Florida’s Space Coast is more than manned trips to the moon and rocket launches. The space coast is full of so much more to discover and explore.
A Little About the Space Coast
The Space Coast stretches 72 miles along the Atlantic in Brevard County, with Titusville to the north, Melbourne Beach to the south and with Port Canaveral and Cocoa Beach in between.
Miles of beautiful beaches, vast wilderness areas, and tons of waterways make the Space Coast one of the leaders in tourism. So many parks to visit and one of Florida’s primary sea turtle nesting grounds. Be sure to check out the Sea Turtle Preservation Society if you would like to tour a turtle nesting area. If you love to surf, the Space Coast is your choice, along with a collection of charming beach towns and beautiful sandy beaches. There is so much to explore!
Kennedy Space Center
A must stop if you love anything space. So much to explore and enjoy at the Kennedy Space Center.
Plan to spend a whole day at the center. Highlights include a walk through the exhibit of the past 50 years of space exploration, meeting an astronaut through the Astronaut Encounter, and experiencing the new Space Shuttle Atlantis immersion exhibit. We enjoyed lunch with an astronaut and we loved listening to the kids asking the astronaut questions about space travel. You can try a simulated shuttle launch, watch a Space Station IMAX 3-D movie, and see real rockets in the Rocket Garden. On our visit, the Atlantis space shuttle hadn’t been brought to the space center yet and we can’t wait to go back to see it. The bus tour of Behind the Gates is a must see.
One of the perks of living not far from the Space Coast is when there are rocket launches. You can see them from our home, especially at night. When the shuttle program was still active, those were the best to see. One of the flights at night lit up the sky like the sun. It was incredible! The picture above is what we normally see on a day launch.
People of all ages love to visit Titusville with activities including rocket launches, bird watching, and fun airboat rides. I describe Titusville as the size of a postage stamp when it came to viewing launches. The beach areas are also a great place to sit while you watch the rocket launches even today. But you must get there early no matter where you go to view.
The Space View Park is the best seat in the house to watch any launch and a tribute to the space program with monuments, mission plaques and bronze handprints of six of the original seven astronauts.
Titusville is also a gateway to nature with the Indian River Lagoon and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge with more threatened and endangered species than all other Florida refuges combined.
The Canaveral National Seashore is a 24-mile-long beach which is the longest undeveloped beach on Florida’s east coast. Home to the sea turtle nesting areas during the summertime and has guided tours of the nesting sites.
TV Nostalgia & Cocoa Beach
For those of you who remember the TV program I Dream of Jeannie with Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman, you will know that it was centered around the Space Coast and Cocoa Beach. Only 1 episode was actually filmed in the actual area if Cocoa Beach.
We just had to make a stop at the I Dream of Jeannie street to take some pictures and reminisce over the show and how much we loved it.
Cocoa Beach is such a lovely town to visit also. Very eclectic and if you love art, its the town for you. During the space boom of the 1960s, Cocoa Beach became the place to live for families who worked at the Kennedy Space Center. The old-time Florida feeling can still be seen in many areas. Before there was a Silicone Valley, you would find the most technical minds around in Cocoa Beach. Many retired employees of the space center still live in the area. Be sure to stop by Historic Coca Village for shopping, dining, and events all year long.
If you are planning a family beach vacation, a weekend getaway, or just a day at the beach, you’ll find everything you need in Cocoa Beach and the Space Coast area to make your stay one to remember. Deep sea fishing, eco-tours, watersports, surfing and tons of shopping are just a few items to explore. If you love to take cruises, Port Canaveral is a short drive away. The Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier is a must to see and parking is a premium and most areas you have to pay to park.
Since Mr. G and I are always on the look for historical homes, Brevard County didn’t disappoint with the Pritchard House and the Porcher House.
The Pritchard House opened to the public in December 2010. I love the colors used to bring this beauty back to life. Tours are available but only by reservations. The house can be reserved for weddings, meetings, and private functions. Special public events take place throughout the year including civil war reenactments and parties.
The Porcher House was built in 1916 by Edward Postell Porcher for his wife, Byrnina M. Peck and is a wonderful example of 20th-century classical revival antebellum architecture which was adapted to the Florida climate. The home is open to the community to enjoy as a special place for meetings, weddings, parties, luncheons, and parties. Mr. Porcher is credited as being the first citrus grower to grade fruit for shipping. He also invented the machine which was used to wash the fruit before shipping.
Melbourne is the largest city on the Space Coast offering beaches, fishing, golf, snorkeling, and many other outdoor activities. You’ll find all types of shopping and restaurants in Historic Downtown Melbourne.
The Brevard Zoo is a true experience of Florida habitat by walking along boardwalks surrounded by lush vegetation, paddle-boat around the 22-acre restored wetlands area in the Wild Florida exhibit or kayak around the 10-acre Expedition Africa exhibit. There is also a play lagoon, touch tank for kids and zip line. There is so much to do at the zoo for a full day of fun.
If you are in the area anytime from Thanksgiving through Christmas, be sure to check out the Space Coast Lightfest. Mr. G and I loved the drive through this spectacular light show. We actually went through it 2 times!!
A 1.1-mile journey located in Wickham Park you will enjoy music, a chance for the kids to visit with Santa and 3 million twinkling holiday lights. All proceeds help support the Boy Scouts of America.
We have been to the space coast a few times now and have found different things to do each time. We plan on going back to Kennedy Space Center to see the Shuttle Atlantis and see the things we missed the first time we went.
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I’m just a country girl loving my geeky life with my wonderful husband, always taking pictures, getting my hands dirty in the garden, being crafty, exploring with travels and enjoying all this on a budget. But above all, living my faith as a child of God!