What to Do

Tons of beach fun is implied when you're visiting the Florida coastline. So, read on about Florida beach houses for more details on that. For this guide, we'll feature the Sunshine State's more unique and surprising attractions.

Cocoa Beach

Although this Atlantic Coast travel guide should feature the Ron Jon Surf Shop under the shopping headline, it’s placed in this ‘to do’ section because it’s more of an activity than a shopping trip! The Ron Jon Surf Shop is world-famous for its eclectic goods and souvenirs, and you won’t be surprised if some day in Paris you see a snooty Parisian proudly carrying a Ron Jon store bag. People drive an hour from Orlando to Cocoa just to see this famous store that may take you hours to peruse!

St Augustine

At the Family Fun Factory in St. Augustine, the whole family will have a day filled with laughter and amusement! Try the go-karts, batting cages, flight simulator and mini-golf course, and then play outdoor paintball with your whole family! Or, if your group wants to spend the day outside, go to Watersports of St. Augustine and sign-up for parasailing! If you don’t want to try parasailing, there are also jet skis, and boats for rent.

The Ancient City Baptist Church in St. Augustine was donated by Henry Flagler. It features cone-shaped turrets and a castle-like brickwork that will amaze you! Also, stop at The Oldest House in St. Augustine, and see the oldest surviving Spanish Colonial home. It has been studied by students for hundreds of years because of its unique style!

If your kids think that architecture is boring, take them to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park, instead! This unique farm has all 23 species of crocodiles and alligators on display for your enjoyment. Time your trip just right, and you could see one of the two daily feedings!


If you plan to be in Daytona Beach, take your family to Adventure Landing Waterpark! This isn’t just a waterpark! Your family can enjoy a huge arcade, go-karts, mini-golf, and two full-service restaurants after a day in the water. Or, if your kids are interested in the Daytona 500, take them to Richard Petty Driving Experience for hands-on driving lessons and a chance to win the (simulated) Winston Cup Challenge!

For something romantic to do in Daytona Beach, take your partner to Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse to see the tallest lighthouse in Florida, which is also the second tallest in the country! Make sure you bring your camera, because this 175-foot tower has gorgeous views of the beaches and rolling waves.

Fort Lauderdale

In Fort Lauderdale, Florida, this Atlantic Coast travel guide suggests that you take a tirp to Dania Beach Hurricane to enjoy the biggest wooden roller-coaster that is south of Atlanta! Take the 3,200-foot plunge at 55 miles per hour, and get some great souvenirs at Dania, too!

For an educational experience, the whole family can spend a day at My Jewish Discovery Place in Fort Lauderdale. Learn about the joys of Jewry in this interactive museum that explores the heritage and culture of Jewish people.

Adults will love the St. Tropez Casino Cruises that leave from Port Everglades nightly! 38 table games, and over 530 slot machines will keep you busy, maybe even too busy to enjoy the Atlantic Ocean! Live entertainment with greet you as you come aboard, and a delicious buffet will keep you full as your pocket thins-out!

For nighttime family excursions, go to the Buehler Planetarium on Southwest Davie Road in Fort Lauderdale. Explore the universe and watch the state-of-the-art laser shows in this great planetarium. You will learn so much about astronomy, that you will want to return to your vacation rental to watch the stars knowingly from your beachfront balcony!

Where to Shop and Eat

The Purple Olive Restaurant is the best place to go for a creative dinner menu and excellent wine vintages in St. Augustine. If you just want a quick snack, try the Bunnery Bakery and Café in St. Augustine! In Daytona Beach, Pat’s Riverfront Café is unbeatable in terms of prices and quality! You will love chatting with locals over breakfast, or lunch! In Fort Lauderdale, the famous Black Orchid Café serves its dishes with live music and sleek décor that will make you want to return again and again! You will find hundreds of great dining options in any of the Atlantic Coast cities, but don’t worry, because you will burn a lot of calories swimming all day!

At the Riverwalk in Fort Lauderdale, you will find the “most beautiful mile” of Florida, and great clothes, too! In Daytona Beach, you can enjoy the Sunshine Park Mall, and the Volusia Mall, or stroll along the famous Riverfront Marketplace as you search for souvenirs! There are so many places to shop along the Atlantic Coast, that you will need to bring an extra, empty suitcase when you visit!

When to Visit

Hurricane season promises torrential rains along the Atlantic Coast, but when it’s not raining, it’s the most beautiful time of year! People love to take in the sun while the stifling humidity is at bay, and enjoy the gorgeous, sparkling blue water from comfortable lounge chairs. Summer in Florida is definitely something to see, with sunsets that light up the sky in shades of orange that would make the Aurora Borealis jealous! Keep in mind, though, that Florida is a very popular destination, and you should book your vacation rentals early if you plan to go at the height of tourist season! Also, attractions like Walt Disney World and Universal Studios will be very crowded in the summer.

