I want to start off Spring Break month at Kids Travel Books with a bang – or at least with a place I’m very familiar with. Florida. Florida makes a great spring break destination because the state offers a ton of variety to appeal to any family’s specific wants. I asked some bloggers to share some of their favorite Florida spots, and you’ll find their recommended Florida spring break destinations for families below.
Related: Download the FREE Florida Beach Trip Travel Journal
Since spring break around the U.S. can range from weeks within February, March, or April – the earlier your spring break is, the farther south you’ll need to go to get the best warm weather. However, don’t worry – even the beach destinations are close to indoor family-fun activities if the weather isn’t cooperating.
North Florida Spring Break Destinations for Families
Amelia Island is a barrier island on Florida’s Atlantic coast, and is a fantastic spring break destination for families. There are 13 miles of white sandy beaches, perfect for building sandcastles, collecting shells or hunting for shark teeth. Historic downtown is full of quaint shops and fantastic restaurants with plenty of fresh seafood, and there are public playgrounds for kids to play. Weather in Florida is almost guaranteed to be warm and sunny, and the laid back atmosphere of Amelia Island will make for a perfect spring break vacation.
In addition to playing on the gorgeous beach and swimming in the Gulf of Mexico, kids can learn about sharks and sea turtles, visit a butterfly house and explore undeveloped Florida at Gulf Islands National Seashore in Navarre Beach, Florida.
Perdido Key, Florida: This 16-mile-long barrier island is all wildlife at one end, honkey-tonk at the other, with a gloriously long, serene sandy beach running its entire length. Head east towards the lusher lagoon side of the island, where dolphins, eagle rays, pelicans and ospreys are seen daily. Or go the other direction to the western edge, where you’ll find the South’s most infamous beach bar, the Flora-bama. A sprawling, ramshackle place on the Alabama state line, come for rum-Kahlua Bushwacker cocktails and country grooves in the daytime when kids are welcome.
St. Augustine in spring is tons of fun. Kids loved the beach, the trolley tour and firing cannonballs from the old fortress. But the best was seeing huge alligators at a local zoo.
I lived in Panama City for a bit and have to recommend Panama City Beach and Destin. While PCB used to be a huge college spring break destination, things have changed. When I think of these places all I can think of is the beautiful sand and tons of mini-golf places.
Central Florida Spring Break Destinations for Families
Cape Canaveral, Florida is a fun and educational Spring Break destination due to its nearby beaches and the famous John F Kennedy Space Center. Families will love being able to soak up the Florida sun while enjoying the all-ages activities and tours at the Space Center, including flight simulators and the chance to meet an astronaut.
Bradenton Beach is one of Florida’s best-kept secrets. Miles of unspoiled beaches give this natural paradise old-world charm in spades, but don’t worry, there’s plenty to keep the kids entertained from dolphin kayaks and tours to seafood shacks and ice cream aplenty.
I have a lot of family in Central Florida. One of our favorite small beach towns in New Smyrna, just south of Daytona. My favorite Cape Canaveral-area beach is Jetty Park. There’s a small fee to enter, but I think it’s worth it. We also spent a lot of time in Clearwater Beach. Salvadore Dali fans – don’t forget to check out his museum in St. Petersburg.
Orlando-area theme park spring break destinations for families
Universal Studios in Florida has stood the test of time as a wonderful theme park for a Spring break. Its Harry Potter activities and rides are as exciting for eighty-year-olds as they are for eight-year-olds. The attractions remain fresh and exciting and the queues are manageable. For those interested in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter this theme park really is magical.
Walt Disney World is a place I can make memories with my family and escape the real world for a short time. They are constantly changing and innovating so there is always something new to enjoy
Magic Kingdom is truly an iconic theme park in the Orlando area. It’s also the perfect spot for Spring Break as it has something for all the family. From rides straight out of your favourite Disney movies, sing-along parades and meet and greets with your favourite characters; time will fly here while you make memories for a lifetime.
I lived in Orlando for years so I have plenty of recommendations. If you need a break from the big theme parks – check out the Orlando Science Center or Orlando Regional History Center. We also love taking a stroll down Park Avenue in Winter Park, or enjoying the freshwater at Wekiva Springs. Or take a break at the Florida Mall for shopping – or enjoy the awesome Crayola Experience.
South Florida and the Keys spring break destinations for families
Fort Myers has amazing beaches with nearby Sanibel Island being a hot spot for shell enthusiasts. Spring is the ideal time to visit as temperatures are warm, wildlife is abundant and there are plenty of family-friendly events.
Naples, Florida is a great spring break spot for families. You can rent a house near the beach, visit the gorgeous Naples Botanical Garden, and see all of the animals at the Naples Zoo.
The Florida Keys are a perfect Spring Break destination for families because it is not as hot as the summer, yet the water is still warm enough to enjoy. There are also many accommodation options for families (hotels or homes) with water access as well as snorkeling, kayaking, fishing, and other water activities. If families base themselves in Islamorada, they can take day trips to Key Largo, Marathon, and even Key West.
My husband and I both spent a significant amount of our childhoods in South Florida. On a recent trip, I was reminded how great Miami is. One thing I love is that many large resorts on the beach offer kid’s clubs. For SW Florida, Sanibel Island is a fun family getaway, especially for seashell collectors.
Thank you to all the bloggers who shared their favorites with us.
Be sure to check back later this week for Florida book recommendations and more. And be sure to come back throughout February for tips for the Caribbean Islands, National Parks in U.S. and Canada, and Western Europe for Spring Break.