Florida in January offers both spring break and summer vacation opportunities.
It is almost the middle of the dry season, and the climate is much more pleasant.
If you want to avoid the crowds at the theme parks and other attractions in Florida, January is a great month to visit.
At the same time, you can expect more favorable prices than those in the peak season.
In January, resorts and villas have a larger selection of accommodations.
The hustle and bustle have receded from the beaches on the Gulf Coast and the Atlantic Coast. You won’t miss a thing at Orlando theme parks in January.
Since January is popularly known as the “spring season” in Florida, it’s clear that you’ll be having fun in enjoyable temperatures.
Florida has eleven National Parks, thirty-seven state forests, 175 state parks, historic sites, and trails covering nearly one hundred miles of sandy beaches and eight hundred acres of land.
In addition, over 14,800 trails are designed for biking, hiking, and horseback riding.
The largest state park is the Fakahatchee Strand Preserve, which contains habitats of animal and plant species found only in Florida.
Florida in January: Weather & Temperature
The first thing that comes to mind when you think of Florida is the sun, beaches, and heat, but Florida is a much larger State, and the temperature differences from south to north in January are very significant.
The rainy season in Florida lasts from June to early October.
In January, the percentage of air humidity is lower, and it is much more pleasant. And the hurricane season has long passed.
In Central Florida, January is considered the month of spring. In Orlando, the average daytime temperature in January is 710F, and the minimum measured at night is 520F.
After such cool nights during the day, minimum temperatures rise and reach 600F.
Orlando has an average of nine rainy days in January. 1.8 inches of rain falls during the entire month. Eleven are completely sunny days, and eleven are partially sunny days.
January on the Atlantic coast of Central Florida is pleasant, with plenty of sunny days.
Daytona Beach’s average maximum temperature is 66.40F, and the minimum is 54.10F. Eleven rainy days with 1.5 inches of rain can be expected.
The average ocean temperature is 67.30F. In January and February in Daytona Beach, the sea water is the coldest. Such a low surface water temperature is not recommended for swimming for most people.
Water temperatures below 69.80F make it more difficult to control breathing, and swimming in those conditions is not considered safe.
A day lasts 10 hours and 32 minutes. At the beginning of the month, the sun rises at 7:18 a.m. and sets at 5:37 p.m.
On the last day of the month, the sun rises five minutes earlier and sets twenty-four minutes later.
As you go south from Daytona Beach, the sea temperature gets higher. In Cocoa Beach, the sea temperature is 71.60C, which is a pleasant temperature for swimming.
January on the Gulf Coast of Central Florida is pleasant, with plenty of sunny days.
In Clearwater Beach, the average maximum temperature in January is 69.80F, and the average minimum temperature is 57.20F.
January in Clearwater Beach is a month with few cloudy days. The average sea temperature is 63.70F, so it is not recommended for swimming.
Summer is still going on in South Florida in January. The average sea temperature on the Atlantic side of South Florida is above 750F.
Miami is the hottest city in Florida in January. In Miami, the average January high temperature is 740F, and the average low temperature is 670F.
The sun rises at 7:07 a.m. and sets at 5:51 p.m.
In Fort Lauderdale, the average ocean temperature is 74.30F. In clear and sunny weather, the highest daily temperature is 730F.
In January, swimming conditions at beaches in the Florida Keys archipelago are pleasant.
The average sea temperature in Big Pine Key in January is 72.50F, and the weather is mostly clear and sunny.
The average maximum temperature is 730F, and the minimum is 690F. On average, there are three rainy days in January, with 2.1 inches of rain falling.
The Florida Keys is an archipelago that is the southernmost part of the continental United States.
This archipelago is surrounded by a living coral reef that is the third largest in the world.
You can also swim on the beaches in North Florida in January, but only wearing winter jackets because the sea temperature on the Atlantic and Gulf sides is too cold to enter the water.
In Jacksonville, January is another pleasant winter month after December. The average temperature ranges from a high of 63.10F to a low of 47.80F.
The average relative humidity is 72%, and 1.1 inches of rain falls. With 9.9 rainy days, January has the fewest slopes in Jacksonville.
In addition to February and in January, the ocean temperature drops below 69.80F.
According to long-term measurements, the days in January in Jacksonville are ten hours and twenty-seven minutes long.
