Launch Viewing Venues

3 Unexpected Ways to Experience a Rocket Launch

Rocket Launch

Rocket launches have drawn visitors to the Space Coast for decades. With SpaceX, ULA, and NASA booking launch pads on an almost weekly basis, seeing a launch while you’re vacationing on the Space Coast is a high probability. While you know about going to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex or Space View Park to get close to a launch, here are a few uniquely Space Coast ways to experience a launch.

View a Rocket Launch on the Water

Rocket Launch from a Kayak in the Indian River Lagoon

For those looking for a cosmic viewing a bit more laid back in nature, the water is where you need to be, and there are plenty of Space Coast boat and kayak tour operators ready to help you make your aqueous launch dreams come true! When you venture into the Indian River Lagoon for a launch you’ll not only see a rocket lifting to space, but you’ll also be in the company of dolphins, manatees, and a host of feathered friends perched in mangrove tunnels. It’s an option that’s away from crowds, steeped in nature, and the perfect way to experience all of the Space Coast!

View A Rocket Launch on the Beach

Launch from the Beach Cherie Down Park

Finally, there may be no better place to watch a launch than from the soft sands of Space Coast Beaches. Playalinda Beach at Canaveral National Seashore has been a local favorite for more than a half-century, a simple walk down the beach can get you and your family within five miles of the launch tower. At this range, you get not only the best view, but you’ll feel the engines roar. Jetty Park in Cape Canaveral also offers the close-range launch viewing with the added bonus of plenty of beach amenities like surfboard rentals for some after-launch fun in the sun!

View a Rocket Launch From the Air

Beachside Helicopters Launch Flight

Photo courtesy of Beachside Helicopters

Seeing a rocket while your feet are firmly planted on the ground is a spectacular sight to behold, but what if you were to level the playing field and meet the rocket mid-air? Booking a launch viewing helicopter tour from Beachside Helicopters offers unparalleled views of a launch and the Space Coast. It’s the closest most of us will get to the stratosphere and a launch viewing experience you will remember forever.

Looking for other places to see a launch on the Space Coast? Check out this great map of our favorite viewing locations.

Want to know when the next launch is? Visit our launches page. It provides you with launch notifications, live feeds from NASA, SpaceX, and ULA as well as a calendar of upcoming launches so you can plan your next Space Coast getaway and watch history lift off.

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