Florida aerial view

13 Most Conservative Cities in Florida in 2024

Most Conservative Cities in Florida

Florida, also known as the “Sunshine State,” has beautiful and varied scenery. As a real estate agent, I’ve had the chance to learn about its many cultures, peoples, and, most importantly, political views. I find this state interesting because it has many different kinds of people living in it.

Over the years, especially when helping clients find their dream homes or great business opportunities in other states, I’ve seen firsthand how some towns in Florida lean more toward a conservative philosophy and others toward a liberal one.

In this article, I’ll take you on a journey through the 13 most conservative cities in Florida, shedding light on their defining traits, must-visit attractions, and the underpinnings of their conservative values. This exploration is drawn not just from statistics and reports but also from my personal encounters and the stories shared with me by residents and clients alike.

Whether you’re pondering a move, eyeing potential real estate investments, or simply curious about the political dynamics of these locales, this guide is crafted from years of firsthand experiences and insights. Its goal is to help you learn more about some of Florida’s conservative heartlands.

Here’s an article on the most conservative cities in Texas.

13. Pensacola

Pensacola Florida Gulf Coast
Aerial View of Pensacola Beach and the Bustling Gulf Pier

Military Influence

Pensacola is the 13th-most conservative city in Florida. Located in the Florida Panhandle, Pensacola has a significant military presence due to its close proximity to the Naval Air Station Pensacola and other military facilities[1]. In my travels across Florida, Pensacola holds a special place in my heart because of a community deeply intertwined with the fabric of American tradition and values.

My first visit to Pensacola was during a client’s house-hunting trip. As we passed by the Naval Air Station Pensacola while driving through the city, I was astounded by the overt sense of pride in their military heritage. The respect for national defense and traditional family values was evident in every conversation with the locals, which clearly mirrored the city’s conservative ethos.

Cultural and Recreational Offerings

Pensacola is a desirable location for individuals who value a more traditional way of life due to its rich history, stunning beaches, and vibrant downtown area. The Pensacola Lighthouse and Museum, located in the city’s historic area, highlights the city’s long-standing naval heritage[2]. The Blue Wahoos Stadium hosts community-building minor league baseball games.

Pensacola is indeed one of the best places to live in the Florida Panhandle.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 43.6 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over – 22.6% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.7% (more than the national average rate)[27]

12. Panama City

Panama City Beach Florida
Coastal Scene of Panama City Beach

Military and Healthcare Industries

Another community on the Panhandle is Panama City, which is renowned for its stunning white-sand beaches and conservative-minded populace. The city’s economy is supported by military facilities, tourism, and a booming healthcare sector[3].

Reflecting on my first visit to Panama City, I was there to help a couple relocate for work, and it was impossible not to be captivated by its white-sand beaches and the warm, conservative community that values traditional lifestyles.

Many people in Panama City have a right-leaning perspective, stressing traditional family values and minimal government involvement.

Outdoor Recreation

The region appeals to individuals who want an easygoing way of life based on traditional values because it provides a range of outdoor leisure activities, such as boating and fishing[4].

For instance, St. Andrews State Park is a well-liked vacation spot for families and environment enthusiasts because it has nature trails, beautiful beaches, and an abundance of wildlife.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 41.1 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over – 19.2% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.4% (on par with the national average rate)[28]

11. Ocala

Ocala National Forest Florida
Tranquil Waters and Lush Greenery of Ocala National Forest

Equestrian Industry and Rural Atmosphere

Ocala, located in Central Florida, is referred to as the “Horse Capital of the World” because of its flourishing equestrian sector[5]. Many citizens work in agriculture and other traditional sectors, giving the community a rural feel. The conservative ideals of Ocala are based on a commitment to hard labor, independence and a love of small-town life.

Outdoor Activities

Ocala’s allure isn’t limited to its equestrian fame. The city embodies a slower-paced, conservative lifestyle that’s deeply appealing to those who, like many of my clients, yearn for a connection with nature and outdoor adventures[6].

Silver Springs State Park, a well-liked tourist site for both residents and visitors, offers glass-bottom boat rides and the region’s clear springs.

