Daytona Beach

So I may live in the greater Indianapolis area, but I’m not into race cars. Not at all actually. Yes, yes, I’ve been to the track … and I’ve sweated like a MF (sorry, but remembering how hot it was on the track there really is no way to describe it without swearing) while trying to be interested in everything going on around me, but other than the super entertaining drunk people, I really wasn’t that entertained. But, although this post is about another NASCAR/INDYCAR-crazed city, I’m not going to talk about anything that moves fast other than the absolutely CRAZY slingshot ride on Daytona’s boardwalk.

A few years ago, my family along with two other families rented a beach house a few miles up the shoreline from Daytona Beach. The property itself was on Flagler Beach—halfway between Daytona and St. Augustine. The beach was nice enough and the area was clean and safe, but didn’t have a whole lot of action—which for the teenagers was both good, and bad, depending on whether you ask the parents or the said teenagers. Me, I kind of liked being on a quiet beach where random turtles wandered about, but, truthfully, there isn’t much to do right there—except eat BBQ from Baynes BBQ … really, I can’t say enough about this place, and I’m not even a fan of BBQ. BUT. The coleslaw is so damn good I would go back everyday if I could. (Seriously, its that good!)

But for those who want more to do than chat with turtles, a short drive north or south is in order.

About 25ish minutes north of Flagler is St. Augustine. Home to America’s oldest military fort, Castillo de San Marcos, it’s a nice daytrip and a great place to visit for history buffs and anyone for that matter. If you go, be sure to plan enough time to eat at the Salt Life Food Shack—yes, like that Salt Life. And if you have an off day where you don’t want to be at the beach, check out the dolphins at Marineland. Just be sure that if you want to book an adventure you do so in advance as this can be a pretty popular spot, especially during spring break weeks.

South of Flagler Beach is Daytona Beach … THE spring break destination for a gazillion college students. I mean hey, according to the Travel Channel, it’s the #1 attration in Florida so it’s no wonder so many people flock there. And it’s a great beach for doing absolutely everything to absolutely nothing … and home to the insane, aforementioned slingshot ride—which, for the record I did not do but I did ride the ferris wheel, which, as it so happensis no longer there … it was taken down in 2015 (why,, I have no idea). Anyway, the boardwalk is pretty busy with shops galore and plenty of places to get some ink, a body piercing, and such … truthfully, it’s a little too hectic for The Midwest Mermaid, but my teenagers loved it. Go figure.

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