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Facts of Florida

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Map of Florida
Map of Florida State which lies in the southeastern part of the United States

Key Facts Florida



State Capital


Largest City



28.1°N 81.6°W


The Sunshine State

Postal Abbreviation



65,757.70 sq. mi (170,312 sq. km)

Highest Point

Britton Hill, 345 ft (105 m)

Neighboring States

Georgia, Alabama

Number of Counties



21,299,325 (2,018 est.)

Date of Entering the Union

March 3, 1845

State Anthem

Old Folks at Home” and “Florida”


Ron DeSantis (Republican)

Lieutenant Governor

Jeanette Núñez (Republican)

U.S. Senators

Marco Rubio (Republican), Rick Scott (Republican)

U.S. House Delegation

14 Republicans, 13 Democrats

GDP (Millions of Dollars)



Floridian, Floridan

Time Zones

Peninsula and “Big Bend” region UTC-05:00 (Eastern), Summer (DST) UTC-04:00 (EDT); Panhandle west of the Apalachicola River UTC-06:00 (Central), Summer (DST) UTC-05:00 (CDT)

Where is Florida?

Florida (the 27th state to be admitted to the Union on March 3, 1845) is the southernmost contiguous state in the US. It shares its border with the Straits of Florida to the south, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, Georgia to the north, Alabama to the northwest, and the Gulf of Mexico to the west.

What is the Geography of Florida?

Florida is spread across a total area of 65,757.70 sq. mi (170,312 sq. km), out of which 53,625.70 sq. mi (138,887 sq. km) is land area and 12,133 sq. mi (31,424 sq. km) is water area. Water bodies occupy around 18.5% of the total area of Florida.

The longest rivers in the state are Apalachicola River (also known as Chattahoochee River), St. Johns River, Suwannee River, Ochlockonee River, Alapaha River, Conecuh River, Pea River, Indian River, Withlacoochee River, etc. 

Some of the major lakes in Florida are Lake Apopka, Lake Kissimmee, Lake Seminole, Dead Lake, Lake Istokpoga, Lake Harney, Lake George, Lake Okeechobee, etc.

The mean elevation of this state is just 100 ft (30.5 m) above sea level. The highest elevation point in the state is Britton Hill (located in Walton County’s Lakewood Park) at 345 ft (105 m) above sea level. The lowest elevation point is the meeting point of the Gulf of Mexico with the Atlantic Ocean at sea level.

Besides Britton Hill, the other highest mountains in this state are Falling Water Hill, High Hill, Sugarloaf Mountain, Danley Hill, Sandy Mountain, Pleasant Ridge, Iron Mountain, Mud Hill, and Orange Hill.

The landform in this state can be categorized into four categories: the coastal plains in the Gulf Coast, more than 1,500 islands in the Florida Keys archipelago, swamp and wetland in the Everglades, and hilly area in the upland.

The Gulf Coast’s coastal plains include flat land, which is fronted by barrier islands, sandbars, coral reefs, and sandy beaches. The uplands area (located mainly in the Florida Panhandle) consists of the low rolling hills.

The USA’s largest subtropical wilderness is located in Florida, and it is called the swampy Everglades, whose average elevation is around 8 ft (2.4 m) above sea level. It is a World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve. Many bays, small lakes, bays, and thousands of tiny islands dissect this protected area.

The Florida Keys archipelago which consists of around 1,700 islands, extends southwest from the Florida peninsula’s southeastern tip to the Gulf of Mexico’s Dry Tortugas (uninhabited).

What is the Climate of Florida?

A humid subtropical climate is found in the central and northern parts of this state. However, a tropical climate is found in the southern part. The rainy season takes place during May-October. The decaying tropical lows bring the rainfall during late summer and early fall/autumn.

The dry season generally starts in October and continues till April. This season is first experienced in the northern regions of the state and then catches up in the deep south during the end of October. Florida doesn’t experience frozen precipitation. However, sometimes fleeting snow or sleet is found in northern Florida.

The temperature remains moderate across the Gulf Stream (that runs through the Florida Straits), north of the Florida East Coast (starting from east coast’s Stuart to west side’s Ft. Myers) throughout the year. There are a few extreme temperatures. The sea surface temperature remains warm, and that’s why the ocean surf waters in the Florida beaches are the warmest on the US mainland.

