Welcome to the Sunshine State. Floridians know that life is all about soaking up the sun and enjoying the sea. Whether you’re living in Orlando looking for a quick beach getaway, a potential buyer looking at Orlando homes for sale, or a visitor hoping to explore the best of what Florida has to offer, this list of unique and exciting beaches has got you covered. From the pristine white sand of the Gulf Coast to the vibrant boardwalks of the Atlantic, there’s something for everyone in this collection of in, near, and far beaches that showcase the best of Florida’s  beach culture. So, grab your flip flops and sunscreen and get ready to make a splash.

The pier along the beach at Pensacola Beach, Florida, one of the best beaches near Orlando

Escape the city heat: Discover four fun and unique Orlando beaches

Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach is known for its beautiful sandy shoreline, excellent surfing conditions, and lively beachside atmosphere. In addition to swimming and sunbathing, visitors can enjoy beach volleyball, fishing, and exploring the nearby Cocoa Beach Pier, which offers shops, restaurants, and live music.

New Smyrna Beach

New Smyrna Beach is a picturesque seaside town with a laid-back vibe. The beach is known for its wide, sandy shoreline and excellent surfing conditions, and visitors can also enjoy fishing, boating, and exploring the charming downtown area, which is filled with shops, galleries, and restaurants.

Clearwater Beach

Located on Florida’s Gulf Coast , Clearwater Beach is a stunning stretch of white sand and clear turquoise waters. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, and enjoy a variety of water sports, including parasailing, jet skiing, and paddleboarding. The beach is also home to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where visitors can see dolphins, sea turtles, and other marine life up close.

Canaveral National Seashore

Canaveral National Seashore is a unique and unspoiled stretch of coastline that offers a peaceful and natural beach experience. Visitors can hike through the dunes, watch for sea turtles and shorebirds, and explore the historic Turtle Mound archaeological site. The beach is also popular for fishing, boating, and surfing.

Six catamarans sitting on sand dunes in Ft. Lauderdale beach

Set your eyes on the best of Florida’s Coastline: Four exciting beach escapes just outside Orlando

Jetty Park Beach

Located just 45 minutes east of Orlando, Jetty Park Beach is a friendly beach for everyone with plenty of amenities, including picnic areas, showers, and a playground. The beach is located near the Port Canaveral cruise terminal and offers great views of the ships coming and going. Visitors can also fish off the jetty, watch for dolphins and manatees, and explore the nearby Exploration Tower.

Daytona Beach

Located about an hour northeast of Orlando, Daytona Beach is a famous destination known for its wide, hard-packed sand and iconic boardwalk. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, and play beach volleyball, or explore the many shops, restaurants, and attractions along the boardwalk. The beach is also home to the Daytona International Speedway, where visitors can take a tour or attend a race.

Vero Beach

Located about two hours south of Orlando, Vero Beach offers a peaceful and laid-back beach experience. The town is known for its unspoiled natural beauty, pristine beaches, and crystal-clear waters. The beach is wide, with soft, white sand perfect for sunbathing and building sandcastles.

Apart from the beach, Vero Beach offers plenty of other attractions to keep visitors entertained. The town is home to several museums and galleries, showcasing the rich history and culture of Florida’s Treasure Coast. Art enthusiasts can explore the Vero Beach Museum of Art, which features a collection of more than 880 works of art, including paintings, sculptures, and photographs.

Pompano Beach intercoastal waterway and beach front neighborhoods

Anna Maria Island

Located about two hours southwest of Orlando, Anna Maria Island is a hidden gem that offers a quiet and peaceful beach experience. The island is home to several beaches, each with its own unique charm, as well as a variety of shops and restaurants. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, and explore the island’s nature trails and wildlife preserves. Its prime location at the mouth of Tampa Bay also makes it a popular spot for windsurfing and kiteboarding.

What sets Anna Maria Island apart from other beach destinations in Florida is its old-fashioned charm and laid-back atmosphere. The island is a small, quaint community that has preserved its historic character and natural beauty, making for a unique and authentic experience.

For those looking for a day trip from Orlando, these four beach options offer excitement and adventure

St. Augustine Beach

Located about two hours northeast of Orlando, St. Augustine Beach is a historic destination with plenty of beachfront fun. You can swim, sunbathe, and explore the nearby Anastasia State Park, which offers nature trails, fishing, and camping. The town of St. Augustine itself is also worth exploring, with its charming cobblestone streets, historic landmarks, and unique shops and restaurants. Visitors can take a tour of the historic Castillo de San Marcos, the oldest masonry fort in the United States, or stroll through the beautiful gardens of the Lightner Museum.

Siesta Key Beach

Located about two and a half hours southwest of Orlando, Siesta Key Beach is consistently ranked as one of the best beaches in the world. The beach is known for its soft, white sand and clear blue waters, and a variety of water sports. Siesta Key Village, located nearby, provides a relaxed ambiance with an array of shops, eateries, and bars.

Siesta Key Beach is more than just a beautiful place to soak up the sun. The beach is also home to several cultural events and festivals throughout the year, including the Siesta Key Crystal Classic Sand Sculpting Festival and the Siesta Key Beach Drum Circle.

Atlantic coast with surfer outside in the sunset

Juno Beach

Located about two hours southeast of Orlando, Juno Beach is a tranquil and uncrowded stretch of coastline that offers a peaceful escape from the city. Here, you have the opportunity to engage in a variety of activities at this beach, from swimming and sunbathing to exploring the nearby Loggerhead Marinelife Center. The center is renowned for its educational exhibits and rehabilitation programs for sea turtles. Furthermore, this beach is a popular spot for both fishing and surfing enthusiasts, providing plenty of excitement and adventure for those seeking an active beach experience.

Fort Lauderdale Beach

Located about three hours south of Orlando, Fort Lauderdale Beach is a lively and vibrant destination with a wide range of activities and attractions. A range of aquatic activities awaits you here, including swimming, soaking up the sun, and partaking in various water sports, or exploring the nearby Bonnet House Museum and Gardens, which offers a glimpse into Florida’s unique history and culture. A wide range of shops, restaurants, and nightlife venues call this beach home, making it an ideal destination for both day trips and weekend getaways.

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