If you’re thinking of heading to the Southeast, a trip to Florida’s capital is a must. We recently had the opportunity to experience the sunshine state with Visit Florida, and had the best time!
While Orlando, Destin and Miami are the top places people think of, Tallahassee has a ton to offer. With tons of history and a variety of exciting attractions, there is nothing short of a good time in Tallahassee.
Come with us as we explore 15 of the best attractions in Tallahassee so that you can fill your itinerary for your upcoming vacation.
Our list of the Best Things to do in Tallahassee!
There are so many fun things to do in Tallahassee that we went ahead and broke down all our favorites below for you to check out!
Explore Maclay Gardens
Alright, let’s kick this think off! Looking for something to do with your family in Tallahassee? Why not head over to Alfred B. Maclay State Gardens?
There, you can enjoy the beautiful botanical garden, wander the scenic trails, and pretend you’re all botanists for the day. You can even rent kayaks or canoes to explore the serene lake.
And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can pack a picnic lunch and enjoy it in one of the park’s many picnic areas (that’s what we did with the kiddos) Plus, for those of you who like a little history, you can check out the historic Maclay House and learn about the good old days.
So, if you’re looking for a way to get away from it all and enjoy some peaceful natural beauty, Maclay Gardens is the place to be.
Take a Boat Tour in Wakulla Springs
Wakulla Springs in Florida offers a memorable boat tour experience that is sure to delight visitors of all ages. The tour takes guests on a leisurely boat ride along the Wakulla River, where they can enjoy stunning views of the surrounding natural scenery and spot a variety of wildlife.
Along the way, knowledgeable guides share fascinating insights into the local history, ecology, and geology of the area, making the tour both fun and educational.
One of the highlights of the boat tour is the chance to see the manatees, which are gentle marine mammals that are native to Florida’s coastal waters. Visitors may also spot a variety of birds, turtles, and fish, as well as alligators and other reptiles. The tour lasts for approximately an hour, providing ample time to take in the sights and sounds of the river.
The pricing for the boat tour at Wakulla Springs varies depending on the age of the guest. Adults can expect to pay around $8 for the tour, while children between the ages of 3 and 12 can enjoy the experience for $5.
Children under the age of 3 can ride for free. Wakulla Springs is located in Wakulla Springs State Park, which is situated approximately 14 miles south of Tallahassee, the state capital of Florida. The park is open daily from 8 a.m. to sundown, making it easy to fit a boat tour into your schedule.
Overall, a boat tour at Wakulla Springs is a fun and affordable way to experience the natural beauty of Florida and learn about its fascinating wildlife and history.
Walk Around Florida State University
Florida State University offers plenty of things to do for visiting families. The campus is simply beautiful. And if you are a sports fan, there are some iconic places to visit. Florida State is a powerhouse when it comes to sports, and taking a sports tour of the campus is a must-do for any fan. Start off at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center, where you can catch a basketball.
For football lovers like my husband, take a stroll through the Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium and take a peek at the statue of legendary coach Bobby Bowden. And if you’re lucky enough to be in town during football season, make sure to catch a game and witness the Seminole War Chant in all its glory.
If you’re heading out with the little ones, grab some oats and head down to the lake to feed the local ducks.
Grab a Bite to Eat at Madison Social
Right Next to Florida State University is Madison Social, a popular restaurant located in Tallahassee, Florida, that has gained a reputation for its delectable food and vibrant atmosphere.
This eatery serves up an eclectic mix of modern American cuisine and craft cocktails, making it a must-visit spot for foodies and social butterflies alike. The restaurant is located in the heart of the College Town district, which is known for its lively nightlife and energetic crowds.
When it comes to food, Madison Social does not disappoint. The menu features a wide range of dishes, from classic burgers and sandwiches to creative small plates and entrees.
Some standout options include the signature Madison Burger, which is made with a juicy beef patty, caramelized onions, bacon, and a secret sauce, as well as the Fried Chicken Sandwich, which features a crispy chicken breast topped with slaw, pickles, and honey mustard. Seafood lovers will appreciate the Fresh Catch of the Day, which changes regularly based on what’s in season.
