Hidden Gems at New Smyrna Beach

Canaveral National Seashore

At New Smyrna Beach, enjoy laid-back adventures, water sports and sunset dolphin tours. This 17-mile stretch of white sandy beaches is only 90 minutes away from our villas in Orlando.

New Smyrna has the longest stretch of public beach in the nation and has also been recognised as the number one beach in Florida!† It’s more than just a beach though, where daily activities revolve around sun, sand and sea.

New Smyrna Beach is one of only a handful of beaches in the state of Florida that allows motorised vehicles to drive on its hard packed sand in restricted areas.†† The tradition of driving on the beach in Volusia County dates back to the early days of the automobile.

Best Spot for Surfing in Florida

If you’re keen to try surfing whilst in Orlando, New Smyrna offers some of the finest wave action on the east coast, with more than 300 surfable days a year. When the whole world is flat, you can usually find a wave here.

Surfing at New Smyrna

The top surfing spot in New Smyrna is Ponce Inlet, where the Intracoastal Waterway, Indian River North and Halifax River empty between stone jetties into the Atlantic Ocean.

For the beginners, this is a great area to learn the sport in safe waters. Surf lessons are available for all ages from Jimmy Lane Surfing Academy and Surfin’ NSB.

See Dolphins at Indian River Lagoon

It’s impossible to come to New Smyrna and not see dolphins! Several species live in the waters of the Indian River Lagoon, however bottlenose dolphins are the most common, with over 1000 of them living here.

Dolphins at New Smyrna

The Indian River Lagoon is the most biologically diverse estuary in the northern hemisphere and is home to more than 3000 species of plants and animals, including nearly a third of the nation’s manatee population and a wide range of sea birds, such as the grey and white pelicans and American white ibis.

Bioluminescence Kayaking Tours

Kayaking and paddle boarding tours are also available on the Indian River Lagoon. For those looking for a unique experience, you’ll want to book the bioluminescence kayaking tour with A Day Away Kayak Tours. This tour is available in the cooler Florida months, when bioluminescent Comb Jellies congregate in the protected waters. Comb Jellies are clear, blob-like creatures that, despite their name, cannot sting! Movement through the water causes the water to glow, which creates a phenomenon called bioluminescence – in which light is produced naturally from living organisms such as fish and bacteria.

Bioluminescence Kayaking

Canaveral National Seashore

Canaveral National Seashore is a National Park located at the southernmost point of New Smyrna. It is a recreational paradise, providing sanctuary to both people and wildlife. Many threatened and endangered species find refuge here, including sea turtles who nest on its shores. You might also catch a glimpse of the West Indian Manatee along the water’s edge, when strolling around the trails.

Wildlife at Canaveral National Seashore

Entrance fee is $15 a day per vehicle, and $1 per person for walk-ins & bicyclists.

Fishing at New Smyrna Beach

New Smyrna Beach is home to some of the best saltwater and freshwater fishing in the area. With the location being on a barrier island between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River Lagoon, it is the ideal angler’s paradise.

Fishing in New Smyrna

Whether you’re a beginner or expert, there are many fishing charters in New Smyrna, offering a variety of fishing opportunities and experiences, so you’re sure to find something suitable for a day out on the waters.

Enjoy Some of the Best Seafood

Visitors will come across a vibrant food scene in New Smyrna with latin influences and an abundance of seafood around the area.

Seafood in New Smyrna

JB’s Fish Camp is probably one of the best restaurants in the area. Located on the waters of the beautiful Canaveral National Seashore, it offers some of the freshest seafood around with an Old Florida crab shack feel. You’ll be spoilt for choice with their endless menu featuring scallops, oysters, crab, shrimps and more, as well as alligator, if you’re looking to taste something a bit different.

New Smyrna Brewing Company

Enjoy one of the freshest beers in town at New Smyrna Brewing Company’s taproom, which is located in historic downtown New Smyrna. Each and every one of their beers is hand crafted and brewed in a small batch on site, using the finest grain from maltsters around the world. Whilst relaxing with a beer in the taproom, the tanks are actively fermenting right in front of you and many times you’ll see the brewer transferring or kegging a batch of fresh beer just a feet away.

Beer in the sunshine

These hidden gems are just a few of the things to do at New Smyrna Beach - there is an array of activities and experiences, making it a great day out on the coast. If you’re looking for more ideas for days out from Orlando, take a look at our previous blog.

Image credits:

  • Main blog image (beach): CC by Joneboi, Wikimedia
  • Bioluminescence Kayaking image: A Day Away Kayak Tours website
  • Wildlife at Canaveral National Seashore: CC by Rusty Clark