The winters in this state are the mildest in the entire Continental USA. The average winter temperature ranges from 41 °F (5 °C) at Tallahassee to 65 °F (18 °C) in Key West. The highs in winter temperature are found during the daytime, ranging from 64 °F (18 °C) at Tallahassee to 77 °F (25 °C) at Miami.

During summertime, the minimum temperature ranges from 70 °F (21 °C) in northern Florida to 80 °F (27 °C) in the Keys. The average highs during summer hover in the 90s Fahrenheit (32-37 °C) range. The storm activity in the summers generally takes place in the afternoon or evening, and it brings a sigh of relief in the climate.

A maximum rainfall takes place during summer. 

Spring season remains the driest season in this state. During November-March, the amount of rainfall is higher because of the El Niño effect. A distinct dry season starts from winter and continues till spring. During this dry period, the brush fires take place every year, especially when the temperature rises.

What is the Economy of Florida?

The economy of Florida is one of the biggest in the USA. This economic powerhouse is one of the biggest, and it is driven by tourism, agricultural sector, financial services, life sciences, aerospace or aviation, and international trade. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of this state in current US Dollars was US$ 1036.32 billion (over US$1 trillion) in 2018, becoming the 4th largest state economy after California, Texas, and New York.

Per Capita Personal Income has increased from US$36,611 in 2009 to US$50,070 in 2018. The state created over 180,200 jobs in 2018, and the unemployment rate has come down from a peak of 11.3% in January 2010 to 3.8% in 2018 and further lower to 3.1% in November 2019.

The total export and import value of 2018 was $57,236,644,391 and $80,581,955,617 respectively, resulting in a negative balance of trade of -$23,345,311,226. It was the 8th largest exporter and 10th largest importer of 2018.

The major export items were Electrical Machinery, Industrial Machinery, Aircraft, Precision Instruments, Precious Stones and Metals, Motor Vehicles and Parts, etc. The major import items are Electrical Machinery, Industrial Machinery, Motor Vehicles and Parts, Precious Stones and Metals, Seafood, Oil and Mineral Fuels, Fruit and Nuts, etc.

The US Census Bureau estimates that 2.8 million to 2.9 million people lived below the poverty line in Florida in 2017, which is around 14% of the total state population.

What is the Transportation System of Florida?

The transportation system in Florida includes roadways (Interstate Highways/US Roads/State Roads), commuter rail services, airports, and ports. Some of the major roadways include State Road 112 (SR 112), SR 907, SR 997, SR 826, and many more. Over 1,473 miles (2,371 km) of highway systems are there in this state including 9,934 miles (15,987 km) of the non-interstate highway.

Amtrak Auto Train and Virgin Trains USA are two important intercity railway services available. Florida High-Speed Rail system from Tampa, Lakeland, and Orlando is the major high-speed railway system.

The major airports in the state are Orlando International Airport (in Orlando), Miami International Airport (in Miami), Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood Int’ l Airport (in Fort Lauderdale), Tampa International Airport (in Tampa), Southwest Florida International Airport (in Fort Myers), Palm Beach International Airport (in West Palm Beach), and Jacksonville International Airport (in Jacksonville).

Why is Florida called the “The Sunshine State”?

Florida is officially called “The Sunshine State” since 1970, the year when the Florida legislature officially adopted the name. As this state gets a lot of sunshine (amounting to 2,927 hours of sunshine annually on-an-average) and a high level of tourists every year, Florida is called “The Sunshine State”. The other nicknames of this state are “The Orange State”, “Everglades State”, “The Peninsula State”, “The Citrus State”, “The Flower State”, and “Alligator State”.

What are the Popular Tourist Attractions in Florida?

Walt Disney World, Kennedy Space Center, Universal Studios, Miami Beach and the Art Deco Historic District, Biscayne National Park, Everglades National Park, Daytona 500 International Speedway, SeaWorld Orlando, Busch Gardens Tampa, Dry Tortugas National Park, Duval Street in Key West, St. Augustine’s Historic District and the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, Edison and Ford Winter Estates, The Ringling, Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg

Facts About Florida

1.Greater Miami is the sole metropolitan area in USA whose borders include two national parks – Biscayne National Park and Everglades National Park.

2.Sunshine Skyway Bridge opened in 1987 and is 190 feet above the water.

3.In North America Saint Augustine has the oldest settlement by Europeans.

