Dubbed the Venice of America because of its multitude of waterways, canals and channels, Fort Lauderdale also claims bragging rights to the title of "Boating Capital of the World." Port Everglades serves as the starting point for somewhere in the neighborhood of 4 million cruisers travel via 11 cruise lines and over 33 cruise ships.
Fort Lauderdale derives its name from a series of forts built during the Second Seminole Wars. In 1838, Major William Lauderdale led the capture of Seminole lands and drove the Seminoles northward. From 1842 through 1890 the area was sparsely populated until the 1893 and 1896 Ferry and Florida East Coast Railroad completion began the process of development and eventual establishment of the city of Fort Lauderdale in 1911.
The Florida Land Boom of 1920s pushed the area’s economic development into a thriving city. However in 1926, the bubble burst when the September 1926 hurricane decimated the developers' dreams, driving many into bankruptcy. A second hurricane in 1928 followed by the 1929 stock market crash led to the end of the good times as the great depression began.
World War II saw the city become a US base, with both a Naval Air Station and Coast Guard base. The postwar boon from service men and their families eclipsed the earlier 1920s land boon. From 1940 through 1980, the city earned the dubious distinction of Spring Break capital reaching its apex in the 1960s with the filming of Where the Boys Are in the Elbo Bar (still there). Today, Fort Lauderdale has matured and evolved into a major yachting, arts and culture and strong tourist center.
Not all Fort Lauderdale activities are water based. Although you can certainly take river cruises or hop on riverfront taxis, catamaran and airboat cruises, you can also take advantage of the great deal on your CompareAutoRental.com rental car and drive to the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District, and walk along Las Olas Boulevard ("Style Mile") and among the newly developed stores and restaurants for a very relaxing and pleasurable experience. With over 4000 restaurants and more than 120 nightclubs and bars, the city has a lot to offer the sophisticated and fun-loving traveler. Don’t miss out on an afternoon of exploration in Museum of Discovery and Science with plenty of hands-on fun and activities and an IMAX-3D theatre which will take you temporarily “out of this world.” If you are looking to take in the ocean breeze and warmth of the sun, drive over to the beaches along A-1A. With over ten beaches within the Greater Fort Lauderdale area, make your choice to walk along the 2 ½ mile Boardwalk of Hollywood Beach or delve into the outdoor sports at Hallandale Beach where you can go boating, salt-water fishing or simply relax and watch the beautiful people.
Greater Fort Lauderdale offers a multitude of gaming and sport activities at various casinos and gaming establishments. Now that you have saved money with your cheap car rental from CompareAutoRentals.com, choose among the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Gulfstream Park, the Isle of Capri Casino Pompano Park Racing, and the Mardi Gras Casino and Poker Room for a little indulging. You will be able to experience all the thrills and excitement of the casinos, thoroughbreds, dog racing and race simulcasting. Should you want something more exotic, revel in the excitement of the world's fastest sport at Dania Jai Alai with its 180 mph hard “pelota” sport played with a wicker cesta. The bottom line is that Fort Lauderdale has something for everyone.
The weather can be characterized as tropical and sunny. During the summer months and through August, be prepared for high temperatures (86-90 degrees) and lots of rainfall during many rainy days. In other words, be prepared for weather that is hot, humid and wet but still allows you to have fun. The other months are more forgiving even if still a little wet. Just make sure to check the weather and bring along an umbrella during the rainy season.
"Cruising" Fort Lauderdale
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