On January 1, the sun rises at 7:23 a.m.; on the last day of the month, it rises six minutes earlier at 7:17 a.m. On January 1, the sun sets at 17:37, and at the end of the month, you can enjoy the sunset around 18:02.
There is an average of 6.1 hours of cloudless sunshine per day.
On the Gulf Coast of North Florida at Fort Walton Beach, the mean sea temperature of 63.50F is even lower than on the Atlantic.
The water can only get as warm as 680F on even the hottest days, and the lowest sea temperatures in January at Fort Walton Beach are around 58,640F!
Florida in January: Things To Do
It’s spring in Central Florida in January. It’s the perfect time to visit amusement parks and enjoy sunny beaches without the crowds and summer heat.
However, the ocean temperature is warm enough to swim at those beaches on the Atlantic coast close to South Florida.
January is also the time when manatees migrate to warmer waters.
Many festivals take place in Central Florida cities in January.
On the road with manatees
Manatees are aquatic herbivores. They weigh up to 600 kilograms and are up to four meters long. They have a tail that resembles a paddle.
Due to the thin layer of fatty tissue, they cannot tolerate low temperatures.
When the sea temperature drops below 680F, these gentle giants head for their wintering grounds.
The streams on the west coast of Florida are their natural refuge because the water in them is a constant temperature of 720F year round.
On the opposite coast of Florida from the chilly Atlantic Ocean, manatees are directed to the waters of Blue Springs, which are also year-round at a constant temperature of 720F.
These are the places in Central Florida where you can see manatees in January.
Manatee Springs State Park
Manatee Springs State Park is located six miles west of Chiefland. Manatee Springs has a flow rate of 50 to 150 gallons of water per day and is one of thirty-three first-magnitude springs. It flows into the Suwannee River.
An 800-foot boardwalk runs through the cypress forest. With several observation decks, a great view of the stream is provided.
In the spring, the Manatee Springs stream is crystal clear, and it is possible to see manatees, sometimes as many as twenty, in this place.
But when the Suwannee River floods an area, the main flow of the stream is hard to see because the murky dark water spills everywhere.
Manatee Springs State Park is a habitat for many species of animals, from alligators, turtles, and snakes to numerous fish species.
A feature of this State Park is the cave system from which Manatee Springs springs.
There are several hiking trails in Manatee Springs State Park. The Sink Trail Loop is a 0.6-mile trail. It passes through a forest of magnolia, hickory, holly, and oak trees.
At Manatee Springs State Park, you can swim, canoe, scuba dive, fish, hike, and watch wildlife.
Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge
Crystal River is a town in Kings Bay. In the winter, when the water in the Gulf of Mexico starts to cool, Kings Bay is the perfect place for manatees because it has a constant temperature of 720F.
Kings Bay’s water is warmer because it comes from fifty springs. Crystal River Springs is the second largest group of springs in Florida.
Up to four hundred manatees can shelter in Kings Bay during the winter.
Swimming with manatees is allowed in this place. Near Crystal River is the Three Sisters Spring National Wildlife Refuge.
Blue Springs State Park
Blue Springs State Park is located west of Orange City. Volusia Blue Spring is the largest on the St.Johns River.
In addition to being a wintering place for manatees, this Park is also known for the birds whose habitats are there, and one species in particular.
The Florida Scrub jay is listed as an endangered species. It is 12 inches long and has blue feathers on its tail, head, wings, and collar.
Along with this bird, you can also see Bachman’s sparrows and hairy woodpeckers in Blue Springs State Park.
Visit the National Parks and some of the State Parks
Canaveral National Seashore is a National Park
Canaveral National Seashore is a National Park between Titusville and New Smyrna Beach on the barrier island.
This Park is a habitat for more than 310 bird species and 1000 plant species, and it covers 57662 hectares.
In addition, Playalinda Beach, Klondike Beach, and Apollo Beach are on Barrier Island.
Ocala National Forest
Ocala National Forest is located 10 miles southeast of Gainesville. It covers 607 square miles of northern Florida.
The Ocala National Forest has over 600 natural lakes and ponds where visitors can swim, fish, snorkel, canoe, and boat.
Orlando: the world of fantasy
It’s January, and you’re in Orlando! A real opportunity to visit those places that are usually indescribably crowded during the season.
