Heat and the summer go hand in hand, but, like a lot of things, Florida takes this seasonal event to another level. So, be prepared and relax; we’ve got you covered with some ideas that will help you cool down while still having an adventurous day on Florida’s Space Coast. Air conditioning is a two-word phrase that actually translates, roughly, into paradise this time of year (just kidding, kind of….). Finding it can be critical.

That being said, sitting on the beach with your feet in the sand is fantastic, but an equally great plan is looking at that same beach from an incredible ocean-front restaurant. Sand on the Beach at the end of Ocean Avenue in Melbourne Beach fits this bill perfectly. From their Bikini Bar overlooking the vast Atlantic Ocean, with its famous Monday through Friday Happy Hour, to an eclectic menu featuring everything from mahi-mahi salad to a lobster Reuben, you’ll be in good shape. Try a martini on the second-floor bar overlooking the surf out front.

Relaxing on the beachOut front of Sand’s (as the locals call it) or up the road at Howard Futch Memorial Park, the home of Paradise Beach, there’s plenty of shade, but you’ll be on the beach and in the sun. In that case, two words: sunscreen. Wait, that’s one word. Either way, use lots of it.  Apply it liberally and often. It’ll pay off because one coat is rarely enough during a full day outside, as the Florida sun is unforgiving, even if it is a cloudy day.

And while you’re at Paradise Beach, and under the umbrella at Sand’s, one other quick thought: water can be used to both swim in and drink. Do a lot of both. We’d recommend swimming in the salty stuff, and drinking the delicious crystal-clear stuff.

Away from the beach and on the mainland of Downtown Melbourne, there are a few great activities that will get you out of the heat and into that sweet air conditioning we discussed earlier. One such way to do this is to head to Spa 902, located on E. New Haven. Get your feet pampered with a pedicure, or have a nice, relaxing massage as you escape the heat. Another way to get out of the blazing sun is to go to Downtown Yoga and take one of their many classes, such as core yoga, pure stretch, and ignite circuit.

Downtown Melbourne is renowned as an excellent art district, and along those lines, make it a point to stop at both Get Fired Up Pottery and Painting with a Twist on the main strip of New Haven Avenue. Both offer interesting new takes on old art forms, as you make new creative creations with your own hands. Oh, and the twist at Painting with a Twist is you are welcome to sip your favorite adult beverage as you paint the night away.

Another important note here: both recommend, quite seriously as they often sell out on popular evenings, that reservations be made ahead of time. Call (321) 270-8397 for painting and 321-729-0222 for pottery.

This is just the tip of the iceberg on Florida’s Space Coast as you look to escape the direct opposite of an iceberg. Have fun, stay cool, and enjoy.