First and foremost, this is classic beach territory, so you’ll want to know there are almost 200 miles of open sands just waiting to wrap you up in their golden indulgence. It is almost impossible to go wrong with your choice of beach location anywhere along this coastline, but, when you need to take a break from basking, surfing or paddling, there is plenty of choice there, too.
Kennedy Space Center
As already mentioned the Kennedy Space Center is one of Florida’s must-see attractions these days as it has spent almost $200million in recent years on modernising its many exhibits and tours, making this a vibrant and captivating place to visit. There are also more rocket launches than ever before from the KSC.
Head further north to Daytona and you’re at the home of American motor-sport, where Sir Malcolm Campbell set speed records and a whole new style of racing was born in the 1950s. The colossal Daytona International Speedway has all this covered in an amazing setting for high-octane excitement.
Ormond Beach also has its own tribute to the motor-racing phenomenon at Birthplace of Speed Park, while you can get a literal taste of the action at the famous Racing’s North Turn beach-bar restaurant at Ponce Inlet (just south of Daytona Beach), where the first beach races took place in the 1930s.
Marine Science Center
Slowing down a touch, Ponce Inlet also boasts the Marine Science Center, a natural marine history museum, as well as a host of boat tours to go dolphin-watching, fishing or sailing, which are common all the way along the intracoastal waterway here. Brevard Zoo in Melbourne provides more animal attractions, as does the Florida Oceanographic Society’s Coastal Center in Stuart.
For interactive history of the area – and a great view – head for the seven-storey Exploration Tower at The Cove in Port Canaveral, which boasts a full overview of the area, a gift shop, café and several superb observation decks overlooking the busy port. It’s also prime viewing territory for rocket launches. The Cove is a growing area in its own right, with shops, restaurants and bars that add even more life to Port Canaveral’s bustling profile.
Horticulture fans should make a beeline for McKee Botanical Gardens in Vero Beach, which dates back to the 1920s, and this is also the place to take in the McClarty Treasure Museum to find out first-hand how the area got its name.