Fort Lauderdale Weekend Getaway: A Perfect 3-Day Itinerary

Apr 18, 2024

Feeling stuck in your daily routine and craving a beach escape? Fort Lauderdale, known as the "Venice of America," offers more than just sandy shores. This blog will guide you through a perfect 3-day weekend getaway filled with sun, culture, and adventure. Get ready for fun!

Stay with Roami in New Orleans

🔗Choose Roami for your next visit to Fort Lauderdale and experience the best of Florida's sun-kissed lifestyle. 

At Roami, we're dedicated to providing you with a comfortable and stylish base from which to explore or relax under the palm trees. Trust us to enhance your stay with exceptional service and amenities, ensuring every moment of your Fort Lauderdale getaway is truly memorable.

Brief overview of Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale shines along the southeastern coast of Florida, earning its nickname as the "Venice of America" with an extensive network of canals that crisscross the city. This destination isn't just about breathtaking beaches; it offers a rich tapestry of shopping, sightseeing, and recreational activities that cater to visitors looking for a mix of relaxation and adventure.

The city boasts highly walkable urban areas alongside powdery white sands, making every moment spent here one to cherish.

Visitors to Fort Lauderdale have endless opportunities to make their vacation memorable. They can explore world-renowned museums like the Museum of Discovery and Science or wander through the lush landscapes of the Bonnet House Museum & Gardens.

For those seeking time on the water, boat tours around the shore provide unparalleled views and experiences in this idyllic South Florida locale. With attractions ranging from serene gondola rides to exhilarating paddleboard yoga sessions, Fort Lauderdale holds something special for every traveler.

Why it makes a great weekend getaway

Fort Lauderdale shines as the perfect weekend getaway with its nickname, "Venice of America," thanks to an intricate network of canals offering scenic waterway tours. Its powdery beaches and highly walkable urban center provide a blend of relaxation and exploration that appeals to every traveler.

With activities ranging from deep sea fishing to perusing shops along Las Olas Boulevard, visitors find themselves immersed in a mix of leisure and adventure.

The city boasts attractions like the Museum of Discovery and Science and the lush Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, ensuring your weekend is packed with sightseeing opportunities. Whether you're cruising on the Intracoastal Waterway or enjoying a sunset on Fort Lauderdale Beach, the combination of beautiful landscapes, rich culture, and entertainment options creates unforgettable memories for families, couples, or solo explorers alike.

Planning Your Trip:

Start planning your unforgettable Fort Lauderdale weekend getaway today to experience the best this vibrant city has to offer.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Fort Lauderdale for a weekend getaway falls between December and April. This period offers comfortable temperatures perfect for exploring everything from the sandy beaches at Las Olas Beach to the historic Bonnet House Museum & Gardens.

Visitors enjoy sunny days ideal for outdoor activities without the heavy rains that summer can bring.

Planning your trip around these months also means you'll experience fewer crowds, making it easier to savor the city's attractions. Enjoy leisurely strolls along downtown Fort Lauderdale, relaxed shopping at Galleria Mall, or peaceful boat tours along the beautiful waterways known as the "Venice of America." These conditions create an unforgettable vacation atmosphere in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Stay with Roami

Choosing Roami for your Fort Lauderdale vacation accommodation ensures a comfortable and convenient stay. Located in the vibrant Fort Lauderdale area, Roami offers easy access to all the top attractions outlined in this perfect 3-day itinerary.

Enjoy seamless travel to Las Olas Boulevard for shopping, Hollywood North Beach Park for sunbathing, and Dania Beach for a serene day out. With Roami, experience the best of Greater Fort Lauderdale right at your doorstep.

Roami accommodations cater to every traveler's needs, from cozy rooms perfect for couples to spacious suites ideal for families or groups. Each option comes equipped with modern amenities that make your stay as relaxing as possible.

Whether you're here for the powdery beaches, fascinating museums like the Museum of Discovery and Science, or just soaking up the lively atmosphere of Fort Lauderdale Florida, staying with Roami enhances your getaway by offering comfort, convenience, and accessibility to all major sights and activities.

