Ormond Beach may not be as well known as its southerly neighbor of Daytona, but this pleasant city on Florida's eastern coast is a treasure trove of beaches, parks, shops, and recreational activities. Ormond Beach is perhaps most recognized as the home of Tomoka State Park, which includes a former Native American settlement and provides a glimpse of the local ecosystem. In addition to this natural highlight, the city also has many smaller parks and beaches, plus plenty of local businesses focused on getting visitors out on the water, be it on a paddleboard or boat. Rounding out the town are a few historical sites and a number of museums and local cafes and eateries. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.Addison Blockhouse Historic State Park
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Addison Blockhouse Historic State Park provides guests with a unique look at the 19th-century history of Florida, focusing in particular on the Seminole wars. The park is home to the former plantation home of John Addison, a building that found its heyday in the early 1800s. The house was destroyed by fire during the wars and then used as a defense site against attacks by the Seminoles. Today, the rock structure is a ruin that sits in flatwoods located to the left of the beautiful Tomoka River. Despite its dilapidated state, the blockhouse nonetheless creates a picturesque view within the natural park setting.
2099 N Beach Street, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-676-4075
2.Andy Romano Beachfront Park
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Andy Romano Beachfront Park gives outdoor fun seekers the best of both worlds by offering them a chance to enjoy the recreational facilities of a park right alongside the sand and surf of the beach. Andy Romano contains a total of 4 acres of territory that hits right up against the waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The park is equipped with a number of convenient facilities, including parking, restrooms, and a picnic area with covered pavilions. The little ones can have a blast here at the park’s splash pad and playground or take a dip in the waves while friends and relatives relax on the sand.
839 S. Atlantic Ave., Ormond Beach, FL 32176, Phone: 386-676-3250
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The city of Ormond Beach owes its name to the sandy shores lining its coast. Located a short distance north of the more famous Daytona Beach, Ormond Beach is a tranquil treat compared to the raucous atmosphere of its neighbor. This setting is aided by the fact that the shoreline lacks hotels and high rises, which gives it a more down-to-earth feel. What one can find on Ormond Beach is an abundance of coquina shells, soft sand, and lapping waves. Lifeguard stations are scattered along the beach to make swimming safe, while the dunes protect the city from the Atlantic Ocean’s rolling tides.
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4.Bulow Creek State Park
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Bulow Creek State Park covers a 5,600-acre territory full of interesting wildlife and flora. About 20% of the park includes submerged lands, which makes it a unique example of an East Florida ecosystem. The gem of Bulow is the Fairchild Oak, a gorgeous southern live oak and one of the largest members of this tree family. The park sits next to the site of the old Bulow Plantation, an estate that was viciously destroyed during the Second Seminole War, which took place in 1836. Bulow Creek State Park is a hiker haven, with its 7-mile-long Bulow Woods Trail leading out to Bulow Plantation Ruins Historic State Park for a dose of historical interest.
3351 Old Dixie Highway, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-676-4050
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5.Ormond Beach Memorial Art Museum and Gardens
© Ormond Beach Memorial Art Museum and Gardens
Ormond Beach Memorial Art Museum and Gardens is much more than simply a space to display beauty; rather it serves as a community gathering place for members of the neighborhood and guests in town for a short trip. Founded in 1946, the museum shows off works of art made by local Floridian and international artists in a constant rotation of temporary and permanent exhibits. Outside, Ormond Beach Memorial Gardens serve as a monument to the veterans of World War II and other wars, who fought bravely to uphold the value of freedom. In addition to its exhibition halls, the museum also provides a place for lectures, master classes, and other educational programs.
78 E Granada Blvd, Ormond Beach, FL 32176, Phone: 386-676-3347
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Ormond Beach’s Central Park is actually an amalgamation of four separate parks, which total 149.1 acres in area. In addition to the park’s numerous green and natural spaces, it also has many areas for gathering together friends and family, such as picnic pavilions and gazebos. Central Park also includes a large lake, with opportunities for fishing and swimming as well as a canoe and kayak launch. Outdoor tennis and basketball courts and jogging and bicycle paths make the area a space for fitness and recreation, with a playground providing a play space for the little ones. Finally, Central Park is home to a full-sized labyrinth and Ormond Beach’s Environmental Discovery Center.
601 Fleming Avenue, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-676-3250
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7.La Gourmandise French Bakery & Pastry
© La Gourmandise French Bakery & Pastry
French chef duo the Jenners bring the flavors and atmosphere of France to Ormond Beach in their café, La Gourmandise. The café has graced the streets of the city since 1984, offering a full slate of delicious breads and pastries to its patrons. The specialists at La Gourmandise take their baking seriously; although they have a wide selection of tarts, cakes, quiches, and breads, each one is made with great care and in keeping with the storied French culinary tradition. Locals and visitors alike value the bakery for its glass display case full of quality treats and for the warm service from its staff.
