Beautiful Beach Sunrise

Beautiful Beach Sunrise

5 Space Coast Must-Dos for First Time Visitors

There’s a first time for everything so make it a memorable one.

You’ve made your decision. You’re coming to Florida’s Space Coast for the first time, and we couldn’t be more delighted to welcome you! Visitors from all over the world come here time and time again because they know they’ll eat well, sleep well, play hard, and leave with a ton of memories. With so much to explore and experience, we wanted to make sure you didn’t get overwhelmed trying to figure what to do.

So here are 5 must-dos for your first visit to our beautiful Space Coast.


With a 72-mile stretch of coastline for you to enjoy, the pristine beaches along the Space Coast are some of the best in the world. And we want to ensure that visitors, like you, have a great time while you’re here and see for yourself why our beaches are some of the best.

If you’re looking for a beach that has a lot of action, like games, restaurants, live music, surfing, then you’ll want to check out the Cocoa Beach PierRelax under your umbrella or shop 'til you drop, no matter what you’re looking for in your beach experience, the pier has something for everyone.

If you’re looking for a beach that has more of a neighborhood setting where you can enjoy a full day, grill outdoors, and have a nice family outing, then you’ll want to consider Cherie Down Park. With picnic areas, outdoor showers, and boardwalks, not to mention a great place to surf or boogie board, enjoy the laid back feel while being surrounded by the natural landscape of sand dunes and sea grass in this scenic 6-acre community beach park. 


Now if you want an ideal beach to have a nice leisurely stroll, then the Indialantic Boardwalk is where you need to go. Stop by the Sea Turtle Preservation Society for a bit of education and maybe a tour. By the time you’re done, you’ll have worked up an appetite, so grab a slice of pizza or two overlooking the water and call it a day.

Waterfront Dining

With a body of water, from rivers and lagoons to the ocean, pretty much any direction you face, finding a nice spot for waterfront dining is as easy as 1-2-3, but here are a few of our top choices for a great first time experience.

Located in Port Canaveral, The Cove offers a wide variety of bars, restaurants, attractions and live music, so depending on your preference and what you are looking for will determine which place you’ll choose. Spend the day at the Exploration Tower as you learn about space exploration then head over to Rising Tide tap & table for a lakefront setting. Or if you want to watch the cruise ships and other charter boats sail by, then check out Rusty’s, Seafood Atlantic, or Fishlips, to name a few.


If you’d like to enjoy a nice meal overlooking one of our river lagoons, then you’ll want to try Grills Riverside, River Rocks, Yellow Dog Café, or The Island Waterfront Bar & Grill.  Enjoy the natural landscape as the sun sets or a evening lit up by the moon shining on the water.

But if you want to couple your dining experience with the sound of the waves crashing, then try these beachside restaurants: Sand on the Beach, Lou’s Blues, or Longboards Tiki Beach Grille.

There really is no shortage of enjoying a great meal on the water here on the Space Coast, so pick one of our favorite spots. For more dining options, click here.

Rocket Launches

In order to complete your trip here, you need to discover why we are called the Space Coast in the first place. By adding a visit to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center to your list of things to do, you’ll get an up-close look at all things space exploration. Including a bit of education to your vacation has never been more fun!

And to top off this first-time experience, we can’t think of a better way than to watch one of our rocket launches. Check out the launch schedule and our top viewing locations all over our area and allow your eyes to be mesmerized by this awesome sight that locals never tire of seeing. 



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Art, History, and Culture

There is nothing like adding some history and culture to your visit, especially if it’s your first time and the Space Coast is chocked-full of ways to do that. With historic downtown areas and shops to outdoor museums it’s easy to find ways to experience what makes our area so unique. One thing you can do is take a stroll down Eau Gallie Arts District (EGAD) and view the murals painted on buildings. With creations from artists who are known around the world for their work, you’ll get to experience one-of-a-kind designs as you walk the historical streets of Olde Eau Gallie. And with shopping and restaurants all within walking distance, you can make a day or night out of it.


Brevard Zoo

The Space Coast proudly boasts this long-standing attraction. The Brevard Zoo has been one of the top places to visit since the doors opened in 1994. Over the last 20+ years, the zoo has grown and has been recognized as a leading institution in the top 10 zoos lists. They have been involved in efforts to restore native oysters and mangroves in the Indian River Lagoon to help create more stable shorelines and cleaner water. And in 2014, they opened the only sea turtle rehabilitation center on the Space Coast. So making this place is a must on your first visit is highly recommended.

The zoo hosts not only a beautiful landscape to walk around; they also provide excursions for you and your family (or friends) to enjoy. Where else can you go on a guided kayak tour through an animal exhibit? Paddle along with giraffes, zebras, lemurs, and storks, to name a few, and make memories with the animals up close. And if that isn’t enough, test your skills in the Treetop Trek Aerial Adventure course. With courses for those as little as 3-feet tall to those whose who are more advanced, everyone will have fun as you get a birds-eye view of the zoo.

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We can’t wait to have you here! See you soon!

We want to see all of your first-time adventures, so post your pictures and video so we can follow along. Make sure you follow and tag us using #SpaceCoast 

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Instagram: @floridaspacecoast


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