The season in which you take your annual vacation can be as important as the destination and your accommodations, especially when there are specific things you want to do during your getaway. You would probably not take a cruise to Alaska in the winter, nor plan a hiking vacation to the deserts of Arizona in the summer, knowing that the cold and the heat would keep you from doing the things you want to do most. Fortunately, New Smyrna Beach is an all-seasons destination spot, offering fun and excitement at all times of the year, but because there are things you may want to differently in winter and spring, we have provided this ultimate guide to your winter and spring New Smyrna Beach vacation to our beachside hometown!
As you pull on yet another layer of warm winter clothes and trudge out into the wet and icy snow to start your car 20 minutes before you leave to warm it up so you don’t freeze on your daily journey to work, visions of palm trees, sunny skies, and sandy beaches may fill your head. This is your first clue that your winter getaway should be to someplace warm, with balmy temperatures that reach up to the low 70s—New Smyrna Beach should be that place! Here at the beach, winter is actually the most popular time for visitors as the pale-skinned masses shed their layers, don their flip flops, and prepare for a vacation that is destined to be the envy of all their Midwestern friends. Take plenty of pictures and come back home looking tanned and relaxed and try to come up with reasons why every winter vacation you take should not be one to New Smyrna Beach. (Don’t worry, you won’t find one reason to keep you away in the upcoming winters; we can practically guarantee that!)
As you can expect, your first day of adventures may be spent at the beach. Grab the sunscreen, a cooler, towels, umbrellas, and beach chairs, and spend the day doing nothing more effortful than turning from your front to your back and vice versa. As most New Smyrna Beach travel guides will tell you, the water stays warm—warm enough for cold-blooded easterners, in any case—so if you happen to get too warm, a quick dip in the ocean will solve all your problems! Many visitors, however, have issues with just lying around all day, so why not take a walk along the water’s edge, exploring the different homes and hotels that are visible from the beach? Bring a camera along and take artistic pictures of colorful beach houses, being sure to get the sea in the frame or get that one shot of your charming toddler running towards the shorebirds, her bright red bathing suit offering a touch of color, and capture the giant smile on her face as the birds fly up all around her! Perhaps your walk will lead you to the Sea Vista Tiki Bar, where the grouper is always fresh and the drinks are sweet, cold, and refreshing! Choose a table on the patio, overlooking the fun going on at the beach, and as you sip your first Rum Runner of the day, be sure to take a selfie that shows the beach, the plate of grouper your server just placed before you, and your now slightly sunburned and totally relaxed smiling face!
Of course, you may want to spend some of your New Smyrna Beach vacation away from the beach, checking out everything the town has to offer, including New Smyrna Speedway. Offering races pretty much every weekend of the year, as there is no need to shut down for the winter season, New Smyrna Speedway has been an integral part of the community since opening day in 1964. If you follow the races, you will definitely recognize the names of the superstars who have sped around this asphalt track!
For those who prefer a slower pace, the Canal Street Historic District is fun to explore, offering shops, galleries, and restaurants, most of which are housed inside colorful historic buildings. The first Saturday of nearly every month is dedicated to the arts, and as you join in the people sipping beer and wine and strolling from gallery to gallery, chances are you will find the perfect piece of art to add to your collection. You can also meet and talk with the artists and learn firsthand about the dedication they put into their craft and perhaps learn new skills of your own, should your interests lie in that direction. You don’t have to wait until First Saturday, however, to enjoy exploring the galleries found in the historic district, as most are open every day of the week. Featuring a huge selection of galleries, all offering a unique selection of art pieces in all types of mediums, you will be very happy that our Ocean Properties vacation escapes offer fully equipped laundry areas so you can pack light and leave room for the masterpieces you cannot pass by!
