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Best Things to Do in Cocoa Beach, Florida

Cocoa Beach has 72 miles of shoreline. Most of them are filled with relaxing, beautiful beaches, but the town has much more to offer.

A historic village and playhouse are only a few ways that it honors its history. There are also plenty of museums that celebrate how it came to be. Others delve into subjects such as science and space. It’s also full of restaurants, tours, and other attractions.

Like and subscribe to ViewCation for more reasons this should be the next beach town you visit. Keep watching to learn about the best things to do in Cocoa Beach, Florida.

Kennedy Space Center

This center sits on the remote Merrit Island, north of Cocoa Beach. It was the site of the first American space launch that landed on the moon. Its attractions make you feel like you’re joining them on their launch.

It also has historic rockets, space memorabilia, and an Imax theater. You can even meet a veteran astronaut or join a training exercise.

Cocoa Village

The first settlers of this historic town arrived in the 19th century. It now serves as a popular tourist attraction with plenty of local shops and restaurants. You can also visit the Florida Historical Society and the displays in the Library of Florida History.

Historic Cocoa Village Playhouse

This theater opened in 1924 as the Aladdin Theater. It’s since earned the nickname of the Broadway on Brevard because of its regular rotation of Broadway musicals. It also hosts concerts, children’s shows, movies, and more, attracting 55,000 visitors every year.

Museum of Dinosaurs and Ancient Cultures

This museum is one of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach because it has exhibits for everyone, no matter what your favorite part of history is.

The first floor is a DInosaur Store. The 2nd is a dinosaur section with real fossils. The 3rd floor is the Ancient Cultures section with artifacts from Egypt, China, and Africa. They include replicas of King Tut’s Tomb and the Terracotta Soldiers.

Brevard Zoo and Museum of History and Natural Science

The zoo is a standout in Cocoa Beach with animals from all over the world. It’s split into several sections, including Paws on Play, Wild Florida, Expedition Africa, La Selva, and Australasia. Getting around can be one of the best parts because there are several ways to explore it. A few options are kayaking and ziplining.

The museum is only 15 minutes away from the zoo. It’s full of exhibits that focus on the Windover Woman, Native Americans, pioneers, and early railroads. There’s also a butterfly garden and 22 acres of trails surrounding it that range from half a mile to 2 miles long.

Lori Wilson Park

This 20-acre stretch of sand and greenery has calm, shallow waters. It’s perfect for families and has small waves for beginning surfers.

There’s a beautiful trail with oak and palmetto trees, and migratory birds love to fly overhead. Other features include a boardwalk, dog park, and public restrooms. It’s also one of the most affordable spots because parking and walking are both free.

Alan Shepard Park

Visiting this lovely stretch of beach is one of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach if you want plenty of amenities on hand while you enjoy the sand. It’s full of picnic areas and changing rooms and is close to restaurants and shopping centers.

Paylalinda Beach

This 24-mile sand beach is part of the Canaveral National Seashore reserve. It’s a quiet and peaceful place to escape the crowds of other more popular beaches. It’s also full of natural wonders such as dunes, marshes, and lagoons.

Cocoa Beach State Park

This park is the place to go for those who want to relax and others who want to get their adrenaline up. It has 2 bowls and a half-pipe for kids and grass and bleachers to sit on and watch the thrill-seekers.

Robert P. Murkshe Memorial Park

This memorial park sits on 16th Street South. Its white sand beaches attract surfers, families, tourists, and locals. It also has a planked boardwalk shaded by trees that make you feel like you’ve entered a jungle.

2nd Light Beach

This beach’s name comes from its location by the 2nd traffic light on the south route out of the city. It’s a popular surfing spot because of its great waves, but it’s also a relaxing haven.

Cocoa Beach Pier

This historic boardwalk is over 800 yards and one of the most important landmarks in Cocoa Beach It’s full of restaurants, gift shops, live bands, and more. It’s also known as the East Coast Surfing Capital.

Like and subscribe to ViewCation for more beach town guides. Keep watching to learn about more of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach, Florida, including historic buildings, surf shops, and memorable tours.

Port Caraneveal Space Coast Segway Tours

This port is the perfect place to set off on a cruise. You can take the Disney Dream and Disney Wonder or the Carnival Cruise Lines to the Bahamas.

