About as central as it's possible to get in Florida, Winter Haven holiday villas and apartments put you bang in the middle of the Sunshine State. As an absolute mecca for waterskiing enthusiasts, the area is riddled with over 50 lakes, interconnected by man-made canals; it's a positive nirvana for water sports. Holiday accommodation in Winter Haven are all fully air-conditioned, with all the modern appliances to keep your stay free of hassle. Nearly all Winter Haven rentals have access to a pool and welcome children, though only a few are accessible via wheelchair.
-Theme parks: Opening just a couple of years ago on the site that was formerly Cypress Gardens, one of the world's first theme parks, Legoland Florida is a great family attraction. Legoland's 145 acres of park host over 50 Lego-themed rides, shows and attractions, as well as the preserved botanical garden area built by the former resident.
-Lakes: Winter Haven calls itself 'The Chain of Lakes City', and it's easy to see why. By far the most prominent features surrounding your Winter Haven holiday accommodation are the lakes and interconnecting waterways; teeming with wildlife, this is one of the world's premier bass fishing destinations, too.
-Watersports: With so many lakes, watersports are Winter Haven's raison d'etre. Cypress Gardens was instrumental in the invention of the sport of waterskiing, so the facilities for getting wet, and the variety of ways of doing so, are myriad. Rentals at Winter Haven are never far from the opportunity.
-Nightlife: There are far more bars and restaurants than needed to cater to a town of 26,000, which tells you all you need to know about Winter Haven's popularity as a holiday resort. From fast food to fine dining, laid-back pubs to energetic dance halls, there's something for everyone.
-Beaches: There's not much in the way of sandy beaches in this lake-strewn area, but either coast is only an hour away by car. From the amazing beaches at Tampa Bay in the west, to the equally pristine sand and surf of the Atlantic Space Coast, you're spoiled for choice.
You could expect Florida's subtropical climate to be the hottest here, which is about as far from the sea as you can get in Florida. Fortunately, the extensive wetlands have a similar moderating influence, so temperatures in the summer rarely get intolerable. Typical highs don't exceed the mid-30°C mark, and this is further tempered by the summer thunderstorms which tend to cool things down a little. Winters are on a par with the British summer, so temperatures top 20°C and rainfall is infrequent at best.
As close as Winter Haven is to Orlando and Tampa, it would be silly to fly into anywhere else, at only 48 and 59 miles away respectively. Public transport tends to be a bit of a joke in the US, and the automobile reigns supreme, so flying and driving a hire car is really the most effective, and cheapest, option. There is an Amtrak station in Winter Haven, however, which gives you the chance to experience an authentic American train trip, but they're somewhat unreliable when it comes to timetables. Nearby Lakeland has the only Greyhound station.