359 West Granada Boulevard, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-672-5594
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8.Tomoka River Paddling Trail
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In addition to access to the Atlantic Ocean, the gorgeous city of Ormond Beach also includes a number of smaller, but equally noteworthy, bodies of water. One of these is the Tomoka River, a stunning river that is canopied by palms and other tall trees. This river has been designated by the state as a paddling trail, specifically meant to be enjoyed and observed from a boat’s-eye view. The river runs around Tomoka State Park, which was formerly the site of Nocoroco, a village of the Timucuan Indian people. The remnants of this site are some of the region’s most important archaeological treasures.
9.Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center
© Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center
One of the most striking features of Ormond Beach is its abundant wildlife and verdant ecosystems, and the Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center shows them off in their full glory. The center focuses on Central Park, which is where it is located, highlighting its flora and fauna on a 2,000-square-foot campus. The EDC presents visitors with a number of informative exhibits and classes, all of which focus on the natural sciences and their relationship to the Ormond Beach community. The outside area includes a pond with fish and turtles, a special treat for young patrons, as well as a porch from which to take in the scenery.
601 Division Avenue, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-615-7081
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10.Ormond Brewing Company
© Ormond Brewing Company
Ormond Brewing Company is a beer lover’s paradise, as it brings a host of craft ales to this city and the surrounding area. Ormond Brewing Company runs the gamut of delicious brews, with samplings of light and dark beers, as well as those infused with fruit and other flavors. The taproom always has 18 brews on tap, sometimes featuring a guest beer from another local brewhouse. Food is not served, but guests are encouraged to bring their own as they enjoy the taproom and outdoor beer garden. Local food trucks often stop by, and special events, such as open mic nights and concerts, are regularly on the calendar at Ormond Brewing Company.
301 Division Ave, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-256-3904
© The Casements
The Casements, a gorgeous mansion in the heart of Ormond Beach, has a shining reputation as the “jewel” of the community. This historic building, which has since been restored to its full splendor and sits right on the banks of the Halifax River, was once the winter house of magnate John D. Rockefeller. Today, it stands as the cultural center of the Ormond Beach community, an official Florida Heritage Site and listed on the National Historic Register. The Casements includes several exhibits of cultural and historical memorabilia, which are open to curious visitors, who can explore the mansion and its grounds on a guided tour.
25 Riverside Drive, Ormond Beach, Florida 32176, Phone: 386-676-3216
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12.Birthplace of Speed Park and Ormond Garage
© Birthplace of Speed Park and Ormond Garage
In the early 1900’s, petrol-heads and automobile designers used the firmly-packed sands of Ormond beach as their race track – thus causing Ormond Beach to become known as the Birthplace of Speed. Back in the day, racers came from all over the world to set record after record at Ormond Beach. The name has stuck and today visitors come for a nostalgic look back at the origins of motor racing in Florida. Unfortunately the original Ormond Garage (what stories those walls could tell!) burnt down in 1978, taking with it many original vintage racing cars and 100 years of history. Today you can tour a replica of the original Ormond Garage and see a few replica racing cars.
Birthplace of Speed Park, 21 Ocean Shore Blvd, Ormond Beach, FL 32176, 386-676-3250
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Surfari takes the fun of stand-up paddleboarding (also known as SUP) and makes it accessible to novices who have yet to take to the waves. The Surfari school is a full-service facility that is devoted to creating new SUP lovers through a comprehensive introduction to the sport. Surfari is an all-inclusive experience; lessons come with an hour of instruction and time out on the water independently, plus all the necessary amenities such as gear and access to storage in the shop. The shop offers camps, group lessons, and private and semi-private options. Alternatively, those looking for equipment rental on a trip to the area can also find what they need here.
52 Bovard Ave. Ormond Beach, FL 32176, Phone: 386-615-6754
14.Michael Crotty Bicentennial Park
Located on Ocean Boulevard in the heart of Ormond Beach, the 37-acre Michael Crotty Bicentennial Park is a spacious recreation facility where many locals meet to exercise and play sports. The park boasts baseball, basket ball, soccer/football, tennis and racquet ball courts/fields. There is also a boardwalk and some nature trails to explore on foot and a 4-acre dog park where your 4-legged friends can enjoy some off-lead running around. At the western end of the park you will also find a fishing dock on the Halifax River. Nature lovers can look forward to spotting a wide variety of birds and the scrub habitat around the boardwalks is home to tortoises and raccoons. Admission is free.
