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Florida is known for their awesome beaches and families love to vacation here. Mom and Dad can relax in the sun, while the kids have fun playing on the shore. I am a local Florida mom, and have been visiting our beaches, since I was a kid. Lots of vacationers flock to the famous beaches in Miami, Daytona, and Fort Lauderdale, but these popular spots are not always the best choice for families traveling with kids. As a mom, I want the best for my kids and that includes bringing them to the best beaches in Florida.
Since I live in Florida, we visit the beach all the time, a couple hours here, a couple hours there. It’s a luxury I know that we sometimes take for granted. Vacationers come here so they can spend the whole day enjoying the beach. If you are planning a big trip, then you want to make sure the beach you choose will be perfect for your family’s needs. Obviously, we are all different in our choices, but I would like to share with you some of my favorite Florida beaches to bring the kids too. I like a beach that isn’t too crowded and full of tourists. I know lots of people love the excitement found near Florida’s most popular beaches, but I personally love a quiet beach:) With that being said, the beaches on my list are not secluded, there will be people and they are vacation destinations. Lets face it, this is Florida and everyplace is a vacation spot.
10 Best Beaches in Florida for Kids
(in no particular order)
Jupiter Beach Park
I love living in Jupiter! If you haven’t been to this area of Northern Palm Beach County, then you’re missing out because this is paradise. Jupiter Beach Park is a beautiful spot located next to the inlet for the Loxahatchee River. The Jupiter Lighthouse creates a gorgeous backdrop for the park, and the kids will love watching the boats in the distance as they play in the waves. There is a pedestrian foot bridge that runs along the inlet and connects to Dubois Park. Here you will find a natural beach lagoon for the kids to swim in. No big waves here. There are plenty of picnic tables and a playground located within the park. If you are looking for a place to stay I recommend the Jupiter Beach Resort, a great hotel located just a few steps from the park, right on the ocean. Check out my post on kid friendly things to do in Palm Beach County, before you plan your next trip.
I grew up in Jacksonville, and we visited Amelia Island a lot. Amelia Island is a great beach destination located in Northern Florida. The beaches on the island are nice and deep, so there is plenty of room for the kids to run around and build sand castles. The main beach park has a nice boardwalk with some restaurants and even a putt putt course. Amelia Island is also home to Fort Clinch State Park, where you can take the kids camping, biking or explore the Fort. While the state park is a great place to spend the day with the family, the beaches inside are not guarded, so for swimming I recommend you stick to the main beach. If you are looking for nice resort, I love the Omni Amelia Island Planation Resort. There are also plenty of homes and villas available for rent on the island.
Siesta Key is consistently voted the best beach in America by Trip Advisor! The beach on Siesta Key is huge and the sand is a soft, white powder. It is especially beautiful here as you watch the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico. This vacation destination will be all about relaxing on the beach. There is a cute town with shops, restaurants, and a park, but you will need to drive into Sarasota if you are looking for other activities for the kids. But with a beach like this you probably won’t need them. There aren’t any big resorts on Siesta Key, mostly smaller beach motels. My family personally stays just steps from the the beach at this newly remodeled condo which is available through VRBO.
Bathtub Beach is located on Hutchinson Island near Stuart, Florida. There is a reef located off the shore of BathTub Beach which creates a lagoon and makes the water here warm and calm. Perfect for kids! The kids can also enjoy snorkeling in the beautiful clear water. Make sure you bring a picnic when you visit Bathtub Beach because it is located on the end of a little beach road, where there aren’t any restaurants or shops. The beach here does have lifeguards and restrooms. I recommend staying at the Hutchinson Island Marriott Beach Resort and Marina, which is not located at Bathtub Beach, but it is the closest resort and it also have a beach of its own.
Naples is not just a place for the retired and wealthy people of the world, they have some awesome beaches the kids will love too. If you are going to visit Naples, then I think you must stay in a fancy beach resort! Vacation like the locals right:) There are plenty of lavish hotels located right on the beach, and I like the Naples Grande Beach Resort. Here you can take an open air tram through the Mangrove down to the powdery white sand of their secluded beach. Parents can enjoy drinks from the beach bar while the kids have fun playing. And when your family has had enough of the sand, you can spend some time in their kid friendly pool with waterslide! Just typing this makes me want to take a quick trip across the state.
As a kid I remember, swimming in the beach on Marco Island and finding huge Sea Stars and Sand Dollars. You could just feel them under your feet and pick them up right out of the sand. I have no idea if this is still possible as I haven’t been in quite some time, but as a kid I loved it! It was something I won’t ever forget. I plan to bring my boys one day and want to stay at the JW Marriott Marco Island.
Seven years ago when my oldest son was one year old, we took a family beach vacation and stumbled upon Treasure Island by accident. We had reservations in the St Pete area that turned into a nightmare, so we drove around until we found a great beach hotel. We ended up staying in a two bedroom suite at the Residence Inn on Treasure Island. And what a find. The hotel was nice, and the beach out back was great! It was nice and deep leaving plenty of room for everyone, no crowding here. My son had so much fun splashing in the waves and crawling on the white sand. Treasure Island Beach ended up saving our family vacation, so I had to include it on my list!
I have never been to Seaside, but know people who go often and just love it. They rent a cottage right on the water through Airbnb. I hear the beaches are amazing for kids and that the little town is super cute. A family vacation to Seaside Florida is on my bucket list. Have you ever been?
Sanibel Island is located near Fort Meyers, Florida. Vacationers say that visiting the island is like a step back in time, before beaches were covered in high rises and amusement parks. Sanibel is know for its back to nature feel and its abundance of shells! The kids will love playing on the white sand beaches and collecting seashells. Check out Sundial Beach Resort, they offer summer camps for the kids through their Sea School.
Finally, I thought I would talk about the Keys. The Florida Keys are not known for their beaches. They tend to be small and rocky. There are plenty of kid friendly activities including water sports, pools, and fishing, but splashing in the waves isn’t always possible down here. But if you are planning a trip with the family, then I recommend the Cheeca Lodge on Islamorada, which does have a small beach, or Hawk’s Cay Resort, on Duck Key, which has a neat salt water lagoon and fun kids pool.
Are you ready to plan your next beach vacation to Florida? I hope you will pick a location from my list of favorite beaches!
How cute are these fun beach finds! Bring one along on your next trip!
Whether you live here or you are a tourist, I recommend you try some of my favorite beaches here in Florida. There is so much to discover here aside from the popular tourist spots!