Although Christmas and New Year’s look a little different than they do in your own hometown, our beach village still offers all the holiday spirit of the season! Enjoy a parade of boats decorated in their holiday finest at Riverside Park or invest your vacation dollars in helping the less fortunate have a great holiday when you take part in The Spirit of Christmas where proceeds from handmade wreaths, decorated trees, and the gift gallery are divided between quite a few worthy charities. There’s always something going on at New Year’s in the New Smyrna Beach area but staying in and watching the big ball drop over Times Square as you sip champagne and enjoy the luxurious comforts of our New Smyrna Beach holiday hideaways is bound to be the best experience of your winter getaway, especially if you choose a property with a hot tub. Toasting the new year while simmering in the hot bubbles will set the tone for the next 12 months of your life!
Unless you are a college student raring to get away for a wild beach party with hundreds of your closest friends, you are going to fall in love with the peace and quiet that can be found in New Smyrna Beach over your Florida spring vacation. Our town celebrates family, and as you enjoy the surf, sand, and sun with your kids and spouse, you will be making memories that will last a lifetime! Hike along the Doris Leeper Preserve Trail, watching for egret nests as you do, and if you time it right, you may here the noisy cheeps of hungry babies waiting for mama egret to feed them. Continue the natural theme with a visit to the Marine Science Center, located at 100 Lighthouse Drive in Ponce Inlet, and watch your children’s faces light up as they get the opportunity to touch the stingrays who are housed in their touch pools. Stingrays are known for their poisonous barbs, but these stingrays have none, and the rubbery soft feel of their skin never fails to excite the interest of people of all ages! The Blue Room in the Marine Science Center is a fascinating space, housing exhibits of some of Florida’s more unusual sea creatures, including seahorses and lionfish which are not native to our state but are beautiful to look at.
As you may expect, there will be some rain that will fall on your Florida journey—especially in the spring—but that’s ok! Rather than thinking it will ruin everything, you can take this time to enjoy adventures of the interior kind. Take a little me time with a visit to Angie’s Serenity Day Spa at 306 Washington Street, where talented aestheticians offer massage, skin care, lashes, pedicures, manicures, and even permanent makeup services. Being spoiled for a little while will make you forget all about the gray skies, and when you walk out, you will feel like a whole new person! Explore the history of our beachfront town at the New Smyrna Museum of History, located at 120 Sams Avenue, and discover how the past comes alive through exhibits, artifacts, and photographs. Our hometown was founded in 1768, meaning the history goes back to before our nation’s independence, and as you wander through the halls examining its contents, the whispers of those who went before you can almost be heard through the emotional echoes of the artifacts housed under the red tile roof. Shop at the Posh Pineapple, a sweet shop filled with all the charm of our Florida town, sip ice cold craft beers at New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company or spend a happy hour sharpening your escape skills at our New Smyrna Beach Escape Room—all of these activities promise to make your rainy day at the beach one of the happiest days of your stay!
Because the weather doesn’t change all that much throughout the year, we aren’t going to try to divide up restaurants by season; all the places we list here are destined to become your new obsession, no matter what the calendar pages say!
Start your day out with a hearty breakfast at the Beacon Restaurant, located just a stone’s throw from the beach. Fill your plate with country bacon and plate-sized pancakes before meandering down the road for a day of fun under the sun. Also offering a full lunch menu, the Beacon allows travelers to spend the entire day playing at the beach, much to the envy of all your friends and family back home!
When dinnertime rolls around, enjoying the seafood delights offered at Boston’s Fish House will end the day on a bright note. Located at 1414 Atlantic Avenue and featuring the freshest seafood in town, every dish they offer is guaranteed to be the dish you dream about upon your return to real life! Devour a taste of Puerto Rico with a visit to the Taco Shack, located at 642 N Dixie Freeway and serving lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday. Closed on Sundays and Mondays, the Taco Shack is a casual place featuring a walk up window and patio tables for dining and is a spicy treat to be enjoyed whenever possible.
On warmer days, a visit to Frozen Gold Ice Cream Shoppe provides the tastiest way to stay cool, and cookies, pies, or cakes taste even sweeter at the Sweet Boutique, an Uncommon Bakery, because everything in the shop is made to order!
