The State of Florida is home to 663 miles of beaches due to its peninsula position between the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Straits of Florida. The area is perfect for all types of beach-goers, from beach bums to sandcastle builders to surfers!
South Florida, especially, has some of the best beaches in the world. Many of them are conveniently located near some of our Vacation Village Resorts properties, such as:
- Vacation Village at Weston
- Vacation Village at Bonaventure
- Mizner Place at Weston Town Center
- Palm Beach Shores Resort and Vacation Villas
- The Berkley, Orlando
- Vacation Village at Parkway
Below, check out the 14 must-see Florida beaches you can visit on your next Florida vacation. While there are plenty of great options to explore once you are settled into your suite, you may consider making pit stops along the way if you are driving down.
Beaches in South Florida
Fort Lauderdale is more than a Spring Break capital; it’s a lively oceanside city filled with delicious restaurants, fun shops, and a gorgeous beach! Walk along the Beachfront Promenade, or catch some waves while body surfing and boogie boarding on the family-friendly beach. You can also find surf schools, paddleboard tours, and water-equipment rentals like snorkel gear and underwater cameras. Imagine bringing home videos of your family exploring under the sea!
Close to Boca Raton is Deerfield Beach, a fun and casual beach with a pier and beachside restaurants. Rent a rod and head out on the International Fishing Pier to see what your catch of the day will be! Don’t forget to bring your camera for an epic selfie at sunset!
South Beach is another tourist favorite for its day adventures and nightlife. Just off of Miami, South Beach features all the popular and hip attractions of the neighboring city as well as the historic architecture of Art Deco district. The area is also the perfect place to treat yourself with spa services at affordable prices.
A little farther south in Key Biscayne is a beautiful beach paradise. If your family is active, head to Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park or Crandon Park for fishing, bike paths, and nature trails. If you want to go somewhere more off the beaten path, Virginia Key Beach Park has gorgeous crystal blue waters next to the tranquil and quiet beach.
Although now as well-known as other South Florida beaches, Siesta Key Beach was voted the number one beach in the country by TripAdvisor in 2020. The sand in this area is a powdery quartz-crystal that doesn’t get hot from the sun, making it an ideal spot for sensitive feet and toes. The aquamarine Gulf Coast waters make the views from beach picture-perfect for family vacation photos! Two other adjacent beaches to check out include Crescent Beach and Turtle Beach.
Bahia Honda State Park is a beach haven with a marine sanctuary tour located in the Florida Keys. It will be tough to choose from the many family fun activities at this beach, such as snorkeling, kayaking, swimming, and visiting the Sand and Sea Nature Center. It’s a beautiful and secluded area to relax and reconnect with your family.
Beaches in Central Florida
When you think of Daytona Beach, you may not consider the “beach” that the city offers since it’s home to the essential Daytona 500 NASCAR race in February. If you’re a motor enthusiast, you’ll might enjoy actually driving on the beach. Yes, driving ON the beach! The hard-packed sand makes it possible to drive your family on all their beach gear to a great spot!
Situated very close to Orlando, the Canaveral National Seashore is a secluded beach park that is great for kids and families. It is a fun place to watch local wildlife since it is a registered nature preserve and attracts hundreds of bird species annually. If you time your trip with the nearby Kennedy Space Center’s launch schedule, you can watch a rocket launch from the beach!
Clearwater Beach upholds its name with dazzling waters and beautiful sand. Near sunset, street performers like jugglers and fire breathers turn the coast into a fun festival for all ages. Although off of a small town, you’ll find plenty of restaurants and stores across from the pier.
If you’re a fan of the 1960/70s television show “I Dream of Jeannie,” head to Cocoa Beach where Major Nelson lived! It is also where surfing legend Kelly Slater grew up and where the world’s largest surf shop – Ron Jon Surf Shop – is located. Not only is it the closest beach to Orlando, but it also has fantastic activities like deep-sea fishing, kayak and airboat tours, and plenty of wind and water sports.
The surf hub of New Smyrna Beach has 17 miles of white sand along its coast and perfect waves, whether you are surfing, or swimming, or sunbathing. New Smyrna Beach is safe for young and inexperienced swimmers since the undertow is four to five miles away from shore. Surf lessons are available to all ages, and you can rent paddle boards and kayaks. Kids will have fun learning about local wildlife at the Marine Discovery Center!
Beaches in North Florida
Pensacola Beach is the location farthest north and west on this list, and it is near the Alabama border. Iconic white sand stretches across Santa Rosa Island, and you can find both tranquil and exciting areas on this beach.
Head to Amelia Island for a picturesque experience of riding horses along the white, hard-pack sand sweeping the coastline. The city refers to itself as Island Enchantment for a good reason. The area has luxury attractions like golfing, exquisite restaurants, and art and culture venues. There are also great family-friendly activities like bike and wildlife tours.
St. Augustine Beach is in the country’s oldest city of the same name. If your family loves to see dolphins and whale watches, they will enjoy walking down the four-mile-long St. Johns County Ocean and Fishing Pier.