Most people think of Spring Break when they hear “Daytona Beach.” True that it is still a popular spring destination to escape to, you shouldn’t miss out on seeing this legendary Floridian city any time of year. Daytona Beach has beautiful white sandy beaches that stretch along the eastern coast of the state for 23 miles. It’s the famous home for the Daytona 500 at the Daytona International Speedway and has quite a lot going for it.
Visiting Florida? Make a stop in Daytona Beach for an unforgettable vacation the whole family will love! Here are 10 things you can’t miss when you get there!
- The Beach
One of the most obvious reasons to come to Daytona Beach is for the beach. The sand is hard-packed which means you can drive onto the beach. There are restricted areas for that and during the off-season, it’s very easy to find primo parking near the boardwalk. An interesting tidbit of trivia is that it was the place where the Daytona Beach Road Course took place starting in 1936, but once the Daytona International Speedway was built in 1958, that all ended. On the beach, you can relax with your toes in the sand, wander up to a bar for drinks, or take on watersports like surfing.
- Daytona International Speedway Tours
Even if you’re not a racing fan, getting a tour of one of the most famous speedways in the world is a must. You get to take a ride through the infield where you get to see the track up close. Choose the VIP tour and get a trip around the track as well as check out the collection of trophies, race cars, memorabilia, and plenty more.
- Daytona Beach Boardwalk
The Boardwalk at Daytona Beach is a must-experience for your visit. It is the one-stop place where people of all ages will find something to love. The amusement park has roller coasters and a Ferris wheel, plus plenty more carnival-style fun. Restaurants, bars, a classic arcade and shops abound here too. Walk around and people-watch while taking in all the sights. On Saturday nights in the summer, you’ll find fireworks displays and many free concerts to entertain you.
- Lighthouse Point Park
This public park features 52 acres of things to keep the whole family engaged. Go fishing or jump right in for a swim. Walk along the nature trails or merely observe it all. It’s easy to spot dolphins along the shore, plus you’re likely to have other animal encounters on the land with birds, armadillos, gopher tortoises, and many more.
- Marine Science Center
Want to learn more about marine life? Then this is the place! Florida is more than just a place for theme parks and bustling entertainment centers. It’s home to some of the most distinctive nature in the world. The interactive exhibits make it even more fun to learn about the marine world. There’s a stingray touch pool, a nature trail, a bird observation tower, and of course, a 5,000-gallon aquarium with an artificial reef. Don’t miss out on the seabird rehabilitation center either. Since 2004, it has helped nearly 5,000 wounded or sick birds get back to good health. Likewise, the Sea Turtle rehabilitation department has done the same for sea turtles, gopher tortoises, and freshwater turtles.
- Beach Street
This historic setting is the ideal place to get a true taste of old-school Daytona Beach. Right on the Halifax River, you’re treated to stunning riverfront views while dining and shopping. You’ll find unique places to pick up special treasures almost as historic as this place itself with antiques, books, jewelry, art, and plenty more. The Halifax Harbor Marina, Halifax History Museum, the Cinematique Theater, and the New-Journal Center are also located here, giving you even more ways to stay entertained while you’re here.
- Pure Life Surf School
Regarded as the top-rated surfing institution in the area, you can take on the waves with surfing lessons, stand-up paddleboard lessons, or surf camps. Adults and kids alike will love learning how to work the board as well as proper surfing etiquette. If you live far from the beach, this is an amazing experience you’ll never forget once you go back home.
- Richard Petty Driving Experience
Want to feel like a race car driver? Then drive a real NASCAR race car at the Daytona International Speedway. If that’s a little too intense for you, you can always choose to do the Ride-Along experience where you ride with a professional race car driver instead. There are options for kids ages 6 to 12 too with a Junior Ride-Along, making it the fastest way to fun in Daytona Beach.
- Jackie Robinson Ballpark
On City Island in the Halifax River, you’ll find the historic Jackie Robinson Ballpark. The first integrated baseball game was held here in 1946. History buffs and baseball fans alike will definitely appreciate a stop at this US National Register of Historic Places. A museum plus a statue of Jackie Robinson are other things you’ll want to check out while you’re at the ballpark.
- Daytona Lagoon
And finally, if you’re in Daytona Beach with kids, you can’t miss the Daytona Lagoon. It’s much more than just an awesome water park full of waterslides. There’s a mega arcade, 18 holes of miniature golf, laser tag, go-karts, and a sky maze. It’s easy to spend a day here and still not do it all!
So, start your engines and race on over to Daytona Beach for your best Florida vacation today!