Fly with Harry Potter over Hogwarts, conquer the mighty volcano Krakatau and follow Spider-Man over the city streets.
Or immerse yourself in a world that has no borders. For example, immerse yourself in Disney World.
Walt Disney World Resort
Walt Disney World Resort is 15 miles away from Orlando’s city center.
Ever since Disney World opened in Orlando in 1971, Florida has become known worldwide as the world’s kingdom of fantasy.
The 50th-anniversary celebration began in 2021 and will last until March. But don’t worry.
Whenever you go to Disney World, you will always feel like you are at a festival of fantasy and imagination.
The Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando has four theme parks, two water parks, several golf courses, a camping resort, thirty-one-themed hotels, and many other entertainment venues.
One million visitors visit Disney’s four theme parks, Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Epcot each year.
According to many, Magic Kingdom opened in 1972 and is the best Park in the Walt Disney World Resort.
Universal’s Volcano Bay, Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and Universal Studios Florida are the three Universal Studios theme parks in Orlando that are visited by tens of millions of visitors every year.
The Universal Studio Resort also includes a water theme park, eight Universal Orlando hotels, and Universal City Walk. Universal City Walk is home to shops, restaurants, and entertainment.
The great environment of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley will welcome you to the Universal Studio Florida theme park—the world of wizards, magic wands, and riding the Hogwarts Express in the British countryside.
The last stop is the village of Hogsmeade, which you will have the opportunity to explore.
After that, you will have another adventure at Universal Studio Florida: Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure.
Jurassic World VelociCoaster is an adventure that awaits you in Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
After racing with velociraptors through the jungle, you can immerse yourself in the world of myths, legends, and monsters.
Marvel Super Hero Island and Seuss Landing are such an adventure.
Universal’s Volcano Bay theme park is a trip to an island paradise.
SeaWorld Parks and Resort Orlando
SeaWorld Theme Park, Discovery Cove, and Aquatica comprise SeaWorld Parks and Resort Orlando.
The SeaWorld Theme Park has ten aquariums with over 3,000 marine animals. A special attraction is one of the world’s largest underwater observation tunnels. Sharks swim above and all around the tunnel. For the bravest, visit Discovery Cove and swim with sharks.
SeaWorld also has an amusement park with several huge and fun Roller Coasters.
SeaWorld is fourteen miles from Disney World.
Visit the National Parks and some of the State Parks
Everglades National Park
The Everglades Subtropical Wetland is located in southern Florida. It is the largest grass swamp in the world. The Seminoles called it Pa-hai-oki, or Grass Water.
Dense cypress forests grow in Everglades National Park, and oaks and a special type of pine grow on patches of dry land.
At least one million people visit the Everglades every year.
One of the organized tours in Everglades National Park is Shark Valley Tram Tours. A fifteen-mile-long trail leads to the viewpoint.
You can also ride this trail on a rented bike. Shark Valley got its name from two estuaries, the Shark River and Little Shark River, whose waters are home to several species of sharks.
Accompanied by a ranger, you can canoe through the mangrove forest or kayak through the mangrove maze. This tour call ten thousand islands. Canoeing along the Gulf of Mexico coast is also organized.
The Everglades are home to over three hundred species of birds. Some are there all year round, and some only stop by during migrations.
The Anhinga trail is intended for hiking. This hike will take you past alligator sites. You will see a lot of other wildlife along the way. Anhinga is a very popular trail, usually very crowded sometimes.
You need to book in advance, but since it’s January, you can relax, you won’t need reservations or be crowded, and the Everglades will be right before your eyes in all its glory.
Another popular activity in the Everglades is air boating.
Biscayne National Park
Biscayne National Park receives about 500,000 visitors each year. This Park is located south of Miami along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean.
It covers an area of 172,971 hectares of crystal clear water, white sandy beaches, islands, and coral reefs.
The ocean temperature at the beaches in Biscayne National Park is pleasant for swimming, diving, and snorkeling.
Dry Tortugas National Park
Although the Dry Tortugas National Park area is more than 99% water, it also includes the seven islands of the Dry Tortugas archipelago and Fort Jefferson. The National Park is about 68 miles from Key West.
