15 Fun and Exciting Things to Do in Daytona Beach That You Will Enjoy

Steve Cummings

Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach, Florida, is the perfect destination if you're looking for a family-friendly place with lots of fun and exciting adventures. Located on Florida's Atlantic Coast, Daytona Beach is known for its beautiful 23-mile stretch of white-sand beaches. From relaxing on the beach and visiting museums to going to events and enjoying lively parties, there are many things to do in Daytona Beach. One highlight is the legendary NASCAR races at Daytona International Speedway. Whether you want the loud sound of speeding cars or the soothing sounds of beach waves, Daytona Beach has something for everyone.

Not sure what to do in Daytona Beach? Start planning your dream vacation with this list of the fun and exciting things to do in Daytona Beach, Florida

1. Explore Daytona Beach in Style

Daytona Beach
credit: Depositphotos

One of the best activities in Daytona Beach is spending time on the wide sandy shore. Daytona Beach is often known as the “World's Most Famous Beach.” There are 23 miles of pristine, sandy shoreline to enjoy at any time of day or night, and they are open for walking. If you want to drive, there are some areas where you can park on the beach, but only from sunrise to sunset, depending on the tide.

On the beach, you can enjoy the waves, bask in the warm Florida sun, or look for seashells. From May to October, you might even see baby sea turtles hatching from their nests and going to the ocean. But remember to keep a safe distance, especially if you're visiting without any guide. 

The best way to explore the beach is with a 75-minute Segway tour. Before you start, there is a short 15-minute training to make sure you know how to ride the Segway Safely. Once you're comfortable with it, you get 60 minutes to have fun and explore.

2. Explore Daytona Beach Boardwalk & Pier

Daytona Beach Pier
Credit: Depositphotos

Location: 12 N Ocean Ave, Daytona Beach, FL

If you're looking for things to do during the day or at night in Daytona Beach, the Boardwalk & Pier is a great choice. The Joyland Amusement Center, located on the Boardwalk, has a Ferris wheel, thrilling rides, and bumper cars. There is also the Mardi Gras Fun Center with arcades and carnival games. 

If you go just north and across the street from the Boardwalk, you'll find even more family fun at Daytona Lagoon, a place with water activities! And if you go south on A1A, you'll see some super tall thrill rides at Screamer's Park. These rides are open every day, all year round! At The Pier, you can go fishing, relax in the sun, or grab a tasty bite from the famous Joe's Crab Shack.

The Boardwalk hosts Daytona Beach Bandshell concerts and fireworks from May to September. Your time in Daytona Beach will be unforgettable, with exciting rides, street performers, and many family-friendly activities. 

3. Enjoy the View from Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse and Museum

Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse
Credit: Depositphotos

Location: 4931 S Peninsula Dr, Ponce Inlet, FL

For history buffs, the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse and Museum is a must-see. It is Florida's oldest lighthouse. The lighthouse was named after the man who first sailed into this inlet with a fleet of Spanish ships. It was built in 1887 as part of a series of ten lighthouses famous for shipwrecks along Florida's east coast. The Ponce de Leon Lighthouse is located 20 minutes south of Daytona Beach in Ponce Inlet. 

In 1998, the lighthouse was designated a National Historic Landmark. If you want to climb the lighthouse, be ready for more than 200 steps to the summit. It is worth it, with wonderful views all around—the ocean, the Intercoastal Waterway, and the inlet.

After admiring the sights and learning about the history, you can relax at Lighthouse Point Park. The 52-acre park spans along the barrier island's Atlantic shore. You can explore the park boardwalks, wander along the sandy beaches, or enjoy a relaxing picnic under ancient oak trees. If you're lucky, you might spot sea turtles, dolphins, and manatees in the water. The park is also pet-friendly. Let your furry pals run around and burn off some energy!

4. Visit Daytona International Speedway

Daytona Beach
Credit: Depositphotos

Location: 1801 W International Speedway Blvd, Daytona Beach, FL

If you enjoy racing cars and find yourself in Daytona Beach, head to the Daytona International Speedway. Known as the “World Center of Racing,” the speedway is the most famous attraction in Daytona Beach. It is known for hosting the Daytona 500, NASCAR's most prestigious event.

As you walk through the garages, you will see behind-the-scenes action and learn about the history of the raceway. There are many tour options available. You can see the track's 31-degree banks and even go up to the Victory Lane stage for a selfie with the Speedway Tour tram ride.

A VIP Tour is a great option for a truly unforgettable experience. The trips last about two to three hours and include an exclusive NASCAR Archives and Research Center visit. You'll see a large collection of race cars, trophies, and racing artifacts. While there, visit the Living Legends Motorsports Hall of Fame or enjoy the NASCAR Racing Experience, where you can ride with an instructor at race speeds.

Click here to learn and book Daytona International Speedway Tours.

