go shopping with you (or you’re whining because you have to take them), head over to one of these over-the-top shopping malls where quality family fun is in the bag.

When You Go...

Countryside Mall in Clearwater
27001 US Highway 19 N, Clearwater, FL 33761, 727-796-1079

Disney Springs, Lake Buena Vista
1494 E Buena Vista Dr. Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830 407-WDW-MAGIC

International Plaza in Tampa
2223 N. West Shore Blvd, Tampa, FL 33607, 813- 342-3790

Melbourne Square Mall - Melbourne
1700 West New Haven Ave, Melbourne, FL. 321-727-2000

Shoppes at Sunset Place, South Miami
5701 Sunset Drive, South Miami 305-663-0857

The Shops at Wiregrass, Wesley Chapel
28211 Paseo Drive, Wesley Chapel, FL 33543, 813-994-2242

The Village at Baytowne Wharf, Sandestin
9300 Emerald Coast Parkway West, Destin, FL 32550, 850-267-8000

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