When people think of Florida tourism, they typically think about Orlando theme parks, the Florida Keys, Miami’s club scene, or air-boat rides through the alligator and mosquito infested Everglades.
Less than an hour east of Orlando is the Space Coast. Home of Port Canaveral Terminals unique Indian River Lagoon habitat, Ron Jon’s Surf Shop, and other exciting attractions to explore. The most well-known Space Coast attraction is the Kennedy Space Center and the Port Canaveral Air Force Station. Collectively, these two neighbors are responsible for more space launches than any other location in the world. All of the Apollo moon missions, every space shuttle launch, and countless unmanned satellite launches have left our planet’s surface from this location.
The Space Center’s visitor complex offers a full day of fun, educational activities. The first thing you’ll notice when entering the visitor center is the rocket garden. The rocket garden is known for the illustrious history of our nation’s space exploration program. Nearby take a moment to pay your respects to the Astronaut Memorial. The exhibit has a list of fearless men and women who paid the ultimate price to further our understanding of the universe.
Bus tours will bring you directly to the launch pads and the enormous vehicle assembly building where you can take plenty of fantastic photos opportunity locations. The Kennedy Space Center is has an exhilarating Shuttle Launch Experience plenty of activities for children. Try to visit during when a rocket is scheduled to launch, you’ll witness an awe-inspiring event.
After you spend a day or two at the Space Center, grab your surfboard and head for Cocoa Beach. Cocoa Beach is on the narrow, barrier island separating the Atlantic Ocean from the Indian River and Banana River lagoons. Here you’ll find world-renowned beaches, five-star hotels and resorts, scrumptious seafood restaurants, incredible shopping opportunities and the castle in the middle of it all.
Spend a few days soaking up some rays on the beach, swimming in the ocean with your family, surfing on the same beach were professional surfer Kelly Slater honed his talents or taking advantage of the many amenities offered by some of the local resorts and spas. Here you will also find casino cruises which depart daily for international waters for a fun night of gambling, dining, and cocktails. If gambling isn’t your thing, you may instead decide to book a daytime fishing cruise or a short trip to unique scuba diving opportunities. Of these from the Cape Cruise, Terminals (just north of Cocoa Beach) where’ll also find massive vessels ready to the Bahamas, Jamaica, and just about anywhere. On the mainland, you’ll find Historic Cocoa Village.
Cocoa Village houses many fine dining opportunities collection of unique shops, boat charter and rental businesses along the Indian River, and Cocoa Village Playhouse. Be sure to take the time to go out on the Indian River Lagoon, an ecologically unique mix of freshwater and seawater manatees, dolphins, stingrays, alligators, and many unique species found nowhere else in the country.
You can also embark on an adventure enjoy a day of water-skiing, knee-board, or Jet Ski in or grab a fishing net. A little more faraway south discover the Melbourne area beaches than head to cheer on the Brevard Manatees at the Space Coast Stadium.
Make sure you schedule some time to visit the Brevard Zoo provides yet another day of family fun. Downtown Melbourne’s commercial district offers even more five-star culinary adventures and an exciting, active nightlife. The Art Museum in the Arts District a place to local artists, and next to the science center which offers children a learning.
If love the ocean breeze and plenty of activities away from the amusements parks this the right place for you. Start planning today! Savings tips visit the Florida CVB website for coupons and other ways to save during your visit.
Photo Credit: Space Coast and Florida CVB