Ocala is great, but you can find out why it’s considered a dangerous place here.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 39.2 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over – 19.2% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.4% (on par with the national average rate)[29]

10. Lakeland

Lakeland Florida city view
Train Crossing in Downtown Lakeland, Florida

Location and Economic Factors

Lakeland is an appealing option for individuals who wish to reside in a smaller city with quick access to big urban regions because it is located between Orlando and Tampa. Numerous lakes in the city offer lots of chances for outdoor recreational opportunities[7]. The conservative community of Lakeland frequently emphasizes the benefits of reduced taxes, minimal government involvement and traditional family values.

Community Events and Local Businesses

The city is an ideal location to raise a family while adhering to conservative ideals because of its strong sense of community and emphasis on local businesses. For instance, the yearly Sun ‘n Fun Aerospace Expo draws aviation enthusiasts and fosters belonging among communities[8].

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 39.6 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over – 21.5% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.4% (on par with the national average rate)[30]

9. Port St. Lucie

Port St. Lucie
Well-planned Community Center in Port St. Lucie, Florida

Rapid Growth and Demographics

Port St. Lucie, a town with rapidly increasing population growth and a reputation for having conservative citizens, is situated on Florida’s Treasure Coast. 

My journey through Port St. Lucie began with a client looking to find the perfect retirement haven. The city was known for its fast growth and conservative community.

It stood out right away for its peaceful atmosphere, safety, and low cost of living—all things that retirees, families, and workers value highly. It’s not a surprise to me that it’s one of the best places in America[10].

My clients were particularly drawn to the city’s emphasis on public safety, low taxes, and shared commitment to traditional values.

Several parks and preserves are in Port St. Lucie, which offers a blend of suburban and rural life and plenty of outdoor leisure options. In fact, the Port St. Lucie Parks & Recreation Department recently received recognition at the Florida Recreation and Park Association Annual Conference[9].

Proximity to Atlantic Ocean and Nearby Cities

The closeness to West Palm Beach and the Atlantic Ocean boosts the city’s attraction. Visitors and residents can experience Florida’s natural beauty by engaging in the city’s attractions, such as the Port St. Lucie Botanical Gardens and the Savannas Preserve State Park.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 44.0 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over – 21.4% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[31]

8. Fort Walton Beach

Fort Walton Beach view in Florida
U.S. Highway 98; Primary Route Running Through Fort Walton Beach

Military Presence

Another community in the Florida Panhandle with a significant military presence is Fort Walton Beach, due to the close proximity of Hurlburt Field and Eglin Air Force Base. The city’s conservatism is influenced by the military, since many residents prefer a robust national defense and minimal government involvement[11].

Beaches and Recreational Facilities

Beautiful parks, beaches and recreational opportunities in the city draw tourists who want a more conservative way of life. For instance, the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park preserves the community’s traditional ideals while offering family-friendly entertainment and showcasing the region’s dedication to marine life protection[12].

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 41.5 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –19.6% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[32]

7. Leesburg

Leesburg Florida Downtown Drive
Downtown Drive in Leesburg, Florida

Scenic Landscape and Historic Downtown

Central Florida’s Leesburg is well-known for its historic downtown area and stunning lakes. Citizens of the city tend to lean right and have voted Republican in previous elections[13]. Their conservative ideals are evident in the greater weight they give to limited government intervention, lower taxes, and traditional family values.

Leesburg is a fantastic area to raise a family while adhering to conservative ideals because of its strong sense of community and emphasis on local businesses.

Annual Events

Numerous events held in the city, like the Leesburg Art Festival and the Leesburg Bikefest, draw tourists and boost the local economy. These occasions strengthen community ties and demonstrate the city’s dedication to helping regional creators and small businesses[14].

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 43.7 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –26.6% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[33]

6. Clermont

Flying over Clermont Florida
Bird’s-Eye View Over Clermont’s Lush Landscape

Suburban Atmosphere and Quality of Life

Clermont, a rapidly expanding community in Lake County, draws conservative citizens, due to its suburban setting, emphasis on family values and great quality of life. The area lies among Central Florida’s lovely lakes and rolling hills, offering lots of options for outdoor enjoyment. Politically, Clermont and its larger region, Lake County, display a somewhat conservative leaning[15]

National Training Center

The town of Clermont strongly emphasizes little government engagement, local small businesses, and community involvement, such as visioning workshops[16]. The National Training Center, a top-notch sports complex located in the city, is another example of the region’s dedication to physical fitness and attracts sportsmen from all over the world.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 45.5 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –25.8% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.5% (higher than the national average rate)[34]
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5. Brooksville

Brooksville, Florida Main Street
Main Street in Brooksville, Florida

Rich History and Small-town Charm

Hernando County’s county seat, Brooksville, is a tiny community with a historic past and solid conservative political views[17]. Brooksville’s citizens prioritize reduced taxation, minimal government interference and traditional family values.

