10 beaches closest to Orlando that you must visit (2023)

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While Orlando is known for its theme parks those living in central Florida are just an hour or two drive away from either the Atlantic or Gulf coast of Florida! With so many beaches near Orlando it makes sense many Orlando Families head to the coast for a day trip or weekend getaway.

Planning your trip to Orlando at the last minute?

Be sure to book in advance! Hotels and tours often sell out the closer you get to the trip. Here are our top picks for Orlando:

Top experiences and tours in Orlando:

  1. Kennedy Space Center ticket (The best day trip!)
  2. Everglades Airboat And Wildlife Park (Great for kids)
  3. Universal Orlando Park-to-Park Pass (Easy cancellation!)
  4. Hop-On Hop-Off trolley tour (It's great to explore the I-Drive!)

Best places to stay in Orlando:

  1. Buena Vista Suites Orlando (Close to Disney and affordable)
  2. Avanti Palms Resort (An amazing universal location!)
  3. DoubleTree by Hilton Universal(At the universal entrance)
  4. The Grove Resort Orlando (Disney's Great Water Park)
  5. Gaylord Palms Resort (Our choice! You won't regret it!)

If you fly to Orlando worry-free in less than 50 minutes, you can sit on the beach, enjoy the warm salty air and the warmth and peacewater!

Each of these beaches near Orlando has a unique and special atmosphere. From family-friendly beaches, to state parks, surf meccas, beaches known to have it all, and relaxing small town beaches, you're sure to enjoy yourself at one of these beaches closest to Orlando!

Don't forget to check out some of theBest places to stay in Orlandowhen planning your visit!

10 beaches closest to Orlando that you must visit (1)

Does Orlando have beaches?

Not! Orlando is located in central Florida and is inland. But the good news is that Orlando is less than an hour from the Atlantic coast and just over 1.5 hours from the Gulf coast! Take a trip to any number of Florida beaches and an easy day trip or weekend trip from Orlando!

How far is the nearest beach from Orlando?

The closest beach to Orlando isCocoa Beach. Located just 60 miles or 1 hour drive on the Atlantic coast, you will find one of the most popular beaches on the Atlantic coast. Great for surfing, shelling and relaxing on the white sand beach! Perfect for those going out of town for the day!

Top 10 Orlando Beaches You Should Visit

Cocoa Beach

You must visit Cocoa Beach because it is the closest beach to the Orlando airport. If you arrive at Orlando International Airport, you can have your toes in the sand in just about 45 minutes enjoying the warm Atlantic waters of the Space Coast. A great break from the busy theme parks. If you're coming from Orlando, you're about an hour away from the beach!

Cocoa Beach is often referred to as one of thethe best beaches in Florida, if not the best beach in Florida. It's known for being family friendly, great for shelling and known for great surfable waves!

Home to Kelly Slater, 11-time World Surfing Champion, this is a must-visit beach near Orlando if you want to surf! Head to the Ron Jon Surf Shop, the largest surf shop in the world, or stroll through the Florida Museum of Surfing.

Cocoa Beach Pier is also a great spot! Visitors can dine at any of the restaurants, enjoy sunset drinks, or shop at the boutiques while live music fills the air.

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Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is the most famous beach on the east coast of Florida and is known as "The Most Famous Beach in the World". Daytona Beach has a wide sweet white sand beach that you can drive on.

Often populardestination for spring holidays, can also be a great day trip from Orlando! There are more than 20 miles of beaches to enjoy along with activities like volleyball, jet-skiing,surfing, parasailing and bicycles to enjoy while spending the day at the beach.

If you want to surf, Daytona Beach is a great place to learn. Because the waves are unlikely to break 5 feet, but the breaking of the sandbar means the surf is pretty consistent.

At just 58 miles or an hour northeast ofOrlando, Daytona beach is another one of the beaches near Orlando with over 23 miles of shoreline making it a perfect place for families with children.

