Thursday, July 4, 2013
Florida - Cocoa Beach - 6/12/2013
We took a break from the parks today to enjoy a swim in the Atlantic Ocean at Cocoa Beach, FL. Cocoa Beach is a little over an hours drive from Orlando. Cocoa Beach's heyday was during the 1960's when the US Space program was in full swing. Cocoa Beach has fallen on hard times since the cancellation of the Space Shuttle Program and very little to follow it. Cocoa Beach is adjacent to Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center. Launches of rockets carrying satellites or other research platforms still occur but it is all small compared to the glory days. Increased tourism is helping a lot and there is a cruise terminal located there with surrounding resorts so I was happy to see that things weren't too depressed.
The kids were pretty excited since this was their first time to see the ocean and swim in it. Once they got in we had a hard time getting them out. We had them lathered up in heavy duty sun tan lotion but we were concerned that the water would taken some of it off and they would get burned. We didn't want to ruin the rest of the trip with painful burns. Of course, as we tried to call for them, they couldn't hear and when we waved for them, they couldn't see us.....right! Thankfully, once we got them on shore, we could see that no major burns occurred.
There are a number of beach parks along the coast. Some you have to pay to use and some you don't. We selected Lori Wilson Park for our day based on TripAdvisor comments about it's cleanliness. It was nice and there was a life guard station right in front of where the kids were swimming. We taught the kids about rip tides and what to do if you get caught in one before they got in the water.
We weren't equipped very well for hours on the beach. We had no tent or umbrella to provide shade. It was hot if you weren't in the water. We retreated to a shelter house just off the beach where we could see the kids but also have some shelter.
After the beach we did a little shopping in Ron Jon's Surf Shop which was right next to the beach.
After shopping, we decided the make it a Ron Jon day and drive a few miles to his resort for lunch.
It's back to the parks tomorrow.....the Magic Kingdom.