FROM KIDDOS TO TEENS AND EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN
72 Hours of Family-Friendly Fun at Every Turn
The New Smyrna Beach area embraces families and excites kids of all ages to enjoy sun-filled days at the beach, or time exploring the Atlantic surf, Intracoastal Waterway or any of our attractions. Below are several ideas as you plan your visit with kids in tow.
An absolute must when visiting New Smyrna Beach is a day at the beach. So, dive right in and pack up the car. You can choose to drive right on the sand - entering at beachside's main street Flagler Avenue beach approach (also home to the main lifeguard station) and head north or south or hop on at the other drive-on ramps at Beachway Avenue, Crawford Road, and Third Avenue. If the kids are younger and you prefer a traffic-free stretch, we have that too. Head south to 27th Avenue and park in the off-beach lot where you can soak up the sun worry-free.
But, don't forget to fuel up. Some great foodie options once you cross the south causeway are Mon Delice French Bakery - fresh, French bread subs and pastries with convenient call-ahead ordering and a to-go window; NSB Bagels & Burrito Bar (aka Bagel World) where you might have to wait to park for that breakfast or lunch bagel sandwich, and The Baker's Table on weekends for their fresh doughnuts. If you'd rather beach it first, then a great oceanfront lunch staple is the iconic pink The Breakers Restaurant on Flagler Avenue where they're known to serve the best burger in town. Or, walk down Flagler Avenue to the GoJuice food truck for a fresh smoothie, acai bowl or afternoon cup o' joe.
At either end of New Smyrna Beach's barrier island are parks offering numerous activities that appeal to all ages. Smyrna Dunes Park on the northern end offers a dog-friendly beach along the Intracoastal, a 350-ft. fishing pier and a two-mile boardwalk that takes you to the sand or on a scenic walk or run with water surrounding you on three sides. Heading south, take A1A until you arrive at Canaveral National Seashore where 24 miles of pristine shoreline await allowing you to discover traniquility like that of its early settlers and have some fun climbing Turtle Mound National Historic Site.
Begin the day with a full breakfast at the Beacon Restaurant, a family-owned staple on Flagler Avenue for more than 30 years. Then, stock up on some sweet treats for the kids at Beachside Candy Co., an old-fashioned candy store just down the street. They not only make their own chocolates, but have a huge collection of saltwater taffy and retro and nostalgic candies.
Cross the north causeway and stop in for a free facility tour at the Marine Discovery Center (MDC) where you can book a boat or kayak ecotour along the Indian River Lagoon. MDC naturalists provide an incredible opportunity to experience the area's marine life and mangrove habitats. Just across the causeway is Paddleboard NSB, a coastal outpost and home to SUP and kayak rentals, lessons and tours.
A great ending to a sun-kissed day outdoors is an early dinner at The Garlic. The line usually forms before the doors open at 4 p.m., but it's worth the wait. Guests are treated to authentic Tuscan cuisine in an Olde World atmosphere complete with its vine-covered arbor and lush garden setting.
It's time to head to mainland NSB and visit the Canal Street Historic District, home to historic sites including Old Fort Park where kids can enjoy climbing among the mysterious coquina ruins. But, this area also boasts a pedestrain-friendly shopping experience and free parking. Near the riverfront and rich in artist studios and galleries, visitors frequent The Hub on Canal where you can always see a new artist's collection. This unique space is an incubator for more than 80 artists who work, display and sell in the same space. Dining is fun for all ages when you take a seat at the counter at Little Drug Co. featuring its 1950's style soda fountain. Or, head across the street and check out the pet-friendly Yellow Dog Eats. A sweet ending to the day can be found at the iconic Dairy Queen of New Smyrna, just north of Canal Street along U.S. Highway 1. This DQ looks just as it did in the 1950s and is still family-owned.
Where to Stay:
Best Western - Oceanfront
Hampton Inn New Smyrna Beach - Flagler Avenue
Marriott SpringHill Suites - Oceanfront
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