Southern Living

North Florida is nothing like South Florida, there is a saying that in Florida the more north you go the more south it gets and the more south you go the more north it gets. I would know because I’m a South Florida girl who moved to North Florida for college. It is very different. Here you get people saying “y’all” and other southern words like that which you eventually start saying yourself if you stay here long enough. They also don’t look at you like you’re weird if you wear cowgirl boots around (I have a thing for western wear haha).

The first time I came to Tallahassee Florida I thought “This place looks like Georgia (which is my favorite state). I must live here!”. I was there visiting Florida State University, which is where I ended up for my undergrad (wohoo, go Noles!). Obviously there were many other factors going into my college decision but the fact that Tallahassee looked like my favorite state did give it some extra points. There are the big trees with Spanish Moss hanging from them and beautiful Azalias in the spring. The downtown area looks very old south, with cute southern style houses down the streets. It is very cute and makes you feel at home like you’ve walked the streets before.

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Freshman me with Azalias in the background

Tallahassee, Fl

Population: 186,411

Tallahassee is the capital of Florida, when I first moved here I wondered why they made it the capital and I learned that it is because it’s half way between Jacksonville and Pensacola which are two big  cities in Florida. Since it is the capital you can go visit the capital building and the surrounding area which has the Museum of Florida History, Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science, and the  Union Bank which is the oldest bank building in Florida.

Tallahassee is known as a college town but families live here too. I am a college kid so I live near downtown but if you drive further from the center of town you find family residential areas. My favorite house in the entire world is in that area and one day I will have a house like that. It’s on Thomasville road and is blue. It faces the road (not my favorite part about it) and has the most beautiful windows ever (my favorite part about it). Thomasville Road is a nice area to walk around, there are a lot of local stores and restaurants and bars to visit. Kool Beanz Cafe, I have heard, has really good food. The Wine Loft is also on Thomasville and is very fancy (I think) and has a very large wine selection. It is a bit out of my price range (college student) so I have never bought wine there but I have been inside and it is really pretty and they also have an out door section. If you are visiting and want to check out the Florida State campus it is really beautiful (not just saying that because I go here), a lot of people say it looks like Hogwarts (from Harry Potter incase you didn’t know). One of our dinning halls was actually made to look like a library at Oxford which is the library they used in the Harry Potter films which is probably why people feel that way about FSU. Near by is College Town which is near Gains Street and it contains many nice restaurants, bars, and shops to visit. Cantina is a nice restaurant/bar to go to (they make very good margaritas) and Madison Social is another, they have a large selection of beers to choose from.  There are many things to do here and a lot of local food places that are really good.

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My family and I at a FSU football game!

My two favorite parks to are Cascades Park (which is actually pretty new) and McClay Gardens State Park. Cascades Park is down town and is so pretty, it is a great place to take a walk or have a picnic. My friends and I have picnics there sometimes and it is a great place for pictures too. McClay Gardens is a state park, you pay six dollars to get in and you can go any where in the park after that. The gardens part of the park is really lovely, in the spring there are beautiful flowers everywhere and the walk way is very romantic feeling. I’ve been there many times and still love going back over and over again. There is a recreational area where you can bring your own boat or have lunch in their picnic area. My favorite part is the nature trail. You can go around the entire lake which is about two and a half miles. I really like hiking so I do that walk whenever it’s nice outside and I have time. You get nice views of the lake from this trail and you get a chance to see it at all angles. If you like outdoorsy things (like myself) you would also enjoy Lake Ella, it’s a park and is surrounded by shops. You can walk around the lake and take pictures or have a picnic (by now you must think I really like picnics). At Lake Ella you will also find Big Easy Snow Cones which has the best snow cones you will ever eat. My favorite flavor is tigers blood (no tigers were harmed in making of these snow cones), it’s very fruity with a little bit of coconut flavor. At Big Easy they stuff your snow cone with custard because thats how they do it in New Orleans (“Big Easy” like New Orleans). You can have your snow cone stuffed or not stuffed. It’s personal preference really, I like the slushy-ness of snow cones so I usually get them without the custard but you must try it at least once with the custard because it is very delicious! The Tallahassee Museum is another outdoorsy place to visit because they have zip lining which I have done before (despite my fear of heights). Its really fun and I would recommend it to anyone!

Tallahassee also has very unique restaurants, it is perfect for people who enjoy eating local! If you’re not into local restaurants, that’s okay too, there are many chain restaurants to satisfy your food needs! First I will begin with my favorite eating establishment in Tallahassee, Mr. Roboto Tokyo Grill, they serve Japanese food. They sell amazing hibachi with yum yum sauce, you can also get sushi and other dishes but I recommend the hibachi at this place. You get more then what you pay for, the food is so good and it is relatively inexpensive. Another Japanese place I would recommend is Jasmine’s Cafe and Lounge, it has the best sushi and is my favorite sushi bar in Tallahassee. It is located downtown so if you are exploring the area this is a good place to eat. It is very cute inside, it is small and feels intimate. Well Brothers Bar and Grill, more commonly known here as Monks, is a very good restaurant. I would recommend the Lip Smacker which is a burger with peanut butter and jelly (you have to ask for the jelly and they bring it to you) and their pasta salad (it’s delicious). Their side portions are really big which is nice and their prices are average so it’s very affordable.

Tallahassee is also near a lot of really cool places, it is 45 min away from Thomasville GA, an hour away from Providence Canyon in GA, two hours away from Devils Den, an hour away from Florida Caverns State Park, and two hours away from St George Island. So as you can see there is a lot to do in this area. I will be visiting Providence Canyon, Florida Caverns State Park and Devils Den this summer so if you are interested in learning more about those places follow my blog because I will be writing and posting my pictures from those trips!

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