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Old 02-06-2012, 03:28 PM   #1
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Looking to take 1 day at a beach..Which one?

Will be visiting in Orlando area in March. Traveling with wife, 8 yr old son, and brother with girlfriend who never has seen the ocean or a beach. Should I head to the Cocca Beach area and stop at one of the parks? or head to Clearwater area. No one is a really big beach person. Would like to get in water if its warm enough. What is a suitable water temp to swim? Any suggestions, let me know.
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Old 02-06-2012, 05:45 PM   #2
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It will be too cold to swim in the ocean. But, if "No one is a really big beach person" why are you going? Could the day not be spent better doing something else (e.g. seeing manatees at Blue Spring State Park)? http://www.floridastateparks.org/bluespring/default.cfm
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Old 02-06-2012, 07:40 PM   #3
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We are thinking of going to treasure island beach near Tampa
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Old 02-09-2012, 12:41 AM   #4
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We are in the same boat almost.looking to split vaca between beach and Disney. I really don't mind driving a couple if hours. I looked at Clearwater but everything seems expensive there. I was also looking at treasure island, st. Pete beach or Anna Maria island. I would like to be near 10-15 min from things to do mini golf, restaurants, shopping. We are looking to stay gulf front.
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Old 02-09-2012, 09:23 AM   #5
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Not sure how far you guys wanna drive.. but I've been to Florida a lot so I can give you some suggestions...

Cocoa Beach is closest to Disney and you could also go to NASA if you wanna see some space stuff... your son might like that. At cocoa beach there's a really fun beach bar called "Coconuts" and you can buy drinks and they give them to you in plastic cups and you can chill outside or drink them on the beach. There's also lots of shopping and probably other activities, I spent most my time on the beach though.

I've been to Florida in Feb and the water was warm enough to swim in.. it just depends on how lucky you get.

As for the gulf side..I was never a huge fan because I grew up going to the Atlantic but the gulf side is nice too.. they have white sand beaches but I've also heard they have more sharks! It's been my experience that the gulf-side is more for an older crowd but I've only really been to Naples on that side.

If you have the time.. I'd personally go farther south to Boca Raton/Hollywood/Fort Lauderdale/Miami. You can get some pretty good deals.. my grandma had a condo right on the ocean in Boca.. it was beautiful. Also, on the drive from Orlando down to the southern atlantic coast you can stop at Lion Country Safari.. really fun- you basically drive through a "safari" of real animals in your car, you can also feed a giraffe, ride a camel, etc. I did it like 2 years ago when I was 21 and still had fun. I LOVED Miami beach, it was surprisingly clear and awesome for it being in a big city. If you go to Miami you also could go to this Parrot Island thing.. you can interact with the birds and stuff, I think that's the name but I can't remember... and def eat at Pink's...

Don't bother with the Florida Keys.. all man-made beaches and every time I've been there it's been a disappointment. But an airboat ride in the everglades is really fun!

Hope that helps!

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Old 02-09-2012, 07:00 PM   #6
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Clearwater beach on the west coast is the place to go. It is clean, safe and the

real estate in the area is quite impressive. We stayed last year at a motel one block short walk from the beach called Amber Tides Motel at 420 Hamden Drive Clearwater. It was clean, comfortable, nice pool, had a full kitchen and had what we needed. Clean beds, furniture and bathroom. The owners are wonderful people. I see there is one complaint on tripadvisor but it someone complaining about not enough central heat in their room --- it is Florida. I would stay there in a minute, plus free parking 1 minute from your room. We stayed in March and it was $65 or $70 per night
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Old 02-09-2012, 08:38 PM   #7
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Cocoa Beach is a VERY easy drive with no traffic - within an hour. If people have never seen or heard the ocean before, I suggest the Atlantic side - the wave action is much better. I was in my early 20s before I ever saw the ocean, so I would recommend taking the opportunity to do it if you can!!! It's so close!

When staying in Orlando, we often drive out there for the day or half day to get a 'beach fix'. You can rent chairs and umbrellas at various places if you want to sit and relax for a few hours.
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Old 02-09-2012, 10:21 PM   #8
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This post it looks like is just going to give you lots of differing opinions. My favorite beach day trip from Orlando is Clearwater all the way. It's a big wide beach, great soft sand, lots of activity, a pier, lot of resturants around, etc. It's our beach of choice for an Orlando day trip. With so much to do in Orlando, we only do one day trip away and usually mid week. If you have seen the Dolphin Tale movie and want to see Winter you could even make a stop at the Clearwater rescue facility and go to the beach after that. // That's how we're going to spend a day in Clearwater this June.

Kennedy Space center is certainly a great day trip too and you could do that and see Coco if you don't want to spend much time at the beach.
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