Fort Lauderdale Travel Guide

USA  #12 in Best Cheap Summer Vacations

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Getting Around Fort Lauderdale

The best way to get around Fort Lauderdale is by car. Despite an extensive network of waterways, the roads are still faster. In fact, the canals can be confusing. As you travel closer toward the coast, streets may curve or simply end at waterways. Away from the Atlantic, much of the city adheres to a grid. Tired of driving? Take a water taxi to your next downtown destination. And if not by land or by sea, then arrive in Fort Lauderdale by air. Making the city easily accessible, the Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood International Airport (FLL) is just a 5-mile drive south of downtown Fort Lauderdale and welcomes many commercial airlines. You can also fly into Miami International Airport (MIA), located about 30 miles south of downtown Fort Lauderdale, or Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), approximately 45 miles north of Fort Lauderdale. Rental cars are available at all three airports.


If you're planning to spend more than a day in Fort Lauderdale, you should have a car to explore the city and its surroundings. You'll find the freedom and ease of driving around the area a joy. The majority of the city is on a standard north-south grid. Note: "avenues" run north-south and "streets" run east-west. Should you have an extra day or two to spare, drive down to Miami or up to West Palm Beach for two very different atmospheres. You can reserve a car from major car rental vendors at regional airports.


Opened in 2018, Florida's Brightline train system makes it possible to travel from Fort Lauderdale to West Palm Beach and Miami without a car. Each ride takes about 30 minutes and departs daily every one to three hours, depending on the direction and time of day. Services are available every day from about 5:10 to 12:50 a.m. Basic seats cost $10 or $15 each, while upgraded Select Service seats – which have extra legroom and complimentary snacks and beverages – cost $20 or $25 per person.

Water Taxi

Fort Lauderdale's web-like waterways (all part of the Intracoastal Waterway that runs from the ocean to the Everglades) provide a unique way of getting around and sightseeing. A fleet of water taxis travels along the Intracoastal and downtown's New River, stopping at 14 points of interest in Fort Lauderdale and the Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort in Hollywood. You can hop on and off the boats all day, but the tickets are a bit pricey. Each costs $28 per adult and $14 per child 5 to 11; reduced rates are available for seniors, members of the military and for passengers traveling after 5 p.m. Water taxis depart from each stop on the main routes every 25 to 35 minutes. They operate daily between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m., with extended hours on Fridays and Saturdays.

Trolley & Bus

If your destination is not near a waterway, Sun Trolley offers routes with stops downtown and along the beach, as well as on Las Olas Boulevard. All routes are free except for the Beach Link and Las Olas Link routes, which cost $1 per ride or $3 for a day pass. Exact operating hours and schedules vary by line, so consult Sun Trolley's Routes, Schedules, Fares page to help you plan your ride.

Another option is to use Broward County Transit's commuter buses, which travel throughout the county. Each ride will set you back $2 per person and can be paid in cash on board; however, seniors and children 17 and younger ride for $1 per person. A day pass is also available for $5, or you can opt for a three-day, one-week or 10-ride pass for $12 to $20. All passes cover unlimited rides for as long as they're valid. You'll find bus schedules posted on Broward County Transit's Maps and Schedules page.


For shorter trips around the city, consider reserving a bicycle through the Broward B-cycle bike-sharing program. Broward B-cycle features stations in popular neighborhoods like Central Beach and downtown, making it easy to reach the Museum of Discovery and Science, Fort Lauderdale Beach Park and other must-see sights. Bike rentals cost $5 per 30 minutes or $50 per day.


Though not as scenic as water taxis, traditional cabs are available for getting around. However, rates are pricey. Each ride starts at $2.50, with an extra $2.83 added per mile traveled. If you do decide to hail a cab, you can do so by phone or by flagging one down at the airport or on the street. You can also opt to use ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft.



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