4.80% of the sweet Atlantic white shrimp eaten in Florida is grown in Amelia Island.

5.Punta Gorda means fat point in Spanish. The city was given this name because a major chunk of the land cuts into Charlotte Harbor.

6.The vegetation at Fakahatchee Strand in Everglades filters and cleans the flowing water, stops flooding after heavy rains and is an important habitat for plant and animal life.

7.Among amusement park destinations in USA, Orlando draws most visitors.

8.DeFuniak Springs has a naturally round lake – one of the two in world.

9.Rollins College, which is the oldest college in Florida, was established in 1885 in Winter Park by New England Congregationalists.

10.The Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens located at Delray Beach is the only US museum that is devoted solely to Japanese culture.

11.Cape Canaveral serves one of the most important space flight launch pad in USA.

12.Fort Lauderdale is also called Venice of America as it has 185 miles of waterways.

13.Florida is not the southernmost US state.

14.In Polk County, Fort Meade is the oldest settlement.

15.A museum at Senibel possesses 2 million shells and is admittedly the only museum that is dedicated to mollusks.

16.The Fred Bear Museum of Gainesville pays tribute to Fred Bear, founder of Bear Archery Company and promoter of wildlife management.

17.The Benwood, located on French Reef in Florida Keys, is one of most popular shipwrecks for divers.

18.A part of Rails to Trails program of Florida, Hawthorne Trail draws a number of outdoor enthusiasts.

19.Safety Harbor is home to the historic Espiritu Santo Springs, a name given in 1539 by Hernando De Soto, a Spanish explorer.

20.Baseball City Stadium lies to the north of Haines City, known as the Heart of Florida.

21.Niceville stages the well known Boggy Bayou Mullet Festival on the third weekend of October.

22.The name of Hypoluxo City has been derived from a Seminole expression.

23.Clearwater has the most lightning strikes per capita among US cities.

24.Islamorada is known as the global sports fishing capital.

25.Gatorade was named after University of Florida Gators, which is where it was developed.

26.Key Largo is billed as the global diving capital.

27.Tony Jannus flew the first ever scheduled passenger flight to Tampa from St. Petersburg on 1st January 1914.

28.Marathon houses the historic – Crane Point Hammock that has proof of prehistoric Bahamian and pre Colombian artifacts.

29.Mechanical refrigeration was invented in 1851 by Dr. John Gorrie from Apalachicola.

30.Fort Zachary Taylor was controlled by the Union during the Civil War. It was used later in Spanish-American War and the World Wars.

31.In 1944 Benjamin Green, a pharmacist from Miami Beach, came up with the first ever suntan cream.

32.Built in 1763 Old Kings Road is the original graded road and was named after King George of England.

33.The first ever Snapper riding lawnmower was invented by Neil and Montverde Smith.

34.Jacksonville was the busiest military port in USA during the 1991 Gulf War.

35.Key West experiences the maximum average temperature in Florida.

36.At the time of its completion in 1989 the Dame Point Bridge was the tallest cable stayed structure in USA.

37.Saint John’s River is among the few rivers that flow north.

38.Annual Mug Race is the longest river sailboat race of the world, stretching for 42 miles to Jacksonville from Palatka beside the St. Johns River.

39.Lake Okeechobee is the biggest of its kind in Florida.

40.The Olustee Battlefield State Historic Site marks the biggest battle fought in Florida at the time of American Civil War.

41.On 20th May 1970 a bill to adopt moonstone as the official state gem was signed and sent to the Governor by Florida legislators.

42.Venice, Florida is billed as the global shark tooth capital.

43.The American Alligator was designated as the official state reptile in 1987 by Florida legislature.

44.The Florida Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art in Coral Gables is the first and only US museum devoted to maintenance and promotion of Latin and Spanish American art.

45.The first ATM especially for Rollerblades was installed in Miami.

46.The 47 mile long Pinellas Trail is the longest urban linear trail of eastern US.

47.Once known as the Global Cigar Capital, almost 12,000 tobacco makers worked in 200 factories in Ybor City.

48.Also billed as Space City Titusville is on the western shore of Indian River directly across the John F Kennedy Space Center.

49.The Global Winter Strawberry Capital, Plant City, has the Guinness record for the largest strawberry shortcake of world.

50.Florida is the sole American state that has two rivers with identical names – Withlacoochee.

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Location of Florida
Florida County Map
Florida County Map
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