5. Meet Locals at Daytona Flea and Farmers Market

Location: 1425 Tomoka Farms Rd. Daytona Beach, FL, 

Opening Hours: Friday – Sunday: 9 am – 5 pm

If you want to see Daytona Beach like the locals do, go to the Daytona Flea & Farmers Market. This large farmers' market, or flea market, is three times the size of a soccer field and comprises over 600 stalls selling a variety of items. You can purchase fruits and vegetables, clothing, jewelry, refreshments, and even attend a vintage car show every month. There is always something exciting going on.

Visiting this flea market is a great way to support local merchants and businesses in Daytona. Whether they're just getting started or have been around for a while, supporting these locals is a good idea!  

6. Attend a Polynesian Fire and Dinner Show

Location: 3201 S Atlantic Ave, Daytona Beach, FL

If you're looking for an exciting and memorable evening in Daytona Beach, attend the Polynesian Fire dinner show. It is a fantastic outdoor dining experience, perfect for the whole family. When you arrive, you can meet the performers and have a casual conversation. This event features a buffet dinner served outside in a tropical setting. Along with the delicious food, you'll be treated to a traditional performance that includes traditional Polynesian songs and dances representing cultures from Tonga, Hawaii, New Zealand, Samoa, and Tahiti. The show's highlight is an exciting fire knife display and hula dancing. It is an evening full of fun and entertainment for people of all ages. This show is very popular, so make sure to get tickets in advance so you don't miss it.

7. Wander through Tomoka State Park

Tomoka State Park
Credit: Depositphotos

Location: 2099 N Beach Street, Ormond Beach, Florida

If you prefer outdoor activities, Tomoka State Park is a wonderful spot to visit. It is only a 20-minute drive north of the city. This 2,000-acre park, built in 1945, features a variety of outdoor activities and draws tourists from worldwide. The park, located along the Tomoka River, is ideal for fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and paddleboarding. You can rent a canoe or purchase camping gear for an overnight stay at the Tomoka Outpost in the park's north. 

Besides outdoor activities, Tomoka State Park has Native American artifacts, exhibits on Florida's history, and wildlife displays. Bird watchers also flock to the park, home to around 160 different bird species, including majestic birds of prey such as bald eagles.

Manatees, bobcats, deer, and alligators are other animals you may see. The Tomoka Mounds and Middens archeological site is an important feature that sheds light on the ancient Timucuan people who lived in the region. 

If you forgot to pack food for your day trip, no worries! Tomoka State Park is close to several restaurants that serve snacks, breakfast, and lunch. 

Whether exploring the scenic trails, spending a quiet day surrounded by nature, or paddling along the river in a kayak, Tomoka State Park offers a peaceful and educational experience not far from Daytona Beach.

8. Visit the Museum of Arts & Sciences (MOAS)

Location: 352 S Nova Rd, Daytona Beach, FL 32114

If you love science, art, and history, you should visit the Museum of Arts and Sciences or MOAS. It is affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution and is the largest museum of its kind in Central Florida. There are many interesting things to see, like art from America, Africa, Cuba, and China. Additionally, the museum has the world's most extensive collection of Coca-Cola products. 

The museum has a special space called the Lowell and Nancy Lohman Family Planetarium. It is a large room with engaging seminars and amazing space shows. Every week, they host exciting laser displays for both adults and children. And if you have children with you, check out the Charles and Linda Williams Children's Museum. It is perfect for kids who love exploring and learning. 

MOAS also hosts exciting programs, such as Yoga in the Gallery. If you want to take a break, you'll find a café and a store within the museum with interesting items to buy. You can visit the museum on your own, or sometimes they arrange guided tours to show you around. It is an excellent place to have fun and learn new things! 

9. Meet Creatures at the Marine Science Center

Location: 100 Lighthouse Drive, Ponce Inlet, Florida

If you're looking for a fun and educational family adventure, visit the Marine Science Center. It began in 2002 and has helped over 200 different species of animals recover and return to their natural habitats. They care for animals such as snakes, baby turtles, sea turtles, and other species. The Mary Keller Seabird Rehabilitation Facility, established in 2004, has helped approximately 18,000 injured birds.

You can explore the nature trail, walk along the bird boardwalk, learn about sea turtles in the Turtle Terrace, touch stingrays in the hands-on exhibits, tour the Blue Room, which houses a variety of exotic Florida sea critters, and visit the turtle hospital, which treats injured animals. 

Whether you love sea creatures, want to help the environment, or just enjoy being by the water, the Marine Science Center is a fun and exciting place for everyone. The center is not far from Daytona Beach and is an excellent addition to your Ponce Inlet day trip.

10. Treat Yourself at Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory 

Location: 154 S Beach Street, Daytona Beach, FL 32114

Do you have a sweet tooth? Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory in Daytona Beach is the perfect place for you! Since 1925, this famous chocolate factory has provided a delightful experience in the world of chocolate making. During the factory tour, you'll be able to sample free chocolate and get a behind-the-scenes peek at the chocolate-making process, from melting and shaping to cooling and packaging. 