If you want to avoid the crushing heat, and the masses of summer tourists, then this Atlantic Coast travel guide suggests that you visit the Atlantic Coast in the early fall. The heat will have dissipated to a manageable temperate for strolling outdoors, and the crowds will thin-out as schoolchildren leave the theme parks and beaches in order to return to school on time. Many vacation rentals offer discounts during the fall and spring because there are so few tourists, compared with summer madness and the Christmas rush. So, save extra cash, and enjoy a discounted rate, or possibly a great freebie, like an extra night’s rental or a free boat rental!

Springtime in Florida is magnificent, and the smells of blooming flowers are so inviting, that you will want to return year after year. If you enjoy gorgeous, well-groomed parks, then the Atlantic Coast in spring is a treasure you shouldn’t miss.

What to Bring

Don’t forget your swimsuit, or, if you want to find something new and interesting in a Floridian boutique, leave it at home! Anything you need at the Atlantic Coast, you will be able to buy in one of the great boutique malls or shopping centers.

Do remember to pack your fishing pole if you want to go fishing in the swamps.

Local Services

An entire Atlantic Coast travel guide of services offered could be written, because there are so many services available for your convenience and pleasure! If you want your clothing laundered and pressed overnight, you can get it done. If your partner wants a balcony massage from the comfort of your vacation rental, it’s possible in a city like Miami! Whatever service you would like, you can find it somewhere on the Atlantic Coast of Florida.

In Fort Lauderdale, Sand and Sea Watersports will take you parasailing on a safe 15 minute ride over Pompano Beach. Skydive DeLand in Daytona Beach offers tandem skydiving and fun jumps for most ages.

If you want to do something a little out of the ordinary, A Tiny Cruise Line in Daytona offers four narrated excursions that leave at sunset to see the city lights along the Halifax River. Or for a more adventurous option, call Safari River Tours to book your excursion into the swamps of manatees, alligators, turtles and odd-looking birds! This two-hour tour is narrated, and fascinating! Also in Daytona Beach, Air Florida Helicopters would love to take you up above the golden sands of Daytona for a view that’s unforgettable!

Famous ghost tours are offered in Daytona Beach, St. Augustine, and in Fort Lauderdale. There are also scenic cruises in St. Augustine that will educated you about historic landmarks during the 75-minute ride. If you are in St. Augustine, and you would like to do something unique, consider St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains for a ride aboard a tiny red train! Operated since 1953, these train tours have perfected their narration, and planned their stops along the attractions and shopping centers for your convenience.

What to Know

Along the Atlantic Coast there are many different beach towns and hot tourist spots. So, before you go you should decide if you want a ritzy vacation, or something more relaxed and low-key. Fort Lauderdale is a popular destination because it offers both a small town quaintness and uptown shopping. If you want fun-filled never-ending action, then Daytona Beach may be just the vacation for you! Although it was hit hard by a hurricane a few years ago, this beach is back in business, and revving up for the Daytona 500!

Other beaches along the Atlantic Coast of Florida include Cocoa Beach, with access to Ron Jon Surf Shop, Fernandina Beach, which is located at the northern end of an island, Miami’s famous South Beach, often called “America’s Riviera,” and Playalinda Beach, which allows nude sunbathing. Among these beaches there are many vacation rentals listed on VacationRentals.com that you can choose between for your next exciting vacation!

Getting to the Florida Atlantic Coast

The most popular options when you are traveling to the Atlantic Coast of Florida are MCO, or Orlando International Airport, Daytona Beach Airport, Miami International Airport, or the Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport. Although any of these options will get you to the sparkling coast of the Atlantic Ocean, Orlando International Airport is often the cheapest, even though the Miami International Airport is the most convenient and has the best location. Wherever you decide to fly into, keep in mind that you can elect to fly out of any of the other airports for a slightly higher fee. That means that you can arrive in northern Florida, or in Orlando, and drive your way down from Cocoa Beach to Miami’s famous South Beach, and not worry about the return trip!

Once you arrive in Florida you will notice that the state is pretty desolate in its central swamp lands, so if you plan to hop from beach-to-beach, you should also plan to rent a car! There are public buses, but they are mainly located in Orlando, with service to popular theme parks, and in large cities like Miami.

Why Florida Vacation Rentals?

VacationRentals.com will help you sort through all of your abundant options for Atlantic Coast beachfront rentals, or any other kind of rental property that peaks your interest. When you use VacationRentals.com, you get to choose what your priorities are. So, if you want a cheap vacation rental in Daytona Beach, or a beachfront luxury chalet in Miami, you can find exactly what you have been dreaming of on VacationRentals.com!

Why coup yourself up in a tiny hotel room that doesn’t even have a kitchen, when you could stay in a nice beach town condo for the same price? Hotels are crowded and noisy, and often over-priced. With VacationRentals.com, you will get a great value, and you might even save enough money to enjoy more nights out on the town.