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, Map of Florida
About Map: Florida Map showing the capital, state boundary, roads, rail network, highways, major cities and towns.

About Florida


Florida is located in the southeastern portion of the United States. With two time zones, the state experiences varied climates all throughout the region. It has the longest coastline in the country, due to its borders - which are the Gulf of Mexico to the west, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the straits of Florida to the south.
The southern part of the state is characterized by its large Hispanic community, with Miami being the largest Latin city in the world found north of Mexico. The state is the 4th most populous state in the nation, and the 8th most densely populated.

Geography of Florida


Florida is located on the south-east region of the United States. Its borders are Alabama and Georgia to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Gulf of Mexico to the west, and the straits of Florida to its south. Its close proximity to the Bahamas and South American countries has created a unique culture that is quintessentially Florida, which is evident in the city of Miami.

History of Florida


Its highest point is Britton Hill, which sits at 345 feet above sea level, making it the lowest high point in the entire country. It has a total of 19 metropolitan areas, with Miami being the largest in the state, and that of the entire southeast United States.

The first inhabitants of the state were the Paleo-Indians believed to reside in the region about 14,000 years ago, as archaeological evidence shows. When the first Europeans arrived in Florida in the 16th century, several American Indians settled in the region, some of which were the Apalache, the Tocobaga, Timucua, Calusa, and Tequesta.

Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon is credited for being the first European to set foot in the region on April 2, 1513. He named the land La Florida, which means Flowery Land, due to the abundance of vegetation that was in bloom when he arrived during Easter.

Over the following hundred years, Florida was settled by the Spanish and the French. Great Britain was able to gain control over the region after the French were defeated and the Peace of Paris was implemented in 1763. Great Britain decided to separate the state to East Florida and West Florida.

The Spanish regained control over the 2 regions after the defeat of Britain by the colonies of America. By 1819, the East and West Florida regions were given to the United States for $5 million under the Adams-Onis Treaty, and became one single region once again.

Florida achieved statehood on March 3, 1845.

Economy


Tourism is the biggest industry in Florida, followed by the agriculture sector. Florida's tourism consists of the best amusement parks in the world, high end beach front resorts, and national parks. The state is the biggest producers of citrus fruit, specifically oranges- which the state is known for.

Other important industries include construction, life sciences, biomedicine, and international banking.

Travel Destinations in Florida


Over 60 million people visit the state each year. Due to its warm weather and hundreds of miles of coastline, people from all over the country and the world visit the state for its many tourist offerings.

Among these popular tourist destinations are the amusement parks in Orlando, such as the Universal Orlando Resort, the Busch Gardens, and SeaWorld. Walt Disney World Resort is also located at Lake Buena Vista, contributing a major part in the state's tourism industry. It is the largest vacation resort in the entire world, complete with 4 major theme parks and over 20 hotels.

Popular cities to visit are definitely Miami and St. Augustine. For the young tourist who wants to enjoy the best nightlife and art scene in the state, Miami boasts of vibrant cultures, beautiful beaches, a lively atmosphere in South Beach, art festivals, and its famous art deco architecture found all around the city.

For the tourist who wants a little bit of history, the city of St. Augustine offers cobble-stone streets, charming cafes and restos, museums, and horse-drawn carriages found in its Historic Center. Established in 1565 by the Spaniards, this city is the oldest continuous settlement in the country.

Important Cities in Florida

Cities with populations above 50,000 include: Jacksonville (807,815), Miami (413,201), Tampa (340,882), St. Petersburg (245,314), Orlando (230,519), Hialeah (210,542), Fort Lauderdale, Tallahassee, Cape Coral, Port St. Lucie, Pembroke Pines, Hollywood, Coral Springs, Gainesville, Miami Gardens, Miramar, Clearwater, Pompano Beach, Palm Bay, West Palm Beach, Lakeland, Davie Sunrise

67 Counties in Florida:


Alachua County, Baker County, Bay County, Bradford County, Brevard County, Broward County, Calhoun County, Charlotte County, Citrus County, Clay County, Collier County, Columbia County, DeSoto County, Dixie County, Duval County, Escambia County, Flagler County, Franklin County, Gadsden County, Gilchrist County, Glades County, Gulf County, Hamilton County, Hardee County, Hendry County, Hernando County, Highlands County, Hillsborough County, Holmes County, Indian River County, Jackson County, Jefferson County, Lafayette County, Lake County, Lee County, Leon County, Levy County, Liberty County, Madison County, Manatee County, Marion County, Martin County, Miami-Dade County, Monroe County, Nassau County, Okaloosa County, Okeechobee County, Orange County, Osceola County, Palm Beach County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, Polk County, Putnam County, St. Johns County, St. Lucie County, Santa Rosa County, Sarasota County, Seminole County, Sumter County, Suwannee County, Taylor County, Union County, Volusia County, Wakulla County, Walton County and Washington County

Longest Rivers in Florida

1.Chattahoochee River – 430 miles (690 km)
, 2. St. Johns River – 310 miles (500 km)
, 3. Suwannee River – 246 miles (396 km)
, 4. Ochlockonee River – 206 miles (332 km)
, 5. Alapaha River – 202 miles (325 km)
, 6. Conecuh River – 198 miles (319 km)
, 7. Pea River – 154 miles (248 km)
, 8. Indian River – 153 miles (246 km)
, 9. Choctawhatchee River – 141 miles (227 km)
, 10. Withlacoochee River (central Florida) – 141 miles (227 km)

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Lakes in Florida

Dead Lake, Lake Apopka, Lake George, Lake Harney, Lake Istokpoga, Lake Kissimmee, Lake Okeechobee and Lake Seminole.

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Florida’s Top 5 National Parks


, 1.Gulf Islands National Seashore, Gulf Breeze, FL and Ocean Springs, MS; 4,455,240 Visitors.
2. Canaveral National Seashore, Titusville and New Smyrna Beach; 1,451,225 Visitors.
3. Big Cypress National Preserve, Ochopee; 1,192,856 Visitors.
4. Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve, Jacksonville; 1,121,318 Visitors.
5. Everglades National Park, Miami, Naples and Homestead; 1,110,901 Visitors.

US Highways and State Routes include

Route 1, Route 17, Route 19, Route 27, Route 29, Route 41, Route 90, Route 98, Route 129, Route 231, Route 301, Route 319, Route 331 and Route 441.

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Florida Interstates Highways

North-South interstates include: Interstate 75, Interstate 95 and Interstate 275.
East-West interstates include: Interstate 4 and Interstate 10.

Facts About Florida

State NameFlorida
CountryUnited States
ContinentNorth America
Capital CityTallahassee
Lagest cityJacksonville
AbbreviationFL, Fla. US-FL
Joined the UnionMarch 3, 1845 (27th)
NicknameSunshine State
area65,755 sq mi(170,304 km2)
TimezoneEST(UTC-05:00)
Population19,552,860 (2013 est)
Highest PointBritton Hill
Lowest PointAtlantic Ocean
Official Websitewww.myflorida.com




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