Best beaches for families - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Best beaches for families

Updated: July 17, 2013 04:13 PM
© iStockphoto.com / Robert Simon © iStockphoto.com / Robert Simon

By Elina Bolokhova
From Ideas That Spark 

Summer is synonymous with spending time seaside. We've gone ahead and taken the guesswork out of finding a beach that's just right for your family. Here are five sandy locations that offer something for everyone:


1. Cocoa Beach, Fla.

Located just an hour from Orlando, Cocoa Beach is a great escape for families who need a break from non-stop park-hopping. This stretch of sand was first made popular by the sitcom "I Dream of Jeannie," and it earned the moniker "Space Coast" for serving as the site of NASA's space shuttle launches until 2011. Pay a visit to the Ron Jon Surf Shop -- the largest surf store in the world with 2 million annual visitors -- and the Cocoa Beach Surf Museum to get your collective cowabunga on. Then sprawl out on the pristine white sand, collect seashells, throw a line off the fishing pier and get some much-deserved R & R. Access to the beach is free year-round, with beach rentals and showers available.


2. Old Silver Beach, Mass.

It's no secret that Cape Cod has been a beach vacay go-to for years. Out of the Cape's offerings, Old Silver Beach in Falmouth is the ideal location for families with small children. Little hands can mold the soft, white sand into castles. The warm water is shallow thanks to a south-end sandbank and there are rock pools filled with minnows, crabs and other little critters for kids to discover. If you're looking to teach your children to swim, this may be the place to do it. Parking during the peak summer season costs $20 for the entire day.


3. Coney Island Beach, N.Y.

If you find yourself in New York City during the summer, take the subway train down to Coney Island. It might not have picturesque white-sand beaches, but the attractions make it worth the trip. Feeling brave? Take a ride on the historic, 87-year-old Cyclone roller-coaster before exploring the newly resurrected Luna Park Amusement Park. You can also visit the oldest continually operating aquarium in the United States, catch a Brooklyn Cyclones game and let the tykes take in some history at the Coney Island Museum. Don't leave without trying a Nathan's Famous hot dog at the franchise's original location.


4. Myrtle Beach, S.C.

It's easy to be a beach bum at Myrtle Beach: With 60 miles of shoreline, you won't be hard-pressed to find a place to sprawl out. But with so many other activities, you might feel a little guilty about spending your entire day on a beach towel. The little ones will jump at the chance to see large cats at The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species or watch a live alligator feeding at nearby Alligator Adventure. Or you can tour a real castle, like the Mediterranean-inspired Atalaya Castle, which boasts 30 rooms and offers tours for a small fee.Need some nature beyond the standard sand and surf? Head over to the Brookgreen Gardens, the country's first sculpture garden. When the sun sets, make your way to Broadway at the Boardwalk for live entertainment, theater shows and carnival-style rides.


5. Virginia Beach, Va.

The Guinness Book of World Records lists Virginia Beach as the world's longest recreational beach. Spanning 3 miles, the accompanying boardwalk is truly not to be missed. Take a stroll to enjoy the nautical sculptures decorating the side streets -- the crown jewel is the famous 34-foot bronze statue of King Neptune. Virginia Beach is also a fantastic place to keep kids active, since they have their choice of amusement park rides, bike rentals or water sports. To catch a stunning panoramic view, climb all 191 steps to the top of Old Henry Lighthouse. When you get tired of being out in the sun, stop by the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center to admire 800,000 gallons of marine habitats and over 300 hands-on exhibits.


Elina Bolokhova
is a freelance writer, editor and digital content strategist. The former Parenting.com editor has been published in Parenting and Babytalk magazines, as well as on CNN, AOL and Yahoo. She specializes in lifestyle writing, with a focus on beauty, food and travel.


Copyright © 2013 Studio One Networks. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
  • Recently Featured DestinationsMore>>

  • San Jose, Costa Rica

    San Jose, Costa Rica

    San José enjoys springlike temperatures year-round and its location in the Central Valley makes it both stunning and convenient as a base of exploration.More >>
    San José enjoys springlike temperatures year-round and its location in the Central Valley makes it both stunning and convenient as a base of exploration.More >>
  • Martha's Vineyard

    Martha's Vineyard

    New England sea captains' houses, ice cream shops, lighthouses and pristine beaches ... Martha's Vineyard is a picturesque island indeed.More >>
    New England sea captains' houses, ice cream shops, lighthouses and pristine beaches ... Martha's Vineyard is a picturesque island indeed.More >>
  • Cayman Islands

    Cayman Islands

    Ringed by coral reefs and pristine azure waters, the three islands that comprise the Cayman Islands are a marine paradise in the western Caribbean.More >>
    Ringed by coral reefs and pristine azure waters, the three islands that comprise the Cayman Islands are a marine paradise in the western Caribbean.More >>
  • Local NewsMore>>

