The sunny Floridian city of Gainesville has a myriad of quiet, cozy, laid-back, and hip joints to grab a great cup of coffee. Whether you want stylish French presses, pour-overs, hip nitros, the latest versions of slow drips, or a pure Italian-style double shot espresso, Gainesville has no shortage of coffee shops, and here are some of the best spots to go to get your coffee fix. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.Bay Island Coffee Company
3.Curia on The Drag
4.CYM Coffee Co
5.Dolce Vita Bakery Cafe
6. Fiore's Sweet Cup
9.Maude's Classic Cafe
11.Mi Apá Latin Cafe of Gainesville
12.Opus Coffee at Innovation
14.Patticakes in the Village
15.Terrace Market Cafe
16.Third House Books and Coffee
17.Volta Coffee, Tea & Chocolate
18 Best Gainesville, FL Coffee Shops
- Bay Island Coffee Company, Photo: Bay Island Coffee Company
- Bella Caffe, Photo: Bella Caffè
- Curia on The Drag, Photo: Curia on The Drag
- CYM Coffee Co, Photo: CYM Coffee Co
- Dolce Vita Bakery Cafe, Photo: Dolce Vita Bakery Cafe
- Fiore's Sweet Cup, Photo: leszekglasner/stock.adobe.com
- Harper's Corner, Photo: Harper's Corner
- Karma Cream, Photo: Karma Cream
- Maude's Classic Cafe, Photo: chayathon2000/stock.adobe.com
- Metro Diner, Photo: Metro Diner
- Mi Apá Latin Cafe of Gainesville, Photo: Mi Apá Latin Café of Gainesville
- Opus Coffee at Innovation, Photo: Opus Coffee at Innovation
- Pascal's Coffeehouse, Photo: Pascal's Coffeehouse
- Patticakes in the Village, Photo: ?rtranq/stock.adobe.com
- Terrace Market Cafe, Photo: Terrace Market Café
- Third House Books and Coffee, Photo: Third House Books and Coffee
- Volta Coffee, Tea & Chocolate, Photo: Volta Coffee, Tea & Chocolate
- Wyatt's Coffee, Photo: Wyatt's Coffee
- Cover Photo: ANR Production/stock.adobe.com
Attraction Spotlight: Lubee Bat Conservancy
The Lubee Bat Conservancy is located in Gainesville, FL. Visitors to the Bat Conservancy get to see the bats that call the Conservancy home as well as learn about the research being done and the ways conservation is saving these bat species. The Lubee Bat Conservancy was established as a not-for-profit by Luis F. Bacardi in 1989.
Bacardi had a passion for helping endangered wildlife especially bats. He passed away in 1991 and The Conservancy was endowed partially as a bequest from the late Bacardi’s estate. The endowment, along with donations and grants is the reason Lubee has been functioning over the last twenty-five years. Lubee is not funded by or linked in any way to the rum company with the Bacardi name.
The Lubee Bat Conservatory name is a derivative of its founder's name (Luis Bacardi). Bacardi spent his life preserving endangered species and played a pivotal role in ensuring the survival of flying foxes all over the Pacific. In 1990 the Pacific Island Flying Fox Declaration was the result of the support Lubee showed for an innovative conference that was held in the Pacific Islands. The Declaration promises to guard against over-exploitation of bats and the severe loss of rain forests that these bats depend on.
The Lubee Bat Conservancy is a ranch encompassing one hundred and ten acres that was used as an area for holding animals that were being transferred to Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The Bat Conservancy continues to maintain a very close professional relationship with Disney.
The Lubee Bat Conservancy acts as a conservation-breeding and research center. Visitors to the center will get to view the more than two-hundred fruit bats that call the center home as well as learn about the current research and conservation efforts the facility is making on their scheduled tour.
The Bat Center- Lubee works with conservation scientists and zoological organizations around the world. The facility connects field studies with training and research at the Bat Center to boost the community’s ability to conserve nectar and fruit bats along with the ecosystem services offered through educational outreach. The focus of the Bat Conservancy is on the important relationship between human health, bats, and ecosystems. This offers an important teaching tool and unusual opportunity to focus on major research questions on bats.
The Center’s main goals are to create cross-disciplinary collaborative research and studies on the ecology and biology of bats; encourage opportunities for training for students and scientists in the fields of bat genetics, ecology, biology, and physiology; and to educate the public through the use of casual publications and science education.
The Bat Center offers training a research programs through their educational training facilities. Some of these facilities include an education room with displays where discussions for children are held.
The Woods Haven Retreat Center is a three thousand square foot house built in the ranch-style. It used to be the residence of Luis Bacardi and is used today for graduate students and scientists to stay in when studying the bats that live at the Lubee Bat Conservancy. This Center also contains a large suite of meeting room for holding workshops, meetings, and retreats.
