Travel Guide: Hollywood, Florida

“A bad day in Florida is still a good day anywhere else”

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In case you hadn’t heard the news that I’ve obnoxiously plastered all over social media…. Andrei & I are ENGAGED!!! We got engaged at sunset on the beach down in Florida. I can only assume it was all very romantic & magical…. tbh I cried throughout the entire thing so it’s actually somewhat of a blur! I wrote this travel guide on the plane ride down to Florida – before the proposal – so I thought I’d just add this little preface to share the news!!! Anywho – ENJOY! 

I seriously don’t know what in Heaven’s name has taken me so long to write a travel guide for Hollywood, Florida… I’ve been coming down here since I was a wee, little baby! Fun Fact: My brother actually learned how to WALK in my great grandparent’s (now my parent’s) Hollywood Condo! Anywho – I couldn’t be more excited to share this particular travel guide with all of you today. Truth be told, I think that Hollywood is a tad bit underrated – it’s a TOTAL hidden gem that lies just South of Fort Lauderdale & a little North of Miami &, in my humble opinion, is home to literally the best beach & boardwalk in all of South East Florida – & perhaps the best fish tacos & burgers to boot!

What to Do

Check out the Boardwalk

I one hundred percent believe that Hollywood Beach & Boardwalk is absolutely unrivalled in South East Florida. Yes, friends…. this ALSO means that I prefer it to South Beach… GASP! How dare I make such a bold statement?!

But hear me out. First off, it’s less crowded. Like…. WAY less crowded – like I can actually SEE the sand & not have to worry that I’ll be pelted with a football or trampled by fist pumping frat boys on a weekend bender.

Image Credit: TripAdvisor

Secondly – the Boardwalk is directly ON the beach, ie. there’s no crossing the road to get to the cafes and shops like you’d have to in Fort Lauderdale or South Beach! I can mosey my little beach bum directly from the sand onto a bar stool… perfection!

It’s nothing but sand, palm trees, bike paths, walking paths & restaurants & shops for miles on miles.

Go to the Food Trucks in Arts Park

Okay so for the purposes of this blog post, I wasn’t sure if I should categorize this as “where to eat” or a “what to do“, but I totally feel like this is more of an activity or experience than anything else! Every Monday night about 20ish food trucks line Arts Park in downtown Hollywood – YOU HAVE TO GO TO THIS! 

Image Credit: A Blog About Comfort Food

I swear half the fun is browsing each of the food truck’s disgustingly mouth watering menus. Forewarning – You will likely want to eat EVERYTHING! There is an over abundance of unique, gourmet, creative and interesting foods that are just absolutely to die for!

Go to the Comedy Club at the Hard Rock Resort & Casino 

My family makes it a point to go this Comedy Club every time we’re in Hollywood! They surprisingly have some really FANTASTIC headliners in little ol’ Hollywood , Florida; one time we even saw the Wayans Brothers! Honestly – major headliner or not – my stomach hurts from laughing SO hard literally each and every single time we go! You CAN’T go wrong on this one.

Visit the Keys

One of my favourite things about Hollywood is the location… it is seriously a FANTASTIC location! You’re 15 minutes from Fort Lauderdale, 20 minutes from Miami & about an hour-ish from Key Largo. My brother is an avid scuba diver, so we’ll often do an overnight trip to Key Largo when we’re in Florida because they have some REALLY great diving spots down there! The beaches are not THAT fantastic in Key Largo – but it’s a nice, quiet escape from the bustling Floridian mainland. 

I love strolling through the neighbourhoods in Key Largo because they’re just the most quaint, surfer homes with the prettiest of pastel colours.

Ride the Jungle Queen

Image Credit: Groupon

This is cheesy tourism at its finest… & I love it! Similarly to the Comedy Club- we make it a point to go on the Jungle Queen Steamship Tour literally every single time we are down here! If you’re not into cheesy tourist attractions, you’re totally not going to like this however I, for one, fancy myself some oozing cheesy tourist goodness every once in a while.

We ALWAYS do the sightseeing, dinner & show cruise!

You essentially sail along the Intracoastal, head to a tropical isle – have all you can eat chicken, ribs & shrimp – & watch live entertainment afterwards!

Other notable activities:

  • Stroll the cafes & shops on Las Olas
  • Take the water taxi
  • Watch the horse races at Gulfstream

Where to Eat

GG’s 

Eeeep this is where Andrei & I went for dinner right after we got engaged!!!!!!!

Whenever we’re down in Hollywood, we always aim for one nice dinner out, & GG’s is literally always our go-to spot! It’s situated on North Lake right on the Intracoastal & has just the most STUNNING views…..

Hot Tip: make your reservation for sunset & always ask for a spot out on the patio- it is pure magic!

Hotter Tip: if you’re going down for the holidays they have a GREAT, competitively priced pre-set menu! We went for Thanksgiving & got butternut squash soup, traditional turkey dinner with pumpkin cheesecake – I swear the pumpkin cheesecake was the best dessert we’ve ever had!

What to Order: Steak & Seafood 

Le Tub

Le Tub is home to the best burger in the United States of America… but actually! Their burgers have literally been voted by GQ Magazine & Oprah as the number one burger in America. The wait will be long – but it’s so worth it.

Not to mention… the atmosphere is totally top notch – it feels like a place you’d find down in the keys or the Caribbean & it’s ALSO directly on the Intracoastal.

What to Order: Burgers & Crab

Jimbo’s Sandbar

Jimbo’s looks like a shack on the Intracoastal, but it serves up some pretty mean Fish Tacos! The creamy lime sauce that the Mahi Mahi fish tacos come with is so out of this WORLD it’s ridiculous – I could literally drink it! 

What to Order: Fish Tacos 

Giorgio’s Bakery

We usually hit up Giorgio’s as soon as we land! It’s right beside GG’s on the Intracoastal & they have pretty awesome sandwiches served up on breads and baguettes that are freshly made daily! Note: the sandwiches are MASSIVE – get one & split it between two people… you’ll thank me later!

What to Order: Pizza 

Tasta Gelato 

Andrei has a nose for Gelato. He can seriously sniff out a good spot from miles & miles away. Tasta Gelato & Cafeteria is to DIE for!!!! They’ve only got three locations – two in Italy, & one right here in Hollywood, Florida….. AKA you know they’ve got the good stuff. It’s freakin’ amaaaaaaaaazing.

What to Order: Gelato…. duh!

Have you ever been to Hollywood?! What did I miss?

Brit

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