  • People's United: Retirement Plan Updates

    People's United: Retirement Plan Updates

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:45 AM EDT2014-04-24 11:45:35 GMT
    The Internal Revenue Service is requiring companies to update their retirement plan documents.More >>
    The Internal Revenue Service is requiring companies to update their retirement plan documents.More >>
  • Rutland pharmacist accused of stealing meds

    Rutland pharmacist accused of stealing meds

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:43 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:43:47 GMT
    In Rutland a pharmacist is accused of stealing meds from his employer. 32-year-old Brandon Cigana worked at the Walgreens Pharmacy on Woodstock Avenue. Prosecutors say he used his position there to access the pharmacy's inventory stealing regulated drugs like benzodiazepines, Hydrocodone and Suboxone for himself without a prescription. The Whitehall, New York man faces up to two years behind bars.More >>
    In Rutland a pharmacist is accused of stealing meds from his employer. 32-year-old Brandon Cigana worked at the Walgreens Pharmacy on Woodstock Avenue. Prosecutors say he used his position there to access the pharmacy's inventory stealing regulated drugs like benzodiazepines, Hydrocodone and Suboxone for himself without a prescription. The Whitehall, New York man faces up to two years behind bars.More >>
  • Drug bust in Burlington's Old North End

    Drug bust in Burlington's Old North End

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:44:04 GMT
    Police made a drug bust Wednesday night in Burlington's Old North End. Police and the U.S. Marshal's raided this home on Cedar Street around 8 o'clock. They say they seized heroin and cocaine. Six people were inside when authorities went in. But they're not saying how many arrests were made. The raid was part of an ongoing drug investigation.More >>
    Police made a drug bust Wednesday night in Burlington's Old North End. Police and the U.S. Marshal's raided this home on Cedar Street around 8 o'clock. They say they seized heroin and cocaine. Six people were inside when authorities went in. But they're not saying how many arrests were made. The raid was part of an ongoing drug investigation.More >>
  • Fire damages Lyndonville tree farm

    Fire damages Lyndonville tree farm

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:44:21 GMT
    Fire has damaged ten acres of a Lyndonville tree farm. Eight department were called in to battle the blaze. And it took four hours to get the flames under control. Fire officals say a discarded cigarette combined with dry conditions are to blame. One firefighter suffered from minor smoke inhalation.More >>
    Fire has damaged ten acres of a Lyndonville tree farm. Eight department were called in to battle the blaze. And it took four hours to get the flames under control. Fire officals say a discarded cigarette combined with dry conditions are to blame. One firefighter suffered from minor smoke inhalation.More >>
  • A warning for bird watchers: Give eagles space

    A warning for bird watchers: Give eagles space

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:44:36 GMT
    Bird watchers are being reminded to give nesting bald eagles plenty of space. The Vermont Fish Wildlife Department is urging anyone who sees a nesting eagle not to get closer than 300 feet. Activity too close to their nest can result in them abandoning their young. Harassing a bald eagle is illegal and a violation of the state endangered species statute.More >>
    Bird watchers are being reminded to give nesting bald eagles plenty of space. The Vermont Fish Wildlife Department is urging anyone who sees a nesting eagle not to get closer than 300 feet. Activity too close to their nest can result in them abandoning their young. Harassing a bald eagle is illegal and a violation of the state endangered species statute.More >>
  • Gun fired into New Haven home

    Gun fired into New Haven home

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:44:48 GMT
    Police are searching for who fired a gun into a home in New Haven. It happened late Tuesday night at 2420 Munger Street. Police say a bullet passed through a window of the home. Luckily no one was hurt. Investigators say a stop sign at the intersection of Munger Street and Cobble Road had also been shot. Anyone with information should call state police.More >>
    Police are searching for who fired a gun into a home in New Haven. It happened late Tuesday night at 2420 Munger Street. Police say a bullet passed through a window of the home. Luckily no one was hurt. Investigators say a stop sign at the intersection of Munger Street and Cobble Road had also been shot. Anyone with information should call state police.More >>
  • What triggered a shooting inside the Bennington police station?

    What triggered a shooting inside the Bennington police station?

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:57 PM EDT2014-04-23 22:57:35 GMT
    A Bennington man is in stable condition after being shot by an officer inside the Bennington Police Department. Investigators say Gregory Filo had a knife and was behaving erratically.More >>
    A Bennington man is in stable condition after being shot by an officer inside the Bennington Police Department. Investigators say Gregory Filo had a knife and was behaving erratically.More >>
  • Former Fortune 500 exec indicted in fatal NH crash

    Former Fortune 500 exec indicted in fatal NH crash

    A New Hampshire grand jury has indicted a former Fortune 500 executive on second-degree murder charges in connection with a crash that killed a Vermont couple in December.More >>
    A New Hampshire grand jury has indicted a former Fortune 500 executive on second-degree murder charges in a crash that killed a Vermont couple in December.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.