Nearer to Atlanta than Miami, Tallahassee is "The Other Florida" in attitude, topography, climate and lifestyle. This northern Florida city blends a casual Southern style with the vibrant atmosphere of a major city. Tallahassee also holds the distinction of being the capital of the state of Florida.
"Tallahassee" is an Apalachee Indian word meaning "old town" or "abandoned fields". The original inhabitants knew a good thing when they saw it. It is hard to imagine that this thriving city was once named for abandoned fields. Today there are many things to see and do in Tallahassee that the Apalachee Indians didn’t even dream about. A visit to this city today might take the lucky visitor in many directions. Of course, there is Florida State University, one of the best known universities in the United States. With year round activities taking place on campus, including the famous “Seminoles” games, a visit there is well worth the trip.
For a glimpse of the not too distant past, be sure to visit the Knott House Museum. This historic museum is a time capsule, restored to its 1928 splendor. The Knott House is one of the oldest buildings and the only house museum in the state capital's Park Avenue Historic District. Within the 160-year-old walls, notes of verse penned by Luella Pugh Knott tell the story of the family which lived in the house between the two world wars. Enter the historic house and feel time stand still. To experience life well before this time period, a good bet is Lake Jackson Mounds Archaeological State Park. Here visitors experience the peace of what was once a bustling Native American community which flourished during the 1200-1500 AD period. The mound complex is interpreted through markers along the trails and exhibit area. Visitors can ascend the tallest of six mounds.
A well known resident of Tallahassee is the Governor of Florida and visitors can actually visit his home. The Governor's Mansion functions as both the private and public residence of Florida's chief executive officer and family. It was designed by Palm Beach architect, Marion Sims Wyeth and opened to the public in January 1957. Since that time, the public has been welcomed to tour "The People's House". Also, of political interest is the Old Capitol. The Old Capitol houses the Florida Center for Political History and Governance. The building has been restored to its 1902 appearance, symbolizing Florida's political heritage. Artifacts, photographs and multimedia displays highlight individuals and events that shaped what Florida is today.
When it comes to the weather, any time of year is comfortable for travelers. Winter tends to be the busy season as visitors from the north come south to escape the cold. However, as the capital of Florida as well as the home of Florida State University, any time of year is busy in this cosmopolitan city.
With four very moderate seasons, Tallahassee offers its visitors ideal weather conditions. The summer can get hot with temperatures often exceeding 90 F during the day, so dress accordingly. The evenings do cool off to a more comfortable 70 F, making outdoor activities enjoyable during this time of day. Spring and fall are quite pleasant. With daytime high temperatures near 80 F during the day and the nights a cool 50 F, it’s the perfect time to experience any of the many outdoor activities available. Winters are mild when compared to those of Tallahassee’s northern visitors and all of the sites and attractions are open for visitors. Of course, at any time of the year, there is something of interest taking place in the Capitol complex, around town, and definitely at FSU.