Michael Crotty Bicentennial Park, 1800 N. Ocean Shore Blvd, Ormond Beach, FL 32176
15.Sweet Marlay’s Coffee
© Sweet Marlay’s Coffee
Sweet Marlay’s Coffee is a one-of-a-kind coffee shop that brings a passion for coffee to the masses with its unique menu and specialty bean blends. The owners of Sweet Marlay’s have crafted their own signature blends, which are roasted by a similarly down-to-earth roasting company, keeping the entire operation close to home. All the ingredients used at the café, including in its homemade pastries and snacks, are fair trade and organic, as the proprietors put their heart and soul into the business. The café is a cozy setting for enjoying a cuppa and taking in the calm atmosphere of the beach on a comfortable Cape Cod chair.
214 S Beach St, Daytona Beach, FL 32114, Phone: 386-310-7817
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16.Bad Juju Charters
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Bad Juju Charters is a fun-loving fishing charter company based in the Ormond Beach area of Florida. The enterprise is run by Captain Jason “Jay” Hughes, who has been fishing since childhood and loves sharing that experience with both locals and newcomers to the area. Bad Juju fishing charters are spent catching redfish, tarpon, snook, and other fish varieties commonly found in the southern Florida waters. Because the trips take place inshore or near the shore, anglers of all experience levels are welcome. The 21.5-foot boat can hold up to six passengers and is outfitted with safety and storage amenities.
New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169, Phone: 352-978-7777
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While Ormond Beach is best known for its sandy shores, it also features wide stretches of beautiful marshlands and other scenic ecosystems. Fortunately, thanks to the Ormond Scenic Loop and Trail, fondly known to locals as the Loop, anyone with a car or a pair of feet can access these wondrous gifts of nature. The trail, which extends more than 30 miles, weaves among state parks, gorgeous island dunes, rivers and creeks, and historical buildings and museums. The Ormond Beach Historical Society runs a regular schedule of interesting events around the Loop, including a speaker series and historically themed bus and walking tours.
Ormond Beach, FL 32176, Phone: 386-299-2441
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18.Three Chimneys Historical Site
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A trip to the American South is not complete without a dose of history, and a trip to the Three Chimneys Historical Site is the perfect opportunity to get in touch with the past. This site was originally known as the Swamp Settlement and was established by the British in the mid-18th century, becoming the first successful British sugar plantation in the whole of North America. It belonged to Richard Oswald, who helped broker the treaty that ended the Revolutionary War. The sugar-making facility at the Swamp Settlement included three chimneys, which fell into ruin but were restored in 2007 for visitors to enjoy.
715 W Granada Blvd, Ormond Beach FL 32174, Phone: 386-677-7005
19.Ocean Art Gallery
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The Ocean Art Gallery in Ormond Beach is a must-see attraction for all art lovers. The gallery showcases the fine art works of more than 18 local and national artists and crafters. Here you will find fine art pieces in various mediums including watercolor, acrylics, and oils as well as some stunning creations made using mixed media, inks and resins. There are also finely-executed photographic masterpieces and beautifully made decorative items crafted out of wood. The Gallery also exhibits a fine collection of unique jewelry items which would make perfect special-occasion gifts. Budding artists can sign up for one of their regular courses or workshops.
Ocean Art Gallery, 197 E. Granada Boulevard, Ormond Beach, FL 32176, 386-317-9400
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20.Tomoka State Park
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Tomoka State Park brings together the best of Ormond Beach’s natural scenery as well as many of its sites of historical significance. The park was once the location of a Timucuan settlement and now includes both land-based nature trails and a series of waterways that almost seem to have been designed for paddling. The park provides shelter for many species, including some endangered animals, and is known for its diverse bird populations. Tomoka State Park is also packed with amenities, including a picnic area, boat ramp, interpretive exhibit, and even a park store that sells snacks and supplies to park-goers.
2099 North Beach Street, Ormond Beach, FL 32174, Phone: 386-676-4050
21.Ormond Beach Performing Arts Center
The Ormond Beach Performing Arts Center brings the joy of live performance arts to Ormond Beach locals and visitors. Performances take place in the purpose-built performance theatre, which can comfortably accommodate 600 guests in stadium-styled seating. The theatre is also wheel-chair friendly and has been equipped with a state-of-the-art sound system and professional lighting, to enhance your theatre experience. The performances cover a wide spectrum of entertainment from musical concerts and tributes to Broadway productions, circus performances and dance extravaganzas. You can check their website to see what’s on and to book your tickets online. Budding performers can sign up for one of the regular courses on offer.
