For more information, check out Gainesville’s own tourism page, Visit Gainesville.
Gainesville has plenty of bars and restaurants, many of which you might find populated with English grads any given night. Across from campus is a stretch of bars called Midtown. Typically populated by undergraduates, Midtown isn’t a bad place to get a quick bite to eat or an inexpensive drink. Downtown hosts a nightlife more divorced from University culture. Downtown Gainesville has everything from hip taverns with craft beer and sliders to swanky cocktail bars and whiskey joints. Dancing is always recommended and is usually low-key and casual downtown. A few highly rated/much loved venues are: Stage7Karaoke , Envy Dance Club, The Bank Bar and Lounge, Arcade Bar, Simon’s Night Club, House of Beer, The Dime, Swamphead Brewery, First Magnitude Brewery, The Bull (also the host for the MFA readings).
Gainesville is home to many outdoor experiences for every type of outdoor explorer. Due to Gainesville warm climate, outdoor activities can be enjoyed at pretty much any time of the year. Some of the more popular spots are: Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, Solar Walk, EcoTours, Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park
The best way to stay abreast of Gainesville events is to check different organization’s websites/Facebook pages. There is something happening practically every weekend. Be sure to check some of them out.
Bo Diddley Plaza – Outdoor venue space in the middle of downtown, host to many free music events and other community events including the Union Street Farmer’s Market
Gainesville Community Playhouse – One of the oldest community theaters with the first performance in 1927.
Friends of the Library – Hosts a bi-annual massive book sale–I mean massive, people bring multiple, large boxes for all their books, they have special procedures for people buying books in bulk basically.
Third House Books & Coffee – Independent book store, coffeeshop, and venue space founded by a former UF English grad student.
Florida Museum of Natural History – Also houses a butterfly house and does regular exhibits about Florida flora and fauna; great place if you have kids!
Harn Museum – UF’s art museum regularly hosts different events and exhibitions are constantly rotating. Membership to the Harn is free for UF students and allows you early/exclusive access to some events.
Artisan’s Guild Gallery – Display of local artisan’s crafts and art, great place to become familiar with local art and local art history.
Civic Media Center – An alternative library, reading room, and infoshop. Our mission is to provide community access to information and points of view that are under-reported or distorted in mainstream media.
Deport Park – Great place for food trucks and a variety of events and activities, also home to The Box Car Wine and Beer Garden
The best way to find out about on campus events/student life is to pay attention to the student life section of the main UF website: http://www.ufl.edu/student-life/