Florida beaches

(14 Posts)
childmindermk Thu 04-Jun-15 13:31:01

Hi we are off to Florida in 4 weeks and we would like to go to the beach as well as the parks. Can anyone recommend a nice sandy beach fairly close to Orlando please? Our 4 year old is hoping to collect sea shells, does anyone know if the beaches around there are likely to have some sea shells?
Also I heard from someone, can't remember who it was now that there are some beaches that you can drive the car straight onto, is that true? If so which beaches are they?
Never been before and really excited!
Thank you grin

childmindermk Thu 04-Jun-15 18:35:49

Anybody know? Please!!
What nearby beaches have you been to and what were they like?

Prizepudding Thu 04-Jun-15 18:51:31

We have not been to florida before but are planning on visiting a beach while we are there (3 weeks and counting). Info I have heard is that the closest beaches are Atlantic side (Daytona or Cocoa mentioned a lot) but the sea is choppier and are good for surfing. Most people say the gulf coast beaches are nicer but a slightly further drive. We are planning gulf coast to a beach where you can search for fossilised shark teeth in the shoreline. Other gulf coast ones are st petes, Clearwater but not sure on the distance.

ihatethecold Thu 04-Jun-15 19:15:03

Clearwater, treasure island, St Petes beach are all amazing.
The wildlife is unbelievable
I love it there.
Next time I go (fingers crossed) I'd like to go to Sarasota.

ihatethecold Thu 04-Jun-15 19:15:42

Very easy to get to from Orlando. It's about 1.5 hours.

UnspecialSnowflake Thu 04-Jun-15 19:21:26

Cocoa is about an hour and a half from Orlando, it's nice but quite busy. I prefer Satellite beach ( I got married there), and the whole Melbourne/indiatlantic area, huge quite beaches that go on for miles. Loads of shells for children to collect too.

Chopchopbusybusy Thu 04-Jun-15 19:29:39

I love Sanibel island. Loads of shells to collect. A bit further away from Orlando than you might want but its worth it IMO. You can drive along Daytona beach. It's OK but not my favourite.

childmindermk Thu 04-Jun-15 21:40:47

Thanks everyone for you opinions! I think I prefer the sound of the slightly further away beaches, with nicer sea, possibility of sea shell collecting and not so busy!
I had come across sanibel island as a beach with sea shells but wasn't sure where it was in relation to Orlando.
Does anyone know how far it is from Orlando time wise?

iseenodust Fri 05-Jun-15 18:48:27

Sanibel is about 3 hours drive but if you are going to stay for a couple of nights easily doable. We stayed at Fort Myers which is close but cheaper than on the islands. Ate at some lovely places and there is another beach close by which is a turtle reserve part of the year.

Radiatorvalves Fri 05-Jun-15 19:05:07

Clearwater was amazing. We had 4 fab days there after an exhausting 6 in Orlando. We also went to Coco for a couple of hours post Kennedy Spa e Centre, but Clearwater wins hands down.

Someone on MN recommended the Sandpearl hotel, and it was fab.

childmindermk Fri 05-Jun-15 20:36:12

Thanks so much for the info guys, I think we are going to go to Clearwater as its a shorter journey and has been recommended by a few of you. I looked it up online too and it sound fab!
I think somebody said that you do find sea shells there is that correct? I do realise that it won't be full of them like sanibel Island is but I'm just hoping that there are enough for my 4 year old to look for and collect a few grin

Dinkydoos Fri 05-Jun-15 20:41:50

Anna Marie Island! Google it! Really lovely.

SenecaFalls Fri 05-Jun-15 20:55:10

I live in Florida; all of these are great suggestions. I would add a vote for Daytona; it is an easy day trip from Orlando. It has a funky Florida beach town vibe that some of the others don't anymore. You can drive on the beach in Daytona.

There is a lot more wave and surf action in the Atlantic Beaches, but better shelling on the Gulf Beaches. Sanibel is really nice and is great for shelling. I am particularly partial to Clearwater Beach, however. DH and I spent our wedding night there. smile

ellaballoo Wed 10-Jun-15 18:02:49

Another vote for Anna Maria , it's beautiful.

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