Our homes are designed to pamper and spoil today’s travelers, and when you choose Ocean Properties, you are choosing a lifestyle that never fails to please! Stay home for a day and revel in the luxuries that are a regular amenity in our properties, offering private hot tubs and views of the golf course, beachfront condos and private homes with pools in the backyard. Enjoy a barbecue by the pool, a rainy night spent binge-watching your favorite Netflix shows, and sunsets that make you realize that Mother Nature really does know what she is doing! Renting one of our condos allows you access to community amenities, so heated pools, sports courts, fitness centers, and game or theater rooms can ensure that every minute of your stay will be filled with fun, laughter, and all the excitement you hoped your dream vacation to New Smyrna Beach would provide. Every day will be your favorite day in our selection of condos and homes, even if you decide that you want to sleep late and be lazy.
Reserve your favorite vacation escape today and come home to the comforts provided by Ocean Properties!
Ocean breezes, sand, water – New Smyrna Beach has it all. New Smyrna Beach has adventures on both land and sea, indoors and out, for you to enjoy all summer and into the fall. Don’t forget to sample some of the area’s local cuisine, prepared for locals and guests alike by the best chefs in the area. No matter how you choose to spend your Florida summer vacation, there’s something in New Smyrna Beach for you to enjoy.
Make a splash with surfing lessons. Family-owned and operated, professional surfer Jimmy Lane and his staff will work with first-timers or advanced surfers to catch a wave with your own board or a rental. There are summer surf camps for the kids to keep them busy if you need to enjoy some adult time.
After you’ve had a surfing lesson, change the surf board for a paddleboard and oar. Area companies offer lessons and experiences for everyone to enjoy. If you’d rather strike out on your own, contact a beach gear rental company to see about renting gear and enjoy the SUP experience at your own pace.
If you’d rather be seated when you have a paddle in your hands, New Smyrna Beach has many companies that will take you kayaking. Paddle through the water on a guided tour, take a lesson, or rent a boat and paddle and strike out on your own to explore the waters of New Smyrna Beach.
You won’t be 20,000 leagues under the sea, but you’ll go deep – down to as much as 80 feet salt water – with Sea Dogs Dive Center SCUBA diving. They offer a variety of diving experiences for the novice all the way to expert. Explore Florida’s beautiful reefs or marvel at underwater wreckage. You can even go for a nighttime dive! Non-divers, or ‘bubblewatchers’ are welcome for a small fee, space permitting. They allow spearfishing (and offer lessons) with a license, and lobster hunting during lobster season.
Explore the undersea world of New Smyrna Beach without going too far below the surface. Several companies offer snorkeling tours, many of which may include gear and instruction. Ask about trip length, including day and possible overnight trips. If you’re confident in your skills, you can rent gear from a beach gear rental company and strike out on your own.
After you’ve spent some time in the water and on the sand, head out onto the water. Turtle Mound River Tours offers fun, narrated scenic two-hour boat tours of the Indian River Lagoon. Take a tour via pontoon boat on the Indian River and Canaveral National Sea Shore around mangrove islands. Keep a look out for dolphins, manatees, marine birds, and many other species of sea life. Customize your tour by booking a sunset cruise, shuttle launch from Kennedy Space Center, enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, or even get married! There’s also a ‘family fun fishing adventure.’
The only bad luck you might come across here is not coming home with the catch of the day. Blue Voodoo Outfitters offers fishing charters and is based in the New Smyrna Beach area. Head out in search of your next fish story or catch some fresh fish for a home-cooked lunch or dinner. They offer shallow and fly fishing, inshore, near shore, and even out to sea to the beautiful reefs and fascinating undersea wreckage for an unforgettable deep-sea fishing experience. Depending on the experience you choose, you can look forward to a half day trip, ¾ day trip, or full day trip. For those headed out to sea, the Gulf of Mexico is home to several species, including grouper, king and Spanish mackerel, mahi-mahi, tuna and many others.