Ormond Beach Performing Arts Center, 399 386-676-3375
22.Arts on Granada
Arts on Granada is a co-operative art space and gallery where established and budding artists can create and showcase their works. As such, the gallery exhibits a wonderfully diverse selection of art in many different styles and mediums. The gallery/studio area usually has a working artist in on most days of the week – visitors are encouraged to stop by to admire the works on display, meet the “artist of the day” and gain inspiration. The gallery represents at least 30 artists and their gallery opening nights are popular social events. Other regular activities include the 1str Saturday Gallery Art Walks and several demonstrations and classes.
Arts on Granada, 67 W. Granada Boulevard, Ormond Beach, FL 32176, 386-871-9906
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© MacDonald House
Owned and operated by the Ormond Beach Historical Society, Mac Donald House (or Mac House as it’s affectionately known to the locals) was built in 1903 by prominent local architect Sumner Grove. Currently, the house is home to the city Welcome Center and to the offices of the Historical Society. However, plans have been approved to commence with a renovation program in 2021, which will eventually see this grand old building transformed into the Ormond Beach Museum of History and Welcome Center. Visitors are asked to watch the website for more details and to return to visit the modern, interactive museum once it opens to the public.
MacDonald House, 38 E. Granada Blvd, Ormond Beach, FL 32176, 386-677-7005
24.Bailey Riverbridge Gardens
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Located at the foot of the Granada Bridge, the Bailey Riverbridge Gardens is a 2.5-acre waterfront park where locals and visitors come to enjoy a beautiful recreational area on the mainland side of the Intracoastal Waterway. The park is also home to the historic Pilgrim’s Rest Church where the very first Christian wedding in North America was held. In front of the church there are pretty gardens and a scenic fountain. If you care to take a walk alongside the water you can follow a walkway under the Granada Beach to South Beach Street. Many locals come to the gardens to walk their dogs and enjoy the fresh breezes or to fish alongside the walkway.
Bailey Riverbridge Gardens, 1 North Beach Street, Ormond Beach, FL 32174,
© Alfie’s Restaurant
A true beach-front restaurant, Alfie’s has been pleasing Ormond Beach palates for more than 30 years. The location, on Oceanshore Boulevard is hard to beat and diners can gaze out over the ocean to watch surfers riding waves as dolphins cavort behind them. As befits a Florida beachfront restaurant, one of the highlights of an Alfie’s meal is always going to be freshly caught fish – try it hand-battered, broiled, blackened or stuffed with shrimp. Other favorites include a whole range of delicious sea foods. There are also a few steak, chop and chicken dishes as well as their popular burgers and sandwiches on the menu for the diligent carnivore.
Alfie’s Restaurant, 1666 Oceanshore Boulevard, Ormond Beach, FL 32176,
25 Best Things to Do in Ormond Beach, Florida
- Addison Blockhouse Historic State Park, Photo: Courtesy of SusaZoom - Fotolia.com
- Andy Romano Beachfront Park, Photo: Courtesy of Satoshi Kina - Fotolia.com
- Ormond Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Wirepec - Fotolia.com
- Bulow Creek State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Jane - Fotolia.com
- Ormond Beach Memorial Art Museum and Gardens, Photo: Ormond Beach Memorial Art Museum and Gardens
- Central Park, Photo: Courtesy of captiva - Fotolia.com
- La Gourmandise French Bakery & Pastry, Photo: La Gourmandise French Bakery & Pastry
- Tomoka River Paddling Trail, Photo: Courtesy of jonbilous - Fotolia.com
- Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center, Photo: Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center
- Ormond Brewing Company, Photo: Ormond Brewing Company
- The Casements, Photo: The Casements
- Birthplace of Speed Park and Ormond Garage, Photo: Birthplace of Speed Park and Ormond Garage
- Surfari, Photo: Courtesy of upslim - Fotolia.com
- Michael Crotty Bicentennial Park, Photo: leungchopan/stock.adobe.com
- Sweet Marlay’s Coffee, Photo: Sweet Marlay’s Coffee
- Bad Juju Charters, Photo: Courtesy of lunamarina - Fotolia.com
- The Loop, Photo: Courtesy of offfstock - Fotolia.com
- Three Chimneys Historical Site, Photo: Courtesy of Thomas - Fotolia.com
- Ocean Art Gallery, Photo: Ocean Art Gallery
- Tomoka State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Lauren - Fotolia.com
- Ormond Beach Performing Arts Center, Photo: nagaets/stock.adobe.com
- Arts on Granada, Photo: anon/stock.adobe.com
- MacDonald House, Photo: MacDonald House
- Bailey Riverbridge Gardens, Photo: jerad raines EyeEm/stock.adobe.com
- Alfie’s Restaurant, Photo: Alfie’s Restaurant
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of onlymag - Fotolia.com
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