Day 1: Exploring Downtown Fort Lauderdale

Kick off your Fort Lauderdale weekend with a day packed full of downtown adventures and sights that will leave you eager for more.

Start your day with a delicious breakfast at Foxy Brown

Begin your Fort Lauderdale weekend getaway with a flavorful start at Foxy Brown. This popular spot offers an array of breakfast delights that cater to every taste, from savory benedicts to sweet pancakes.

Enjoy the warm ambiance and friendly service as you fuel up for a day of adventure in "Venice of America." Their menu features both classic dishes and unique twists, ensuring there's something for everyone.

After breakfast, you're perfectly positioned to explore the beauty and activities Fort Lauderdale has to offer. With its prime location, heading out from Foxy Brown puts you close to many top attractions like Las Olas Boulevard and Fort Lauderdale Beach.

Make this meal the launching pad for your exploration of the city’s extensive network of canals, powdery beaches, and vibrant urban center.

Stroll along **Las Olas Boulevard

Walking down Las Olas Boulevard gives visitors a taste of the vibrant life in Fort Lauderdale. This famous street is bustling with unique shops, art galleries, and cozy cafes that invite travelers for a leisurely exploration.

The lush trees lining the boulevard provide welcome shade as you discover each charming storefront, making it a pleasant walk any time of day.

Dining options on Las Olas are diverse, offering everything from gourmet meals to casual bites. Whether you're craving fresh seafood or international cuisine, you'll find an eatery to satisfy your hunger.

In the evening, the boulevard transforms with live music pouring out of bars and restaurants, creating a lively atmosphere perfect for ending your day in Fort Lauderdale.

Lunch at Rocco's Tacos

Rocco's Tacos offers a vibrant atmosphere and a menu packed with authentic Mexican dishes that make it a must-visit spot in Fort Lauderdale. Guests can savor the flavors of freshly prepared guacamole, made right at their table, or dive into a variety of tacos filled with everything from succulent pork to spicy chicken.

The restaurant boasts an extensive selection of tequilas, perfect for pairing with your meal or enjoying in one of their signature margaritas.

The lively decor and energetic music set the scene for an unforgettable dining experience. Whether you're taking a break from exploring the beautiful beaches or looking for a delicious spot to refuel after shopping, Rocco's Tacos delivers both excellent food and fun vibes.

With generous portions and friendly service, this eatery promises to be a highlight of your Fort Lauderdale vacation package.

Beach Time at Fort Lauderdale Beach

Fort Lauderdale Beach invites travelers to enjoy its powdery sands and crystal-clear waters. Known as a top destination for relaxation and recreation, the beach offers endless opportunities for sunbathing, swimming, and indulging in water sports.

For families visiting Fort Lauderdale, this beach becomes a perfect playground under the sun with safety patrols ensuring everyone enjoys their time worry-free.

Visitors can easily rent a car to explore nearby attractions or dine at oceanfront restaurants that boast stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. Fort Lauderdale is famously called the "Venice of America" due to its extensive network of canals that provide a unique backdrop to an already picturesque beach setting.

Whether you're looking to lounge on the sand with a good book or explore Hollywood Beach nearby, Fort Lauderdale Beach serves as an idyllic spot for all kinds of travelers seeking sun-kissed adventures.

Dine at Boatyard for dinner

Dine at Boatyard for a dinner experience that blends sophisticated flavors with the serene beauty of Fort Lauderdale's waterfront. This restaurant prides itself on offering fresh, local seafood alongside beautifully prepared steaks and an extensive wine list.

Visitors enjoy their meals while overlooking the picturesque marina, making every dining moment not only about the food but also about embracing Fort Lauderdale’s charming canal views.

Securing a table at Boatyard promises an evening filled with culinary delights. The ambiance captures the essence of coastal luxury, featuring nautical-inspired décor that complements the city known as "Venice of America." Guests can expect top-notch service and dishes prepared to perfection, turning dinner into a memorable highlight of any trip to Fort Lauderdale.

