Tavares Travel Guide

Browse 5 travel reviews, 1 travel blogs and 162 travel photos from real travelers to Tavares.

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Tavares Overview

Tavares (pronounced Tuh-vair-ees) is a pretty, fast growing town of about 15,000 (up 54% since 2000) located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 441 and Florida Highway 19 in Lake County in Central Florida. Tavares is sandwiched between Lake Eustis and Lake Dora and has several smaller lakes in and near the city limits too. Tavares is not far from Orlando. The city was established in 1880 by Alexander St. Clair-Abrams, a railroad man and newspaper owner. St. Clair named the town after a Portuguese ancestor (Tavares is a common Portuguese surname. Tavares got a post office in 1883. St. Clair wanted to establish Tavares as the state capitol but the movement never went anywhere. St. Clair did charter a rail line from Tavares to Orlando. Tavares has been the county seat of Lake County since 1887, and was incorporated in 1919. Tavares has a nice marina and a seaplane base. NASCAR pioneer, Edward Glenn “Fireball” Roberts was born in Tavares. Roberts dominated NASCAR for several years winning many races. His career was cut short, however, when he had a fiery crash on 24 May 1964 and died of his injuries on 2 July of that year.

Tavares has a nice historic district with several buildings of historical and/or architectural interest. There are two buildings in Tavares listed on the National Register of Historic Places: The Old Lake County Courthouse, and the Duncan House.

Tavares has a nice museum located in the old courthouse.

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