There’s no doubt that as far as self catering, Florida villa rentals type holidays are concerned, Florida is the USA. But don’t overlook the rest of this vast country, which offers pretty well every holiday setting from the bays, forests and historic towns of New England to the deserts and Grand Canyon of Arizona, which may be a desert state (think Las Vegas) but also has some attractive new resorts like Scottsdale, which combine brilliant weather (bright blue skies and abundant sunshine) with great leisure opportunities.
If it’s seaside and sand you’re after, South Carolina boasts some of the most stunning beaches and beautiful scenery on the Eastern seaboard of the USA, while its towns and resorts offer a wide diversity of character and amenities. The ski resorts of the Rockies offer splendid summer bases as well as unrivalled winter ski-ing. On the west coast, California’s balmy climate and the attractions of San Francisco and Los Angeles make it a good year-round destination.
But Florida is undoubtedly the holiday playground of America. With over 1,700 miles of soft white beaches, warm sea, a glorious climate and more Disney-style holiday attractions than anywhere else on earth, is it any surprise the sunshine state is just about the fastest growing holiday destination for rain-weary Britons?
In Florida’s favour is the fact that it’s an easy destination to reach and travel around, with plenty of reasonably priced charter flights, a massive hire-car industry and no language problems. Best of all, there’s an excellent supply of reliable, spacious self catering accommodation of a uniformly high standard.
Almost all the houses and bungalows you’ll see to let in Florida are purpose built on residential developments. As a result you won’t find the variety and quirkiness of villas in, say, Mediterranean destinations, but these American homes are, virtually without exception, spacious, detached, air conditioned and have a screened private pool, double garage and a superb level of equipment.
Most owners use a local management company to look after the houses and sort out any problems while you’re there, so you can look forward to a comfortable, hassle-free base from which to go out and enjoy everything Florida has to offer.
If you haven’t been to Florida before, it’s easy enough to describe: it’s big (about the size of England) and flat, with lots of lakes, orange groves, cattle ranches and theme parks in the middle and end-to-end sand around the outside. And lots and lots of sunshine. There are still plenty of unspoilt areas, including of course the Everglades, for nature-minded visitors. You may well have a lake or canal at your back door, often with a boat deck and use of a boat.
You have one basic decision to make before you choose your holiday base. Is it more important to be next to the sea (in which case you’ll probably head for the Gulf coast, on the west of Florida) or to the theme parks near Orlando and east coast attractions like Cape Canaveral and Daytona? (in which case you’ll probably choose Kissimmee or one of the other central developments). We hope you found our Florida villa rentals guide useful in helping you decide on what to do and where to go next!