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Florida

A map of FloridaFlorida is located in the southeastern United States. The northwestern “panhandle” is gently rolling country, interspersed with swamps along the coast. Most of the state occupies a peninsula lying between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. It is low and flat with a few rolling hills. Much of the east coast is flanked by sandbars and barrier islands. Central Florida is dotted with lakes, with Lake Okeechobee the largest. The Everglades in the south, which includes Big Cypress Swamp, is an extremely wide, slow-flowing river. Stretching off from the peninsula's tip are the Florida Keys, a chain of islands and reefs linked to the mainland by a causeway.


Fort Jefferson, a massive, unfinished coastal fortress on Garden Key, about 70 miles (110 km) west of Key West. Built from more...Read More >>Fort Jefferson, a massive, unfinished coastal fortress on Garden Key, about 70 miles (110 km) west of Key West. Built from more than 16 million bricks in 1846–47, it is the largest masonry structure in the Americas.

Name

Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León was the first European to set foot on what is now Florida. Landing there during the Easter season—called Pascua Florida (“Feast of Flowers”) in Spanish—in 1513, he named it La Florida (“Land of Flowers"). It is said Ponce de León was searching for the Fountain of Youth, a spring that supposedly restored the youth of anyone who drunk or bathed in it, but this is a myth.
Sunshine Skyway Bridge spans Tampa Bay with a cable-stayed main span and a total length of more than 4 miles (6.7 km). The...Read More >>Sunshine Skyway Bridge spans Tampa Bay with a cable-stayed main span and a total length of more than 4 miles (6.7 km). The present bridge dates from 1987.

Climate

Florida has the longest coastline in the contiguous United States, approximately 2170 km (1350 miles).

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