GEOGRAPHICAL FACTS
FAST & FUN

 Total Area - 58,560 square miles

 Total land area - 54,136 square miles

Total water area - 4,424 square miles

 Rank among states in total area - 22nd

 Length north and south - 447 miles (St. Marys River to Key West)

 Width east and west - 361 miles (Atlantic Ocean to Perdido River)

 Distance from Pensacola to Key West - 792 miles (by road)

Highest Natural Point - 345 feet

Geographic Center - 12 miles northwest of Brooksville, Hernando County

Coastline - 1,197 statute miles

Tidal shoreline (general) - 2,276 statute miles

 Beaches - 663 miles

 Longest River - St. Johns, 273 miles

 Largest Lake - Lake Okeechobee, 700 square miles

 Largest county - Palm Beach, 2,578 square miles

 Smallest county - Union, 245 square miles

 Number of lakes (greater than 10 acres) - about 7,700

 Number of first-magnitude springs - 33

 Number of islands (greater than 10 acres) - about 4,500
Historical facts

 First permanent European settlement - 1565, St. Augustine, by Spain

 Acquired from Spain as a U.S. Territory - 1821

 Admitted as 27th state of the U.S. - March 3, 1845
Current facts

 Capital - Tallahassee

 Population 2005 (estimate) - 17,789,864 (Rank 4th)

 Population 2004 (estimate) - 17,397,161 (Rank 4th)

 Population 2000 - 15,982,378 (Rank 4th)

 Population 1990 - 12,937,926

 Population 1980 - 9,739,992

 Population growth rate 2000-2005 (estimate) - 11.31%

 Population growth rate 1990-2000 - 23.53%

 Most populous metropolitan area 2003 - Miami-Ft. Lauderdale: 5,289,000 (estimate - Ranked 6th in the US)

 Most populous metropolitan area 2000 - Miami-Ft. Lauderdale: 3,876,380

 Most populous County 2005 - Miami-Dade County: 2,376,014 (estimate)

 Number of counties - 67

 Form of government - Governor and cabinet consisting of Attorney General, Chief Financial Officer and Commissioner of Agriculture

 State sales tax - 6%

 State income tax - None

 Legislature - 120 house districts, 40 senate districts, 25 congressional districts

Sources:
US Census Bureau
























Interesting Geographic Names In Florida

Florida has e a lot of cities and rivers that are derived from Native American and/or Spanish terms.
 Here are a few favorites:

    * Altamonte (as in Altamonte Springs) means "high hill". Remember, "high" is relative in Florida -- we're a         pretty flat state.
    * Apalachicola means "those people living on the other shore". Well, the Apalachicola River is pretty                 wide....
    * Boca Ciega (as in Boca Ciega Bay) translates to "blind mouth".
    * Boca Raton roughly translates to "rat's mouth" (hmmm). The name refers to some hidden rocks near to            shore.
    * Caloosahatchee means "river of the Calusa" which is a Native American tribe.
    * Canaveral (as in Cape Canaveral) means "place of reeds or cane". If you've ever been in the Cape back            country, you can appreciate the name.
    * Chattahoochee is roughly translated as "marked rock". It's the name of both a river and a city.
    * Hialeah means "pretty prairie".
    * Homosassa means "place where the wild peppers grow".
    * Islamorada means "purple island".
    * Kissimmee means "heaven's place". By the way, the name is pronounced Ki-SIM-mee, not "KISS-i-mee".
    * Loxahatchee means "river of turtles".
    * Miami means (variously) "all beavers", "all friends", "cry of the crane" and "people who live on the                peninsula" and "very large". The name sure does get around! In this case, it's thought to derive from             Mayaimi, referring to the very large nearby Lake Okeechobee.
    * Ocala means "heavily clouded".
    * Palata is derived from "ferry, ford or crossing" since it was a major trading post on the St. John's River.
    * Panasoffkee is translated as "deep valley".
    * Punta Gorda means "fat point", referring to some land jutting out into the bay.
    * Steinhatchee translates to "dead man's creek". Don't guess I'm going to be moving there anytime soon....
    * Tallahassee -- there are divided views on this one, but after some research I'm going to have to go with         the translation of the Muskogee Indian word meaning "old town".
    * Wauchula is interesting, roughly meaning "cow house" -- a barn maybe.  Of course there is always the            fact that COW stands for County of Wauchula...could it be that's what got it all started?
    * Weeki Wachee (as in Weeki Wachee Springs) means "little spring".
    * Wewahitchka probably means "water eyes".