If you're visiting between May 15 and October 31, be on the lookout forsea ​​turtleswhich gather on the sands of Daytona Beach to lay their eggs. Or pair a trip to the beach with one of the many events held in Daytona Beach like the Daytona 500 or Bike Week!

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New Smyrna Beach

New Smyrna Beachlocated just south of Daytona Beach and popular with locals from all over the area. Just over an hour from Orlando, you can also get to this beach while looking for the perfect spot to land and enjoy the beach!

This beach is a hidden gem because it is often not crowded, unlike the more popular beaches in the area. New Smyrna welcomes visitors who want to relax and enjoy a laid-back beach town. Just park along Flagler Avenue and enjoy the many restaurants and boutiques that line the beach.

In New Smyrna, the beaches are wide and flat with golden sand. The city is rooted in local culture and art, full of personality. A prime location for surfers, New Smyrna Beach is perfect for families to spend the day building an epic sandcastle or swimming in the ocean.And is dog friendly!

If you're looking for one of the beaches closest to Orlando known for dolphins, head to New Smyrna Beach! You can see good dolphins right from the beach!

Stand up paddle boarding and kayaking are very popular in this area as you can go on the Intracoastal.

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Clearwater Beach

Clearwater Beach is the first listed beach on Florida's Gulf Coast. Located about 1 hour 45 minutes, or 108 miles west of Orlando, it is the beach advertised at Orlando International Airport.

Another one of the beaches in Florida that is on the list of the best beaches in the country! Clearwater Beach was named the number 1 beach in America by TripAdvisor, Dr. Beach, USA Today and Forbes.

Visitors come toClearwater Beachcan expect calm waters of the Gulf and powdery white sand. The town works hard to keep it clean, raking the sand every morning to keep the sand as soft as sugar. Clearwater Beach is also one of the few beaches where lifeguards are on duty year-round. This is an excellent choice for those with families.

Clearwater Beach has some of themthe best restaurants in Clearwater. Check out Frenchy's Rockaway Grille while you're still on the beach, Ocean Hai or head down the beach for a historic dinner atColombia.

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Madeira Beach

Maderia Beach is located west of St. Mad Beach, as the locals call it, is home to John's Pass Village, an 1,100-foot-long boardwalk, with more than 100 restaurants and shops in the center of the village.

About 2 hours from Orlando (111 miles) and 15 minutes west of downtown St. Petea, you'll reach a 2.5-mile stretch of powdery white sand. Perfect for relaxing on the beach or swimming in calm clear water!

Madeira beachis a retirement community that has a laid-back vibe mixed with all things pirate. You can take daily pirate charters from Hubbard's Marina or go deep-sea fishing if you're looking for something other than relaxing on the beach.

With just 5,000 residents, this small Florida beach town is the perfect weekend getaway if you're lookingsmall city beachesnear Orlando.

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St. Beach Heels

St. Beach Heelsit is located a little less than 2 hours from Orlando and is one of the closest beaches to Orlando on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. This iconic beach is recognizable by the famous pink hotel known as Don CeSar! If everyone in your group wants something different for their beach experience, this is the beach to head to!

Known as a resort with hotels, restaurants and shops, it is often difficult to find parking on this beach, unless you arrive early! A free green energy shuttle known as the "Freebee" transports guests along Gulf Boulevard and has numerous stops along St. Heels!

With 10 public promenades on the beach, St. Pete has numerous areas from which you can enter the beach! From renting cabins on the beach to restaurants, bars, water sports. St. Beach Pete beach is full service. Kayaking and canoeing are popular, or try speed boating, windsurfing and parasailing for a real adrenaline rush!

The water is a beautiful turquoise color and the pristine white sand makes this beach one of the best near Orlando. For those who want solitude, head to Uphambeach on the northern tipSt. Beach Heels.

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Canaveral National Seashore

Located between New Smyrna Beach and Titusville on a barrier island, you'll find a pristineCanaveral National Seashore.It's only a 1 hour 15 minute drive or 66 miles from Orlando to this pristine and undeveloped area of ​​the coast.

