Monday, August 10, 2009
Fort Lauderdale Attractions
lcome to MetroGuide Networks' overview of Fort Lauderdale-area attractions. The Greater Fort Lauderdale area is full of attractions for all ages. Greater Fort Lauderdale’s famed beach -- once the “Where The Boys Are” Spring Break Capital of the Universe – in recent years has proactively upgraded from a steady diet of wet T-shirt and banana-eating contests to offer a tonier menu of more diverse attractions, all within an increasingly smart resort city atmosphere. That goes for the rest of Broward County, too, altogether covering some 1,200 square miles and encompassing 30 municipalities and 1.7 million residents. On South Florida’s Gold Coast, midway between Palm Beach and Miami, Greater Fort Lauderdale stretches from Deerfield and Pompano past Fort Lauderdale on south to Hollywood and Hallandale. Westward, Greater Fort Lauderdale sprawls toward the eastern edge of the Everglades and embraces planned cities such as Coral Springs and Weston. In between are wild west-oriented Davie, trendy Wilton Manors and miniscule Lazy Lake. County seat Fort Lauderdale, the largest of all, has 150,000 residents and is navigable not only by its “Venice of America” waterways, but also by a grid system with east/west boulevards and north/south avenues. One main-drag exception is the 17th Street Causeway, a major east/west artery that leads over the Intracoastal Waterway past Port Everglades and curving north into A1A, the scenic beach route. Florida’s only tunnel, on Federal Highway, burrows under New River just south of Broward Boulevard. As the “Yachting Capital of the World” underscored by dozens of gleaming yachts docked at places like the famed Bahia Mar Yacht Basin (fictional home to the Busted Flush, Travis McGee’s twin-dieseled houseboat in those John D. MacDonald novels), Greater Fort Lauderdale is a place where watercraft of all ilk get dressed up big time for holiday boat parades. It’s a destination that has come a long way since incorporation in 1911 with just 175 residents, getting its name from Maj. William Lauderdale, who in 1838 built a fort at the mouth of New River during the Seminole Indian wars.