Welcome to Florida Lives, your guide to exploring the Sunshine State! We highlight Florida State Parks, share travel guides to some of Florida’s amazing cities, visit national parks, and find other outdoor adventures!

Our goal is to help you love Florida as much as we do. Whether you’re a Florida native looking to explore where you live or a traveler eager to stick your toes in the sugar sand, we want to help you discover everything Florida has to offer.

You may know about our pristine world-renowned beaches and famous theme parks, but Florida boasts so many other unique experiences. Like kayaking through crystal-clear natural springs, walking the streets of the nation’s oldest city, or climbing down inside a sinkhole. There are so many opportunities to discover natural wonders, wildlife and history.

At Florida Lives we have a passion for exploring the Sunshine State and sharing information and tips on the best places to visit, bites to eat, things to do and more.

The Face Behind Florida Lives

Hi there! I’m Lauren. I am the face and creator behind the Florida Lives website, social media pages, and shop.

A little bit about me:

☀️ I’m a twenty-something, third-generation Floridian born and raised. I’ve lived in Gainesville and the Tampa Bay area throughout my life. I currently live in Gainesville, FL.

☀️ My goal is to visit all the Florida State Parks. I’m currently at 72/175.

☀️ I’d also like to visit all the US National Parks (8/63) and a state park in every state (7/50).

☀️ My favorite animals to see in the wild are manatees and otters.

☀️ I love to be outdoors. I love snorkeling and kayaking in Florida’s freshwater rivers and springs. I’m not a huge beach lover, although I do like to have a beach day every once in a while!

☀️ On the weekends you can probably find me at the springs, trying new breweries and restaurants, or checking another Florida State Park off my list!

☀️ I just wrote a book about things to do in Gainesville, which comes out July 2024. More info can be found at 100 Things to Do in Gainesville Before You Die.

The Florida Lives Journey

Florida Lives was originally a name chosen by my parents. My mom was a real estate agent in the early 2000s, and she planned to create her own website for her listings. My parents picked the name “Florida Lives” for her site and bought the domain. She never ended up making the website but they still held onto the domain. So it had just been sitting there collecting dust for 15 years.

Fast-forward to 2018, I was a recent college grad with a magazine journalism degree, a personal blog that was starting to get a couple thousand views a month, and a stroke of Florida wanderlust.

My family has always been one for adventures and outdoorsy activities. I’ve been going to state parks basically my entire life. So when my dad had the idea to visit all the Florida State Parks and document it on the “Florida Lives” website they had, Florida Lives was born.

With my blogging and social media experience plus my degree, it was natural for me to take this idea to the next level. This wouldn’t be just a personal journal of our adventures, but a resource to help others explore too. We would focus not just on state parks, but all things to do in Florida. I’d share photos and tips on social media and talk about our favorite places.

We officially launched the website in June 2019 and we have posted about a variety of Florida topics. There’s lots of state park posts, but also vacation guides and other activities. We’ve come a long way since 2018. It’s been a long slow process, and a pandemic certainly threw a wrench in the plans. But I am so happy to say we are still plugging away at this website and our state park goal.

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Contact Us

Have a question, comment, suggestion, or just wanna say hi? Send us a message using the form below or email us directly at hello@floridalives.com.