Travel up over the water as high as 500 feet! You’ll take off and land on the boat’s specially designed flight deck as you soar to new heights. Many companies in the area take pictures and video of your flight, and some may even provide you with a GoPro so you can capture the experience from a rider’s point of view.
Locals know fall is the best time of year for spotting wildlife. If you visit New Smyrna Beach in late fall, make sure to stop by Haulover Canal to see the manatees. The cooler water temperatures of approximately November through April attracts these majestic mammals. Your best opportunity for spotting is in the early morning, when they’re out for their breakfast of mangrove leaves, algae, shoal grass, and other plants. You can also choose to take a manatee-watching tour.
If you want your New Smyrna Beach fun motorized, a jet ski is just the thing for you. Opt for a group tour around the area or rent a jet ski and follow your own path. Don’t forget a life jacket! Be advised that the State of Florida requires any driver born after 1987 to have a valid boater’s license or complete a temporary certificate online. The certificate needs to be with you whenever you’re out on the water.
A Florida summer vacation to a locale called New Smyrna Beach isn’t complete without a visit to, well, the beach. Grab your beach gear, pack the cooler and some snacks and head down for a day at the sand and sea. Work on your tan, take a dip in the shimmering waters of the Gulf, or rent some gear for activities like snorkeling, stand up paddleboarding, kayaking and more.
There are countless islands dotting the waters around the Florida mainland, but not many that disappear and reappear as the tide changes. The aptly named Disappearing Island is located at Ponce Inlet but is only available by watercraft during low tide. The island is a popular place for boaters, and locals and visitors alike will pack up beach gear, grills, and picnics when they head to the island. Some companies offer tours that stop at the island. In accordance with Florida law, patrons born after January 1, 1988 will need to acquire a temporary Florida boating permit before piloting a jet ski or watercraft.
Lace up your hiking shoes, grab a water bottle and your compass and head out. The many and varied hiking trails and loops offer a challenge for all skill levels. From trails as short as a quarter of a mile to trails over 20 miles, you can fill all or part of your day. Hiking is better in the fall in Florida, when you can stay out and explore longer before the heat of the day takes over.
Take a guided horseback ride along the beach for fall in Florida. Guide your horse on a tour along the sand and through the lapping waves of low tide with a beach tour from Equestrian Adventures of Florida. Advance reservations are a must since the company transports the horses by trailer to meet riders at the starting point on the beach. Rides are available every day, with a minimum of two riders and a maximum of five per party.
If you can’t get to the Daytona International Speedway, there’s a way to get your adrenaline dose right in New Smyrna. The speedway hosts many nationally recognized races and is famous for its steep bank and high average speeds. Well-known racers like Mark Martin, Rusty Wallace, and Tony Stewart have burned rubber here. There are races throughout the year.
Held every second Saturday of the month throughout the year, from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m., the Canal Street Cruise fills historic Canal Street with muscle cars, street rods, cruisers, custom, and classic cars and motorcycles. Up to 500 vehicles can be seen at some events. There is a DJ and Canal Street businesses remain open for shopping.
If you don’t want to take the four-day trip to Miami to watch the Marlins during your summer getaway, take in a minor league game at Jackie Robinson Stadium in Daytona, the home of the Daytona Tortugas. The team is a Class A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds MLB team. If you’ve always dreamed of playing professionally, ask about their on-field batting practice experience: a 90-minute session with all necessary equipment provided.
Treat yourself to seven different types of massages, eleven different types of facials, plus body treatments, mani/pedis, and waxing. Don’t forget to check out their many add-on services to complete your day of relaxation. There are even services tailored just for men who want to be pampered.
