18 Best Beaches Near Orlando For Families (2023)

Some of the links below are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.

The perfect day trip-worthy beaches near Orlando, Florida are all within 2.5 hours of the city, offer endless fun for families with kids of all ages, and are the best places to experience all that Florida has to offer while on a family vacation. 

From water sports to fishing and sand dune crawling, you’ll find it all at these beaches that are an hour’s drive or two from the city. If you are planning a fun family vacation near Orlando, make sure to stop by one of these beautiful beaches before the end of your stay and see why so many call Florida home.

1. Playalinda Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 54 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour

One of the closest beaches to Orlando, Playalinda is one of the best family beaches for many reasons. It is a not-so-popular beach located near Orlando and is known for viewing rocket launches from the Kennedy Space Center. We’ve found that the beach is pretty clean and a great place for children to build sandcastles!

There is a $20 fee to enter, but the ticket is valid for 7 days meaning you can come back every day of your Florida family vacation for that flat rate.

There are 13 “lots” at this beach, the last being a family-friendly nude beach. If you prefer to stay clear of lot #13, note that it is about 1 mile from lot #1, which offers some great distance from the start of the beach where you are able to relax as a family without any worries. 

2. Canaveral National Seashore

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 55 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 50 Minutes

With its $10 entrance fee, it is both a little cheaper than Playalinda and closer to Orlando (including Walt Disney World if that is your reason for visiting Florida). Canaveral National Seashore has a picturesque shoreline where you can swim, fish, and view wildlife. If you love scouting for seashells, this is the place. We adore that the sand is flooded with seashells.

They also offer backcountry campsites which you can get to via watercraft for $20 per night nature lovers will get a thrill. You can purchase your permits from rec.gov up to six months in advance. If you need to rent a canoe, they offer rentals that can get to spots #1-5. Find out more information on rec.gov.

3. New Smyrna Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 56 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour

Another short drive away from Orlando is New Smyrna Beach. Surfers and fishermen alike will love this beach. New Smyrna Beach offers a great location to give your mind a break while basking in the peace that the ocean has to offer. You can find lifeguards overwatching the waters and for $20 you can park right on the beach for a comfortable family afternoon!

It’s a pretty clean beach that offers plenty to do thanks to the nearby shops. It also has a stunning boardwalk that would make for some beautiful family pictures any time of day. Note that it does tend to get busy as it is a more popular beach in the area, but don’t worry, you are still able to spread out on the beach and get cosy with your family.

4. Daytona Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 57 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour

Daytona Beach is the most iconic beach in Florida (and the world) thanks to the Daytona International Speedway, host of the Daytona 500 NASCAR race. If you are looking for the world’s most famous beach that has it all, this popular place is the spot. 

Not only does Daytona Beach offer an expansive beach, but you’ll also find a boardwalk with rides and arcades that are perfect for a fun family afternoon. If your kids love water parks, plan to spend some of your days at the Daytona Lagoon Water Park. There you will find go-karts, laser tag, and waterslides. The food is also a must! For outdoor seating on the water, Caribbean Jack’s offers something delicious for everyone.

5. Cocoa Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 60 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour

Labelled “one of the nicest beaches in Florida” by many, Cocoa Beach is a must-visit that is an easy drive from Orlando. It’s not as crowded as other beaches in Florida, making it a more comfortable visit for families on vacation in the area.

Explore the historic Cocoa Beach Pier, swim in the turquoise water, or get out into the water to fish and surf. It is also close to the Kennedy Space Center, so you might be able to spot a rocket launch! Cocoa Beach is a wonderful place to visit in the evening for crowd-less sunsets as well. 

6. Ormond Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 62 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 15 Minutes

If you’re wanting to visit Daytona Beach without the crowd, Ormond Beach is nearby and offers a less-crowded beach with sparkling blue waters. Here you will find a soft sand shoreline scattered with beautiful shells for the kids to ooh and aah at. You’ll find the beach to be surrounded by sand dunes that the kids are sure to enjoy as well!

You are also welcome to swim at this Florida beach. For safety, there are lifeguard stands stationed along the beach that will bring you some peace of mind as your family makes some memories playing in the beautiful waves!

7. Romano Beachfront Park

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 66 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 15 Minutes

Romano Beachfront Park is a fabulous beach for families with young kids. The soft sand beach is a welcoming place for families thanks to its calm waters, snack shack that offers just about anything your family could want to eat, and bathrooms with showers to rinse off after exploring the beach.

They even have plenty of family-friendly attractions thanks to their kid’s play area with a splash pad. You’ll find free parking as well nearby, just a short walk from the beach, which is always a perk for these family trips and makes things easier with little kids.

8. Flagler Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 79 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 20 Minutes

The six-mile stretch of Flagler Beach offers a beautiful place for families to relax on vacation. At Flagler Beach, you can swim, fish, and surf. You can even go horseback riding on the beach! They’re known for their retro little town filled with open-aired restaurants and an expansive fishing pier. There is a small fee to go onto the pier, but it is well worth it.

You’ll also find a family-friendly Beachfront Winery that offers “adult slushies” aka wine freezes that are superb! They have incredible French bread that the kids would love while you sip on your slush.

9. Sebastian Inlet State Park

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 92 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour and 30 Minutes

If your family is keen on looking for sea life, Sebastian Inlet State Park is a must-visit. Not only can you spy crabs on the rocks, but you might get a visit from some manatees or dolphins during your stay! 

While fishing off of the pier is the main reason visitors flock to the beach, the shallow lagoon, offering shallow waters, does offer a wonderful place for the family to cool off. I recommend that you bring/wear bug spray at this beach as visitors have reported many bug bites due to the mostly still water, unlike other Florida beaches in the area.

