Cocoa Beach Pier

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Cocoa Beach Pier

Cocoa Beach | Jetty Park | Cocoa Beach Pier | Shepard Park | Lori Wilson Park

Where to stay on Cocoa Beach

While most piers in Florida tend to be geared toward fishing and sightseeing, the Cocoa Beach Pier, also known as the Canaveral Pier, is largely devoted to eating and drinking and people-watching. That isn't to say some serious fishing doesn't happen here, but it is overpowered by the restaurant business. The pier is actually a bit tricky to find if you've never been here before. It's on Meade Avenue and Ocean Beach Blvd. Just look for the Best Western Hotel. There is a traffic light. You can park in the pier parking lot for $5 per day, or you can find metered parking on the streets around the pier. If you just want to go fishing, I'd recommend that you drive north for 20 minutes or so to Port Canaveral's Jetty Park. The fishing is MUCH better there and you don't have to push your way through the pier restaurants to get to the fish.

If you are looking for a laid-back, casual, but busy beach atmosphere with the smell of fried fish and beer, the Cocoa Beach Pier is for you. Walk up onto the planks and pick your restaurant, or just head straight for the open-air, but covered, bar overlooking the beach. Great people-watching here. The furthest restaurant out is perched right over the surf zone, so you can literally sit and eat while watching the surfers.

The entire area surrounding the pier, especially the stretch of Ocean Blvd and North Atlantic Avenue for several miles south of the pier, is chock full of hotels of all shapes, sizes, and prices, and plenty of restaurants too. Everything you need is here. Read about where I've stayed in Cocoa Beach.

Cocoa Beach Pier entrance picture

Above: Every day seems like Saturday at the Cocoa Beach Pier. Don't these people have jobs? So why are you still stuck in your "office" cubicle while all these folks are just relaxing on the pier? Lots of professional beach bums here among the more traditional tourists.

Above: The pier seems a bit ramshackled and cobbled together, but its holding up just fine. See that little tiki hut at the end of the pier. If you want to sip an adult beverage, but don't want the chatter and plate-banging of the regular bars and restaurants on the pier, go for the tiki hut. But hold onto your hat, it can get breezy out there.

Above: The pier attracts a nice crowd. Plus there is the fact that some major hotels surround the pier. Lots of these folks are staying in the hotels. To park at the pier you've got to pay.

Above: There are plenty of hotel rooms and condos on Cocoa Beach. But at least they left the sand dunes intact.

Above: The light brown sand on Cocoa Beach is great for a long walk. No sharp shells and no rocks. This is looking south toward the pier. Notice that the first half of the pier is mainly restaurants and bars. There are 3 or 4 restaurants on the pier.

Above: Standing on the pier looking north. Not a lot of people on the beach north of the pier. In the distance is Port Canaveral and Cape Canaveral.

Above: The pier is pretty tall. Gives you a great view of the coast, and of the surfers down below.

Above: Cocoa Beach is all about surfing. You can't go anywhere without seeing surfboards. Why not give it a try?