A trip to Florida might involve huge theme parks, sporting events, and beautiful sunsets, but it feels incomplete without a trip to the beach. The best beaches in Florida offer the chance to earn a cinnamon tan in a way that feels comfortable for you. There are beaches for families. There are beaches to show off your body. There are beaches that are perfect for fishing if that’s what you prefer. Here are the best beaches in Florida right now for your consideration.
- Gulf Islands
The National Seashore is difficult to top when it comes to the best beaches in Florida. There are plenty of secluded areas that are perfect for camping and fishing. If you like to explore, you’ll have birding, swimming, and hiking options available to you. Many of the beaches in this area are primitive, but that is what makes them so attractive. The waters are emerald and peaceful, the sun is hot, and the chances to relax are plenty.
Some say this beach has the softest, whitest sand that they’ve ever seen in the world. There’s no denying that there’s a thick sand carpet there that’s perfect for building sandcastles. It’s also a great place to setup a volleyball net for a pickup game or to have a quiet walk along the beach. Take advantage of the recreational facilities or just stop by to enjoy a sunset and you’ll have a fantastic time.
For most of the year, you’ll only be able to access this beach by boat. On the lower tides of the year, it is also possible to access this beach from Clearwater Beach by foot, but you’d need to watch for the tide coming in so you don’t get stranded. The white sands here are unspoiled, partially because of its difficulty to access, but you can reach it with a short ferry ride. Natural trails are available, a playground is there for families, and you’ll have plenty of space to yourself to enjoy.
If you don’t mind the effort it takes to make it to this beach, then you can find one of Florida’s hidden gems. It’s not the place to go if you want plenty of amenities. The only accommodations here are bathrooms. Yet if you want to see undeveloped natural shoreline, beautiful sand dunes, and you have a surfboard you want to bring along, then this is the perfect beach for you. You’ll find it just north of the NASA space complex.
This Florida beach has a little bit of everything. It’s easy to access from many of the state’s top tourist draws. It has amenities that are reasonably affordable, with family friendly options available. More than $30 million has been spent to renovate this beach area, so you’ll find plenty of shops, restaurants, and playgrounds to enjoy. Stages feature local music acts on a regular basis and there are plenty of chairs, umbrellas, and other luxury features ready and waiting for you.
- Lover’s Key
If you plan on getting married on the beach, then this is the best beach in Florida for you. There are hundreds of weddings here every year, so a visit to the shores can be a bit complicated since you might be crashing a wedding. The good news is that beach is more of a cluster of islands that is easily accessible, so even if there is a wedding party going on, you can still find a quiet place to kick back, relax, and enjoy the view.
- Fort de Soto
This beach was originally reinforced during the Spanish-American war. Many of the placements are still there, although more in relic or ruin form, giving you the chance to explore as you enjoy the afternoon sun. There are two separate beaches that are accessible here and dogs are more than welcome with their own park. You can also access two fishing piers, take advantage of various picnic shelters, or hit the trails with a bike. Kayaking and boat excursions are also available, but you can just pitch your umbrella in the sand and relax as well.
- St. Joseph
If you want to have a quiet beach in Florida, then this is the best place to go. It offers everything you’d expect from a beach in this state: calm blue waters, white sands, lots of sunshine, and brilliant strawberry sunsets. There is a nature preserve on the west end of the beach as well, which can be accessed by boat if you wish to explore some more. Grab your flip-flops, bring a cooler full of your favorite beverages, and enjoy a chance to avoid the tourist hot spots without compromising the quality of the beach.
This Florida beach offers you access to the local artistic community in a unique way. It’s a public beach with a mellow, laid-back attitude that offers you plenty of space to pitch a tent or umbrella, or just lay out one of the best beach towels and enjoy some sunshine if you prefer. Galleries are just across the street, as are some fantastic restaurants, and you can pick up a cocktail or two to enjoy as well. It’s family friendly, offers paragliding and others sports options, and enough elbow room even though it tends to be busy.
This beach almost feels like a Northeast Atlantic beach instead of one of the best beaches in Florida. The sands are white and the winds have whipped them into a few dunes. It’s a popular beach destination for families, with a playground available within the state park. The waters of the Gulf of Mexico are usually calm as well, making it a great place for swimming if you wish. Camping is also a possibility, as is seeing a few dolphins in the distance.
The best beaches in Florida offer sand, surf, and sun in large quantities. Find your piece of paradise, enjoy quiet moments with your family and friends, and you will see why Florida is one of the best places to visit when you want to spend some time by the water.