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Growing up as one of Florida’s oldest settlements along the rim of a massive prairie, Gainesville is one of Florida’s youngest cities in temperament, thanks to being the home of the University of Florida. Around the university, you’ll find college culture, centered on long-standing cafes like the popular Burrito Brothers, funky shops, galleries, and used music stores, as well as attractions that draw big crowds—the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Harn Museum of Art, and the Butterfly Rainforest. Gainesville’s residential districts on rolling, tree-covered hills are reminiscent of Appalachian cities, with deep ravines that fill with ...

Growing up as one of Florida’s oldest settlements along the rim of a massive prairie, Gainesville is one of Florida’s youngest cities in temperament, thanks to being the home of the University of Florida. Around the university, you’ll find college culture, centered on long-standing cafes like the popular Burrito Brothers, funky shops, galleries, and used music stores, as well as attractions that draw big crowds—the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Harn Museum of Art, and the Butterfly Rainforest. Gainesville’s residential districts on rolling, tree-covered hills are reminiscent of Appalachian cities, with deep ravines that fill with wildflowers each spring, and the city’s ideals are similarly green. Active preservation of land means plenty of outdoors to play in, and a strong sense of community and heritage means a vibrant arts community, top-notch museums, and a downtown historic core that’s a delight to stroll. Surrounding the city are historic communities such as Newberry, Cross Creek, and Micanopy. Established in 1821, Micanopy is Florida’s oldest inland village, a destination for antique shopping and enjoying the ambiance of Old Florida.

Sandra Friend
About the Expert

Sandra Friend has written 12 books about Florida, including the Explorer's Guide (Countryman Press) series to Florida.

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Climate

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    Spring, winter, and fall