Florida is the perfect escape destination for cold-climate residents looking for a winter getaway. Compared to most parts of the U.S., Florida is practically balmy in February, especially on the beaches of the southern coast. In fact, it's one of the best times to visit the state and much more comfortable dealing with the oppressive humidity that arrives in the summer.
With mild weather and sunny beaches, it's not surprising that February is considered the high season for travel to Florida. Flights and hotels may be more expensive than usual, especially during popular travel periods like President's Day weekend. However, when you're in need of a little winter sunshine, that extra cost might be worth it.
Florida Weather in February
Even though temperatures across the state are mild in February, expect cooler temperatures in the central and northern parts of the state. Night especially can get chilly, so don't underestimate the cold in cities like Jacksonville, Panama City, and Tallahassee. Fortunately, though, temperatures rise steadily throughout the month, and a late-February vacation is much likelier to be warm.
|Average High Temp.||Average Low Temp.|
|Daytona Beach||71 F (22 C)||48 F (9 C)|
|Fort Meyers||77 F (25 C)||55 F (13 C)|
|Jacksonville||67 F (19 C)||44 F (7 C)|
|Key West||76 F (24 C)||66 F (19 C)|
|Miami||73 F (23 C)||63 F (17 C)|
|Orlando||74 F (23 C)||51 F (11 C)|
|Panama City||65 F (18 C)||41 F (5 C)|
|Pensacola||64 F (18 C)||45 F (7 C)|
|Tallahassee||67 F (19 C)||42 F (6 C)|
|Tampa||72 F (22 C)||54 F (12 C)|
|West Palm Beach||76 F (24 C)||58 F (14 C)|
The humidity and thunderstorms that are a daily part of life during the Florida summer have yet to arrive, so you don't have to worry much about bad weather. Hurricanes are technically possible at any time of year, but the season doesn't begin until June and there is only one recorded tropical storm on record in February ever.
The water temperature for the Gulf of Mexico on the western coast ranges from 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) to 60-some degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) this time of year. The Atlantic Ocean on the east side typically stays above 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) from central Florida and above. The beaches to the south, such as West Palm Beach, Miami, and The Florida Keys, are always several degrees warmer than those located further north.
What to Pack
Shorts, sandals, T-shirts, and sundresses are a must for the Florida sun, but also be sure to take along a sweater and jacket for possible chilly nights. You should also pack a bathing suit, even if you don't plan on hitting the beach since most hotel swimming pools are heated. Lastly, don't forget your sunblock, since you can still get a bad sunburn even on cloudy days.
If you happen to be planning a romantic Valentine's Day getaway, don't forget to pack formal clothing for a special night out. Besides wanting to impress your significant other, your restaurant of choice may enforce a dress code.
February Events in Florida
There are plenty of events to enjoy throughout the Sunshine State for lovers, singles, and families alike.
- Valentine's Day in Florida: Keep an eye out for restaurant specials, hotel spa packages, and more perks for couples surrounding the romantic February 14 holiday. Singles can get in on the action, too, with parties at the local bars.
- Seven Seas Food Festival: Enjoy local craft beers, listen to live concerts and performances, and taste new culinary delights at this food festival taking place every weekend from February 5 to May 9, 2021, at SeaWorld Orlando.
- Florida State Fair: Showcasing the best agribusiness Florida has to offer, the state fair is held each year in Tampa, drawing families and farmers alike from all over the state. It's normally held in February, but the 2021 State Fair is postponed until April.
- Lake Worth Street Painting Festival: Guests can stroll the downtown streets of Lake Worth to view the most beautiful chalk art street paintings from 600 different artists, all for free. The 2021 Street Painting Festival is canceled and it's scheduled to return in February 2022.
- Universal Orlando Mardi Gras: Between February 6 and March 28, 2021, Universal Orlando is transformed into the Big Easy nightly with its annual Mardi Gras celebration. It features parades, live music, colorful costumes, Cajun food, and much more.
February Travel Tips
- Florida's mild climate continues throughout the winter months, but there is a chance for cold temperatures during the first half of February in both northern and central Florida. If you plan on enjoying the famous white sand beaches, you may want to plan your trip later in the month.
- Florida's peak season is mid-December to mid-April, so February falls smack-dab in the middle. You can find the best deals by traveling mid-week.
- Don't expect to have the beaches or Disney World to yourself during this popular travel time, and be especially aware of the President's Day long weekend.