10. Crescent Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 99 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

Offering white, sandy beaches, Crescent Beach is one of the best beaches near Orlando to visit for those looking for a small beachfront community. It doesn’t feel as “touristy” as other beaches around the area, even though it offers many of the same attractions like surfing, swimming, and horseback riding.

Head to the south end of the beach if you’re one to love scouting for sea glass and seashells. If you are looking for a picture-perfect family beach sunset, this quaint Florida beach offers some beautiful views come evening time. Grab the camera and capture your next family photo on this beautiful Florida beach!

11. Clearwater Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 106 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours

Known for its soft white sand and clear blue waters, Clearwater Beach offers a once-in-a-lifetime Florida beach vacation for families thanks to its many wonderful attractions. At this beach, you will find year-round jet-skiing, parasailing, and stand-up paddle boarding. You can also swim year-round at this beach thanks to its great warm water temperatures.

If you are able to visit during the hours of sunrise to mid-morning, you might just catch a glimpse of some dolphins making their way through as well. However, if you visit later in the day, the Pier comes to life in the evening offering all sorts of family fun! While visiting, try to make your way to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium for a kid-friendly Florida experience.

12. St. Augustine Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 106 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

St. Augustine Beach is one of the most pristine beaches in all of Florida thanks to their white quartz sand beaches and beautiful blue waters. During the summer months, you do need to pay a small fee to visit the beach, but it is well worth it! 

On the beach, you’ll find a beachfront park with a playground, splash pad, and volleyball courts for the family to make use of. You’ll also find that the nearby Beach Boulevard offers many family-friendly restaurants and ice cream shops that are perfect for a tasty afternoon pick-me-up.

13. Vero Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 107 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

Vero Beach is home to some of the best East Coast family resorts and offers a laid-back atmosphere. As one of the lesser-known beaches in the area, you’ll find that Vero Beach is typically less crowded than its neighbouring beaches, making it the ideal place for families who want to relax.

South Beach is the most popular destination in the Vero Beach area and it offers a bathroom, which we all know is so important for families with young kids. Like the many other beaches near Orlando mentioned in this post, you can also swim and fish at this beach. Stand-up paddle boarding is another popular activity at Vero Beach.

If you are looking to stay in the area, Disney’s Vero Beach Resort is a fun family-friendly option that everyone will enjoy!

14. Vilano Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 109 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours

Known for its fishing pier, boardwalk, and Art Deco tiles, this Florida beach is great for the family. The pier is a great place to fish of course, but it also serves as a wonderful spot to sit and watch dolphins swimming along the coast.

There are so many dolphins, in fact, that you could even sign up for the Dolphin Odyssey and Sightseeing Tour to see them up close in their natural habitat. This Florida beach is another that offers a stunning, picturesque boardwalk as well. Take a stroll down it with your family toward the water and soak in the scenery.

15. Caladesi Island State Park

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 110 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours and 30 Minutes

Accessible only by boat, this lesser-known Florida beach is worth the trip it takes to visit. You can take a ferry ride of about 20 minutes to get to the island beach. Kids 5 and under are free, so take advantage of that if you have little kids you’re bringing with you on the Florida vacation.

At Caladesi Island State Park, you’ll get to explore one of the last undisturbed barrier islands of Florida with its soft sand and vibrant blue waters. You’ll be able to see sea turtles, plenty of birds, and other wildlife all around the island. A true treat if you’re looking for a relaxing beach day with the family.

16. St. Pete Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 112 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours

This is one of the best white sand beaches with turquoise waters near Orlando. St. Pete Beach is a lovely family-friendly beach with its collection of historical museums and nature preserves. If you’re lucky, you might also spot some bottlenose dolphins as well! You should visit March through May for beautiful weather, though the best time to view the dolphins is late spring through summer, so take your pick!

The water here is so clear you can even see fish swimming around. If you’re more into relaxing on the beach, there are chairs and umbrellas for rent nearby for an affordable price. There is also a clean restroom that is easily accessible from the beach.

17. South Ponte Vedra Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 115 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours

For a sandy beach scattered with beautiful pieces of shells, South Ponte Vedra Beach is a stunning choice for the entire family. It is another beach that isn’t overrun by tourists and offers free parking along with a bathroom that has showers. There are also picnic areas with plenty of picnic tables up from the beach that makes for a great spot to eat a yummy lunch before exploring the sand overfilled with shells.

While this isn’t a great swimming beach, it is a great beach for exploring and collecting the many shells that you will find along the way. This Florida beach is the perfect spot for relaxation, so take advantage of that.

18. Anna Maria Beach

🛣️ Miles From Orlando: 125 Miles
🚗 Drive Duration: 2 Hours 15 Minutes

Known for its stunningly clear waters, Anna Maria Beach is the perfect place for a day of swimming along the Florida coastline. This spring break vacation favourite offers an incredible white sandy beach with much to do. This is another beach with waters so clear that you can see fish swimming around you.

One of the best things Anna Maria Beach has to offer is its small beach town vibe but, unfortunately, parking can be a pain later in the day, so if you want a good spot make sure to get to the beach in the morning. When planning your vacation, keep in mind that it is a more touristy spot as compared to some of the other beaches near Orlando mentioned in this post.


For All The Latest Travels
In Your Inbox!

Let’s Chat!

Thanks for stopping by! Do you have experience with this trip or want to share some of your own tips? We’d love to hear about it! Comment below and let’s chat!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *