20901
Fort Lauderdale
Inside Fort Lauderdale
Immerse yourself in Fort Lauderdale’s vibrant culture, historic trading posts, natural wonders and beautiful canals that have earned this city its nickname: “The Venice of America.”
Rating (5)
Program No. 20901RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,499
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6 days
5 nights
12 meals
5 B 4 L 3 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
Check-In, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
D
Riverside Hotel

Afternoon: Orientation: The Group Leader will greet you with a warm welcome and introduce everyone. We will review the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss responsibilities, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer any questions you may have.

Dinner: Enjoy a 3-course meal at the hotel with salad, choice of entrée, and dessert.

Evening: Take the rest of the evening to settle in, relax, and prepare for the full day ahead.

DAY
2
Stranahan House, River Cruise, History Museum
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
B,L
Riverside Hotel

Activity note: Walking up to 1 mile on uneven terrain. Boarding and de-boarding the water taxi.

Breakfast: Our breakfast buffet at the hotel offers hot and cold items including fresh fruit plus coffee and tea.

Morning: Take a journey through time in the Stranahan House Museum. This 1901 house built by Frank Stranahan, considered Fort Lauderdale’s founding father, who made friends with the Seminole Indians. The oldest surviving structure in Broward County, it has also served as a trading post, post office, and town hall. The wood-frame vernacular structure has wide porches and a stunning view of the New River. Then, head over to the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society. Led by a docent, explore Fort Lauderdale History Center sites including the New River Inn (1905) and the King-Cromartie House (1907) that reveal life of an earlier era.

Lunch: We will eat at a local restaurant on the riverfront.

Afternoon: This city is also known as the “Venice of America” for its 300 miles of navigable inland waterways, (part of the Intracoastal Waterway) that stretch from the Everglades to the Atlantic Ocean. Fort Lauderdale is a major yachting center, with more than 100 marinas and 42,000 resident yachts. It is also built around the centerpiece of the New River, which is fed by three major canals originating in the Everglades. Learn about the waterways of Fort Lauderdale on-board a Water Taxi tour. Take in vistas of aquatic creatures, lush tropical foliage, mansions, and notable yachts of an earlier era.

Dinner: Explore local restaurants on Las Olas on your own.

Evening: Free Evening. Continue your personal independent explorations and enjoy the camaraderie of new Road Scholar friends.

DAY
3
New River History, Bonnet House Museum, Old Dillard
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
B,L,D
Riverside Hotel

Activity note: Walking up to 1 mile on uneven terrain.

Breakfast: Full breakfast at the hotel

Morning: Start your day with a talk from a local expert from the Florida Public Archaeology Network at Florida Atlantic University about the importance of the New River. Learn the history and prehistory of the New River and how it has shaped the lives of its inhabitants for more than 2000 years. Next, we will visit the Bonnet House Museum and Gardens. Created in 1920 on South Florida oceanfront land, the Bonnet House estate is today a preeminent house museum dedicated to historic and environmental preservation, learning and creative expression. The eclectic design for a Caribbean-style plantation house provided the backdrop to display extensive collections of the Birch-Bartlett families and whimsically painted decorations. After exploring the house, we will see the grounds during a tram ride around the property.

Lunch: Enjoy a picnic lunch at the Bonnet House, a 35-acre estate and historic house museum.

Afternoon: We will depart after lunch for the Old Dillard Museum. Old Dillard was the first school in the area constructed for people of color, erected on land purchased from Ft. Lauderdale pioneers Frank and Ivy Stranahan for a dollar. The original building is long gone, but the Old Dillard Museum of today is a landmark that serves as an educational and cultural center for Ft. Lauderdale's African-American community and as a valuable resource to historians and other visitors interested in Black history.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: At leisure

DAY
4
WPBT Lecture, Galleries, Free Time
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
B,L
Riverside Hotel

Activity note: Walking up to 1 mile on uneven terrain.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Meet and hear from a representative of South Florida's public television station WPBT-Wild Florida launched in 1953. Learn about behind the scenes activities of this popular and important station. Next, we will head out to Las Olas to visit one of its many art galleries. Hear from a gallery expert at National Geographic's gallery about the work on display. Then take some time to look around the gallery on your own, or visit another of the dozen or so major international art galleries along the Boulevard.

Lunch: At a local restaurant on Las Olas.

Afternoon: Free Time. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities.

Dinner: Enjoy dinner on your own tonight.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum, Wildlife Sanctuary at Flamingo Gardens
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
B,L,D
Riverside Hotel

Activity note: Walking up to 1 mile on uneven terrain.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Depart this morning and head to the Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum on the Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation. There, we will be able to peruse with a guide through a collection of over 30,000 unique artifacts and archival items documenting the rich culture and heritage of the Seminole tribe in Florida. Also at the museum is a "Living Village," made up of Chickee style dwellings characterized by a palmetto thatch roof over a cypress log frame. This style was created during the 1800's when Seminole Indians needed a disposable shelter while on the run from U.S. troops charged to create a path for “white” settlement. In the village, see tribal artisans demonstrate the traditional arts and crafts of woodcarving, beadwork, basketry, and the distinctive Seminole patchwork. We will then depart for Flamingo Gardens.

Lunch: Light fare upon arrival at the Flamingo Gardens Café.

Afternoon: Established in 1927, Flamingo Gardens is one of the oldest botanical gardens in South Florida. We will explore the Everglades Wildlife Sanctuary nestled in and around the gardens that is home to more than 90 species of Florida native birds and animals -- most permanently injured or non-releasable -- including alligators, bobcats, eagles, otter, panthers, peacocks and, of course, flamingos.

Dinner: Enjoy good company and good food for our farewell dinner with a select menu of appetizer, entrée, and dessert.

Evening: After dinner we will hear a lecture from a local historian about why Fort Lauderdale is the "Venice of America." Linger over conversations with new Road Scholar friends and prepare for departure in the morning.

DAY
6
Lecture, Farewells and Wrap Up
Riverside Hotel - Ft. Lauderdale
B

Activity note: Hotel Check Out is at 11:00am

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: This morning enjoy one final lecture to enhance your expanded knowledge of Fort Lauderdale and South Florida with a local expert before wrapping up the program. Please remember that hotel check-out is by 11:00 am. We hope you have enjoyed this Road Scholar learning adventure and look forward to having you on other rewarding programs in the future. Please stay in touch and share your memories, pictures, and comments via the Road Scholar Social Network. Best wishes for all your journeys!