Top Family-Friendly Beaches in Florida

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Pinterest image of family-friendly beaches in Florida

While Florida has hundreds of beautiful and pristine beaches your family will love, there are a few that are not necessarily kid-friendly. Sometimes you just want to find a family-friendly beach to enjoy.

In the Sunshine State, you’ll find plenty of beaches that have calmer waters, plenty of soft white sand, playgrounds, and fun activities that are nearby. Here are some places that are not only gorgeous, but also the top family-friendly beaches in Florida as well.

Clearwater Beach

Just to the west of Tampa,  Clearwater Beach is one of the most stunning beaches that you’ll come across in Florida. The white sand is so soft beneath your feet, while the waters are an amazing emerald hue. Visitors and locals enjoy parasailing, paddle boarding, and jet skiing. There are many cafes and seafood restaurants, along with street vendors that you’ll come across at this family-friendly beachfront.

Photo from DepositPhotos (PeterEtchells)

There are many activities to do in the surrounding area local beach events and shopping. Pier 60 often offers free nightly movies and fireworks for families, along with other fun festivals throughout the year. You’ll also come across the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where you can meet Winter and Hope, the dolphins from the Dolphin Talemovies.

If you’re staying on the main land and don’t want to deal with the traffic heading to Clearwater Beach, consider taking the Clearwater Ferry. There are pickup spots in downtown Clearwater and in Dunedin– it’s a great way to commute over without having to fight over a parking spot.

St. George Island

To the southwest of Tallahassee, you’ll come across St.George Island, a popular and remote vacation getaway island. The island stretches for more than 28 miles but is no wider than 1 mile at any point. Did we mention the beaches are amazing? Come here to catch a sunset, or the change to witness dolphins popping up out of the water. How about consider staying at one of St. George Island’s Bed and Breakfasts?

Bike riding, swimming, fishing, or kayaking are just a few of the many things that you can do there. St. George Island also has many restaurants and shops, while the state park has several hiking trails, observation points, and boardwalks to stroll on.

Marco Island

You’ve probably heard of this beach destination before. That’s because you’ve heard your neighbor or family member go on and on about it. What they’ve told you is most likely true. It’s a paradise that offers a romantic atmosphere, while perfect for families with children at the same time.

 

Family-friendly beach of Florida
Photo from DepositPhotos(Christin_Lola)

Marco Island has a long list of things to do and see besides its wonderful beachfront. A few of those include the Otter Mound Reserve, the Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, Marco Island Historical Museum and the lagoon of Tigertail Beach.

There you’ll find excellent places to paddleboard, parasail, or kayak. You will also find several golf courses to improve your game. Make plans on a relaxing stay at one of Marco Island’s best resort hotels, where your vacation will be the perfect tropical getaway that your family needs.

Vero Beach

Looking for a beach that’s more low-key and less crowded? Located along Florida’s Atlantic coast, Vero Beach is another wonderful spot for your family. The beaches are beyond peaceful there. There’s plenty of wonderful places to golf, while the beach is ideal for several water sports, fishing, and other recreational activities.

Pier on Vero Beach, FL
Photo from DepositPhotos (doncon42)

Also located there is the Disney Vero Beach Resort. It’s a great place to get your Mickey and Minnie fill without having to deal with the theme parks and still being able to lay out on the beach.

Fernandina Beach

Not far to the northeast of Jacksonville, Amelia Island, is the perfect vacation or weekend getaway. There you’ll come across Fernandina Beach, which also has a historic downtown stretch of shops and restaurants for you to enjoy.

The beach also has an ice cream shop to help your family beat the heat. Horseback riding, kayaking, river cruises, and Florida Adventure Sports, are among the most popular activities for your family to do.

Birds at family-friendly beach Fort Clinch State Park Florida
Photo from DepositPhotos (nfiane)

If you’re like us, you love a Florida state park, so be sure to explore Fort Clinch, a 19th-century seacoast fortification. There’s also hiking trails and campgrounds where your family can nestle under the stars for the evening. Lastly, there’s also the Amelia Island Lighthouse, which happens to be the oldest preserved lighthouse in the entire state of Florida.

Cocoa Beach

Just about 1 hour east of Orlando, you’ll come across Cocoa Beach. If you happen to be visiting Disney World or other amusement parks in the Orlando area, Cocoa Beach is about the closest one around.

The baby blue waters that you’ll find along the pier are stunning. There you can enjoy kayak tours, parasailing, and airboat rides that are fun for the whole family. There’s plenty of other things to check out, including the Astronaut Memorial Planetarium & Observatory, or enjoy watching manatees at the Manatee Sanctuary Park.

Siesta Key Beach

Just to the south of St. Petersburg, along the Gulf of Mexico, is the city of Sarasota. There you will come across the calm and shallow waters of Siesta Key Beach, which is another one of the family-friendly beaches in Florida. This is the perfect family beach where your children can go hunting for seashells or build the most extravagant sandcastles along the edge of the mesmerizing waters.

Siesta Key beach
Photo from DepositPhotos (serenethos)

Right on the beach, there’s a small cafe and bar area where you can stock up on some tasty treats, a pizza, and a drink. After a day at the beach, you’ll come across several shops and cafes to visit. There’s also the limestone croppings of Point of Rocks that’s neat to check out.

Captiva Beach

Are you looking to take your family to a more remote destination, to a beach with fewer crowds swarming the water’s edge? We’ve got the perfect destination picked out for you. It’s actually been voted amongst the best beaches in Florida a number of times.

Head on over to Captiva Island, and find out for yourself. Captiva Beach has beautiful blue waters with white sands that meet it. Children enjoy hunting for conk and seashells, along with filling their buckets with sand dollars. Biking, parasailing, fishing, and snorkeling are popular activities you can enjoy. The beach even offers wave-runner rentals for even more thrilling of an afternoon.

These are among the top family-friendly beaches in Florida. Which of these have you been to before, and which ones are you planning on crossing off your bucket list in the near future? Did we leave one of your family-friendly beaches in Florida off the list – let us know which one you love! 

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4 Comments

  1. Ivan at mindthetravel.com

    18th Jan 2020 -

    Clearwater Beach looks very attractive! O have been to Florida twice but never had a chance to visit it. I’ll put it on my list now! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Kendall Dickinson

    7th Jan 2020 -

    Great list! I would love to visit Vero Beach – it looks so beautiful and calm.

  3. Dani

    6th Jan 2020 -

    I just spent New Years at Miami Beach! Florida definitely has some gorgeous beaches. The only one I’ve visited on this list is Cocoa Beach – and it was so hot that day we didn’t stay very long!

  4. Maggie

    6th Jan 2020 -

    I don’t know how you narrowed down this list, considering how many beaches Florida has! So good job haha. I have actually not spent much time exploring Florida, but all these beaches sound lovely. I definitely a prefer more-lowkey beach scene

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