5 Best Spring Break Beaches in Florida

Spring break vacation is by far the largest student event of the year in the USA. A tradition that originated by university students in the 1930s in the United States during early spring, spring break usually takes place in mid-April and lasts from a few days to a week. Over the years, this vacation tradition is now also observed outside of the US.

Spring break has become extremely popular due to the affordable hotel rates during the spring break period, especially in US states like California, Arizona and Florida. As with much of Florida, tourism is very important to the local economy. Cities like the Jacksonville area and Panama City, in particular, are in high demand during times of the year like spring break for their great weather, beautiful beaches and plenty of activity options.

Who doesn’t love a good beach vacation? This year, instead of heading to the crowded shores of popular seaside escapes, consider checking out something a little more off the radar. The following beach towns are perfect destinations for travelers looking for sun and sand, as well as eclectic shopping, dining and lodging.

best spring break beaches in Florida

Here are some of the best spring break beaches in Florida:

1. Panama City

One of Florida’s best spring break vacation destinations for families and the number one choice for students wanting the ultimate Spring Break experience. Panama City, particularly Panama City beach is considered the Spring Break capital of the world. Panama City is a city and the county seat of Bay County in Florida.

Where to stay in Panama City? There are plenty of daytime and nighttime activities, including free concerts and other similar events, available in Panama City and hotel accommodations that will fit within any budget. Hotels like the Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Panama City, offer comfort and convenience from the center of town.

It is located near Panama City Mall, a few minutes from the Shipwreck Island Waterpark and nearby some of the city’s best beaches. Otherwise, if you wish to stay directly on the Panama City Beach, off Front Beach Road, the Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Panama City Beach, is within walking distance.

Located off the Gulf of Mexico, Panama City has over 27 miles of white sand beaches with emerald green waters. Without leaving the continental US, in Panama City, you can find beaches as pristine as some of those found in the Bahamas and enjoy them at some of the very best and most talked about beach clubs in the US.

Panama City is known to be a four-season paradise for water sports enthusiasts, mainly because every beach offers a ton of activities, such as Kayaking, paddle boarding, sailing and kiteboarding.

Some of the best sites and attractions to visit in Panama City are Panama City Mall for a great shopping spree, the SkyWheel at Pier Park for incredible views of the Emerald Coast, McKenzie Park and St. Andrews State Park for a relaxing day in the sun.

You can also go to the Panama City Beach Winery to treat yourself to a tasting of wine from local vineyards and the Bay Point Golf Club at Bay Point Resorts to enjoy on championship golf courses and tennis courts on a 1,100 acres nature preserve.

If you are also interested in family-friendly activities, the Shipwreck Island Waterpark features a blue lagoon, a lazy river and an enormous wave pool. Alternatively, head over to the Shell Island Boat Rentals & Tours to rent a jet ski, a pontoon or a fishing boat or book a guided day trip to uninhabited islands or to snorkel with bottlenose dolphins.

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2. Jacksonville

Jacksonville is another one of Florida’s preferred vacation destinations during spring break, especially for families. Though Jacksonville is the most populous city in Florida, it has become a popular destination for spring break on a budget for people between the ages of 25 to 34.

Due to its proximity to the Atlantic Coast, Jacksonville is appealing to those seeking a sun-filled spring vacation filled with beaches offering plenty of activities, away from the popular party areas, like Panama City Beach or Daytona Beach. There are also plenty of accommodation options in the center of town where many of the city’s businesses are located.

Hotels like the Country Inn & Suites in Jacksonville, is a convenient accommodation option for easy access to the city’s main attractions and exciting activities, its major businesses and its beaches.

Jacksonville is home to a variety outdoor venues with great family-friendly activities, including the Marineland Dolphin Adventure, a small park where you can enjoy a shallow water or a deep-water experience with a dolphin; the Metropolitan Park, a 27-acre nature reserve; and to the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, where you can visit more than 2000 animals and 1000 varieties of plants.

Other spring break destinations in Florida

If Jacksonville and Panama City are not your scene and you are searching for some cheap places to go in Florida for spring break, there are few other cities you could look into. Each offers plenty of sponsored activities held on the beach during the day and an abundance of wild nightclubs that run late into the evening, if that is more your scene.

3. Miami

Other than Panama City, Miami is one of Florida’s premier spring break destinations for college students for its vibrant mix of cultures and ethnicity. Its pristine beaches offer plenty of family-friendly activities, and for those more interested in the party scene, also plenty of nightlife.

4. Key West

Otherwise, island cities like Key West are the perfect location to spend your spring break vacation for its diverse and laid-back charm. Is there something about Key West that makes it stand out from the rest of Florida that makes it worth visiting? Key West is the southernmost point in the continental United States with beautiful coral reefs, making it a great destination for diving and snorkeling.

There is a lively night life on Duval Street that rivals New Orleans but with less emphasis on alcohol.

5. Daytona Beach

Spring Break is the most anticipated week of the year for American college students. The bikini bikers and innocent flirting have given way to contests of wet shirts and marathons of shots. The MTV was commissioned to popularize it in the 90s with a special program that mixed concerts of pop stars. The first broadcast was made from Daytona Beach in Florida.

Daytona Beach is another long-time favorite spring break destination both locals and visitors alike. A great party atmosphere, with iconic events like Daytona 500 and Bike Week, Daytona Beach is also home to miles of white sand beaches and great hotels.

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Kalyan Panja