Davenport, which is precisely in the center of Florida between Lakeland and Orlando, is rapidly expanding. It’s the second-fastest growing municipality in the state. As a result, those staying in Davenport will have to travel for almost an hour to reach any of Florida’s world-famous beaches.
However, we recommend using GPS to locate the beaches we will list in this guide. Unfortunately, many tourists, speed traps, and traffic are everywhere. So before you grab your Piña Coladas and enjoy the sun, read on!
9 Best Beaches to Visit Near Davenport
Cocoa Beach, located on Florida’s Space Coast, differs from other parts of Florida, embodying a classic beach setting. The area offers a range of tourist activities, such as kayak eco-tours, deep-sea fishing, and paddleboarding. The Cocoa Beach Pier is a major attraction, extending 800 feet into the Atlantic Ocean, accommodating many people interested in fishing.
The iconic Cocoa Beach Pier, completed in 1962, is a hub of activities and a central landmark. It attracts over one million visitors annually, providing fishing opportunities and local shops, restaurants, and stunning ocean views.
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Cocoa Beach is well-known for its surf culture, with the pier generating some of the best surfing waves on the East Coast. The proximity of the Kennedy Space Center, located on a barrier island just north of Cocoa Beach, adds a unique touch to the experience, where visitors can learn about space exploration.
The beach’s shoreline stretches for miles, offering opportunities for water sports and spotting wildlife such as dolphins, manatees, and nesting sea turtles.
The wide range of outdoor recreation options and a blend of natural, historical, and cultural attractions contribute to the appeal of Cocoa Beach as a destination near Davenport, Florida.
Saint Peach Beach
St. Pete Beach, located on the Gulf of Mexico and approximately two hours from Davenport, is known for its soft sand and calm waters, making it ideal for swimming and sunbathing. This lively beach town is near the cultural and cosmopolitan attractions of St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Tampa, offering a balance between a relaxed beach atmosphere and active urban experiences nearby.
Visitors can enjoy various water sports activities, including windsurfing, parasailing, and paddleboarding. The beachfront is adorned with restaurants and shops for those looking to dine with a view or buy souvenirs.
A visit to the renowned Don CeSar resort or the Postcard Inn can add a touch of luxury to your beach getaway. For a more local experience, the Corey Avenue district is worth exploring, with its galleries, boutiques, and eateries showcasing local arts, crafts, and cuisine. A lively nightlife scene awaits those interested, with a wide variety of bars perfect for a night of “bar hopping.”
New Smyrna Beach
About a two-hour drive from Davenport, New Smyrna Beach offers a coastal vacation spot rich in natural beauty and cultural offerings. The beach is known for its quality waves, making it a surfer’s delight and providing numerous accessible places for fishing and bathing.
The surrounding area enhances the coastal vacation experience with antique stores, restaurants, affordable apartment rentals, and hotels.
The vibrant arts scene is a draw with the Canal Street Historic District and the Flagler Avenue Arts District bustling with galleries, boutiques, and eateries, offering a glimpse into the local culture.
Nature enthusiasts have much to explore, with the Smyrna Dunes Park and the Turtle Mound National Historic Site providing trails and observation platforms to appreciate the area’s natural beauty and wildlife.
The nearby Indian River Lagoon opens up boating, fishing, and wildlife viewing opportunities, ensuring various activities during your visit to New Smyrna Beach.
Tables Beach, located on Florida’s East Coast, is unique due to its proximity to Patrick Space Force Base, where visitors occasionally spot a military plane. The absence of lifeguards necessitates caution for those choosing to swim.
The beach maintains a clean public facility with ample free parking and standard amenities. However, bringing your snacks and drinks is wise since nearby restaurants can be a bit distant and pricey.
For surf enthusiasts, local surf spots or surf shops nearby could enhance the beach experience. Exploring notable nearby attractions such as museums or parks can enrich the visit to Tables Beach.
Playalinda Beach, a part of the Canaveral National Seashore, offers a blend of space exploration ambiance with visible launch pads from the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
On a clear day, witnessing rockets blasting off into space from the beach is a sight to behold. This area isn’t only about space-related vistas; it’s a natural haven housing various plant and bird species.
The beach landscape is adorned with palm trees, tropical plants, and a long boardwalk, providing easy access to the shore and breathtaking panoramas of the sea and the adjacent space complex.
Playalinda is recognized for its great waves, attracting surf enthusiasts. Wildlife observation opportunities, such as sea turtle nests or bird watching, contribute to the beach’s appeal.
Indian Rocks Beach
Indian Rocks Beach offers a long stretch of coastline along the ocean, with its white sandy shores being a significant draw. Visitors can enjoy swimming, watching dolphins ride the Gulf’s waves, or deep diving with experts.\
The beach’s favorable location near Clearwater facilitates easy access to the city’s diverse attractions, encompassing hotels, restaurants, and nightlife venues. Regular events, live music, local markets, or community gatherings at or near Indian Rocks Beach could provide a lively local experience.
Nature enthusiasts might find exploring nearby trails and observation platforms appealing, offering a glimpse into the area’s natural beauty and wildlife, making Indian Rocks Beach a diverse destination for visitors.
