top of page
  • Writer's pictureNatalija Ugrina

Sebring, Florida: The City on the Circle

Hello, lovely readers!


eating ice cream at Sebring Soda Florida

Today, I'm thrilled to take you on a virtual journey to one of Florida's most charming and underrated destinations: Sebring.

Nestled in the heart of Florida, the city of Sebring offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty that captivates the hearts of all who visit. Known affectionately as "The City on the Circle," thanks to its circular downtown layout designed by George Sebring in the early 20th century, this charming locale has a story worth telling. Join me as we delve into the rich tapestry of Sebring's past, uncover the top activities that make it a must-visit destination, and reveal a little-known fact that even some locals are surprised to learn.



A Stroll Through History

Sebring's story begins in 1912, when George E. Sebring, a pottery manufacturer from Ohio, envisioned creating a planned community in Florida. His dream materialized as a picturesque town with a circular plan, radiating streets, and a central park that today remains a focal point for community gatherings and events. Over the years, Sebring has flourished, particularly gaining fame as a racing destination thanks to the renowned Sebring International Raceway. This track has hosted the Sebring 12-Hour Grand Prix of Endurance since 1952, drawing racing enthusiasts from around the globe.


A Glimpse into Sebring's Past: Harder Hall and Boom-Time Hotels

One cannot talk about Sebring without mentioning the majestic Harder Hall. Built in the 1920s, during Florida's land boom, this grand hotel exemplifies the extravagance and optimism of the era. Named after its developer, Lewis F. Harder, Harder Hall was a symbol of luxury and leisure, attracting visitors from across the country. Though it has seen various incarnations over the years, including attempts at revival and preservation, Harder Hall stands today as a poignant reminder of Sebring's golden age of tourism and elegance.

Similarly, Sebring's landscape is dotted with other boom-time hotels and buildings that echo the city's past prosperity. These structures, built with the hope and extravagance of the 1920s, add a historic charm to the city, inviting visitors to ponder the stories and lives that have unfolded within their walls.


Harder Hall
Harder Hall

The Heart of Sebring: Downtown and Its Notable Buildings

Downtown Sebring, with its unique circular layout, is not just the geographical center of the city but its cultural and historical heart. Among its most notable buildings is the Circle Theatre, an art deco marvel that has been a focal point for community gatherings, performances, and events since its opening. The historic downtown area also hosts a variety of shops, galleries, and restaurants that occupy beautifully preserved buildings, offering a blend of modern amenities and historical ambiance.


Downtown Sebring
Downtown Sebring

A Taste of Local Flavor: Sebring Soda and More

No visit to Sebring is complete without experiencing the local flavors, and Sebring Soda is a must-try. This local soda shop offers an astonishing variety of craft sodas, showcasing traditional and unique flavors that cater to all tastes. It's a nod to the city's entrepreneurial spirit and its residents' appreciation for the finer, simpler things in life.

Sebring's downtown is also home to other culinary delights, from cozy cafes to fine dining restaurants, each offering a taste of local and international cuisine. These establishments, set in historic buildings, provide not just a meal but an immersive experience that blends the city's culinary diversity with its rich heritage.


Sebring Soda
Sebring Soda

Top Things to Do in Sebring:

  1. Sebring International Raceway: For motorsport fans, a visit to this legendary track is a thrilling experience. Whether attending the iconic 12-hour race or exploring the facility during quieter times, the raceway offers a pulse-pounding glimpse into the world of professional racing.

  2. Highlands Hammock State Park: A paradise for nature lovers, this park is one of Florida's oldest and most beloved state parks. With its ancient oaks, diverse wildlife, and serene walking trails, Highlands Hammock provides a peaceful escape into nature's embrace.

  3. Downtown Sebring's Circle: The heart of the city, with its unique circular layout, is home to a vibrant arts scene, quaint shops, and delightful eateries. The Circle hosts various events throughout the year, including art festivals and farmer's markets, making it a lively center for community life.

  4. Lake Jackson: Covering 9,212 acres, Lake Jackson is a haven for fishing, boating, and enjoying spectacular sunsets. The lake's clear waters and scenic shores offer a perfect setting for a day of relaxation or aquatic adventure.

