Daytona Beach isn’t the only pitstop for car lovers in the Sunshine State. Everyone knows that the coastal town is the very birthplace of car racing.

Yet, over the years, the influence and obsession with car culture have spread to all parts of our state. For those passionate about cars, Florida offers a rich tapestry of automotive attractions. From scenic drives to world-renowned car shows, there’s always something exciting.

For drivers looking to celebrate the beauty and precision of automobile engineering, these are the Top 8 Places In Florida All Car Lovers Should Visit:

The Revs Institute

A 2023 USA, TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Award winner for Best Attraction for Car Lovers, this three-story structure in Naples, features 100 historically significant vehicles and an extensive automotive archive. The museum is divided into four thematic galleries: Automobile, Porsche, Revs, and Vitesse. 

The first floor primarily contains sports cars, while the collection’s race cars are parked on the second floor. There are no protective barriers, allowing visitors intimate access to the sprawling exhibit space. 

Additionally, there is a 12,000-square-foot workshop made exclusively for auto restoration and care for antique machinery. 

Please note that tickets must be reserved for specific dates and times in events. Walk-up visitors cannot be accommodated. 

Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing

The Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, split between two buildings, has 300 cars dating back to 1976 through the present. An estimated 90 racing cars can be seen at the Drag Race building, and an additional 50 vehicles are parked in the Antique Car structure. 

The collection includes Garlits’ iconic “Swamp Rat” cars and the vehicles of automobile designer Dean Moon. 

In addition to the iconic cars, the museum is also home to the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame, which has inducted Raymond Beadle, Don Schumacher, Sydney Allard, and many more. 

Dezerland Park Orlando 

This sizeable indoor attraction is definitely one for the whole family to enjoy. The Orlando Auto Museum has 20 themed rooms, offering an entertaining mix of automotive and pop culture. Each themed room creates a unique and immersive experience for guests.

Themed showcases include the legendary Batcave, complete with iconic superhero replicas, and Cars of the Stars, celebrating the glitz and glam of Hollywood. There’s also a military section featuring tanks and armored vehicles, among many other fascinating displays.

Outside of the automotive wonders, families can enjoy indoor karting, bowling, and glow-in-the-dark mini golf. Additionally, The Pinball Palace is the largest pinball arcade in the Sunshine State! There’s truly something for everyone.

Tampa Bay Automobile Museum 

Over in Pinellas Park is a collection you have to see to believe. From the collection of Alain Cerf, a French entrepreneur, comes an array of innovative engineering from the 20th century. Featured automobiles include creations from countries such as France, Czechoslovakia, Germany, Italy, and many other locations. Each vehicle showcases unique design elements and technological advancements from its country of origin.

One special feature at the museum is an at-scale working replica of the French 1770 Fardier de Cugnot, the world’s first self-propelled vehicle. This extraordinary exhibit provides a rare glimpse into the early days of automotive innovation and history.

Elliott Museum

Named after inventor Sterling Elliott, the museum is renowned as one of the world’s largest collections of historic Ford Model A and Model AA commercial vehicles. 

Harmon Elliott originally built the museum in 1961 as a tribute to his father. The site was torn down 50 years later, and the current 48,000-square-foot museum opened to the public two years later. 

Shortly after opening, the museum merged with the nearby Classic Boat and Maritime Museum, adding maritime history alongside a collection of 90 cars and trucks. 

Each spring since 1996, vintage car enthusiasts have participated in the museum’s annual car show Classics at the Beach. 

Sebring International Raceway 

If you’re a driver with a need for speed, the small town of Sebring will get your blood pumping. As our country’s longest-running sports car endurance race, Sebring offers year-round on-track activities, including car clubs, manufacturer testing, and 175 events. Racing enthusiasts can relish the constant buzz of motorsports action and participate in various events, capturing the spirit of competitive driving. The atmosphere is electric and filled with excitement.

Beyond the iconic races, Sebring offers a rich history and deep connection to the world of motorsports. Visitors can explore the past of the Sebring International Raceway, learn about legendary drivers, and immerse themselves in the evolution of car racing.

The tracks also accommodate those interested in the Skip Barber Racing School, which lasts one to three days. Participants receive expert training, enhancing their driving skills and gaining invaluable racing techniques. The curriculum covers everything from basic driving principles to advanced racing strategies. It’s an unbeatable experience for anyone eager to improve behind the wheel.

Edison and Ford Winter Estates

ford winter homeAutomotive lovers can visit the birthplace of the modern car in Fort Myers. Henry Ford’s original vacation home still stands, with a garage that holds four vintage makes: the 1917 Model TT one-ton truck, the 1929 Model A, the 1916 Model T, and a 1914 Model T Calliope. Stepping into this garage is like stepping back in time, providing an authentic glimpse into automobile history.

Next door is the former home of Thomas A. Edison. Famous guests to both homes included Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, President Herbert Hoover, and many others. Together, these historical homes offer a unique perspective on innovation and the friendships that helped shape modern technology.

The Sarasota Classic Car Museum 

The second oldest continuously operating antique car museum in the nation, the Sarasota Classic Car Museum has one-of-a-kind classic rotating exhibits throughout the museum, seven days a week. Visitors can enjoy different displays every visit, ensuring a fresh experience each time.

Originally opened in 1953 under the title “Horns’ Cars of Yesterday,” the museum saw immediate success. It offered rides in several of the antique cars on site, adding a unique interactive element to the experience.

The museum has over 75 automobiles, including Alfa Romeo, Bentley, Edsel, and Ferrari. The collection spans various eras and styles, showcasing the evolution of automotive design and engineering marvels.

Rev Your Engines in the Sunshine State

As you can see, the Sunshine State boasts many fantastic automotive attractions for all kinds of car lovers. From museums and speedways to unique collections and historical sites, there is something for everyone. These destinations celebrate car culture’s rich heritage and offer immersive experiences for enthusiasts of all ages and interests.

Whether you’re into high-speed racing or classic car elegance, these spots will rev up your interest! Florida’s diverse automotive landscape ensures excitement, admiration, and deeper appreciation with every visit. Start planning your next road trip and explore these must-visit locations. Florida’s car attractions await your discovery!

 

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