Beaches in Florida
Florida is a peninsula with 1,350 miles (1,200 of it surfable) of sand, sun, fun, and relaxation. Central Florida offers 2 wonderful and very different coast experiences for beachgoers. The east(Atlantic) coast boasts a fantastic surf for those who enjoy playing in the waves. The west (Gulf) coast is more laid back, great for shelling and relaxing. The following are the most popular beaches in Central Florida.
From your luxury vacation villa, it’s only about a one hour drive to the East Coast. Our most beloved beaches are New Smyrna Beach and Cocoa Beach (insert I Dream of Jeannie pun here).
New Symrna Beach
Located over the inlet from Daytona Beach (one of the Spring Break capitals and not on my list for exactly that reason), New Smyrna Beach is a quiet little community of core surfers…good waves and swells for the wannabe Kelly Slaters (he’s from Cocoa Beach!) in your family. It’s usually a busy beach, especially during the summer months and one of the few locations where you can drive your car onto the beach. So if you are looking for a real beachy, fun day out, this is a good choice. There are also a lot of restaurants and bars nearby to refresh yourselves.
This area is also known as The Space Coast. NASA resides here and yes, Major Anthony Nelson and his bottled beauty lived here in beautiful Cocoa Beach. It has been called the quintessential beach town with its restaurants and hometown appeal. The beach is very nice and usually quieter than New Smyrna. Great for families to frolic in the waves, build sand castles and make wonderful lifelong memories.
The west (Gulf) coast is known for fewer waves and its beautiful white sand. The gentler surf is good for younger children to enjoy, go shelling or just sitting with your favorite book and let the sounds of lapping water lull you into a state of perfect zen. The drive is more like 1.5 hours from your villa but very well worth it.
I adore Gulf Coast beaches and apparently, I’m not alone. TripAdvisor just named 8 Gulf coast beaches in its Top 10 Best Beaches of 2019…with lovely Clearwater Beach in the number 1 spot. The nearby St. Pete Beach came in 4th on the list and Siesta (Key) Beach is in at number 6.
The list left out (and I’d be remiss to not mention it) a local’s favorite, Pass-a-Grille Beach, which is lovely and lively and located at the southernmost end of St. Pete Beach. Historic Pass- A-Grille is a quaint, laid back beach town with boutiques, an ice cream shop, outdoor art market, restaurants, and fishing piers. If you did not snack too much while lounging on the fine, white sand, hit Crabby Bill’s, a laid back seafood restaurant on Gulf Boulevard, for good food at good prices and a rooftop bar with a fantastic view.