  5. Children's Museum of the Highlands: A fantastic spot for families, this museum provides interactive exhibits that engage young minds in the wonders of science, art, and culture, making learning fun and exciting.


Discovering the Natural Wonder of Highlands Hammock State Park


Highlands Hammock State Park, a true natural treasure nestled in the outskirts of Sebring, Florida, stands as a testament to the beauty and diversity of the state's wilderness. Established in 1931, it is one of Florida's oldest state parks, and its lush landscapes, ancient hammocks, and rich biodiversity have been captivating the hearts of nature enthusiasts for decades. Let's take a closer look at what makes Highlands Hammock State Park a must-visit for anyone seeking to immerse themselves in Florida's natural beauty.


Highlands Hammock State Park
Highlands Hammock State Park

A Sanctuary for Nature and Wildlife

Spanning over 9,000 acres, Highlands Hammock State Park is a sanctuary for a wide array of flora and fauna. The park is renowned for its virgin hammocks, dense and lush forests that are home to towering oaks, delicate ferns, and an underbrush teeming with life. These ancient ecosystems have remained largely untouched by time, offering visitors a glimpse into Florida's natural heritage.

Wildlife viewing is a highlight for many visitors, with opportunities to spot white-tailed deer, alligators, various species of birds, and the elusive Florida panther. The park's boardwalks and trails make it easy to explore these habitats safely and intimately, allowing for close encounters with nature that are both educational and awe-inspiring.


Highlands Hammock State Park

A Hiker's and Cyclist's Paradise

For those who love to explore on foot or by bike, Highlands Hammock offers an extensive network of trails. Ranging from easy to moderate in difficulty, these trails meander through diverse landscapes, from dense hammocks and cypress swamps to pine flatwoods and scrubby flatwoods, each offering its unique beauty and challenges. The park's 3-mile loop drive is also a popular route for cyclists, providing a scenic ride through its varied ecosystems.


Environmental Education and Recreation

Highlands Hammock State Park is not only a place for recreation but also for education. The park's Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum pays homage to the men who built the park and many others across the country during the Great Depression. Through exhibits and displays, visitors can learn about the CCC's contributions to conservation and the development of the United States' national and state parks.

In addition to hiking and cycling, the park offers picnic areas, a playground, and camping facilities, making it a perfect destination for a family outing or a peaceful retreat into nature. Canoeing and kayaking on the park's waterways provide a tranquil way to explore its aquatic environments, offering a different perspective on its beauty and serenity.


Highlands Hammock State Park

A Commitment to Conservation

Highlands Hammock State Park plays a crucial role in the conservation of Florida's natural habitats and species. Through its management practices and educational programs, the park strives to protect its ecosystems while fostering a deeper appreciation and understanding of the natural world among visitors. It stands as a reminder of the importance of preserving these precious resources for future generations to enjoy and learn from.


An Unforgettable Sebring Moment


And now, let me share a moment that truly captures the essence of Sebring's cool, adventurous spirit. As I sit here, writing and enjoying lunch at the Sunset Grill and Bar, a delightful spot known for its breathtaking waterfront views, something extraordinary happens. Two floatplanes glide gracefully onto the lake, their pilots expertly maneuvering them to dock. The passengers, with smiles as bright as the Florida sun, disembark and join us for lunch. It's a scene straight out of an adventure novel, showcasing the unique and thrilling experiences Sebring offers. This casual blend of aviation and dining epitomizes the unexpected joys of life in Sebring, making it an even more special place in my heart.


float planes flying into sebring florida

Where to stay: Inn On The Lakes

Where to eat: Faded Bistro & Beer Garden, Chicanes Restaurant & Bar, Cowpoke’s Watering Hole

4,312 views12 comments

12 Comments


Guest
Feb 26

Call me I would love to chat +1 864 8163907

Like

Guest
Feb 20

It is amazing(🥰🥰🥰). All think you say about this place is wonderful and you always colours the place and make the place enchanting as your outfits (🤩). Lady💚

Like

Linner Queen
Linner Queen
Feb 19
Like

Linner Queen
Linner Queen
Feb 19

That’s great

Like

cawilliams2021
Feb 19

Great post! Love the info and you look amazing in that little skirt! Keep it up!

Like
Linner Queen
Linner Queen
Feb 19
Replying to
Like
bottom of page