Nature / Outdoors, Picnic, Swimming

Best Orlando Florida Beaches: A Rundown

I really don’t like over-crowded trashy beaches full of tourists, cars, and screaming people. That being said, there are some REALLY SPECIAL FLORIDA BEACHES.Where are the best Central Florida beaches?

These are my favorite beaches, and I’ve gone to them with my friends & family for years. I’m sharing them with you—knowing you’ll value them too. Grab your beach bag, time to get some sun!

Playalina Beach—Best Central Florida Beach

When you mention Playalinda Beach, one of the first things people usually says is “Isn’t that a nude beach?!?” Well, no. It’s not. (Sorry to disappoint.) I guess there is a section of it that’s rumored to be nude at the very end. But most of the 25 miles of it has people wearing normal suits. There’s plenty of amazing beach land, without trash, without commercialism, and usually—without many people.

The quality of sand at Playalinda is just delightfully fluffy and soft. It’s great for sandcastles. And it’s so peaceful here, it’s easy to stay all day and watch the sunset before you drag yourself home (for a welcome shower.) It’s beautiful. No buildings. No development. No trash. It’s the real deal. It’s a state park, so it’s kept clean.

Playalinda has beautiful sand dunes that feel like you're in an isolated beautiful island.

Playalinda has beautiful sand dunes that feel like you’re in an isolated beautiful island.

Pros: It’s gorgeous, it’s nearly empty, and it’s got a real “sand dune in South Africa” vibe going on. It’s near the Kennedy Space Center, so not too many people bother to drive over that way. There is also an entrance fee of like $4-5. (I put this as a PRO because it deters crowds.) They have no bathrooms or showers, but there are Port-a-pottys.

Con: It’s a little further from Central Orlando that say, Cocoa. It’s also away from stores, so bring your own food and drinks. There are Port-a-pottys. (Sorry, this goes on the CONS list too.)

Best Orlando Florida Beaches - Playalinda

See, no worries on the nudity! Playalinda is great. 🙂

Address for Playalinda Beach: Canaveral National Seashore, 17 Olsen Rd, FL 32927
Phone Number: (321)614-5710

Sapphire Beach — Best Central Florida Beach (Free)

This a beautiful beach near Cocoa. It’s a little isolated area, with a Port-a-potty. It’s really, really pretty.

Pros: It’s free. It’s easy to find. Your friends can get there without getting lost. It’s centrally located (on the coast). It’s near restaurants for grabbing an ice cream or some sushi afterwards.

Cons: It’s very windy sometimes. It’s not as “truly natural” feeling as other more isolated beaches. (Honestly, not too many cons though.)Orlando hipster sapphire beach

Melbourne Beach & Sebastian Inlet — Best Central Florida Beach with Kayaks

But isn’t Melbourne Beach (in Florida) like an hour away? Yes, well, guess what… all beaches are an hour away from Central Orlando. Melbourne has very few Orlando tourists who make it out that way, and it has a nice little small beach town vibe. Also, the sand has a really nice quality to it, lustrous and lumpy….not hard, fine, or tough at all. It won’t really blow in your eyes because it’s heavier feeling.

Pros: Stunning beach, few Orlando tourists. You’ll just bump into Melbourne locals. Enjoy one of the cute little bakeries or Cafes in Melbourne while you’re there. Camping and kayak rentals at Sebastian are fun!

Cons: It’s a drive, but not worse than others. Another con, it’s not as amazing as Melbourne Australia. 🙁 But what is.

More Info: Sebastian Inlet park website.

Orlando Florida Beaches

Cocoa Beach, at 8th Street

Cocoa Beach is huge. So saying go to Cocoa Beach is really giving you a huge array of entrances. It’s over-whelming. This is a nice little entrance, not very populated. As far as Orlando Florida Beaches go, this is one of the best ones you’ll find.

Pros: It’s nearly empty. The sand has a nice quality to it. You’re entering in a neighborhood without  much traffic or commotion.

Cons: It’s not fancy, and there’s no showers.

Cocoa Beach at 8th Street - Quiet Little Nook of a Beach

Cocoa Beach at 8th Street – Quiet Little Nook of a Beach

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