The factory tours are quick, only lasting about 20 minutes, and are entirely free. As you visit the factory, the air is filled with the delicious aroma of chocolate and freshly made treats. They make various tasty treats like chocolate-covered bacon, a classic box of different sweets, and pecan pralines. After the tour, you can get different chocolates and treats from the gift shop to bring a taste of your Daytona Beach trip to your friends and family. A visit to Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory is a truly delicious and unforgettable experience.

11. Step Back in Time at Lilian Place Heritage Center

Location: 1000 S Peninsula Drive, Daytona Beach, Florida

If you want to learn more about Daytona's history, visit the Lilian Place Historic House in the South Peninsula Historic District. Lilian Place is the oldest residence on Daytona Beach, dating back to the 1880s. It is a great spot to see what Florida was like in the late nineteenth century.

The Lilian Place Historic House is beautiful with its Italianate Victorian architectural style. Inside, you'll find a lot of restored furniture and decorations from that era, as well as stunning woodwork. Make sure to see the Hotchkiss House next door. It was built in the grand Queen Anne Victorian style and is now a popular site for city events.

You can join daily tours to learn about the history and legends of the people who once lived there. Some say the mansion is haunted, so be prepared for ghostly occurrences. The museum offers guided tours from 1 pm to 4 pm (closed on Tuesdays), and the grounds are open from 9 am to 5 pm, where you can explore at your own pace.

12. Go Kayaking

Daytona Beach is a fantastic place for people who love kayaking. There are streams, marshlands, and beautiful spots like Blue Spring State Park and Tomoka State Park, where you can spot manatees. The protected Halifax River is also perfect for kayaking.

If you prefer guided tours, there are many options available. Some tours take you to Rose Bay's backwaters, which are away from the crowded tourist areas. But if you like exploring independently, you can easily rent a kayak from one of the many rental outlets along the waterfront.

13. Visit Jackie Robinson Ballpark

Location: 105 E. Orange Ave, Daytona Beach, Florida

If you're a baseball fan, you may be familiar with Jackie Robinson, the first African-American to play in a baseball game in the United States in 1946. The stadium where he made history is now known as Jackie Robinson Ballpark and is located in Daytona Beach's historic downtown waterfront district. There is a statue of Jackie Robinson. The stadium is more than simply a place to watch baseball. It is also a memorial to Robinson's legacy and an opportunity to enjoy the game in a historical setting. The ballpark now hosts concerts and games for the Daytona Tortugas, a minor-league baseball team. Even though it is historic, it recently got some cool upgrades. 

Today, it has a huge HD video board, luxury suites, a modern press box, and lots of places to eat and drink. So, whether you're watching a game or exploring baseball's rich heritage, visiting the Jackie Robinson Ballpark is a great thing to do in Daytona Beach.

14. Cool Off at Daytona Lagoon

Location: 601 Earl St, Daytona Beach, FL 32118

When you visit Daytona Beach, make sure to check out the famous Daytona Lagoon. Daytona Lagoon is an exciting water park and family fun center that offers a fantastic time for people of all ages. Situated in the center of Daytona Beach, this watery haven provides various water attractions, including a relaxing lazy river, a wave pool for a beach-like experience, and thrilling water slides. In addition to water activities, Daytona Lagoon has go-kart racing tracks, an arcade with lots of games, laser tag, and mini-golf for a day full of action and enjoyment.

And if you get hungry, there are places to grab a bite, and if you need a break, you can relax in one of their cabanas. Whether you want to cool off on a hot summer day or have indoor fun on less-than-ideal weather days, Daytona Lagoon is a perfect spot for a full day of family entertainment.

15. Visit the Halifax Historical Museum

Location: 252 South Beach Street, Daytona Beach, Florida 32114

Open Hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 10 am – 4 pm

If you're curious about the history of Daytona Beach, check out the Halifax Historical Museum. It is located on South Beach Street along the Halifax River. The museum is housed in a beautiful neoclassical building from 1910, which used to be a merchant bank.

At the Halifax Historical Museum, you can explore the area's history through photographs and everyday artifacts. They have interesting exhibits like The Racing Zone, the Spanish & British Plantation Eras, and The Civil War in Florida. It is a treasure trove of stories about the city's past. Some of the items even go back to the time around 5,000 years ago! 

Visiting the museum takes about an hour and a half. You can learn a lot about how Daytona Beach has changed over the years by exploring the artifacts and stories in this museum.

Final Thoughts

So, are you ready for a fantastic time in Daytona Beach? As you plan your trip to Daytona Beach, you'll find a dynamic mix of fun and excitement awaiting you. Whether you're speeding around the Daytona International Speedway, exploring the rich maritime history at the lighthouse, or simply relaxing on the beach, Daytona Beach promises a memorable experience for every traveler. 

This list of 15 fun and exciting things to do in Daytona Beach will make your next beach getaway memorable! So, pack your bags and get ready for a fun-filled adventure in Daytona Beach!

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