Grandkids & Beaches Near Disney World
If you’re bringing your grandchildren to Orlando, you can easily slot in a day of sunshine and sandcastle making on either the Atlantic or the Gulf sides of the ocean. Beaches are a perfect multi-generational spot because you can let the kids play in the water and run around in the sand while you kick back on a lounge chair and watch them from a nice, shady spot. Here are some reasons why you shouldn’t forget the beach when you pack up the grandkids for a Disney World vacation.
Sure, it’s nice to add other activities to your beach day, but that’s not necessary. Many grandparents are on a fixed income, and a beach day is a low-cost activity compared to theme park admission, food, and souvenirs. Beach admission is cheap or free, although you’ll generally have to pay for parking. You can pick up a cheap styrofoam cooler, some ice, sandwiches, snacks, and soda at a grocery store for an inexpensive lunch, or just swing by one of the many fast-food restaurants you’ll pass on the way to the ocean. That, plus the gas, is your only expense for a priceless day with your grandchildren.
Part of traveling with your grandchildren is spending time with them and making precious memories together. The crowds and hectic pace at Walt Disney World often get in the way. Beaches are less crowded, making them the perfect backdrop for relaxed multigenerational fun. You can be a kid again yourself as you get down in the sand with your grandkids to help them recreate Cinderella Castle in the sand or wade through the water as it laps on the shore’s edge.
You’ll find everything you need at the beaches, including changing rooms, restrooms, and even water sports and lounge chair rentals. Because they’re so family-oriented, many also have adjacent playgrounds for the grandkids to enjoy.
Disney is right in the middle of the land strip that is Florida, which means that the Atlantic and Gulf sides are almost an equal distance away. Kids get antsy on long car rides, but you can easily be at a beach within 60 to 90 minutes when you start from the Disney area. The Cocoa Beach and Daytona Beach areas are about an hour away, and tack an extra half hour onto that for St. Petersburg and Clearwater.
Lots to Do
Florida’s beaches are located in prime spots that usually have plenty of other tourist attractions in the area. For example, if you venture to Daytona Beach, the grandkids will clamor to head over to the boardwalk and hop aboard the rides at Joyland. They can see manatees in Cocoa Beach or spend part of the day at the Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex admiring the Atlantis space shuttle and meeting astronauts in person. Your family can even visit Winter the Dolphin, star of the family favorite movie “Winter’s Tale,” at the Clearwater Aquarium if you visit a beach in St. Petersburg or Clearwater. The kids will say, “You’re the best grandma and grandpa ever!” when your beach day turns into a multifaceted adventure.
Where there are a lot of great Florida Beaches…two are inside of two hours from Disney World are Ranked in the Top 5 of All Beaches Throughout the World. One is Siesta Key Beach located south of St Petersburg. It holds the ranking of being the second-best in the World. It offers sugary white sand. The other ranked #5 in Clearwater Beach which is located a bit closer in Clearwater, Florida just off of I-4.