Drive on Over: Coastal-Chic New Smyrna Beach is Worth the Trip

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Skip the Planes and Hit the Open Road to NSB This Spring

The iconic Flagler Avenue sign in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.

Centrally located on Florida’s East Coast, the New Smyrna Beach area’s prime location makes it an easily accessible spot for travelers who want to get away this spring without boarding a plane. Filled with charming boutiques, art galleries, unique local restaurants, and stretches of drivable (and non-drivable) beaches, this coastal-chic destination is well worth the trip.

Easy Access to Major Interstates
This beautiful beach town is just minutes from Interstate 95, a popular main thoroughfare that stretches from Miami to Canada. Miami residents can escape the hectic city and have their toes in the white sand in just under four hours. The trip is essentially a straight shot via I-95, with plenty of spots along the way to stop, stretch those legs, and refuel. Coming from Atlanta? Take I-75 down to I-95 and arrive in about six and a half hours. New Smyrna Beach is also a short 30-minute drive from Interstate 4, which spans across Central Florida to Tampa. Vacationers from Florida’s West Coast can roll into this East Coast slice of paradise in under two and a half hours. Hop on at a nearby starting point and then hop-off in New Smyrna Beach for a quick, stress-free road trip.

Must-See Districts
New Smyrna Beach is home to two unique downtowns: The Canal Street Historic District features unique spots like the Old Fort Park ruins, The Hub on Canal and Arts of Douglas galleries, restaurants and quaint local boutiques along this palm-lined street. The Local Pearl, a tide-to-table restaurant, is owned by two-times James Beard Foundation semifinalist and chef Henry Salgado. Enjoy fresh, succulent oysters from the raw bar.

A quick 5-minute drive across the North Causeway bridge, visitors will discover NSB’s second downtown, the Flagler Avenue beachside district. Here they'll find plenty of locally owned eateries like sustainability-focused Third Wave Café, endless shopping for attire and gifts, and vibrant nightlife at Flagler Tavern. It's all just steps from the beach—park and access it on foot or drive the car right on the sand for a nominal fee.

Where to Stay
Book rooms at family-friendly hotels like SpringHill Suites by Marriott and the Hampton Inn—both are located on Flagler Avenue…within walking distance from all the fun. Breakfast is also included at both hotels.

Luxury lovers will want to check out the award-winning Black Dolphin Inn, where Food Network host and executive chef MacKenzie Smith whips up scrumptious breakfasts for guests each morning. Or book a stay at the Night Swan, a cozy bed and breakfast that’s also pet-friendly. Both the Night Swan and Black Dolphin offer beautiful views on the Indian River Lagoon.

Outdoor Adventures
Some of the most beautiful spots are just a short drive away from our popular downtown areas. Pet-friendly Smyrna Dunes Park features 73 acres of pristine land and a 2-mile boardwalk. Area kayaking, boat and paddle-boarding tours depart from various locations throughout NSB. The Marine Discovery Center is centrally located, with group boat and kayak tours available daily. Thrill seekers can learn to surf with a lesson from a professional from Nichols Surf Shop.

About the New Smyrna Beach Area
The New Smyrna Beach area includes the communities of New Smyrna Beach, Edgewater, Oak Hill, Osteen and Port Orange in east Central Florida. New Smyrna Beach is an eclectic mix of old and new; of subtle sophistication and bohemian soul that is as “real” as Florida gets. It occupies a notable place in history as the second oldest city in Florida, site of the largest single attempt at British colonization in the new world. In 2018, New Smyrna Beach celebrated its 250th birthday. The city’s barrier island is recognized worldwide for its incredible surf with Surfer magazine recently touting it one of the “Best Surf Towns in America” and National Geographic magazine including it in its “World’s Top 20 Surf Towns”. Accommodations range from charming bed and breakfast inns to family-size condominium units and oceanfront hotels. Natural attractions include 17 miles of sandy beaches from Ponce de Leon Inlet to Canaveral National Seashore and North America’s most diverse estuary – the Indian River Lagoon. Two distinct downtowns along Flagler Avenue and Canal Street and connected via the Waterfront Loop welcome visitors with independent restaurants, unique shops, artisanal coffee shops and art galleries.

For more information, please visit or call 386-428-1600. Follow @NewSmyrnaBeach1 on Twitter, or @visitnewsmyrnabeach on Instagram for the latest news. Download the free New Smyrna Beach Mobile App for iPhone and Android to receive this information on-the-go.

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Courtnee Brokaw
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