The 2000-acre campus of the University of Florida is located in the northern part of the Florida peninsula at Gainesville (population 97,500) in Alachua County (population 198,700), approximately 60 miles from both the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.
The pleasant climate makes year-round outdoor activities possible. The mean annual temperature is 69.9F; the January average is 57.6F and the July average is 80.7F. Summers are long and relatively humid; winters, although punctuated by periodic invasions of cold air, are mild and relatively dry.
Fresh water lakes, natural springs, and picturesque forests surround the Gainesville area. The lakes provide some of the finest fishing areas in the nation, as well as playgrounds for those who enjoy water sports. Tennis, racquetball and handball courts, playing fields, swimming pools, and golf courses are readily available and the city has an extensive network of bicycle paths. Gainesville is within easy driving distance of many of Florida’s best known tourist attractions including Walt Disney World, EPCOT, MGM and Universal Studios, Busch Gardens, Silver Springs, Sea World, Daytona Beach, and Kennedy Space Center.
The University serves as a focus for much of the cultural life in the area by sponsoring appearances of distinguished speakers and nationally prominent entertainers and offering a series of musical concerts and theatrical production. The night life in Gainesville is comparable to that of a much larger metropolitan area. Gainesville is also well supplied with restaurants, shopping facilities, movie theaters, and modern apartment complexes.
The University athletic teams add color and excitement to life on campus. In recent years, the Gator football, basketball, baseball, gymnastics, swimming, golf, and track teams have all experienced great successes and national rankings.