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New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

port monmouth, NJ
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New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

Has anyone out there been to both? How do the beaches compare? We would prefer something less crowded, and within walking distance to restaurants and activities.

knoxville tennessee
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47 posts
6 reviews
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1. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

It has been a while for Cocoa, but we make New Smyrna our vacation spot every year. Not crowded except this week, and plenty of local restaurants. Both beaches are your typical deep packed sand type. If you want to walk to restaurants stay near Flagler Ave. on the north end of the beach.

Good Luck.

louisiana
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43 posts
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2. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

is there really a lot of shark attacks in new smyrna beaches?

cocoa Beach
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3. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

Below would be my description of Cocoa Beach.

Cocoa Beach is quintessential beach town, located just an hour's drive east of Orlando on Florida's beautiful Space Coast, and offers endless ways to enjoy recreation and leisure.

One of the more affordable vacation spots in all of Florida, there is never a lack of exciting things to do see and do around Cocoa Beach. Besides offering "sun and fun" at the beach, you can play some of the best golf courses Central Florida has to offer, look to the stars at Kennedy Space Center, or take in our wild side with an eco-tour adventure on a kayak tour, stand up paddle board or airboat ride, getting up close and personal with Florida's awesome wildlife.

Another thing that makes us different than New Smyrna beach is the softness of our sand. New Smyrna allows driving on the sand due to the type of sand they have (a car won't get stuck) Cocoa Beach has sugar sand and is too soft to have cars drive on it. Also the Atlantic Ocean clears up as you go south, so I believe the water is clearer in Cocoa Beach than in New Smyrna.

For more pictures on the area check out pinterest.com/staycocoabeach/

Fernandina Beach FL
Destination Expert
for Amelia Island, Fernandina Beach
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1,820 posts
210 reviews
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4. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

In the spirit of fairness it should be noted that New Smyrna does not allow driving on all of its beach areas. The southern part of the beach area (south of 27th Ave.) does not allow beach driving and there are many, many condo complexes on that section of the beach.

New Smtrna Beach, FL
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12 posts
2 reviews
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5. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

Responding to the sand/water comparisons first, both beaches have been extensively "renourished" in recent years with sand dredged from offshore, so I question whether the sand varies much. It's definitely incorrect to suggest that "a car won't get stuck" on NSB. Many do, and anyone choosing to drive on the beach should be careful. Regarding water clarity, while it's true that the water is generally clearer in south Florida (Miami/Naples), the 2 beaches in question are less than 50 miles apart. I've never noticed a difference.

The biggest contrast in my opinion is that New Smyrna Beach is isolated, meaning that there's no way to enter/leave to the north and south. No one on A1A in New Smyrna is passing through. Cocoa Beach on the other hand has the two large employers on either end: the Kennedy Space Center to the north and Patrick Air Force Base to the south. Port Canaveral and its large cruise ships are also on the north end. There's a lot of traffic passing through, particularly at rush hour. New Smyrna has precisely 1 traffic light on about 15 miles of A1A, Cocoa Beach has a lot. Cocoa Beach also has most of the fast-food chains represented, and many hotel chains (Holiday Inn, Hilton, Days Inn, etc.). NSB has a no fast food chains (except a Subway), and the only hotels are a Best Western and a Hampton a few blocks off the beach. There are a few Mom and Pop motels, however many visitors rent a house or condo; see VRBO or Homeaway websites.

Beach driving is very controversial, but it's only permitted on about a third of NSB, so it's easily avoided if it's not your thing. There are advantages though. You don't have to search for a parking spot and then lug your stuff in the heat. And the fees ($5 per car) fund the beach patrol and lots of lifeguards. There are also vendors on the beach in the summer selling food and renting umbrellas, surf boards, bikes, 4-wheelers, etc. I prefer the non-driving area myself, but I'm old...

Cocoa Beach is definitely more convenient to Orlando and its attractions, if that's important. New Smyrna is near Daytona which is great if you're a biker or race fan.

You won't go wrong either way...

Nashville
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6 posts
18 reviews
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6. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

New Smyrna all the way! Quaint and gorgeous and so much more to do than just the beach! Chateau By The Sea is the best location for rentals!

Rochester, New...
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7. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

yes I ve been to both actually! im leaving Tuesday for new symernia,and then going to coco for a few dayz too.new sermernia is very nice place I ve been stayin at a place called sea vista motel, its right on ocean it has tiki bar and a a pool,!!it also close flagler ave,it ghas everything you could possibly enjoy!coco beach is a hole nother nut ,its a little more upscale,and a little more relaxing..same ocean just a lot slower,enjoy..

Seattle, Washington
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8. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

Thanks to all for the input.

I've been pouring over all things relating to relocation to a beach town on the Atlantic side. I'm way up her in Seattle and have never been to Florida. I lived on Galveston Island as a younger man so I have the memory of what a beach town is like. I had to retire early (57 yrs old) due to Parkinsons. My health otherwise is very good and I'm a very active guy. The silver-lining to all this is I'm able to live pretty much wherever I like. I think I've narrowed it down to one of 4 places. they are St Augustine, Cocoa Beach, New Smyrna Beach, or Jensen Beach. I'm looking for that quintessential laid-back surf town. any and all input is truly appreciated.

thank you James in Seattle

9. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

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10. Re: New Smyrna or Cocoa Beach?

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