You’ll find adventure at America’s original beach
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Located on Florida’s central east coast, Daytona Beach’s hard-packed, white-sand beaches became synonymous with automobile racing in the early 1930s.
Decades later, racing is reserved for Daytona International Speedway and two other local tracks, and a drive on the beach occurs at a much more leisurely pace. Today, visitors are discovering that a 2-mph paddle along the water yields as much pleasure as a 200-mph lap around the track.
Daytona Beach resides in Volusia County, which is bordered on the west by Lake Monroe and the St. Johns River, which is Florida’s longest river, flows north and is home to 183 species of fish. Atlantic Ocean waves lap at the area’s eastern border, while the Tomoka River, also north-flowing, resides at the northern border. The Intracoastal Waterway, aka the Halifax River, lets out at the southernmost point in Ponce Inlet, with Florida’s tallest lighthouse at the helm. Add in biodiverse Mosquito Lagoon, Lake George and Spruce Creek and it adds up to 331 square miles of the good stuff –water.
You can pet stingrays and starfish at the Marine Science Center, which is renowned for its sea turtle rehabilitation. The nearby Marine Discovery Center offers dolphin and eco tours and programs to protect the Indian River Lagoon system. The Lyonia Environmental Center, known for its friendly scrub jay population, provides unique insight in the area’s fragile ecosystem. All of this is surrounded by Great Florida Birding and Wildlife trails, designated scenic drives, state parks and springs, shooting ranges and phenomenal paddling trails.
Few destinations can compete with the variety of unforgettable group activities that Daytona Beach offers. There is ziplining, paddleboarding, race cars, roller coasters, festivals, lighthouses, ghost tours, fishing and more.
Equally diverse are the choices for one-of-a-kind venues and meeting spaces, whether beachside, riverside, or at the spectacular World Center of Racing. Countless meeting hotels make it easy to find one that’s perfect for any budget and many are located right on 23 miles of sparkling coastline. It’s the perfect place to meet with easy drive-in access and a local airport with more than 200 Atlanta and Charlotte connections — plus non-stop Jet Blue service from New York beginning Jan. 7. There are more than 12,000 guest rooms for all budgets, many located directly on the ocean. The world-class Ocean Center Convention Complex is walking distance to about 1,200 guest rooms. And the city is experiencing about $2 billion in new development and renovations. Plus there are incentive dollars available.
It’s everything you’d expect from America’s original beach