2022 Guide to Spring Break in Cocoa Beach: Where to Go & Things to Do

February 8, 2022

Winter chill got you down? If you’ve been searching high and low for that tropical beach feeling, and missing the sensation of sand between your toes, Cocoa Beach could be your answer.

Seashores full of golden sand, sunny cloudless skies, and legendary surf entice even the most experienced beach bums to hightail it to the Atlantic Ocean come mid-March. Follow along with our handy guide to learn everything you need to know about Spring Break in Cocoa Beach.

This Central Florida oasis is just an hour's drive from Orlando and happily hosts spring breakers from all over the United States. 

While once just considered a wintertime getaway, spring break season in this laidback coastal community now recruits some crowds. However, for families looking to divvy up their vacation time between theme parks, nature trails, and saltwater excitement Cocoa Beach is as good as it gets.

Where to Stay

If you are banking on more time with Mickey than scouring for seashells, you can save both time and money by booking any of our premier options for Orlando Hotels and Resorts. From luxurious European-inspired timeshares to fully equipped resorts boasting lazy rivers and waterslides, we provide an endless array of accommodations. 

Sleep serenely in tiki-inspired majesty just minutes from Disney, or embrace the spacious intimacy of a private pool or townhome. As always, make your reservations with confidence knowing you are always guaranteed our lowest rates. 

Close up of a lifeguard stand with the sun setting behind it on Cocoa Beach near Orlando, Florida, USABeaches, Boardwalks, and Bars

Crystal clear blue waters, calm waves, and a shallow beach break have been luring surfers and the sea curious to Cocoa Beach for generations. 

Besides being the home of renowned surf legend Kelly Slater, Cocoa Beach is an eclectic paradise of unspoiled nature, watersport adventure, and incredible imbibing. 

Make the most of your visit to this sunscreen-scented nirvana by carving out some time for fun in the sun at Lori Wilson Park.

Related Post: Current Festivals and Events in Cocoa Beach

Scope out the waves and debate whether to paddle out, or stick to dry land and explore the diverse flora and fauna of this over 32-acre beach park. Marvel at the majesty of mother nature as you hike past impressive dunes, sea oats, seagrass, and palmettos.

Stop for a mini reprieve at one of the park’s three wooden pavilions (two of which are named after Kelly Slater), or get down with some sandy competition on their volleyball court.

Cocoa Beach Pier

Beach boardwalk fun runs full strength at the world-famous Cocoa Beach Pier which provides over 800 ft of family-friendly thrills. Stretching generously over the Atlantic Ocean, kids and adults of all ages will be clamoring to explore the delicious eats, stylish retail options, and laidback live music scene.

Grab a creamy ice cream cone at Sea Dogs, unwind with a pina colada at the Rikki Tiki Tavern, or scope out that perfect souvenir at the Tropical Threads Boutique. Tiny groms can make their WSL come true when they book a lesson at the Cocoa Beach Surf School, while mom and dad can breathe easy knowing there are year-round lifeguards on duty. 

Cocoa Beach Florida Pier

Cocoa Beach, Florida, USA at the pier.

Ron Jon Surf Shop

A Cocoa Beach icon in its own right, the Ron Jon Surf Shop has been supplying tourists and locals alike with bikinis, boardshorts, board rentals, and more for over sixty years. This one-of-a-kind retail location is the world’s largest surf shop and takes up an impressive 52,000 square feet of beachfront real estate.

Open 24 hours a day to fulfill your every beach fantasy, no visit to Cocoa Beach would be complete without the purchase of a Ron Jon T-shirt or boogie board. Have your camera at the ready as you’ll need to document every inch of this water-soaked empire, complete with fish tanks and flowing waterfalls. 

Panama City Beach

Set sail for waves of water sports adventure, sublime seafood, and dolphin day cruises when you head to Panama City. Soak in every sun-blessed moment of this subtropical climate when you swim and splash the day away in the sparkling waters of St. Andrew’s Bay.

Less hustle and bustle than the student-packed boardwalks of Cocoa, Panama City is ideal for families of couples seeking a salty reprieve. Feast on mouth-watering mollusks on the Oyster Trail, rent some snorkel gear

Daytona Beach

Equally known for its infamous International Speedway and raucous spring break party scene, Daytona Beach hardly needs any introduction. Containing 23 miles of pristine white sand beaches, this buzzing city transforms into a throbbing mecca of bikini and board short clad hard bodies come March.

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Suck back frozen Hurricanes, pool party hop to your heart’s content, or simply sprawl out at the beach for some Vitamin D. While families may choose to eschew Daytona Beach for the rising levels of rowdy, you can find solace and homespun fun at the recently restored Daytona Beach Pier.

Scream your head off on the ‘Slingshot’ which propels you almost 400 ft in the air, or tackle some nostalgic boardwalk games like whack a mole and skee ball. For a dose of splish-splashing fun, get soaked at the Daytona Lagoon, or attempt injecting some educational entertainment into your vacation at The Museum of Arts and Sciences. 

Space Coast

To infinity and beyond! Florida’s Space Coast is America’s gateway to the great unknown. For over 70 years this stretch of paradise has served as the jumpoff point for interplanetary and exploration.

Home to NASA, the Kennedy Space Center, and a host of cutting-edge companies like SpaceX, Boeing, United Launch Alliance, and Blue Origin, there’s no better place to witness a rocket launch.

To see if your Spring Break plans coincide with one of the most exhilarating occurrences on earth, check the official launch schedule here

Kennedy Space Center 

Mission Control, come in Mission Control! For decades mankind has been transfixed by the cosmos. The final frontier represents untold opportunities for innovation, exploration, and growth.