Riding a segway through Port Canaveral is one of the best ways to see Port Carnaval up close. You’ll see the Ron Jon Cape Caribe, watch the ships take off, and see a manatee in the water if you’re lucky.

Canaveral Exploration Tower & Lighthouse

Visiting these attractions is one of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach’s Canaveral section other than watching the boats. 

The 7-story Exploration Tower’s design resembles the sails of a ship, making it stand out from everything around it. It’s full of interactive exhibits about wildlife, indigenous people, and English settlers. You can even practice steering a ship in its history exhibit.

The top 2 floors are observation decks that let you see all the way to the Kennedy Space Center. There’s also a cafe and movie theater nearby.

The lighthouse is 151 feet tall and has remained standing since 1868. The surrounding grounds are beautiful and provide great views of docked ships. Parking is free.

Ron Jon Surf Shop and Surf School

This is the world’s biggest surf shop at 52,000 square feet. It’s full of any type of water sports gear you could want to buy or rent. It’s also a beautiful shop with fish tanks and glass waterfalls. Don’t forget to visit the Florida Surf Museum inside.

Cocoa Beach has calm waves for beginners, and the Ron Jon Surfing School is the perfect place to start learning to ride them. All of its instructors are trained in CPR and basic life support in addition to their years of surf experience.

321 Kiteboarding and Watersports

This is another perfect place to freshen up your kitesurfing and surfing skills. You can also rent gear for other watersports such as paddleboards and kayaks.

Fat Kahuna’s Beach Side Grille

This is one of the best places to eat in the area because it nails the feel of a beach town. If the weather isn’t too hot, eat outside to enjoy the beautiful ocean views. If you need to go inside to cool off, you’ll get the perfect ambiance with Hawaiian music and full-screen TVs playing surf footage.

Coconuts on the Beach

This is a charming small restaurant that you shouldn’t miss on your trip to Cocoa Beach. The menu is full of seafood dishes such as fish Reubens, fish tacos, and fish ‘n chips. The drinks are also great and don’t miss out on the pina colada smoothie.

Cocoa Beach Spa

The architecture and vintage beach house look of this beachside relaxation station may not be enough to lure you in, but the highly-reviewed services should. It has copper-pot pedicures and other services to prepare you for a Cape Canaveral cruise.

Escape Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach may not seem like the place to get in on the escape room trend, but this spot proves that it is. There are 4 rooms with themes such as bank heists and the old west. They last 1 hour with difficulty levels from 3.5-4.6. Each one costs $29 per person.

Cocoa Beach Aerial Adventures

This is another activity to get your adrenaline pumping, but it exercises the mind more than the body. The courses set individuals against larger groups. 49 challenges are set throughout its 7 trails. THere’s a wide enough range of difficulties that anyone can participate.

Twister Airboat Rides

This is one of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach if you want an intimate look at the local wildlife and a chance to travel in a unique vehicle. The captain will point out the unique animals and plants, including alligators, bald eagles, birds, and wild hogs. You can also choose from 3 different lengths to customize how long you want your trip to be.

Fin and Fly Fishing Charters

Cocoa Beach is a great fishing spot if you have the right gear. These charters will provide you with everything you need and take you out onto the teaming waters. You’ll see large schools of redfish, snook, tarpon, trout, and more.

Wildside Tours

There are 2 hour-long eco-friendly tours offered by this company every day. They cover anywhere from 6-15 miles. The captain decides what you’ll see and where you’ll go, but you’ll never be disappointed by what they offer because you’re sure to see beautiful wildlife and get great views.

Cocoa Beach Kayaking Tour

This is one of the best things to do in Cocoa Beach, Florida if you came to see one of the state’s most beloved animals; manatees. They’re not afraid of humans and often come right up to your boat as you go down the Thousand Islands or the Indian River Lagoon. You may even see other wildlife such as dolphins and migratory birds.

Don’t worry about your kayaking skills because you’ll get lessons before you set off and have a guide with you the entire time. You won’t have to bring any special gear, either, but be sure to bring your camera so you don’t miss any photo opportunities.

Do you have a favorite beach section of Florida? Let us know in the comments below. Like and subscribe to ViewCation for more guides to help you find the best the state has to offer.