Volunteering also offers educational opportunities for those who do it. Volunteers are required to work at least sixteen hours a month. Volunteers working at the Conservancy learn about bats as well as develop helpful skills for their future careers in conservation and animal work.
Internships are also offered through the Lubee Bat Conservancy. These internships help interns gain professional experience in the care of animals. Interns are tasked with the daily activities associated with being an animal keeper. Some of these activities include nutrition, husbandry, training, enrichment, and educating guests. The objectives of the internship are as follows:
· Learn from professionals in animal care how to carry out basic duties such as husbandry, cleaning the exhibits, preparing foods and enhancement activities, helping with enhancements to the environments, giving medications, assisting or observing vet practices, and maintenance of the grounds.
· Interns will learn how to implement and develop animal enhancement programs
· Interns will train in both formal and informal interpretive instructional programs for outreach audiences and guests.
· Interns will also learn to follow animal and keeper guidelines for policies, operations, and safety.
· Interns will also get the opportunity to develop and complete a project
· At the end of the internship, interns will give a short summary of the project to the staff of the Lubee Bat Conservancy.
The Bat Conservancy offers a service for building Bat Houses on residents of the community’s properties and teach them what species are found on the property and how to provide a warm, safe area for the bats to live and take care of their babies.
1309 NW 192nd Ave, Gainesville, FL 32609, Phone: 352-485-1250
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Attraction Spotlight: Matheson History Museum
The Matheson History Museum is located in Gainesville, Florida. Visitors to the museum will learning the history of Florida and specifically Alachua County, through its extensive collection of postcards, stereoview cards, illustrations from famous newspapers, photos, exhibits and archives.
The Matheson History Museum commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of Alachua County Historical Society in 2017. The museum and the historical society merged when the museum was opened in 1994.The opening of the Museum marked the sesquicentennial of the Matheson House built in 1867. Sarah Hamilton Matheson was a member and former president of the Alachua County Historical Society. She founded a trust that donated the Matheson House to the Society in 1977. She was also the person who established the Matheson Historical Center later renamed Matheson History Museum.
The roots of the Museum go all the way back to the Alachua County Historical Society’s founding in 1967. Meetings of the Society were held in the homes of members and showcased programs by significant speakers before the Museum was established. The Society’s goal was to interpret and preserve the history of Florida by constructing markers, and hosting field trips and regular programs to important historical sites.
Late in the 1880s the Society worked to create the library and collections for the museum which would be housed in the American Legion Hall. The Hall would be renovated by Jay Reeve an architect. Today’s Matheson History Museum preserves and interprets Alachua County and its surroundings through preservation.
The Matheson History Museum offers tours of its various exhibits.
Timucuan Canoe- This exhibit displays a canoe that is 1,400 years old. It was unearthed in 2011 in a disappearing pond of Alachua County. The canoe was preserved through the partnership of the Matheson History Museum and the Florida Museum of Natural History. The exhibit also features mural that serves as a backdrop for the canoe that was created by Stacey Breheny.
Matheson & Company Store- This exhibit is a recreation of the original store the way it looked in the early twentieth century. The store was opened as a general store in 1867 in downtown Gainesville, but changed to specializing in leather and shoes in the 1890s.
History of Alachua County- Examines the history of the country beginning with its Timucuan Tribe who were the first people to settle the area, and ends with the early twentieth century. Visitors can discover the history that includes the visit of William Bartram in 1774, Florida’s Spanish occupation, and the University of Florida’s history.
Historic 1885 Alachua County Courthouse- This exhibit features artifacts from the courthouse from 1885. Visitors will find the Florida Coat of Arms hanging in the hall of exhibits. This coat of arms is one of the two original copper renditions that used to be at the courthouse before it was demolished in 1961. A copper lion that once adorned the courthouses doors is on loan the Matheson History Museum from the county.
Some features of the Matheson History Museum collections include more than twenty thousand Florida postcards throughout the state's history presenting each county. The collection also houses one thousand five hundred stereoview cards, a huge collection of illustrations of the state that came from various newspapers and magazines, the Bone Photo Collection which highlights photographs that were taken by Matheson resident, Elmer Bone spanning the years between the 1920s and 1950s. Local social and civic group records are also stored here.
The Museum’s library is catalogued as part of the collection of the Alachua County Library District. They can be searched on the website for the County Library.
The Museum also contains a big collection of stereoscopic views that come from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. These views show different locations around Florida and capture the time in the state’s history when it went through an enormous growth in industry, tourism, agriculture, and development.
1867 Matheson House- The Matheson House is affiliated with the Matheson History Museum and offers tours for the public and private school fieldtrips. Visitors with an appreciation for architecture will enjoy the house and it’s many architectural elements.
