New Smyrna Beach Florida Trip Guide

We just got back from a week at the beach and there’s nothing quite like spending a beach in a lounge chair watching your kids dig in the sand and ride the waves.  All that sunshine and the soothing sounds of the ocean makes my soul feel at rest.  How about you?  

While New Smyrna Beach has been in the news a lot for their large, toothy residents (aka sharks), we didn’t see one.  Instead, we find it to be the most delightful, non-commercialized beach town around with miles of white sand beaches.  A perfect destination for any beach lover.  

Where is New Smyrna Beach located?

New Smyrna Beach is located just 74 miles east from the Orlando International airport on the Atlantic ocean.  It sits just north of the Canaveral National Seashore and just south of Daytona Beach.  With a population of under 25,000, it’s the quaint small, beach town you are looking for.  You can ride your bike on the beach to Flagler Avenue, the main drag for lunch of shopping.

Where to stay in New Smyrna Beach?

New Smyrna Beach has lots of rentals and 2 hotels on the beach.  We have stayed at the Coconut Palms beach resort for the last 25 years.  It’s just a short walk to Flagler Avenue and situated right on the beach.  It has daily activities, a nice heated pool, and great views.

If you are in need of baby items like cribs, high chairs or even beach accessories, we have had great luck with renting from Sandy Andy’s.  He drops it off prior to your arrival where you are staying and picks it back up.  Check out what they offer here.

Best places to eat in New Smyrna Beach?

Breakers Restaurant by far is our favorite beachside lunch place located directly on the beach.  You can’t miss its iconic pink exterior.  Breakers boasts the best burgers in town but their key lime shrimp skewers are also amazing.  Don’t forget to try a Mai Tai or Margarita with your meal.  

JB’s Fish Camp is short drive south down A1A and located on the Indian River.  As the name indicates it’s a casual place filled with wooden booths where you can get your hands dirty eating fresh seafood.  Our family’s favorite is the spiced peel and eat shrimp!  Don’t worry napkins are provided and I like the hush puppies too.

Flagler Tavern is located on Flagler Avenue and is a “bit” less casual but still family-friendly. They are known for their grouper and oysters.  Scott got the Oysters Rockefeller and I got the Grouper Francaise and both were amazing!  We also shared the mini fishbowl signature drink with my sister.

Treats on the Beach is located half a block off the beach on Flagler Avenue and is a little ice cream stand with LOTS of choices from soft serve to hard scoop ice cream plus lots of other options.  A great place to stop for a mid-afternoon pick me up or after-dinner dessert!

What’s there to do in New Smyrna Beach?

Besides the obvious swimming, boogies boarding and playing in the sand.  We have found purchasing a boogie board at the local grocery store or Walgreens to be the same price as renting and then we leave it behind for other guests to enjoy!

My cousins took a surfing lesson (you can find who they used here) this last time.  Once you have taken a lesson, you could rent a surfboard for the week; 

We also have enjoyed the Marine Discovery Center Nature Cruise.  You ride on a pontoon boat and experts point out wildlife and pull-up specimens from the rive for you to interact with plus you can enjoy seeing all the sights as you cruise down the river.  They also offer kayak and walking tours.  You can find more information on their website here.

Rent a moped, bike or golf cart and drive north down New Smyrna Beach toward the inlet.  It’s a fun way to enjoy the beach.  You can rent equipment at Wildside Beachwear on Flagler Avenue right across from Breakers Restaurant.

Of course, you can also rent jet skis or go deep-sea fishing as well.

New Smyrna Beach is a short drive to the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse and the National Canaveral seashore which usually boasts lots of shells since the beach is largely unpopulated.

I didn’t even mention the shopping.  Flagler Avenue is full of darling boutiques, eateries and coffee shops.  You can also check out Canal Street just across the causeway for more fun shopping as well.

Why pick New Smryna Beach?

If you are looking for that quaint small beach town feel with a cute little downtown full of local eateries and shopping with a great white sand beach, New Smyrna Beach is for you!  

Please note, they do allow cars to drive on the beach so don’t let that surprise you.  My family has been enjoying this little hidden gem for over 25 years and it feels like our home away from home. The people are friendly, the atmosphere is relaxed, the food is amazing and the views are hard to beat.  

Don’t let the sharks keep you away, you are much more likely to see sea turtles and dolphins!  It really is Florida’s best-kept secret.

Until next time keep on keeping on with a simple purposeful life!

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