Visiting Cocoa Beach, Florida is a good idea at any time of year. The warm water and soft sand will stun you, especially when you see a sunrise or sunset over the water. Aside from the beautiful scenery, Cocoa Beach also has a lot of things to do. Whether you are traveling alone, with friends, or with your family, there is something for everyone here. These are the ten things that we recommend doing before you leave.

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These Are The 10 Best Things To Do In Cocoa Beach, Florida

1. Kayak through Thousand Islands

Take a tour with a local company (try Cocoa Beach Kayaking Guided Eco Tours) and paddle through the waters surrounding Cocoa Beach. On your tour, you might see Bottlenose Dolphins, Roseate Spoonbills, or even Florida Manatees. Your tour guides will take care of all the logistics, right down to the sunscreen, and you’ll be out on the water for about two hours exploring the wildlife and natural surroundings.

2. Listen to Live Jazz

Heidi’s Jazz Club is much more than your average place to catch a show. Their wine list is chock full of reasonably priced bottles, their food is delicious, and the crowd is always ready to appreciate some excellent jazz tunes. This intimate setting offers guests the perfect place for a romantic evening out or a night of adventure with friends. Head to Heidi’s Jazz Club for some great grub, music, and drinks!

3. Stand atop the Exploration Tower

Take a short drive to Cape Canaveral and head straight to the Exploration Tower. The top of this 7-floor tower is dedicated to giving visitors an incredible view of rocket launches and star gazing. The Exploration Tower also features a theater, space memorabilia, and glass artwork and sculptures hanging from the ceiling. If you’re a space enthusiast, there’s no better place to visit while in Cocoa Beach than the Exploration Tower.

4. Stroll Down Cocoa Beach Pier

This historical landmark on Florida’s Space Coast was founded in 1962 in a prime location, both then and now. On the pier, you’ll find locals and visitors alike, five restaurants, four bars with views of the beach, gift shops, and live entertainment. You can also check out Thunder on Cocoa Beach in May when world famous race teams speed through the water at close to 200 mph. This is the loudest and fastest boat race in Florida and you’ll get a great view of the action from the pier.

5. Take a Surfing Lesson

Cocoa Beach is known for its consistently calm waves and shallow water. Put together, these properties make the area a hotspot for beginning surfers. Take a lesson with a local company and they’ll have you out on the water in no time. Check out Ron Jon Surf School, Next Generation Surf School, or School of Surf and get your adventure started.

6. Enjoy a Meal on the Water

If you’re looking for a place to grab a drink and food and look out at the ocean, you have to check out Coconuts on the Beach. This place has a huge covered outdoor bar area where you can enjoy cocktails and a wide open view of the Atlantic. It also features a patio area with just as great of a view, a stage for live music, and some scrumptious chicken wings.

7. Visit Florida’s Largest Planetarium

Take a trip to Astronaut Memorial Planetarium and Observatory and check out a star show, see hands-on demonstrations, and visit the museum honoring space explorers from around the world. Located on the Eastern Florida State College campus, this place is a great place to take the kids to learn about the stars, planets, gravity, and much more. There’s even an art exhibit with rotating works done by local artists. Check out this place during your stay in Cocoa Beach.

8. See a Rocket Launch from the Shoreline

Shepard Park, a five-acre, oceanfront park offers one of Cocoa Beach’s best views of Cape Canaveral. Head out to the park’s shoreline and spread out a blanket as you get ready to watch a space launch from adjacent Cape Canaveral. The park also provides picnic pavilions, a bathroom, and plenty of parking so you’ll have all the amenities you need for a day at the beach.

9. Visit the Brevard Museum

Known as the Brevard Museum of History and Natural Science, this museum is also located on the Eastern Florida State College Campus. It sits on 22 acres of land which includes a 19.5-acre nature preserve encompassing three different ecosystems. The museum also plays home to the Florida Historical Society Archaeological Institute where you can learn about Florida’s archeological history. Check out the Brevard’s many exhibits, including one dedicated to the Ice Age, the Hubble Space Telescope and even the Florida East Coast Railway.

10. Explore the Historic District

The streets of Cocoa Beach date back to the 1860s, and Historic Cocoa Village certainly gives visitors a taste of the old days. Head to the Cocoa Village Playhouse and catch a show—whether it’s theater, dance, or live music, you’ll find it here! Riverfront Park is also located in the “Village” and it features a gazebo, playground for the kids, and the historic Porcher House which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Take a stroll through this district and get a feel for both the new and old Cocoa Beach.

This article was written by Julianne Aiello.