Whether arriving by car or docking at the marina, Boatyard accommodates all guests looking to indulge in a meal that celebrates Florida’s rich aquatic bounty.

Explore the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District

The Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District in Fort Lauderdale offers travelers a vibrant blend of culture, art, and entertainment. Stroll through this bustling area to discover a variety of galleries, museums, and theaters.

You can catch live performances or explore the rich history of Fort Lauderdale at one of the many cultural venues. This district is perfect for those looking to immerse themselves in the local arts scene while enjoying the picturesque settings along the river.

Renting a car makes it easy to reach all that the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District has to offer. With convenient parking options nearby, you won't miss out on any attractions.

Whether you're interested in contemporary art exhibitions at a gallery or want to watch an exciting show at a historic theater, everything is within reach. The area also features several parks where you can relax after a day filled with exploration and discovery.

Day 2: Relaxing on the Beach and Exploring the Seaside Villages

Day 2 invites travelers to soak in the sun on Fort Lauderdale's pristine beaches and discover charming seaside villages. A perfect blend of relaxation and adventure awaits as you explore unique local spots and enjoy waterfront dining.

Start the day with Brunch at Coconuts

Kick off your second day in Fort Lauderdale with a relaxing brunch at Coconuts. Situated right on the waterfront, this spot offers not just breathtaking views but also a menu full of fresh, local flavors.

Savor dishes like their famous coconut shrimp or dive into a hearty lobster omelet while enjoying the gentle sea breeze. It's the perfect setting to fuel up for another adventurous day exploring what Fort Lauderdale has to offer.

After brunch, consider taking a stroll along the nearby beach or hopping into your car rental for an easy ride to your next destination. Coconuts is conveniently located, making it an ideal launching point for any activity planned in your itinerary.

Whether you're heading out for a water taxi tour, visiting museums, or simply looking to relax by the sea, starting your day here ensures you do so with satisfied taste buds and a smile on your face.

Explore the waterways with a Water Taxi Tour

Taking a Water Taxi Tour offers an unmatched view of Fort Lauderdale's intricate network of canals, famously known as the "Venice of America." Visitors glide past stunning waterfront homes, lush landscapes, and key landmarks, gaining insight into why this city earns its nickname.

The captains often share fascinating stories and facts about the area’s history and notable residents, making every moment onboard both educational and entertaining.

This unique mode of transportation also serves as a practical way to hop on and off at various attractions throughout the day. Whether you're aiming to visit shops along Las Olas Boulevard, dine at waterside restaurants like Shooters Waterfront or explore cultural gems like the Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, the water taxi simplifies your travel plans.

It allows for a leisurely pace while soaking up the sun and sea breeze on Fort Lauderdale's beautiful waterways.

Enjoy lunch at Shooters Waterfront

Shooters Waterfront offers an unforgettable dining experience right on Fort Lauderdale's scenic Intracoastal Waterway. Guests can savor delicious dishes while enjoying panoramic views of the water.

The restaurant is famous for its vibrant atmosphere and friendly service, making it a favorite among both locals and travelers. From freshly caught seafood to expertly prepared salads, there’s something for everyone on the menu.

Choosing to dine at Shooters Waterfront means embracing the true essence of Fort Lauderdale's waterfront lifestyle. The eatery provides outdoor seating where diners can feel the gentle breeze and watch boats glide by.

This spot perfectly embodies Fort Lauderdale’s nickname as the "Venice of America," with its beautiful canal views complementing your meal. Whether coming in from a morning exploring or ready to kick off an afternoon adventure, stopping here enriches any itinerary with a taste of local flavor and charm.

Visit the historic Bonnet House Museum & Gardens

Step into the past at the Bonnet House Museum & Gardens where history and nature meet in splendid harmony. This historic estate offers a glimpse into Fort Lauderdale's early days, showcasing art, architecture, and wildlife across its sprawling gardens.

Visitors can tour the main house to view original furnishings and personal collections of the Bartlett family, providing insight into their lives and times.