If you're looking for one of the closest beaches to Orlando that offers a place to think and relax while exploring nature, this is the place to go! You will find many of Florida's endangered species such as sea turtles, manatees,alligators, and birds together with over 1000 species of plants.

Hike the Scrub Ridge Trail bordering the marshes and ponds where alligators are always peeking out before heading to the beach!

There are many activities you can do on this national seashore. From walking on the beach, swimming in calm and warm water to fishing, you will surely enjoy every moment spent in this paradise.

You can buy a park pass at the entrance to Apollo Beach or Playalinda Beach. Additional information on passes and fees is providedhere.This is the perfect place for a weekend camping trip.

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Melbourne Beach

Melbourne Beachlocated about 1 hour 20 minutes or 76 miles southeast of Orlando. Located on Florida's Space Coast, Melbourne is known as the "Port City" and has miles and miles of pristine beaches. A visit here will take you back to old Florida with a small town feel!

If you're looking for pristine stretches of beach, good waves to surf, and all the beach amenities you'd expect, this is one of the beaches near Orlando you should visit. Located on a barrier island just across the Indian River, it's a great option if you're also visiting the Kennedy Space Center.

The summer months are a great time to drive from Orlando as Melbourne Beach is the second largest nesting area for sea turtles in the country. Being on a barrier island makes the local ecosystem the perfect breeding ground! Just be careful not to disturb the sea turtle nests!

If you park at Curtis Byrd Park, parking is free and you just walk to the beach! See our article on7 Best Places to See Wild Sea Turtles in Florida. Also, this area is great forriding a horse.

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Anastasia State Park

While Anastasia State Park may not be one of the closest beaches to Orlando, it's worth the drive! Located just over 1 hour 40 minutes or 106 miles northeast of Orlando, you'll find Anastasia Island located nearbySaint Augustine. One of the beaches on over 42 miles of coastline.

Since this is a state park, the entrance fee is $8 per car.Beaches, tidal marshes andpaths through natureform the foundation of this 16,000-acre reserve and it's the perfect place if you wantweekend camp!

You can enjoy 4 miles of pristine white quartz sand beaches on Matanzas Bay. A visit here means a lot of flexibility from enjoying a quieter beach inside the state park to St. Augustine and several other options!

If you come during the summer season from Memorial Day to Labor Day, there is a lifeguard on duty! This is the perfect place if you are looking for one of the beaches closest to Orlandoshelling!

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Vero Beach

Vero Beach is located just over 1 hour 30 minutes or 106 miles southeast of Orlando, making it one of the closest beaches to Orlando for a day trip! The beach is located on the Atlantic Ocean and offers over 26 miles of shoreline to enjoy.

Here in Vero Beach, you'll find uncrowded white sand beaches just waiting to be visited. Vero Beach is a small seaside town where you can often see sea turtles during the summer months and is also a great place to collect seashells.

Head to the most popular South Beach with restrooms or Jaycee Park and 8 acer oceanfront park with a boardwalk leading to the beach or the popular Round Island beach park calledOceanside Parkthere are playgrounds, toilets, showers, pavilions, walking paths and picnic tables!

Kountry Kitchen With Love is the epitome of an old-fashioned diner experience. However, keep in mind that it's cash only! If you do forget, there is an ATM in the restaurant. Be sure to check out our listingthe best restaurants in Vero Beach!

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10 beaches closest to Orlando that you must visit? ›

1 | Cocoa Beach | Cocoa Beach is the closest beach to Orlando, approximately 59.8 miles to the east. This famous beach sits on the magnificent Space Coast, so named for its proximity to the iconic Kennedy Space Center and its rocket launches.

What is the closest and nicest beach to Orlando? ›

1 | Cocoa Beach | Cocoa Beach is the closest beach to Orlando, approximately 59.8 miles to the east. This famous beach sits on the magnificent Space Coast, so named for its proximity to the iconic Kennedy Space Center and its rocket launches.

