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Family Activities in Gainesville: Ideally situated in north central Florida, the city of Gainesville is a must for family vacationers looking to get away for a fun-filled adventure. With a little bit of everything, Gainesville has an attraction for everybody. From sporting events to museums, everyone in the family will enjoy this Floridian gem locally known as “Hogtown.”
Gainesville is home to the University of Florida, the fifth-largest public university by enrollment in the United States, with over 50,000 students. The university is known for fielding some of the best college sports teams in the nation with the Florida Gators football, baseball, and basketball teams. If you are in the area, put on some orange and blue and take in a home game with the family.
After the game head on over to the Mojo Hogtown Bar-B-Que for some of the best BBQ that Florida has to offer. This restaurant has a bluesy vibe that will make you feel right at home. Peruse the massive whiskey menu, scan the local art-laden walls, and snack on some delicious barbecue. This family-friendly restaurant has lots to offer.
End the evening by checking the family into one of Gainesville’s highly rated hotels. Hotels are available at a variety of price points. Make your hotel stay enjoyable for the family and choose a hotel that is centrally located in the heart of Gainesville.
Gainesville is host to a variety of museums that make for a fantastic learning opportunity for the whole family. The A. Quinn Jones Museum and Cultural Center was recently opened in 2017 to great fanfare. The museum pays tribute to A. Quinn Jones who dedicated his life to increasing access to and improving the quality of the education available to the African-American community in Florida. The museum is located within the restored former homestead of A. Quinn Jones himself.
Be sure to bring the family to the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention for another day of learning and exploration. The Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention is named for Dr. James Robert Cade who is well known for inventing the sports drink Gatorade. This museum is intended to inspire a new generation of young inventors and entrepreneurs.
The Historic Haile Homestead at Kanapaha Plantation is a must-visit for the avid history buff in the family. Converted to a museum in 2001, the homestead was the setting for the movie “Gal Youngun” in the mid-1970s. Tours of the museum tell the story of the Haile family who built the homestead in the 1850s as well as the story of the enslaved laborers who worked the plantation.
The Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo is a great place to take the family. The 10-acre zoo is host to over 75 species of animals and is operated and maintained by the students of Santa Fe College. Admission is affordable and is also another great opportunity to learn in Gainesville.
No matter what brings you to Gainesville, you’ll find a lot of other things to do while you are there. Between awesome museums and delicious food, you will enjoy exploring the city and discovering everything it has to offer.