Beach Recreation in Florida
Overview (How Many Beaches Are There in Florida?)
Located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico and being the southernmost state in the United States, Florida boasts warm tropical climate and immediate proximity to the ocean – all parts of the state are either at the seaside or within a two-hour drive of it.
Florida’s long shoreline includes hundreds of miles of beaches, both public and private, for any taste and budget – from non-commercialized nude swimming holes to famous big-city beaches will well-maintained amenities to remote island getaways and premium resorts favored by celebrities.
There are quiet places for families featuring shallow swimming areas for kids; there are dedicated dog parks and beaches that allow bringing pets. Although Florida’s beaches are not like Caribbean ones, still there are several with clear turquoise and emerald-colored coastal waters – for the sheer joy of beach recreation in the Sunshine State.
Swimming, sunbathing, shelling, castle building, strolling, wildlife watching, and engaging in watersports – once you are on Florida’s seashore it’s going to be no problem to find an activity to suit your interests and current mood!
The warmest state in the country, Florida features a humid subtropical and tropical climate with hot summers and very mild winters. Florida rarely sees below freezing temperatures and snowfall, which is limited to the state’s farthest northern regions. From Miami on southward, mean temperatures in January are above 60°F, which is certainly not for soaking up the sun but still appropriate for a quick and energizing swim.
As for summers in Florida, they boast perfect conditions for a long and relaxing beach vacation – average temperatures in July are as high as about 90°F. No wonder, Florida is world-famous for its vacation-mode atmosphere and is home to a number of U.S. top beaches.
Beach Locations (Where are the Best Beaches in Florida?)
Florida’s shoreline borders the Atlantic Ocean in the east, the Gulf of Mexico in the west, and the Straits of Florida in the south.
The Gulf Coast beaches are famous for their fantastic sunset views and well-developed tourist areas like Sarasota and Tampa Bay.
Beaches along the Atlantic coast tend to be less crowded and there are many spots popular with watersport enthusiasts and surfers among them. Some of the most popular destinations on the east coast are St. Augustine, with a variety of attractions, and West Palm Beach, with 47 miles of beaches.
As for the southern tip of the state, its top destinations include Bahia Honda State Park and Key West with its Caribbean feel and top-rated resorts. Snorkeling in these waters is going to become an unforgettable experience. Beaches in South Florida are also much favored by nature-lovers who come here to see dolphins playing in clear waters or sea turtles hatching in the nesting season (which is from March to October).
Beach Conditions (What are the Best Beaches in Florida?)
In Florida, you can find any type of beach environment to satisfy your needs – from state parks with diverse flora and fauna and shady hike and bike trails (for example, Bahia Honda State Park with its spectacular Calusa Beach and Sandspur Beach) to crowded palm-fringed boardwalks with abundant tourist facilities in proximity to all kinds of big-city amenities (check out South Beach and Lummus Park in Miami Beach) to serene coasts in remote locations (like Dry Tortugas National Park or Sunset Key Cottages).
Some of Florida’s best beaches also offer a unique opportunity to watch space rocket launches (check out Alan Shepard Park in Cocoa Beach).
If you are a big fan of spectacularly white sand, we would recommend you PCB Beach, Santa Rosa Beach, Blue Mountain Beach, Grayton Beach, and Crystal Sands Beach as some of Florida’s nicest beaches in this category.
Finally, if you are looking for swimming spots that allow dogs, you and your furry friend will be welcome at PCB Beach, Blue Mountain Beach, Grayton Beach, James Lee Park Beach, Top Sail Beach State Preserve, Henderson Beach State Park and Pensacola Beach. Just don’t forget to check relevant information on their dog policies and – bring a waste bag to pick up after your four-legged friend while he or she is having fun in the water and sun!