What is the easiest beach to get to from Orlando? ›

For most people, Cocoa Beach is the closest beach to Orlando. It is one of the easiest beaches to get to thanks to the 528 toll road, lovingly known as the “beach line,” directly connecting Interstate 4 with the Atlantic coast. A visit to Cocoa Beach isn't complete without stopping at Ron Jon's Surf Shop.

Where are the closest beaches to Orlando? ›

Cocoa Beach is the closest beach for Orlando residents, located a little less than an hour from Central Florida. It's well known for family fun, relaxing along the beach, a location for eco-tours or for deep-sea fishing.

What is the nicest beach near Orlando with clear water? ›

Clearwater / St Pete – The Best Beaches Near Orlando

They are located on 25 miles or so of barrier islands off of Tampa and its namesake bay. Clearwater Beach is on the northern end, and St Pete is on the southern tip with about 20 miles of condo communities in the middle.

What is the closest White sand beach to Orlando? ›

The closest beach to Orlando is Cocoa Beach. Located just 60 miles or 1 hour away on the Atlantic Coast you will find one of the most popular beaches on the Atlantic coast. Great for surfing, shelling, and relaxing on the white sand beach! Perfect for those heading out of town for the day!

Why is Vero Beach so popular? ›

Vero Beach is an incredible vacation destination located on Florida's East Coast, halfway between Melbourne and Palm Beach. It is part of Florida's Treasure Coast and has abundant outdoor attractions, citrus, and was home to the LA Dodgers for years in the past.

What is the nicest beach closest to Disney World? ›

Another good reason to head to Cocoa Beach is that not only is it the closest beach to Disney but you'll have the chance to spot dolphins, manatees and seabirds during a family-friendly Dolphin Eco-Tour of the mangroves of the Cocoa Beach Thousand Islands.

Is Clearwater close to Orlando? ›

If you're looking for a quick weekend getaway or a day trip from Orlando, Clearwater is a great destination with its beautiful beaches and charming downtown area. The distance between these two cities is approximately 105 miles, which should take under two hours to drive.

What is the closest beach to the Orlando theme parks? ›

The closest beaches to Disney World are Daytona Beach, New Smyrna Beach, Canaveral National Seashore, and Cocoa Beach, all on the Atlantic coast (East). Each is about the same driving distance from Disney World, with Daytona Beach sitting just over an hour to the northeast, just above Cape Canaveral.

What Gulf coast beach is closest to Orlando? ›

Although you might prefer visiting the Gulf of Mexico with its warmer, bright blue waters. If so, Clearwater Beach, St. Pete Beach, and Madeira Beach are the closest Gulf beaches to Orlando. But the drive will be closer to 90 minutes.

What beach has the bluest water in Florida? ›

Destin. Destin is one of the beaches people commonly rank as one of the best blue water beaches in Florida. Nearby Choctawhatchee Bay helps to filter out the darker residue, leaving emerald and clear waters and beautiful sand. Destin and nearby Fort Walton Beach has about 24 miles of beautiful sandy beaches.

What beach has the clearest water in Florida? ›

Destin Beach, Emerald Coast

On the hunt for the absolute clearest waters of Florida? Then, Destin Beach is the place to go.

What part of Florida has white sand and clear water? ›

Siesta Key

It was also declared the Number Two Beach in America and the Number 16 Beach in the World in 2013 by TripAdvisor. And it's no wonder. Its pure quartz sand is easy on the eyes as well as the feet, and its crystal clear waters are ideal for swimming. Plus, it boasts spectacular sunsets over the Gulf.

Which coast of Florida has nicer beaches? ›

They get the better waves and, thus, some greater action. Florida's Gulf Coast, however, is responsible for those visions of smooth, sandy beaches and crystal, clear water. This is where you go to lounge in a hammock all day and forget your worldly woes.

What is the best Gulf Coast beach closest to Orlando? ›

The closest Gulf Coast beach to Orlando is Clearwater Beach, approximately a 2-hour drive west on the I-4; there are several other family-friendly options as you head south along the coast. (Though without fail, we've hit traffic and road works on three consecutive trips, and it's been at least 2.5 hours!)


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