Anyone interested in what to do when vacationing to Wisconsin? Probably not, well then how about giving me your opinion on Florida Beaches then? I am taking my family to Orlando, we would like to rent a car and take a trip to the east coast at least one of the days we are at Disney. Mainly interested in visiting a couple of nice beaches, finding a good place to go shelling, maybe rent a wave runner, and ???? well any other sites or tourist attractions you think is a must see! I think Cocoa Beach and Daytona Beach are the closest and/are the most popular from what I have read so far but I would rather hear it from one of the natives. I think both the space station and the racetrack are in that area but I what I really want is to be able to find some reviews of beaches from other travelers. Any advice or experience you can share with me would be much appreciated! And don't forget, my offer about all the hot spots up here in cheese head land is still on the table! Thanks much!-Jeremy
I'm not a native of Florida - in fact I live about 3 miles due south of the Wisconsin border so I can tell you interesting things to do there for vacation. (Unless you live there yourself, then you already know.)
Two years ago, we did a 10 day roadtrip along the coasts, starting on the west coast, down to the keys and back up the east side to Jacksonville. We avoided the interstates on purpose. This past January, we were in Ft. Lauderdale and then headed (back) to Sanibel Island. For shelling - Sanibel is the best!! (Known as the shell capital of the US, even with 2 hurricanes disrupting everything.) But, it is quite a drive from Orlando and has limited accommodations.
Of the two areas you have mentioned - I found Daytona Beach to be the more interesting. It is also one of the only beaches you can drive on and park. (Harkens back to when the Daytona 500 was run on part of the beach.) Because of that, the amount of shells we were able to find was much smaller. Cocoa Beach had a better selection and will have the amenities you are also looking to take advantage of - waverunners. (Ron Jon Surf Shop is in Cocoa Beach - it's world famous for it's size alone.)
Personally, we liked the beaches of Fort Lauderdale the best. Though, it will be a longer drive from Orlando. Cocoa Beach has the military base (and I Dream of Jeanie Way - aptly named since they filmed the TV series in CB). Daytona has the raceway.
Being a shell collecting addict, I found the shelling improved the farther north we went. We brought back about 35-40 lbs of shells from each trip - all as carry-on.
Saw your post and am wondering if you have ever considering checking out the Northwest part of Florida. In my opinion, we have some of the most beautiful, cleanest beaches in the united states. In fact our are is called the Emerald Coast - the water is blue green like the Caribbean, we have sugar white sand and sand dunes with sea oats. There are many state parks that offer nature trails and beach access. There is also a bike path that goes along the whole scenic beach road called Hwy 30A. Nearby there are water parks, mini golf courses, go cart race tracks, shopping, dining, etc. You can check out a site called www.beachesofsouthwalton.com for more tourist information. Or if you have any questions, I will be able to help with any thing I can. If you love the beach, you should definitely give us a try. Have a great trip!
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Definitely Clearwater on the west of Florida, it was incredible. I was in Orlando, and we just booked it there as a day trip. Miami Beach was okay, but very much there for the celebrities and no one else really.
I lived 10 years in Orlando and to be honest won't step foot on the beach in Cocoa or Daytona. The west coast of Florida has fabulous beaches but it is a bigger hike to get there. Clearwater is nice but some of my favorite are even further south, Sanibel, Siesta Key and Captiva Island. I love that area. Siesta Key is really my favorite.
Have a great trip!
Siesta Key is really my favorite.
I second that! West coast of Florida is definitely much better than east when it comes to beaches.