The Museum itself is an educational opportunity. Visitor learn the history of Florida and more specifically Alachua County. Field trips are offered for all grades.
The Matheson History Museum offers temporary exhibits throughout the year.
Liberating Learning?: The Story of Desegregation in Alachua County Schools- This exhibit explores the impact desegregation had on the community and schools.
Finding the Foundation of Youth: Exploring the Myths of Florida’s Magical Waters- This exhibit explores how the story of Ponce de Leon’s journey to find the Fountain of Youth impacted and shaped Florida’s image as a land of rejuvenation, fantasy, and spring-fed magical waters.
513 East University Avenue, Gainesville, FL 32601, Phone: 352-378-2280
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Attraction Spotlight: Haile Homestead
The historic Haile Homestead is located at Kanapaha Plantation in Gainesville, Florida. Visitors to this homestead will get to explore the time period and the lives of the plantation owners and their slaves. Thomas Evans Haile and Esther “Serena” Chestnut Haile, his wife came to Alachua County in Florida with their children in 1854 from Camden, South Carolina.
They founded the one thousand five-hundred-acre cotton plantation. The plantation was named Kanapaha, which means “small thatched houses” in Native American. The house is six thousand two hundred square feet and is built of sturdy pine used to brace the construction frame with cypress siding. The Haile Homestead was finished in 1856 and stands as a representation of the expertise and skill of the slave craftsmen who constructed it.
In the mid-1890s Serena and Thomas Haile died. The property was left to Evans Haile on of their fifteen children. He was an important defense attorney that resided in the Duck Pond part of Gainesville. He spent his weekends entertaining family and friends at the Homestead, utilizing it for dances, hunts, and parties.
The house was abandoned and boarded up in the early 1930s. It was discovered again in the mid-1970s by Victor Nunez a movie producer. He filmed “Gal Youngun” there. In 1986 the Haile House was put on the National Register of Historic Places. The State of Florida gave a grant to have the Homestead restored in 1996. Tours began in April of 2001.
The Haile Homestead has a few different attractions and exhibits for visitors to learn about the Haile Family and the slaves that built and worked their plantation.
Allen ad Ethel Graham Visitors Center- The Visitors Center contains several exhibits that tell the story of the enslaved laborers at Kanapaha Plantation as well as the other four plantations owned by the Hailes and two Chestnut Plantations. The names of the slaves have been researched thoroughly through deeds, oral history, wills and other materials. These names can be found on a special display. Another display has artifacts that were discovered close to the outbuildings of the property. These artifacts include a slave ball. This slave ball acts as a reminder to visitors of the gruesome truths of slavery. Inside the Haile Homestead, a two-sided display has photos of some of the slaves mentioned like William Watts, Johnson Chestnut, Henry Gaines, the Kelley Family, Bennet Kelley, and Edmund Kelley Jr. Other slaves are mentioned by name in the journal of Serena Haile in the years between 1874 and 1893.
Talking Walls- The Hailes had a unique habit of writing on the walls of their house that were unpainted. These walls have more than twelve thousand five hundred words along with artwork in every room of the house, even the closets. The oldest writing was discovered upstairs in the Trunk Room. A young Benjamin inscribed is name in the year 1859 just a short time after the house was finished. Some of the writing done by family members were personal observations, growth charts for children and grandchildren, visitors’ names, linen, china, and silverware inventories, household solution recipes, prose, and records of business. People that attended the house parties on holidays and weekends during the early twentieth century were the most creative writers. The Music Room and Parlor walls are covered with more than one hundred and fifty messages from different individuals. A new wall covered in writing was discovered recently that had been plastered over during the restoration of the Haile House during the 1990s.
Haile House- The Haile House itself is open to the public for tours.
The Haile House offers a Docent Program for volunteers. Docents are historical interpreters. Volunteers wishing to become docents must go to three comprehensive training conferences as well as quarterly meetings. It requires the volunteers to commit to giving house tours of the Historic Haile Homestead at least one Saturday or Sunday a month. Docents are also required to help at events that are held at the Haile Homestead. All docents must be members of the Historic Haile Homestead, Inc. Most volunteers wear Victorian dress to give the tours and events a more authentic feel.
The Historic Haile Homestead offers special events throughout the year.
Candlelight Visits- During these visits, is the only time the Haile House is open at night. It usually takes place around the holidays. Visitors are treated to the House being decorated for the holidays and lit by candlelight.
Annual Homestead Holiday- The Haile House opens to the public with free admission, free carriage rides, and a chance for the kids to visit with Santa.
The Historic Haile Homestead offers reproductions of some of the most creative and fun writings from the Talking Walls of the house.
8500 SW Archer Road, Gainesville, FL 32608, Phone: 352-336-9096
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