Words By: Jamani Elston
After a long stressful semester of assignments, tests, labs and papers, a vacation is well needed. Tallahassee may not seem like a vacation spot for most, but there are many adventures that can be found. Pierre Touze, a junior biology pre-med student from West Palm Beach, Fla., plans on staying in Tallahassee during the summer because of work and only knows of pool parties and clubs as something fun to do for the summer.
“As far as adventures, pool parties are usually the thing to do [in Tallahassee] along with ‘White Trash Wednesday’ at the strip on Tennessee Street,” Touze said.
Travelandleisure.com suggests taking a weekend getaway to a beach town as #1 of eight “Things to Do in Summer.” Journey Magazine has compiled the top places in the surrounding Tallahassee area to enjoy during the summer break.
St. Georges Island
Known as one of the “most beautiful and serene beaches on the Gulf Coast,” according to apalachiacolabay.org, St. George Island is a little more than 2 hours (76.3mi) away from Tallahassee. Ea Desmarattes, a sophomore pre-occupational therapy student from West Palm Beach, Fla., believes that St. George Island is great for those that enjoy privacy.
“It’s huge, so you could be secluded with whoever you’re with and don’t have to be bothered,” Desmarattes said.
St. George Island has less attractions but offers much privacy and relaxation.
Panama City Beach
Panama City is definitely a place that a lot of students have visited, especially during spring break. Although Panama City is known as the “Spring Break Capital of the World,” according to pcbeachspringbreak.com, Panama City is also a very popular travel destination during the summer. According to smartertravel.com, Panama City Beach is the busiest during the summer, and the high season is June to August.
Besides the beautiful beach, Panama City Beach has many attractions such as clubs, waterparks, mini golfing, rental scooters, shopping, arcades and more. Panama City Beach is the home of Pier Park, a 900,000+ square feet shopping center with many restaurants, a mini amusement park, and movie theater.
Tallahassee is full of many outdoor adventures. Wakulla Springs is the largest and deepest freshwater spring in the world, according to wakullasprings.org. There are many things to do at Wakulla Springs such as the swimming area, the River Boat Tour, and The Wakulla Lodge.
The River Boat Tour is a 45-minute boat tour of the spring and visitors will witness many different animals that live in and around the spring. According to Tallahassee Democrat, while taking a boat tour of Wakulla Springs, tourists will see alligators, manatees, osprey and many other animals.
Tallahassee Museum also has many nature-filled adventures from living animal exhibits, quiet nature trails, to zip lining. According to tallahasseemagazine.com, the Tree to Tree adventures passes over cypress swamps and the zip liner will master different aerial games and obstacles.
The Tree to Tree adventures has three different courses depending on age and height. For anyone over the height of 54” and at least 15 years old, the two courses to choose from are Canopy Crossing and Soaring Crossing.
Canopy Crossing is an introductory course that will last for about 45 minutes of the participants completing 14-18 treetop challenges, two zip lines and walking 20 feet above the ground.
According to tallahasseemuseum.org, Soaring Crossing has large zip lines that rise up to 60 feet from the ground. Participants will zip across more than 700 feet of cypress wetlands as well by wildlife such as eagles and deer. The course takes about 2 hours to complete.
The Tallahassee museum also has many museum exhibits. Featured at the Tallahassee Museum is Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church, the first regularly organized black church in Florida. The museum is the home of other exhibits that are important to black history such as the Bellevue Plantation, The Concord School house, and the Seaboard Airline Caboose.
Other history museums that can be found in Tallahassee are: John R. Riley House and Museum, the Knott House Museum, the Goodwood Musuem and Gardens, and the Museum of Florida History.
The John R. Riley House and Museum was the home of John Gilmore Riley that was built in 1890. Riley served as an educator for 49 years in the Tallahassee area and was one of the few African Americans to own property in Tallahassee at that time, according to rileymuseum.org.
The John R. Riley House and Museum can be found on Jefferson street and tours are given Monday through Saturday.
“A summer in Tallahassee is what you and your friends make of it,” said Touze. Plan a summer to remember!