In addition to the impressive menu for adults, Madison Social also has a great kids menu that is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters. Our daughter Olivia and the little guy baby Jack enjoyed the mac and cheese, which was creamy and delicious, and the chicken tenders, which were crispy and perfectly seasoned (i may have snuck a few bites).
The staff at Madison Social were also very accommodating, providing high chairs and crayons to keep the little ones entertained. Overall, we highly recommend Madison Social for its fantastic food and fun atmosphere.
Tallahassee Museum – This is No Ordinary Museum
Oh boy, where do I even start? The Tallahassee Museum was an absolute blast! It’s not your typical boring museum filled with dusty old artifacts, oh no. Instead, it’s a unique This 52-acre outdoor museum that combines history and wildlife all in one place.
Where else can you stroll through a 19th-century farmstead, pet a baby goat, see a bunch of bald eagles, or even bears and then walk across a swaying suspension bridge over a live alligator exhibit?
It’s like a choose-your-own-adventure book come to life! And don’t even get me started on the zip-line course. Olivia wanted so bad to be like flying through the treetops like a superhero, but unforunately the height limit was 54″ so she just an inch to shy. It looked so fun.
There are even outdoor playgrounds for the kids. It’s awesome. So, if you want to have an unforgettable day of adventure and excitement, the Tallahassee Museum is definitely the place to be.
Go Shopping at Market Square
Market Square is this awesome outdoor shopping center that has everything you could want in a shopping trip. With over 60 stores and restaurants, you can spend the whole day exploring all the different options. You can find anything from high-end fashion at Chico’s to unique home decor at Southern Compass Outfitters.
And if you’re into vintage finds, you should definitely check out The Other Side Vintage or My Favorite Things. When you need a break from all the shopping, there are plenty of restaurants to choose from, like the delicious Nefetari’s Fine Cuisine and Spirits.
Oh, and the best part? Market Square hosts regular events like the Farmer’s Market and Art in the Park, so there’s always something new to see and experience.
Railroad Square Park in Tallahassee provided a delightful experience for visitors of all ages. The park’s vibrant and welcoming atmosphere, complemented by live music and food trucks, created a fun and exciting space for all.
Olivia, our 9-year-old, had a great time taking part in outdoor activities such as playing in the interactive water fountain. Meanwhile, our toddler, Jack had a blast running around the open green space and cooling off in the fountain.
Overall, Railroad Square Park is an ideal location for a family outing, with something for everyone to enjoy.
Enjoy Happy Hour at Proof Brewery
Happy hour at Proof Brewery is an enjoyable experience that attracts locals and visitors alike in Tallahassee. The brewery’s relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, coupled with its vast selection of craft beers, creates a perfect ambiance for unwinding after a long day.
During happy hour, customers can indulge in discounted drinks and appetizers while socializing with friends or meeting new people.
With its laid-back atmosphere, excellent selection of craft beers, and friendly staff, happy hour at Proof Brewery is an excellent way to enjoy Tallahassee’s nightlife.
Enjoy a Delicious Meal at Table 23
Table 23 in Tallahassee is a must-visit restaurant for foodies and families alike. Located in the heart of Midtown, this restaurant offers a sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere with a modern twist. The restaurant features a spacious dining room with a contemporary décor that provides the perfect ambiance for enjoying a meal with family and friends.
But what sets Table 23 apart is the delicious food. Their menu is a fusion of American and international cuisine, featuring fresh, locally sourced ingredients that are expertly prepared by their talented chefs.
Their signature dishes include the crispy pork belly, the pan-seared salmon, and the savory mushroom risotto. But their menu is not limited to these options; they have a wide variety of dishes that cater to all palates and dietary needs.
Table 23 also offers a delicious kids’ menu that our daughter Olivia and baby Jack enjoyed. The menu features kid-friendly dishes such as chicken fingers, mac and cheese, and grilled cheese sandwiches, all made with the same high-quality ingredients as the adult menu.
