Beaches and parks are listed geographically from north to south.
Twenty-three miles of warm, wide beaches and sparkling Atlantic Ocean water draw visitors from all around the world. From Deerfield to Hallandale Beach, this area will appeal to every member of your family. Here you'll find charming downtowns, funky shops and sophisticated restaurants, old-world elegance and, of course, fantastic beaches.
This area is a respite from some of the more bustling areas of the county. The beaches are wide and serene, but you'll still find plenty of activity here. Visit the Public Beach and International Fishing Pier. This one-mile stretch of beach features lifeguard stations, recreational areas and volleyball nets. There is one beach wheelchair available at lifeguard station 3. The nearby Deerfield Island Park is accessible by a boat shuttle. This park is a heavily wooded 56-acre site, which features a nature trail, boardwalk, picnic area and playground.
With its 3-½-mile beach, the Intracoastal Waterway, canals and offshore reef, Pompano Beach is an outstanding area for divers, snorkelers, beach-goers, sports fishermen and water lovers alike. The public beach here is 100- to 300-feet wide, one thousand yards long, and made up of fine, golden sand running from Atlantic Boulevard north to Northeast 5th Street. The beach features watersports, sand volleyball, swimming, fishing, boating, kayaking, sailing, a playground and picnic areas. There is also a fishing/sightseeing pier that's open 24 hours a day.
This small town is a haven for divers and beachgoers. Just 100 yards off the beach, you'll find an amazing three-tier, natural coral reef ecosystem. Once you've finished exploring this underwater paradise, stroll up to Anglin's Pier or over to the charming Pelican Square to check out the quaint shops and restaurants.
Fort Lauderdale boasts seven miles of warm, soft sand, four of which are public access. There are 76 public beach access points in the "wave wall" from Fort Lauderdale Beach Park to Oakland Park. There is one beach wheelchair available from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Sebastian Street Lifeguard Station (just north of Beach Place Mall and just south of where A1A splits and becomes one way). Please call 954-828-4595 for assistance. The beachfront is bustling with people checking out the shops, restaurants and sidewalk cafés. On the beach, you can boat, kiteboard, parasail, paddleboard, Jet Ski, play volleyball, snorkel, scuba dive or do whatever else you may desire. If you'd rather relax, stretch out on your towel and enjoy beautiful views of the Atlantic Ocean.
Located Between Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, Dania Beach is a short drive to all the attractions in the area. This family-friendly beach has unique Seminole "chickee huts" for shade and playgrounds on the sand. Dania Beach features several city parks including the very popular Dania Beach Waterfront and Fishing Pier.
Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park, Dania Beach
With 2-½ miles of natural beach, this park is a favorite in the area. Lloyd Beach has two boat ramps with easy access to the ocean through the Port Everglades Inlet. Snorkel and see tropical fish or explore nature trails with glimpses of beautiful birds and animals. You can also kayak along the mangroves for more wildlife viewing. The park has concessions, restrooms and picnic facilities.
The coastline here is lined with a 2.5-mile Broadwalk, a 27-foot wide thoroughfare with its own cycle path that parallels the palm-fringed beach. However, there are three distinct areas of Hollywood Beach. North Beach is a haven for shell seekers and families in search of quieter amenities. Three parks, one run by the city, one by the county, and one by the state, create plenty of access to picnic areas, showers, playgrounds, an observation tower and restrooms. Central Beach, considered the bustling center, has boutiques, outdoor cafés and live entertainment. It's perfect for people-watching. South Beach is the residential area of the city. There are many small bed-and-breakfasts, as well as some high rises and hotels.
The southernmost beach in the area, this small town features a mile of unspoiled coastline. At this public beach, you can rent chickee huts, and relax and watch the ocean. There are concession stands, a playground, bocce ball courts, restrooms and showers.
Check out more information about area beaches at www.sunny.org/beaches.
Photos by Lauren Tjaden for VISIT FLORIDA