Things to do in Gainesville, FL

Get Your Bearings in Gainesville

See & Do

Things to See

The University of Florida is a huge draw to the city and it contains numerous attractions like Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, the Curtis M. Phillops Center for the Performing Arts, the Harn Museum of Art, and Lake Alice, where visitors can see bats feeding on insects at night. The town also contains a number of other museums, like the Matheson Museum and The Florida Museum of Natural History, housing a number of exhibits on wildlife and history.


The Florida Museum of Natural History is closed on Sundays.

Where to Stay

Gainesville offers a number of lodging choices to visitors, including numerous Holiday Inns, Hampton Inn Gainesville, and the Red Roof Inn, with amenities like an outdoor pool. The Residence Inn Gainesville on 20th Boulevard is a more high-end hotel close to the University of Florida. The Residence Inn provides internet, flat screen TVs, a fitness center and suites with full kitchens.


College events tend to fill hotels in the area, so reserve rooms in advance.

What to Eat

Gainesville has a number of international restaurant options including Dragonfly Sushi and Sake Company, serving up Japanese European fusion, as well as Ti Amo! Restaurant and Bar and Amelia's on Main Street, which both serve Italian. The Jones Eastside focuses on vegetarian and breakfast dishes, while The Swamp serves a college clientele and often hosts musical groups.

Be Sure to Sample:

The Swamp has a special brunch menu on weekends.

Places to Party

Mid-town, located across from the university, has a number of bars and restaurants, including the Salty Dog, Grog House, and the Swamp, all of which have weekly and sometimes daily specials on drinks and food. Downtown Gainesville also contains a number of bars like Stubby's, specializing in imported beers, and dance clubs like Sky.


Many bars popular with the college crowd may be crowded on game days.

Where to Shop

The Oaks Mall on Newberry Road contains a number of dining, entertainment, and shopping options including major chain department stores like Macy's and Dillard's to clothing, specialty, jewelry and shoe stores. Waldo Farmers and Flea Market is the region's largest flea market spread across 50 acres. Downtown Gainesville contains a number of clothing stores for men and women and a Wednesday Farmers market.


The Flea Market is only open on weekends.

Things to do in Gainesville