The portions are just the right size for little tummies, and the presentation is fun and playful. The staff at Table 23 is incredibly friendly and accommodating, making our family feel welcome and comfortable throughout our dining experience.
The Hyatt House in Tallahassee is the perfect place for families to stay while visiting the city. The spacious rooms are ideal for families, with separate sleeping areas and a kitchenette, which is perfect for storing and preparing snacks and meals.
The hotel’s complimentary breakfast buffet has something for everyone in the family, with a great selection of hot and cold items. It was perfect to go downstairs and grab a bagel for Olivia and Jack’s favorite oatmeal with peanut butter.
Kids will also love the heated outdoor pool, which is a great way to cool off after a day of exploring the city. And the 24-hour fitness center means that parents can squeeze in a workout whenever they have the time (which we actually did, I am proud of myself for that one)
The hotel’s location is also a plus – it’s close to all the main attractions in Tallahassee, including the Capitol Building and the Tallahassee Museum, so there’s always something to do.
Plus, the friendly and helpful staff are always on hand to offer recommendations for family-friendly activities. So if you’re looking for a family-friendly hotel in Tallahassee, the Hyatt House is definitely worth checking out!
More Places to Check out in Tallahassee
We only had 48 hours in Tallahassee so we couldn’t check out everything. Here are some additional places recommended by our Instagram community and fellow travel bloggers.
The Museum of Florida History was established back in 1977 and has tons of cool artifacts and exhibits to explore. From the colonization of Florida to native culture, you’ll get to experience plenty of neat collections. Some of our favorite attractions include the Survival of the Slowest and the Butterfly Rainforest.
Mission San Luis de Apalachee is a historical Spanish Franciscan mission that was built in 1633 and is the perfect trip for those who want to see the deepest bits of Florida history.
Say hello to the Friar while walking around the church or watch the blacksmith at work. We highly recommend stopping to listen to some of the costumed guides to learn as much as you can
The 24-acre Cascades Park offers a great place to relax during your Tallahassee vacation. Cool down with the 73 water jets in the walk-in fountain or set up for a picnic in the sun. This area is one of the best places for families with toddlers who need to burn off some energy.
The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory is the largest magnet lab in the world. Here you can learn about all different kinds of magnets and how they work. Make sure to join one of the public tours while you are there to get the most in-depth look at this incredible facility.
St. Marks Lighthouse is a must-see located on the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge! It is the second-oldest light station in Florida. It sits in the beautiful setting on the National Wildlife Refuge. It was built in 1830 and has weathered over 100 storms and is still standing.
Established in 1931, the St Marks National Wildlife Refuge is among the oldest wildlife refuges in the United States. Just under 30 minutes from the city, you can encounter a diverse group of wildlife, including owls, eagles, butterflies, and more. Make sure to visit the lighthouse while you’re there!
While in Tallahassee, driving around the Canopy Roads is an absolute necessity. Drive on roads like Moccasin or Sunny Hill to enjoy moss-draped oaks and otherworldly landscapes. Driving through these roads is a wonderful way to bond with the family.
The Lofty Pursuits soda fountain and food truck is a great place to get both breakfast or milkshakes. Enjoy several ice cream flavors, as well as plenty of vegan and vegetarian flavors. No matter how old you are, there is always a good time to enjoy ice cream.
The indoor Sky Zone park is a place to take the little ones. Let your little ones enjoy bouncing around on the various trampolines while your older ones enjoy the Freestyle Jump or Ultimate Dodgeball. Enjoy the delicious dinners at Family Night Sundays!
Lake Ella sits just north of downtown Tallahassee and combines a gorgeous public park and water recreation area. There are plenty of walking trails, fountains, and picnic areas, perfect for a casual lunch!
Pin-it for later: Things to do in Tallahassee
Map of Things to Do in Tallahassee
Frequently Asked Questions about Things to do in Tallahassee
What are the best beaches near Tallahassee?
Cape San Blas
Grayton Beach State Park
Panama City Beach
St. George Island
St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge
What can you do in Tallahassee for free?
Florida Historic Capitol Museum
Railroad Square Art Park
Museum of Florida History
Florida State University
Fred Drake Park