Florida's Lower Gulf Coast is a series of layers: on the outside, a string of barrier islands with popular and crowded beaches; next, a series of large and small communities anchored by Sarasota in the north and Naples in the south; and finally, virtually empty rural areas that are largely sawgrass wilderness.
Virtually all of Florida south of Lake Okeechobee and outside the coast strips is taken up by the Everglades. This "River of Grass" is crossed by I-75 in the famed "Alligator Alley" that runs between Ft. Lauderdale and Naples. But from Naples north along the coast is a virtually unbroken string of small towns and cities, joined together by their proximity to the Gulf and the fishing, shipping, and tourism industries that developed and sustains this region.
Sarasota is considered the major cultural center of the region. This city developed a reputation as an artists' colony in the 1920s, and today the town is known worldwide for its music festivals, its ballet, opera, and theater. Farther south, Port Charlotte, Cape Coral, and Fort Myers are the major urban centers.
With hints of Spring in the air after what seems like an endless winter, warm weather communities are seeming more and more attractive to retire to. Why live in an area where you look forward to a few short summer months, when you can live in warmth year Read more...
South Florida News from The Sun-Sentinel
Local attorney on mission to win legal status, freedom for chimps
May 23, 2015 11:57 am
Should chimpanzees complex creatures with thoughts, feelings and the smarts to learn sign language have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?
Special delivery: Broward Sheriff firefighter/paramedics welcome new baby in new rescue truck
May 23, 2015 8:40 am
A brand new fire rescue truck was christened Friday night when firefighter/paramedcis delivered a baby while enroute to a hospital during the truck's first call.
Rescuers bring naked man down from raised railroad bridge in Fort Lauderdale
May 23, 2015 1:07 am
Firefighters answering a rescue call on an otherwise routine downtown Friday morning encountered a scene that was anything but: A man perched 100 feet atop a railroad drawbridge over the New River.
Two small planes encounter issues when landing, causing runway to close twice in one day
May 22, 2015 11:04 pm
Two small planes encountered problems during landings Friday, forcing flights at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to be diverted to other runways in what officials are calling a rare ev...
Detectives release sketch of mask worn by assailant
May 22, 2015 8:09 pm
Hoping to stir up leads in the disturbing attack of a disabled Deerfield Beach woman, the Broward Sheriff's Office on Friday released a sketch of the chilling mask one of the attackers wore.
Memorial Day events
May 22, 2015 8:07 pm
Services and other events taking place in Broward County over the Memorial Day weekend.
FBI seeks Davie bank robber
May 22, 2015 7:33 pm
The FBI is searching for the man who robbed a Chase Bank in Davie.
Colleges move to the front line for serving vets
May 22, 2015 7:29 pm
South Florida's colleges are pledging to better serve veterans so that their pursuit of education doesn't become another battle.
Hot holiday weekend; beware of dangerous rip currents
May 22, 2015 6:59 pm
Plan on having a hot time this holiday weekend - but if you go to the beach, beware of dangerous rip currents.
Tri-Rail puts new limits on smoking
May 22, 2015 6:05 pm
Want to light up at a Tri-Rail station? Soon you'll have to do it in a designated area of the platform.