Florida beaches. They beckon like a shimmering beacon of hope in a wintery world of ice, snow, and misery. They promise light, warmth and short sleeves. They can fulfill those promises—but you need to know a few simple facts about how to pick that perfect destination that will leave your whole gang smiling.
Consider the Coast:
- Gulf of Mexico beaches tend to have white sand and calmer waters that are great for young children or for those timid about the water.
- Atlantic beaches tend to have golden brown sand and waves for surfing and other fun.
- The Florida Keys offer superb scuba diving, snorkeling and fishing, but are not renowned for their beaches, with the exception of beautiful Bahia Honda. Many of the Florida Keys’ beaches are manmade, or are just a layer of sand over a sliver of limestone.
Weigh the Weather:
- The north is almost always cooler than south, something to remember in both summer and winter. To find out the average temperature of a destination, just look at the top of VISIT FLORIDA’s home page. You’ll find a place to enter the city’s name plus the month.
- As far as water temperatures go, as a general rule, the water anywhere in Florida will be warm enough to swim between April and October. During the cooler months, the farther south you go, the warmer it will be. Fort Lauderdale, Miami, the Keys, Marco Island and Naples will have the warmest water during the winter.
Mull over the Mood:
Do you want a sophisticated city? A charming little town with shopping and cafes? A beach where you see almost nobody else? Someplace upscale? Someplace old-fashioned? Florida features beaches on both coasts in all these varieties. The following articles can help guide you.
If you have another question, you can write me here, and I’ll get back to you quickly with personal advice. Remember the more details you provide -- like when you’ll be visiting, what kinds of activities interest you, and if you’re looking for a luxurious getaway or a family friendly one – the better answer I can provide.