Loggerhead Key, Garden Key, Bush Key, Long Key, Hospital Key, Middle Key, and East Key are the seven main islands within the Park.
Fort Jefferson is the centerpiece of the island. What is specific about this fortress is that it is the largest masonry building in the Western Hemisphere.
About 63,000 visitors visit Dry Tortugas National Park annually. Diving, camping, snorkeling, bird watching, fishing, and kayaking are available in the Park.
Unfortunately, the Dry Tortugas can only be reached by boat or seaplane.
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
The Florida Keys archipelago consists of one hundred and fifty islands. Most Keys chains consist of Key Largo, Marathon, Islamorada, Big Pine Key, and Key West. This archipelago is the southernmost part of the continental United States. It is surrounded by a living coral reef, the third largest in the world.
The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary encompasses more than 2,900 miles of protected waters.
With an average sea temperature of 72.50F in January, swimming conditions at beaches in the Florida Keys archipelago are pleasant for swimming. The weather is mostly clear and sunny.
Key Largo is the longest and, according to many, the most beautiful island in the archipelago. In addition to the clean sandy beaches on this island, you can walk on well-maintained paths, dive, snorkel, fish, or cruise the sea. A special attraction is diving into the wreck of the 510-foot Spiegel Grove, which was deliberately sunk in 2002. Once part of the US Navy, this ship is located on the seabed about six miles from the coast.
Islamorada is home to the world’s largest fishing fleet per square mile. As a result, Islamorada is called the fishing capital of the world.
The 110-mile Overseas Highway takes you from Miami to Key West. There are 42 bridges on this road, and the longest is the Seven Mile Bridge, with a length of 6.79 miles. The Seven Mile Bridge is located southwest of Marathon and spans open water for its entire length.
Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park
Fakahatchee Strand Preserve is the largest state park in which there are habitats of animal and plant species found only in Florida. The Park is divided into four areas.
The winding Big Cypress Bend Boardwalk leads through the marsh to the lookout. It is 2500 feet long.
The East River is canoed and passes through a series of small lakes and mangrove mazes and tunnels.
Canoeing and kayaking are also available on Jones Grade lakes. These lakes are also suitable for fishing.
Most hiking and biking trails depart from Janes Memorial Scenic Drive. It is a dirt road that is 6 miles long.
Big Cypress National Preserve
The 729,000 acres of wetlands that make up the Big Cypress National Preserve are home to a variety of wildlife, most notably the home of the endangered Florida panther. And the plant life in Big Cypress National Preserve is diverse and represents a mixture of tropical and temperate plant communities.
In this National Preserve, you can camp, kayak, or canoe, walk along well-maintained trails, and observe birds, lush flora, and fauna.
Visit State Parks and National Forests
Fanning Springs State Park
Fanning Springs is located on the Suwannee River. It is located seven miles west of Manatee Springs.
Fanning Springs is an excellent location to start paddling, whether going downstream to Manatee Springs or to several attractive areas upstream.
Fanning Springs are springs of the second category in terms of water quantity. Visitors can swim, fish, canoe, or kayak, and walk along the marked trail along the river.
Manatees are frequent visitors in January. In addition, white-tailed deer, gray squirrels, and numerous species of birds can be seen in the Park.
According to legend, in 1838, during the Second Seminole War, a wooden fort was built on that spot, the remains of which have long since rotted away.
The fort was initially called “Palmetto” but was renamed in honor of Colonel Fannin.
In Fanning Springs Park, cabins are available for accommodation that can accommodate six people.
Apalachicola National Forest
Apalachicola National Forest is located near Tallahassee. Visitors can paddle and fish on the Ochlockonee and Apalachicola Rivers.
There are numerous lakes in the forest where you can swim.
In addition, you can walk and ride a bicycle on well-maintained paths and roads.
There are eighty-five miles of groomed hiking trails in the Apalachicola National Forest. Sixty-four miles of the Florida National Scenic Byway also runs through the forest.
Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park
Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park is located next to Tallahassee. The Park has several hiking trails and five miles of bike paths.
In addition, Lake Hall is open for canoeing, swimming, and fishing.
Camellias bloom in January at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park. Their flowering begins on January 1 and ends on April 30.
Besides the camellias in the garden, the most prominent attractions are the reflecting pond, the lake, and the secret garden.