At the Cape Canaveral Kennedy Space Center, this passion for the past, present, and future of the space program is put on display like never before. Visitors can weave their way through tons of hands-on exhibits, movies, presentations, and even meet with a real-life Astronaut!

Space nerds will be in intergalactic heaven as they come face to face with the Space Shuttle Atlantis. Then, journey to the red planet, and walk among rockets from NASA’s Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs.

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Your one-hour fully guided tour of the Space Center not only includes all transportation but ensures you eek out every last moment of astronaut-fueled awesomeness. 

Kennedy Space Center AtlantisCanaveral National Seashore

Not all of the Space Coast excitement lies in the skies above. In fact, this area is also the keeper of a bevy of beautiful beaches including the Canaveral National Seashore. This secluded seaside U.S. National Park contains the longest stretch of undeveloped Atlantic coastline in the state.

Pack up a picnic and prime yourself for tons of tranquility, diverse species of flora, and historic sites. Traverse this barrier island ecosystem composed of dune, hammock and lagoon habitats as you keep your eyes peeled for loggerhead sea turtles, Atlantic salt marsh snakes, and bald eagles.

Truly pioneering types can also commit to backcountry camping to escape the hustle and bustle of the spring breaker crowds. 

Theme Parks

Walt Disney World Resort

Need a break from the sunburns and sandy feet of your Cocoa Beach days? The magic of Mickey awaits you at Walt Disney World Resort, where there has never been a better time to embrace the enchantment of their four thrilling theme parks.

In addition, look out for hungry hippos on the Jungle Cruise then sing along to ‘It’s a Small World.’

Or, discover new and electrifying nightly firework shows at Epcot.

From the thrilling Flights of Passage in the world of Avatar to the intergalactic immersion of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, no one can resist the timeless charm, appeal, and excitement of a Walt Disney World getaway. 

Wide shot of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida, USA

photo credit: Renato Mitra via Unsplash

SeaWorld Orlando

Harness the awe of an aquarium, and combine it with the pure power and adrenaline of Florida’s best roller coasters and you have the SeaWorld Orlando experience. Equal parts education and entertainment, SeaWorld Orlando has been capturing the imagination of budding marine biologists for almost 50 years.

Hold on for dear life on Mako, take a river rapid plunge on Infinity Falls. Or hightail it to Antarctica to observe five species of penguins. Little ones will love palling around with Big Bird and the gang in Sesame Street Land. Meanwhile, animal lovers will admire the care and training that goes into the new Dolphin Adventures show.

Related Post: Orlando on a Budget: How to Visit Without Breaking the Bank

Thrill-seekers should stay tuned as on February 18, 2022, the brutal Ice Breaker coaster will be released into the wild. Running on pure Arctic terror and strength, this death-defying coaster features four airtime-filled launches. As well as a reverse launch into the steepest beyond the vertical drop in Florida. 

Father and Daughter close to a Beluga Whale at SeaWorld Orlando - Orlando, Florida, USAAquatica by SeaWorld Tickets

Double up on that SPF because it’s time to fulfill your quota of H2O-inspired fun at Aquatica by SeaWorld. Splash, slip, and slide your way through over 43 slides, rivers, and lagoons at America’s #1 waterpark. A watery treat for swimmers of all ages. Aquatica boasts 84,000 sq feet of sparkling white sand beaches and under the sea attractions.

Steel yourself for a whole new wave of adventure coming this March. Tackle Reef Plunge, a water slide ride like no other. Speed, twist and turn your way through over 330 feet of eye-catching translucent cutouts and rings. Meanwhile, peer out at a staggering marine habitat containing dolphins, leopard sharks, sardines, and other cold-water fish.

Feisty park goers seeking a high stakes drop will lose their cool on the Riptide Race. It holds the distinction of being the world's tallest dueling racer. 

woman with fish underwaterUniversal Orlando Resort

Put the pedal to the metal with Hagrid and Harry. Or cause mischievous mayhem with the minions. Then, run for your life from a vengeful mummy. With three theme parks full of rides, attractions, and entertainment full of your favorite characters. You're never too far from the cinematic magic at Universal Orlando Resort.

Get soaked on the Krakatau Aqua Coaster or race through the streets of NYC with Jimmy Fallon. Then, try to avoid the terrifying grip of the T.Rex on Jurassic Park River. At Universal Orlando, you're more than just a fan.

Be part of the action as you dive beyond the screen. Peer at the sets, sounds, and exhilarating moments of your beloved heroes, characters, and villains.

Keep the party vibes flowing when you stick around for the annual Universal Mardi Gras parade. The festivities run from February 5th - April 24th, 2022. Featuring spicy space-themed floats, live concerts, Bayou flavor, beads, and more!

Close up of the Universal Studios Mardi Gras Parade with a huge float decorated with greens, yellows, and purple plus a large crowd around the float in Orlando, Florida, USA

photo credit: Universal Orlando Resort

Related Post: What to Expect at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Center

Cocoa Beach may no longer be a Spring Break secret. But, that's no reason to let the crowds that frequent these golden kissed shores get you down.

From hanging ten at the Cocoa Beach Pier. Then, marveling at the seashells and coastal beauty on the Canaveral National Seashore. There are oodles of ways to enjoy the Atlantic Ocean this spring break.

Pound some cold beers in your bikini at Daytona. Or, head to Orlando for the day to meet up with Goofy, Mickey, and Minnie.

With near-perfect weather, plenty of salt-water-infused activities, and sunshine to spare. There’s never been a sweeter time to indulge in a Cocoa Beach Spring Break vacation!

How Will You Be Spending Your Cocoa Beach Spring Break?

Let us know in the comments below!

isis with mural in background

Written By Isis Maya

A New York native, Isis-Maya spent most of her professional life working in TV production until a vacation whisked her away to Central America and her love o ...

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