Looking for unspoiled beaches, world-famous surfing and mind-blowing rocket launches? Look no farther than Florida’s Space Coast. stretching 72 miles along Florida’s east coast from Sebastian State Park to Canaveral National Seashore. It is only 45 minutes east of Orlando and its biggest cities include Cocoa Beach, Melbourne, Palm Bay, Port Canaveral, Titusville, and Viera. There are endless things to do and see on the Space Coast, so if you are looking for a warm and sunny adventure packed summer vacation, then this is the destination for you.
You can start your vacation by flying into Orlando Melbourne International Airport, which was recently named the No. 1 Most Scenic Airport Landing in the U.S., and No. 8 Most Scenic Airport Landing in the world by PrivateFly, then make your way to some of the best beaches Florida has to offer.
When you find your beach look up, you might just see why it is known as the Space Coast. It got its name from the relationship it has to America’s space program at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center and the Canaveral Air Force Station located at Cape Canaveral. Ever wonder why the Brevard County telephone area code is 3…2…1, liftoff! Even Delta airlines got in on the space theme designating their last flight of the day from Atlanta to Melbourne as DL321. You can pretty much pick any beach or unobstructed location on the Space Coast to watch a launch, but some will offer a much more amazing view than others. Here are just a few of those spots. For many more spots to watch a launch and much more info on the schedule visit: http://spacecoastlaunches.com/
- Playalinda Beach is one of the closest locations for viewing being just 5 miles away from Launch Complex 40 and Launch Complex 41 where the Atlas V and Falcon 9 launch from. Beware if it is a launch from Complex 39A, the beach may be closed because of how close it is to that launch pad.
- Max Brewer Bridge and Space View Park are best for Launch Complex 39A launches, but both are a great spot for nearly all launches.
- The Cocoa Beach Pier and Lori Wilson Park are both excellent locations for most launches and while waiting for the launch you can grab a drink or do some fishing at the pier.
- If you would like an up close viewing spot and don’t mind paying for the ticket, then the best place for you is the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. This will get you the best seat anywhere around to watch any of the launches. For more info visit: https://www.kennedyspacecenter.com/events/events-calendar/see-a-rocket-launch
Don’t like just sitting around on the beach? Well grab a surfboard and hit the waves on the surf capital of the east coast. The legendary Cocoa Beach is home to several of the worlds best surfers such as Kelly Slater, Dana Brown, and the Hobgood brothers Cj and Damien. Never surfed before and you really want to catch some waves…no problem give the Ron Jon Surf School a chance to teach you. Oh yeah don’t forget to visit the Ron Jon Surf Shop, the worlds most famous surf shop, which is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Another very cool outdoor adventure that should definitely be on your bucket list while visiting is a Bioluminescence Kayak Tour. Florida is one of 6 places in the world where you can see bioluminescence in nature. What is bioluminescence? It is microscopic organisms called dinoflagellates, or plankton, which create an ethereal bioluminescent effect as a defense mechanism. So every paddle stroke produces a glowing blue/white light in the water when the plankton are disturbed and every wake of the other kayaks leaves a glowing trail. Hopefully you’ll also get to see the fireworks show that the jumping mullet provide when they hit the water. May through November are the best months to view this unforgettable experience. For more info on tours check out A Day Away Kayak Tours or BK Adventure.
This is just a glimpse of what Florida’s Space Coast has to offer. Some of the other must see things are the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, Brevard Zoo, Exploration Tower, U.S. Air Force Space & Missile Museum, and Canaveral National Seashore. The Space Coast has so much more to offer visitors than just being the place where NASA is located. Make sure to explore all that Brevard County’s Space Coast has to offer. Southeast Aerospace is proud to call Brevard Co. home for 20 years now. You might just end up staying too.