Archive for October, 2012

New Smyrna Beach Makes National Geo’s List of World’s 20 Best Surf Towns

I’ve spent most of my entire life surfing. The rest I wasted. ~ Unknown

Want some news guaranteed to float your flip-flops?

New Smyrna Beach just splashed onto National Geographic’s list of the World's 20 Best Surf Towns. The folks at National Geographic were looking for destinations with “consistent waves, inviting accommodations, friendly locals, fun nightlife, delicious food and plenty of activities should the ocean go flat.” They cited the town’s 13 miles of beach, 300 surfable days a year, warm water and great fishing.

Although I am not a skilled surfer (an epic understatement if there ever was one) I couldn’t agree more. New Smyrna Beach has loads of little shops and cafes, a thriving arts community and its beaches are wide and flat with golden-hued sands. You can drive on the beach – which is great if you have surfing gear – or opt for their beach that doesn’t allow cars. And parking is free.

Yes, you should visit!

Insider’s tip: For a great burger smack-dab on the beach, eat at Breakers (518 Flagler Ave., New Smyrna Beach, Fla., 32169, 386- 428-2019).

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Photo: Port St. Joe

St. Joseph Peninsula State Park has some of the highest sand dunes in the continental United States.

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Photo: Port St. Joe

Sea oats frame beachgoers at St. Joseph Peninsula State Park.

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Video: Escape to Santa Rosa Island

Just east of Pensacola Beach and west of Navarre Beach on Santa Rosa Island, I found the ultimate escape.

It has beaches thick with soft, white sand, and turquoise waters. It has beach houses snuggled close to the Gulf, bike trails to ride and kayaks to paddle. The waters are brimming with fish, and to say it’s not crowded is an understatement.

And I’ll bet you’ve never seen it. Check out my video for a peek at this remarkable island. 

Continue reading Video: Escape to Santa Rosa Island »

Photo: Port St. Joe

On Cape San Blas, a Salinas Park boardwalk rewards walkers with a vista of St. Joseph Bay and kayakers with an entry point.

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Photo: Port. St. Joe

Near Port St. Joe, the bend of Cape San Blas offers great boating and fishing.

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Photo: Port St. Joe

You can wade the flats of St. Joseph Bay for fishing, or rent a kayak at St. Joseph Peninsula State Park and float them.

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Photo: Port St. Joe

The beaches of St. Joseph Peninsula State Park offer white sand and uncrowded views.

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Photo: Port St. Joe

Minutes away from downtown Port St. Joe, kayakers ply the clear waters along Cape San Blas.

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Video: Wekiwa Springs State Park

It has to be the best six bucks I’ve ever spent.

A whopping $6 bought my husband Paul and I entry into Wekiwa Springs State Park, where we spent the day exploring a vast wilderness of pine forest via bicycles. You can also canoe the river, hike, or snorkel or swim in the crystal-clear waters of the spring.

Check out my video for a glimpse at the pristine paradise, located in Apopka, just one hour from most central Florida attractions.

Continue reading Video: Wekiwa Springs State Park »