Caladesi State Park
Caladesi Island State Park, located north of Clearwater, is a barrier island park accessible via boat or ferry from Dunedin. This destination is a haven for hikers with its diverse pathways and a dream for water adventurers with its mangrove-surrounded waterways for canoes and kayaks.
The transparent and tranquil waters are perfect for swimming or fishing.
For a bit of cost, visitors can explore the waters further through boating, free diving, canoeing, or paddleboarding.
Given the park’s natural setting, birdwatching could be a rewarding endeavor. The availability of picnic areas may add to the enjoyment for those looking to have a meal amidst nature.
Shelling is also an engaging activity; visiting the Visitor Center may provide more insights into the park’s offerings.
Hightower Beach is a worthy choice for those seeking solace by the sea. The strong waves here pose a challenge, making it less suitable for children but a favored spot for surfers. The soft textured sands lend themselves well for a family picnic.
Surf competitions, if held here, could offer an exciting spectacle. Nearby eateries or food trucks may present various food options, and the parking facilities could ease the visit.
South Beach Park
South Beach Park, situated in Vero Beach, is ideal for those desiring a luxurious beach experience. The numerous boardwalks, several adorned with ample wooden canopies, lead to the shores and provide a haven for both migratory and local birds, marking it a serene getaway near Davenport for environmentalist tourists.
The closeness to upscale hotels enhances the allure of South Beach Park. The beach may offer amenities such as restrooms, showers, or lifeguard services for visitor comfort. Nearby attractions or notable landmarks could enrich the visit, while accessibility features ensure a welcoming experience for all.
Engaging in beach activities such as volleyball or frisbee could lead to a fun-filled beach day.
Clearwater Beach, about an hour and a half drive from Davenport, is renowned for its powdery white sandy shores and tranquil waters, making it ideal for families.
The beach is primarily known for its mesmerizing sunsets, which paint the sky with hues of gold and pink. The Pier 60 Park on Clearwater Beach offers a splendid fishing pier and hosts a daily festival to celebrate the sunset, featuring local artisans, crafters, and street performers.
From a different perspective, visitors can take a sunset cruise to enjoy the stunning sunset views from the water.
The Clearwater Beach Marina is another attraction where visitors can rent boats, jet skis, and other watercraft for an adventurous day on the water. The area surrounding the beach is bustling with activities; visitors might enjoy a boat tour to spot some dolphins, explore the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, or dine at one of the numerous waterfront restaurants.
The well-maintained amenities like restrooms, showers, and rental cabanas add convenience, ensuring a comfortable beach day.
Saint Pete Beach
Saint Pete Beach, located two hours from Davenport, is a lively beach town blending the casual beach atmosphere with active urban experiences. The soft white sands and the clear seas make for an inviting swim or a relaxing sunbathing session.
Visitors can take a dolphin-watching tour to see these playful creatures in their natural habitat, adding a touch of magic to the beach experience. The nearby Don CeSar resort, often called the “Pink Palace”, stands as a historic icon offering luxury accommodations and has been a popular destination for celebrities and dignitaries since the 1920s.
The Corey Avenue district is a notable area nearby, bustling with galleries, boutiques, and eateries showcasing local arts, crafts, and cuisine. For thrill-seekers, water sports activities abound, including windsurfing, parasailing, and paddleboarding.
The proximity to the cultural and cosmopolitan attractions of St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Tampa enriches the beach experience, offering a blend of relaxation and excitement.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are several beautiful beaches nearby Davenport, such as South Beach park and Caladesi State Park.
The distance between Davenport and Orlando is only 29.77 miles, so it’s not that far at all to drive.
Cocoa beach is the closest beach to Florida. It’ll take only 1 hour and 27 minutes from Davenport, FL, to Cocoa Beach.
Davenport, in the northeastern corner of Polk County, is a popular vacation spot because of its closeness to many beaches like Cocoa beach and Tables Beach.
Davenport is known for many things like inexpensive restaurants, museums, bright nightlife, live music events, farmers markets, historic and unique hotel properties, and military and rocket ships.
Visitors can enjoy various activities at the beaches near Davenport, including swimming, sunbathing, surfing, fishing, kayaking, and paddleboarding.
Tables Beach and Honeymoon Island State Park are dog-friendly beaches near Davenport, Florida.
The weather at the beaches near Davenport, Florida, is typically warm and sunny, with occasional rain showers and thunderstorms.
Several restaurants near Davenport, Florida beaches include beachfront restaurants, seafood restaurants, and casual dining options.
There are several beachfront hotels and resorts near Davenport, Florida, including luxury resorts, family-friendly hotels, and budget-friendly options.
Cocoa Beach, Clearwater Beach, and Honeymoon Island State Park are great options for families, with clear water, plenty of amenities, and activities for kids.
Cocoa Beach and Playalinda Beach are popular destinations for surfing, with great waves and opportunities for water sports.
Yes, beach rentals are available near Davenport, Florida, including beach chairs, umbrellas, and water sports equipment.
Visitors can enjoy fishing at several beaches near Davenport, including Cocoa Beach, Indian Rocks Beach, and Fort DeSoto Park.
Honeymoon Island State Park and Caladesi Island State Park are great options for shell collecting, with various shells and other marine life to discover.