The city is a great choice for individuals who enjoy a relaxed pace and traditional values. It has plenty of parks, a quaint downtown, and a strong sense of community.

Annual Florida Blueberry Festival

My experience wandering through the downtown area, with its charming shops and welcoming locals, offered a glimpse into the strong sense of community that Brooksville prides itself on.

One of the highlights of my time in Brooksville was attending the annual Florida Blueberry Festival[18]. This event is not just a celebration of the city’s agricultural roots but a vibrant testament to its conservative backdrop and the residents’ pride in their heritage and patriotism.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 48.0 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –28.7% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.6% (higher than the national average rate)[35]

4. Sebring

Sebring Florida city
Street Corner of Sebring’s Historic Downtown

Scenic Beauty and Recreational Opportunities

Sebring, a city in Highlands County, is popular for its conservative residents, stunning environment and recreational options. There are a lot of lakes encircling the city.

The city is home to the Sebring International Raceway, where the yearly 12 Hours of Sebring endurance event is held[19]. Residents of Sebring often support reduced taxes, little government intrusion and traditional family principles.

My journey to Sebring was sparked by a client interested in relocating to a city that balances a strong sense of community with ample recreational opportunities, and Sebring did not disappoint.

Highlands Hammock State Park

Sebring has a number of outdoor recreational opportunities, including the Highlands Hammock State Park, which has hiking trails, opportunities to see animals, and a range of outdoor activities for both families and nature lovers[20].

This emphasis on protecting the environment and encouraging outdoor leisure is consistent with the community’s traditional beliefs.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 44.3 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –25.5% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[36]

3. Punta Gorda

Punta Gorda coastline
The Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center in Punta Gorda

Charming Downtown and Waterfront Parks

On Florida’s west coast, the city of Punta Gorda is popular for its picturesque center waterfront parks and conservative residents. The residents of the city frequently highlight the benefits of reduced government interference, low taxation and traditional family values.

Punta Gorda is a fantastic area to live and work while adhering to conservative beliefs because of its strong sense of community, stunning environment and emphasis on small businesses. Organizations here, like the Punta Gorda Chamber of Commerce, focus on supporting the local business community, fostering economic growth, and promoting the area’s unique attractions and qualities[21].

Fishermen’s Village and Ponce de Leon Park

Fishermen’s Village, a waterfront retail and eating complex and Ponce de Leon Park, which offers access to the beach, fishing and wildlife viewing, are a couple of the city’s prominent attractions[22]. These features add to the city’s allure for visitors as well as residents who value a conservative environment.

During my time of visit here, I noticed that the community community, which is made up mostly of older adults, cherishes stability, wisdom, and a calm lifestyle. This shows the city’s traditional values and makes it attractive to seniors seeking a quiet, community-focused place for retirement.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 67.6 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –56.8% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[37]

2. Palatka

Palatka Florida house view
Classic Southern Architectural Style Houses in Palatka, Florida

St. Johns River and Rich History

Just missing out on the top spot on the list of the most conservative cities in Florida is Palatka. Palatka is a small town with a rich past and a predominantly conservative population[23]. It is situated along the St. Johns River in Northeast Florida.

Residents frequently emphasize minimal government involvement, low taxes, and traditional family values. For those who favor a slower pace and conservative ideals, Palatka provides a blend of urban and rural life, as well as a wide variety of parks and recreational options.

Ravine Gardens State Park and Annual Azalea Festival

Ravine Gardens State Park, located in Palatka, is a renowned tourist destination with lovely gardens, hiking paths and picnic sites[24]. The Azalea Festival, honoring the colorful blossoms that cover the city each spring, is also held there every year.

In keeping with its conservative principles, the city’s dedication to conserving the environment and creating community is demonstrated by events and attractions.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 37.9 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –19.9% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.3% (lower than the national average rate)[38]

1. St. Augustine – Most Conservative City in Florida

St Augustine Florida view from above
View of the Iconic Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida

Rich History and Beautiful Architecture

The oldest city in the country, St. Augustine, is famous for its extensive history, stunning architecture and conservative populace. Residents of the city frequently highlight the benefits of minimal government involvement, reduced taxes and traditional family values. 