Explore vibrant gardens that are home to an array of tropical plants, orchids, and native wildlife. The Bonnet House also emphasizes conservation efforts for local flora and fauna, making it not just a step back in time but a forward-looking preserve as well.

Throughout your visit, you'll encounter exotic birds and perhaps even catch sight of playful monkeys among the trees. This serene oasis provides a quiet break from the bustling cityscape, inviting guests to slow down and appreciate Fort Lauderdale's natural beauty alongside its rich history.

Savor dinner at Casa Sensei

Enjoying dinner at Casa Sensei transforms an evening in Fort Lauderdale into a cultural journey. This unique restaurant blends Latin and Asian flavors, creating unforgettable dishes.

Guests can look forward to sampling innovative sushi rolls, crispy bao buns, and savory tacos with a twist. The waterfront setting adds to the allure, offering diners spectacular views as they indulge in their meals.

Casa Sensei’s atmosphere pulls you into an experience that goes beyond dining. Its location on the waterway allows for a serene backdrop while enjoying your meal. Opt for outdoor seating to get the full effect of the beautiful surroundings and watch boats glide by.

This spot is perfect for those looking to end their day with a memorable feast in Fort Lauderdale's Venice-like canals.

End your evening with drinks and live music on Las Olas Boulevard

Cap off your day on Las Olas Boulevard, where the evening comes alive with vibrant bars and live music. This bustling street in Fort Lauderdale is the perfect place to unwind after a full day of adventures.

With its extensive selection of venues, you can find everything from cozy wine bars to lively pubs featuring bands that play a mix of genres. Sip on crafted cocktails or enjoy a local brew as you soak in the atmosphere that makes this area so beloved by locals and travelers alike.

Las Olas Boulevard not only offers great drinks but also an unforgettable experience under the stars. The music ranges from jazz to contemporary hits, creating a backdrop for memorable moments.

As you move from spot to spot, let the rhythms guide your night and engage with both friends and friendly strangers. This iconic part of Fort Lauderdale showcases its energetic nightlife, ensuring your weekend getaway ends on a high note filled with fun and music.

Day 3: Coffee, Shopping, and Nightlife

Kick off your final day with a fresh cup of coffee at Java & Jam. After fueling up, get ready for thrilling airboat adventures and an evening of vibrant nightlife.

Grab breakfast at Java & Jam

Start your third day in Fort Lauderdale with a hearty breakfast at Java & Jam. This cozy cafe is known for its inviting atmosphere and delicious morning offerings. They serve up all the breakfast classics, from fluffy pancakes to savory omelets.

Not only does Java & Jam provide a delightful start to your day, but it's also conveniently located, making it easy to jump into the day's activities.

Java & Jam prides itself on using fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Whether you're craving a strong cup of coffee or something more substantial like their signature breakfast sandwich, you'll find that every dish is prepared with care.

This spot becomes the perfect place to fuel up before heading out for an airboat tour or spending your last few hours shopping at Galleria Mall.

Take an exciting Airboat Tour

Hop aboard an airboat tour to experience the wild beauty of Fort Lauderdale's natural landscapes. Feel the wind in your hair as you glide across waterways, getting up close with local wildlife and lush vegetation.

This adventure offers a unique perspective of the "Venice of America," revealing scenes inaccessible by foot or car. Guides share fascinating facts about the ecosystems and animals you encounter, making it both an educational and thrilling ride.

Discover hidden gems within the extensive network of canals that earned Fort Lauderdale its nickname. Watch for exotic birds, turtles, and maybe even alligators sunning on the banks.

The airboat's speed and maneuverability allow for exploration deep into serene environments, where tranquility meets the excitement of speeding over water surfaces. This tour not only adds an adrenaline rush to your weekend getaway but also immerses you in the area's stunning natural beauty.

Enjoy a hearty lunch at Gilbert's 17th Street Grill

After a busy morning exploring Fort Lauderdale, Gilbert's 17th Street Grill offers the perfect spot for a hearty lunch. This family-owned gem serves up mouth-watering burgers, fresh salads, and home-style plates that will refuel you for the afternoon ahead.

