15 Last-Minute (And Affordable) June Florida Trips Outside of Disney

There’s a reason they call the rest of the state “the Real Florida.”

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Updated May 28, 2024
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While Florida is best known for its theme parks — particularly Disney World — there's so much more to explore in the Sunshine State. With great weather and plenty of affordable activities, now is the perfect time to step up your travel and plan a last-minute getaway to paradise.

From beautiful beaches to gorgeous national parks and bustling international cities to cute, under-the-radar small towns, there's magic to be found that has nothing to do with The Mouse.

Here are 15 last-minute and affordable Florida spots to visit in June.

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Cocoa Beach

Acker/Adobe sunrise at cocoa beach pier

Located on Florida's Space Coast, Cocoa Beach is a classic beach town. Spend your days on the sand and enjoy paddling, swimming, and gentle surfing.

Visit the nearby Kennedy Space Center ($75 per person), though you can watch rocket launches outside of the museum for free. Bioluminescent kayaking at Merritt Island is a must.

Crystal River

April/Adobe clear blue spring in florida

Crystal River is "the manatee capital of the world." Go snorkeling with these sweet creatures (for about $60 per person) in King’s Bay, their natural habitat. Summer may be the off-season, but resident manatees can still be spotted.

Afterward, enjoy noshing on world-class seafood and exploring the area's beautiful springs by kayak or paddleboard.

Destin

Pauline/Adobe beach sunset

With its pristine beaches and gorgeous green waters, Destin is a gem in the Florida panhandle; it’s perfect for affordable activities like snorkeling and paddling. It’s also famous for fishing, which you can do right off the beach.

Walk on the Destin Harbor Boardwalk free of charge, and enjoy an affordable lunch at local favorite Bitterroot.

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Everglades National Park

JUAN CARLOS MUNOZ/Adobe aerial view of Everglades National Park in Florida

The "river of grass" is a paradise for nature lovers, even off-peak in the summer. Explore this stunning UNESCO site by taking an airboat tour or kayaking (our favorite) through the mangroves at dawn. Keep an eye out for birds, turtles, and of course, alligators!

Airbnb has plenty of affordable lodgings near the Everglades.

Fort Myers

lunamarina/Adobe palm trees in florida fort myers

Although impacted by Hurricane Ian, Fort Myers is a bustling Gulf Coast city with plenty to see and do, indoors and out. When you're done at the beach, downtown has great window shopping and delicious restaurants.

Visit the Edison and Ford Winter Estates ($25 each), where you can tour the historic homes and beautiful gardens.

Gainesville

SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe Gainesville Florida USA downtown

Gainesville is a college town in Central Florida with plenty of fun, affordable attractions — like Kanapaha Botanical Gardens ($10 each) — but it's the nearby nature that steals the spotlight.

Ginnie Springs, Gilchrist Blue Springs, Devil's Den, Ichetucknee Springs, Rainbow Springs, and more are all within an hour’s drive — some of the most beautiful places in the state.

Islamorada

Kevin Ruck/Adobe islamorada florida keys resort

While Key West is well-known (and expensive), Islamorada — the "Sportfishing Capital of the World" — is a more laid-back and affordable destination in the Florida Keys. Water, beach, and outdoor activities are abundant in this paradise.

Take in a show at Theater of the Sea ($30-$50 each), and if you can afford the splurge, swim with dolphins!

Miami

littleny/Adobe Miami Florida skyline and bay

Yes, you can do Miami on a budget, and summer (off-season) is the best time for it. There's South Beach, but there's also Little Havana and Little Haiti to explore. Dining is especially amazing in this international metropolis, and that includes cheap eats.

Use Airbnb for affordable lodgings and local recommendations.

Mount Dora

Susan Rydberg/Adobe sunset over lake dora in florida

Escape the crowds and discover Mount Dora, Central Florida's best-kept secret. Stroll down the tree-lined streets, browse the cute shops and galleries, and take a boat tour on Lake Dora.

Wekiwa Springs is only a 30-minute drive away from this charming town, perfect for an affordable kayaking day trip.

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Ocala

Ronald/Adobe silver springs state park florida

The "Horse Capital of the World" lives up to its name with beautiful horse farms and scenic trails. Enjoy the endless beauty of the Ocala National Forest, too.

A visit to Silver Springs State Park is a must, where you can take a glass-bottom boat tour ($14-$30 each) and see alligators, manatees, rhesus monkeys (yes, really), and more.

Orlando

lunamarina/Adobe Orlando skyline from Lake Eola

While Orlando is famous for its theme parks, there's so much more to the large Central Florida city. Check out the Orlando Science Center ($30 each) and the Orlando Museum of Art ($20 each), as well as the incredible food and nightlife scenes.

Outdoors, enjoy Harry P. Leu Gardens ($15 each). Oh, and you can't miss Gatorland ($35 each), an OG Florida attraction.

Sarasota

SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe Sarasota Florida USA

A gem on Central Florida's Gulf Coast, Sarasota is a growing city known for its award-winning beaches, artsy vibe, and fun food scene. Spend your days on the white sand beaches of Siesta Key and Sunday night at the famous drum circle. Kayaking mangrove tunnels? Essential.

Art fans shouldn't miss a stop at the Ringling Museum of Art ($25 each).

St. Augustine

SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe st. augustine florida usa

St. Augustine is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the country. It shows in the cobblestone streets of the historic district and at the Castillo de San Marcos.

After enjoying all of the historic spots, visit the St. Augustine Alligator Farm ($36 each). 

Pro-tip: Grab a Cuban at the Columbia Restaurant for lunch. Don’t forget the beach!

St. Petersburg

SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe st. petersburg florida

Located on Florida's Gulf Coast, St. Petersburg is a hip city with a libertine spirit. You can't miss a stop at the Dali Museum ($29 each) after enjoying all that the white sand beaches of the area have to offer.

Restaurants and breweries abound downtown, with plenty of nightlife for the young at heart.

Tarpon Springs

Brad/Adobe palms at howard park

Tarpon Springs feels more like Europe than the U.S., thanks to the thriving Greek community. Get great Greek food at Hellas or enjoy world-class seafood at Rusty Bellies after exploring the famous sponge docks.

A boat trip to Anclote Key is worth it, where you can walk on empty beaches and collect seashells.

Bottom line

levranii/Adobe happy family on holiday vacation

With so many fun destinations to choose from, planning an affordable, last-minute trip to Florida this summer has never been easier. Each locale on this list has activities, dining, and lodging that won't break the bank if you put a little legwork into it.

Just keep your eye on the weather, as June marks the beginning of hurricane season in the Sunshine State. And don’t forget to bring your favorite travel credit card to make the most out of your trip.

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Earn 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases

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Cat Lafuente

Cat Lafuente is a Florida-based writer and editor with extensive experience in digital and print content spaces. Her own personal finance journey — particularly consolidating debt and paying it off, in turn boosting her credit score and becoming a homeowner — inspired her to join the FinanceBuzz team; she hopes she can help others do the same.