Challenge each other to a game of paintball at XPlex Paintball. “Regular” paintball guns shoot .68 caliber paintballs with a speed between 260 and 280 feet per second (FPS). Basic admission includes rental gear like the gun, full-face mask, paintball ammo container, and daily membership, but does not include paintballs. They also offer low-impact paintballs. Low-impact experiences use lighter equipment that shoots at lower velocity (220-240 FPS) with a lower impact on the target.
Spend some time indoors trying to get out! The New Smyrna Escape room has six different themed rooms for you to test your deductive skills, solve the puzzles, and escape in 60 minutes or less to win. You can book a room based on how many people it might take to solve the room and the ‘escape rate’ for each, as well as room difficulty and age recommendations. Patrons of all ages can participate, but those under age 16 will need a waiver signed by a parent or guardian.
While you’re out and about enjoying your vacation, you’re bound to hear your stomach rumble. There are many fun and unique restaurants in New Smyrna Beach to satisfy your cravings, no matter what meal of the day.
This family-owned and operated restaurants serves traditional American fare like pancakes, French toast, and waffles, as well as their famous Lomito a Caballo, a beef tenderloin steak, homemade empanadas, or another one of the Argentinian delights. Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options are available.
Burgers, sandwiches, seafood, an array of specialty drinks and a view of the water. The Breakers’ famous pink building is just steps from the sand. Enjoy your food in the dining room and bar or pull up a seat facing sand and sea.
Another family-owned and operated gem of New Smyrna Beach, Panheads Pizzeria offers pizza, flatbread, pasta, calzones, and other Italian favorites. You can heap on traditional toppings like ham, mushrooms, or black olives, or choose specialty toppings like artichoke hearts, hummus, or pulled pork. Appetizers include homemade meatballs or bread sticks to keep your taste buds entertained until your pie or other main dish arrives.
Featuring an assortment of Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese, Korean, Japanese salads, appetizers, Pho, rice, pastas, Pho noodles, Poke Bowls, seafood, and vegetarian specials, AA Garden Fusion sizzles the senses. Bold, exotic twists are added to familiar dishes and accompany traditional, made-from-scratch selections like spring rolls, traditional Vietnamese Pho, and pot stickers. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available.
If you’re looking for authentic Mexican food, look no further than La Terraza. You’ll find Mexican favorites like gorditas as well as vegetarian selections. If you’re craving something different, try a house special like a taste of the sea with their camarones a la diabla, or the port milanasa. End the meal with a dessert like their authentic churros.
After a day at the beach, you’ll want to head over to the New Smyrna Beach Brewing Co. to find out what’s on tap. They offer seasonal pickings like Smyrna Spumpkin in the fall – a pumpkin/yam beer made from spiced pumpkin ale brewed with pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg. They also have Chocolate Peanut Butter – a porter created with the aromas of peanut butter from a peanut butter and chocolate finish that won’t give you cavities. There’s something for everyone.
If you’re looking for wine, food, beer, and a good time, include some time at Crimson House. They have a wine bar offering a selection of wine and craft beers by the glass. There is a variety of red, white, and specialty wines, snack plates and their newest addition – the Coronado Kitchen – which offers made-from-scratch foods to complement your libation selection while listening to live music.
If you’re looking for somewhere to hear some live music, let your hair down, and dance the night away, Beachside Tavern has you covered. Enjoy drinks, too! All shows are free and start at 9 p.m. You must be 21 years of age or older to get in.
When you’re on vacation you want to make sure you experience everything you came to enjoy. Whether it’s great food or great fun, New Smyrna Beach has it all. Rest, relax, and rejuvenate after each fun-filled day in a beautiful vacation rental by Ocean Properties & Management, Inc. Enjoy the privacy of one of our vacation rental homes or condos in New Smyrna Beach for your home away from home. Choose from a cozy one-bedroom for a small family or sweethearts’ getaway all the way up to a sprawling four-bedroom for a family or group reunion filled with Florida fun and memories.
Contact us today to start planning your ultimate summer or fall getaway to New Smyrna Beach!