White-tailed deer and alligators can be seen at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park, and the lake’s waters are rich in fish.
Ochlockonee River State Park
Ochlockonee River State Park covers 392 acres with thirty campgrounds. A picnic and swimming area are at the junction of the Dead and Ochlockonee rivers.
Ochlockonee River water is a mixture of fresh and tidal saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico.
As a result, the river is rich in freshwater and marine fish. Catfish, sea bass, bream, and spotted perch are fished. You can walk along the river and ride a canoe.
Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve State Park
Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve State Park is a preserve in Jacksonville. Wetlands, water bodies, and other habitats on about 46,000 hectares are included in this Park.
Osceola National Forest
Osceola National Forest is located west of Jacksonville. Flatwoods and swamps in the Osceola National forest are suitable for fishing and swimming.
Florida: Festivals and events in January
South Walton is hosting the Songwriters Festival from January 12-15, 2024.
Traditionally the festival will occur at various locations along scenic Highway 30A in South Walton.
This festival is one of the best music festivals in Florida.
Singer-songwriters with compositions from multiple musical genres perform in public venues such as large amphitheaters throughout the area, town halls, local pubs, and even some intimate venues.
South Walton is located in North Florida. It is a very popular tourist spot because of the beauty of its beach, but also because of its natural environment.
Scottish Highland Games
In Winter Springs, a parade is traditionally held every January in Central Winds Park to start the Scottish Highland Games officially.
The sound of bagpipes brings the Gaelic spirit to Central Florida. Following the centuries-old tradition, the descendants of the highlanders from the Scottish Highlands compete in shoulder throwing, archery, and other disciplines.
Border Collie sheep herding is demonstrated, traditional dances are performed, traditional dishes are prepared, and whiskey is tasted at the end.
Food & Wine Festival
Gourmand flocks to Key West every January for the Food and Wine Festival. And with good reason.
Wine and first-class food in an exotic tropical setting, tastings on the coast, and the presence of winemakers and first-class chefs at the festival, it’s like the best gastronomic dream.
Art Deco Weekend
Art Deco Weekend will be held on January 12, 13, and 14, 2024.
Forty-six years ago, the Miami Design Preservation League launched Art Deco Weekend. Their idea was to draw attention to the beautiful Art Deco buildings on South Beach.
And really, can you imagine Miami Beach without historic Art Deco?
In the three days of the weekend, there will be theater performances in the street, parades, parades of antique cars, food, and drinks.
The Original Miami Beach Antique Show
The original Miami Beach Antique Show will be held at the Miami Beach Convention Center on January 11-15, 2024.
South Florida Fairgrounds
West Palm Beach is hosting the South Florida Fairgrounds from January 12-28, 2024.
Traditionally, the fair will last for seventeen days. The first fair was organized in 1912 and was held every January.
More than half a million visitors visit the fair every year. The piglet race is one of the most popular events at past fairs.
Gasparilla Pirate Festival
And this January, pirates will flood the streets of Tampa.
Someone may also drink rum in Tampa Bay. So be on Bayshore Boulevard and join the merry-go-round.
Art Fort Lauderdale
The gallery tour lasts four days. This is a unique artistic experience because the galleries are reached from the sea on private yachts.
On view are works from modern contemporary paintings, installations, and films to the best pieces of independent artists.
Florida Manatee Festival
The Florida Manatee Festival is held in downtown Crystal River.
In honor of the gentle giants who spend every winter in the warm waters of the Crystal River on the day of the festival, the boat trip to Three Sister Spring will be free.
Entertainment will be provided by singers who will perform on two stages. There will also be plenty of seafood dishes, other food, and drinks, especially in the famous beer garden.
Saint Augustine Film Festival
Every year, the film festival in St. With its selection of films, Augustin offers viewers the opportunity to get acquainted with new films of foreign productions also shown at other film festivals.
Films by independent American authors are always included in the program, but comedies worldwide are also offered to make the festival feel truly carefree.
Rodeo & Rodeo Days
Rodeo & Rodeo Days are held in Homestead annually in the Rodeo Arena and numerous other locations.
Of course, there will be barrel racing and bareback riding, but there will also be a Little Miss & Mister contest, and the bands will roll up their sleeves and start their musical battle.
More destinations to discover: