Florida is the southeasternmost U.S. state. It’s bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Gulf of Mexico on the other. Florida is the only continental U.S. state with a tropical climate. As a peninsula and the state with the longest coastline, Florida is home to hundreds of miles of beaches. Many of them are world famous.
The beaches on the Atlantic (east) coast of Florida have active water. The waves tend to be big and high. The Atlantic beaches are suited for surfing and water sports. There seems to be a lot more shells on the shores of east coast beaches (making them rougher to walk on with bare feet). Beaches like Daytona, Cocoa, New Smyrna, and West Palm tend to be more tourist-y. Daytona Beach appeals to young people and families with young children. While a beach like New Smyrna is more relaxed for older people and couples who want to take things slow.
The beaches on the Gulf (west) coast of Florida have calmer waters, especially along the coast of central Florida. The waves are not as big and the shores have softer sand. Bay area beaches like Anna Maria Island, Clearwater, and St. Petersburg have waters that are less active because the beaches are inside of a bay. Anna Maria Island is perfect for relaxing and taking it easy; the waters are warm and calm. Coquina, Siesta Key and Holmes are similar beaches because they are all part of the Bradenton Beach chain. The towns surrounding the Gulf beaches have a laid-back vibe. St. Petersburg and Clearwater beaches have a more active vibe.
Fort Lauderdale Beach is the most famous beach in south Florida’s Broward County. Fort Lauderdale Beach’s well-kept shores are near the Las Olas Boulevard shopping area, the Stranahan House (a historic 1900s home), and the arts and entertainment district. Miami Beach is known for its arts scene and nightlife, especially along upscale South Beach. Glamorous people migrate to the Lincoln Road Mall. Ocean Drive is famous for its Art Deco architecture and outdoor cafes. Delray Beach is a quieter beach located in south Florida. Delray Beach is family friendly and perfect for those looking to slow down.