Daytona Beach is the perfect place to enjoy the sun, the ocean, and the beautiful Florida weather. While it’s hot as… um, somewhere really hot… inland, the coastal breezes and the Atlantic Ocean offer plenty of relief from scorching temperatures.
Unfortunately, there is also a really, really good chance that you’ll get rained out if you visit Daytona Beach from May to September. And as fabulous as the beaches of Daytona are, they are considerably less fabulous during a thunderstorm.
Daytona Lagoon offers the perfect solution when you’re vacation gets rained out.
As the name might suggest, Daytona Lagoon is an outdoor waterpark. Which, OK, doesn’t sound like the best place to go to escape rain, thunder, or lightning.
But, Daytona Lagoon is also a huge indoor arcade! It is an air conditioned nirvana of flashing lights and ticket spouting video games. You and your family (or loved one, if you’re the type of couple who finds competition romantic), can spend hours challenging each other to skeeball tournaments and electronic dance offs. And that’s just what you can do with your tokens.
Daytona Lagoon also offers laser tag, rock climbing, mini golf and ridiculously fast go kart racing.
The mini golf course is devoid of windmills or waterfalls and can easily be played in about an hour with a family of four. It’s definitely not a world class putt putt course, but it’s clean and fun. You get 18 holes for $7 per person.
The laser tag is fantastic. Of course, this is the only place I’ve ever played laser tag, so I have nothing to compare it to, but I had a blast. Even if I did have someone else’s kids whooping and hollering about how easy I was to shoot the entire time. I was nervous going into it, but the staff was very helpful and the arena was safe enough that I would feel comfortable letting my 9 year old run loose inside of it. You’ll pay $7 per person, per game for laser tag.
The rock climbing is much, much harder than it looks – and extremely fun. There are four seperate courses and you can race against other climbers. Your victory (or defeat, in my case) will be announced by a giant bell when you reach the top. A $6 rock climbing ticket will get you 3 climbs and 2 limp noodle arms.
Of course, a rainstorm in Florida rarely lasts all day. When the clouds break, you can immediately hop out and enjoy the waterpark. If you have school aged kids, this is a nice, safe alternative to the slightly more intimidating ocean – what with the sharks and rip tides and lack of depth markers. Admission to the waterpark varies, but starts as low as $11.99.
Your best deal is to make a day of Daytoona Lagoon and pay for the all access pass. You’ll certainly find plenty of ways to amuse yourself, and lots of different activites to keep up with the short attention spans of school agers and teenagers.
As an added bonus, parking in the Daytona Beach parking garage can be purchased at a discounted price of $3 from Daytona Lagoon. You can park here to spend the day at Daytona Lagoon, and leave your vehicle there when you head out for dinner or a trip down the Daytona boardwalk at night. Daytona Lagoon is just a short walk from the beach, the boardwalk, shopping, and several restaurants.
If you’re with kids, I highly recommend you make the 3 block trek to Cruisin Cafe Bar & Grill. There is a ton of Nascar memorabilia to look at, the service is great, and the food is very reasonably priced for a themed restauarant just off a tourist beach.
Daytona Beach is an excellent vacation destination to enjoy the warmth and sun. But if the sun refuses to shine, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy your Daytona Beach vacation.