The First Baptist Church Institutional Rehabilitation Project in St. Augustine has been honored by the Northeast Florida Regional Council (NEFRC) with an Award for Excellence in Culture and Historic Preservation. This accolade highlights the city’s commitment to preserving its rich cultural and historical heritage, a value deeply ingrained in the St. Augustine community[25].

St. Augustine is a desirable vacation spot for people who value a more conventional way of life because of its strong feeling of community, historical significance and emphasis on small businesses. This is the most conservative city in Florida.

Castillo de San Marcos and St. Augustine Lighthouse

Two of the city’s most prominent attractions are the Castillo de San Marcos, a Spanish fort from the 17th century, and the St. Augustine Lighthouse, which provides breathtaking views of the surroundings[26]. These historical landmarks draw tourists from all over the world, boosting the local economy and preserving the city’s conservative character.

Key Statistics (US Government Census)

  • Median Age – 48.7 (older than the national average)
  • Population Aged 65 or over –26.9% (more seniors than the national average)
  • Same sex relationship status – 0.6% (higher than the national average rate)[39]

Conclusion – 13 Most Conservative Cities in Florida

In conclusion, Florida provides a vast variety of conservative cities, each with distinctive qualities and attractions. There is a city to fit any taste, from the rural beauty of Central Florida to the military-influenced Panhandle areas.

For people who adhere to conservative ideals, these 13 most conservative cities in Florida provide a desirable quality of life, a strong feeling of community and an emphasis on traditional values. Do you think I have missed a city? If so, comment down and let me know!

If you want to know the most liberal cities in Florida, read this post.

Reference List

1 – https://cnrse.cnic.navy.mil/Installations/NAS-Pensacola/

2 – https://www.pensacolalighthouse.org/

3 – https://www.internationalinsurance.com/health/systems/panama/

4 – https://panamasportfishing.com/

5 – https://mynews13.com/fl/orlando/news/2023/07/18/equestrian-athletes-attracted-to-ocala-s-growth

6 – https://www.floridatoday.com/story/life/style/2017/07/14/authentic-florida-outdoor-adventures-ocala/103602272/

7 – https://www.belocalpub.com/locations/lakeland-belocal-b8cd/articles/local-lakes-of-lakeland-f90d21/

8 – https://rove.me/to/florida/sun-n-fun-aerospace-expo

9 – https://www.cityofpsl.com/Home/Components/News/News/6864/1747?backlist=%2fdiscover-us%2fawards-recognition-good-news

10 – https://www.cityofpsl.com/home/showpublisheddocument/8089/636807214815070000

11 – https://www.getthecoast.com/military-family-appreciation-day-this-saturday-at-the-landing-in-fort-walton-beach/

12 – https://gulfarium.com/about-us/

13- https://bestneighborhood.org/conservative-vs-liberal-map-leesburg-fl/

14 – https://lakeandsumterstyle.com/bringing-the-community-together-for-25-years/

15 – https://www.bestplaces.net/voting/city/florida/clermont

16 – https://www.clermontfl.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=93

17 – https://www.bestplaces.net/voting/city/florida/brooksville

18 – https://brooksvilleblueberryfestival.com/

19 – https://www.sebringraceway.com/events/mobil-1-12-hours-of-sebring/

20 – https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/highlands-hammock-state-park

21 – https://www.puntagordachamber.com/about-the-chamber/

22 – https://www.puntagordachamber.com/things-to-do-places-to-go/

23 – https://www.bestplaces.net/voting/city/florida/palatka

24 – https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/ravine-gardens-state-park

25 – https://www.citystaug.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=444

26 – https://www.nps.gov/casa/learn/photosmultimedia/virtualtour.htm

27 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1255925

28 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1254700

29 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1250750

30 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1238250

31 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1258715

32 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1224475

33 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1239875

34 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1212925

35 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1208800

36 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1264875

37 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1259200

38 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1253875

39 – https://data.census.gov/table/DECENNIALDP2020.DP1?q=United%20States&t=Same%20Sex%20Couples&g=160XX00US1262500


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