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  • Writer's pictureKim Kortum

Fort Lauderdale and it's Perfectly Placed Public Land

When looking for an easy weekend in the sun, we found Ft. Lauderdale airport was just 15 minutes from the beach. With plenty of affordable places to rent and a state park right on the beach, Ft. Lauderdale is an ideal weekend getaway spot!

Hugh Taylor Birch State Park

Before Ft. Lauderdale was the sprawling vacation destination that it is today, it was a tropical wilderness that attracted a wealthy Chicago family. Hugh Taylor Birch bought much of the coastline and spent winters there. He donated some of his land to be protected through Florida State Parks. Today, the Hugh Taylor Birch State Park is "an urban oasis nestled between the ocean an intracoastal waterway," according to the park website.

Here is the appeal:

  • The airport is a 15 minute Uber ride away, which means no need to rent a car!

  • There are plenty of nice (clean), affordable rentals between Las Olas and Sunrise Blvd. This is a safe area full of restaurants and shopping, all within walking distance. Rent a place close to A1A, between the intracoastal and the ocean, and you will be perfectly situated.

  • Not only do you have all the conveniences of city life, but you have the protected public land space at the state park so that you can escape and explore some Florida wilderness.

  • Miles of public, ocean beachfront for you to explore.

The Bonnet House Museum and Gardens

As if the state park wasn't enough, Hugh Taylor Birch's son built quite an expansive estate that has also been preserved. The Bonnet House Museum and Gardens is located just south of the state park. This property also stretches from the intracoastal to the beachfront. Bonnet House is not part of the state park, but is preserved through a non-profit organization. The tour of the house and grounds is well worth the admission price.

It always boggles my mind that people have been so generous in generations before mine, and donated such incredible resources to be preserved for us to enjoy. I am so thankful for that, and for the agencies that protect that land still today. I hope that this park and adjacent property remains protected for many more generations to come!

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