Their commitment to quality ingredients and generous portions has made them a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

Their menu features something for everyone with options like thick and juicy burgers cooked to perfection, crisp salads tossed with vibrant dressings, and comforting dishes reminiscent of home cooking.

Make sure to save room for their homemade desserts – the perfect sweet finish to your meal. As you enjoy your lunch, the grill’s casual atmosphere lets you relax and take in the charm of Fort Lauderdale’s lively urban center.

Shop at the upscale Galleria Mall

The Galleria Mall stands out as a premier shopping destination in Fort Lauderdale, drawing visitors with its array of upscale stores and boutiques. Here, you can find everything from the latest fashion trends to luxurious jewelry pieces.

The mall's elegant atmosphere provides a unique shopping experience that caters to those looking for high-quality merchandise and exceptional service.

Indulge your taste buds at one of the fine dining restaurants within the mall after an exciting day of retail therapy. Whether you're searching for designer outfits or exquisite gifts, the Galleria Mall offers a diverse range of options that meet every shopper's needs.

Its convenient location also makes it easy to access other attractions in Fort Lauderdale, ensuring your weekend getaway is filled with memorable moments.

Dine at Burlock Coast

Burlock Coast offers a dining experience that captures the essence of Fort Lauderdale’s seaside charm. This restaurant not only serves up some of the freshest seafood in town but also pays homage to Florida's rich Prohibition-era history with its rustic yet elegant ambiance.

Guests can enjoy dishes crafted from locally sourced ingredients, ensuring every bite carries the flavor of the region.

As evening sets, Burlock Coast transforms into a vibrant spot where travelers mingle and relish innovative cocktails crafted by skilled bartenders. The setting sun casts a golden glow over diners as they indulge in culinary delights, making it an ideal place to wrap up your Fort Lauderdale getaway.

With its prime location along the coast, this eatery combines stunning views with exquisite meals for an unforgettable dining experience.

End your weekend wth a Sunset Cruise along the coast

Cap off your Fort Lauderdale weekend by sailing into the stunning sunset along the coast. Board a relaxing sunset cruise and feel the ocean breeze as you watch the sky change colors.

This magical experience provides breathtaking views of Fort Lauderdale's shoreline, showcasing its natural beauty and serene waters.

As the boat glides through the water, keep an eye out for dolphins playing in the wake. The setting sun paints a picturesque backdrop against which to reflect on your weekend adventures.

A sunset cruise not only offers a calming end to your trip but also gives you one last chance to admire why Fort Lauderdale is called "Venice of America." Enjoy this peaceful voyage as a perfect conclusion to your memorable getaway.


Fort Lauderdale invites you for a weekend getaway filled with sun, adventure, and relaxation. This three-day itinerary ensures every traveler discovers the city's charms, from its sparkling beaches to its vibrant nightlife.

Enjoy breakfasts that fuel your mornings, explore scenic landscapes by day, and unwind in cozy dinner spots as night falls. Every moment in Fort Lauderdale becomes a treasured memory, making you wish the weekend would never end.

Get ready to experience the best of Florida's southeastern coast!


1. What is the best time of year to visit Fort Lauderdale for a weekend getaway?

The best time to visit Fort Lauderdale for a weekend getaway is between December and April when the weather is warm and sunny.

2. Can I enjoy Fort Lauderdale on a budget?

Yes, you can enjoy Fort Lauderdale on a budget by exploring free beaches, parks, and affordable dining options.

3. Are there family-friendly activities in Fort Lauderdale?

Fort Lauderdale offers many family-friendly activities like visiting museums, water parks, and nature centers.

4. Should I rent a car for my Fort Lauderdale weekend trip?

Renting a car can be helpful for exploring more distant attractions but isn't necessary if you plan to stay near downtown or the beach areas.

5. What are some must-see places in Fort Lauderdale during a 3-day itinerary?

Must-see places include Las Olas Boulevard for shopping and dining, Hugh Taylor Birch State Park for outdoor activities, and the famous Fort Lauderdale Beach.