We are spoiled for choice when it comes to stunning beaches, but sometimes the crowds can be too much for us locals. There are plenty of hidden gems along the coast if you know where to look. Next time you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle, why not explore one of these lesser-known spots? There are plenty of secret sand spots in South Florida that even the most dedicated tourists don’t know about. These hidden gems are perfect for those who want to enjoy the sun and sand without the crowds. So if you’re looking for a little slice of paradise, be sure to check out one of these secret beaches in South Florida.
1. Bahia Honda
Although it is not located in the Miami area, Bahia Honda State Park is definitely worth the visit. This snorkeler’s paradise also offers kayaking, boating, and tanning opportunities with a stunning view of an abandoned historic bridge. We suggest that you wake up early to give yourself three to four hours of sun and surf before driving home. This way, you can enjoy the waves and the sun without having to worry about getting home too late. Plus, waking up early will help you start your day feeling refreshed and energized.
Make a day trip out of it and drive southward toward Key West. Once you’ve crossed the Seven Mile Bridge, you’ll come across Bahia Honda. On your way back, be sure to stop by the Islamorada Fish Company for some fresh seafood and beer.
36850 Overseas Hwy., Big Pine Key
2. John D. Macarthur Beach State Park
West Palm and the surrounding areas boast 15 percent of their land dedicated to public green space, beaches, and landmarks. John D. MacArthur Beach State Park, which is considered an environmental treasure, is one of the absolute favorites. This park is a great place to spend the day hiking, fishing, swimming, or just relaxing on the beach. The two-mile-long beach provides visitors with plenty of picturesque and quiet stretches of sand. In fact, it is so quiet on the beach that you will feel like you are on a private island. This makes it the perfect place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of your surroundings.
To get to John D. MacArthur Beach State Park, the best route is to take US1 northbound until you reach Palm Beach Gardens. From there, take West Blue Heron Boulevard eastbound until you reach A1A. This scenic route will take you past Singer Island before arriving at the park.
10900 Jack Nicklaus Dr., North Palm Beach
3. Matheson Hammock Park
Head over to Matheson Hammock if you’re looking for a spot on the main beach, or alternatively, find a secluded spot if you’re wanting some time to yourself. In either case, bring along a towel and pick your favorite spot before settling in to watch the sunset.
The best way to get to the beach is by riding your bike a few miles down Old Cutler Road. You can also drive and park in a nearby lot, but biking is the best way to go.
9610 Old Cutler Rd., Coral Gables
4. Oceanfront Park Beach
Looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Miami for a day? Head over to Oceanfront Park in Boynton Beach. With its gorgeous stretch of sand and plenty of shady areas, it’s no wonder this is one of South Florida’s most popular spots.
The best way to get to Oceanfront is by car. The beach is situated right off A1A, and there is ample parking available. This means that you don’t need to worry about arriving early or staying late.
6415 N. Ocean Blvd., Boynton Beach
5. Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park
The Cape Florida Lighthouse is the oldest standing building in Miami-Dade County. The lighthouse was built in 1825 at the end of Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park. The park is a great spot for taking in gorgeous views, especially during a seaside sunset. If you want to make the most of your staycation, come a few hours early and lie on the gorgeously soft sand. This island is the perfect place to escape from your busy life and relax in paradise. With its tranquil blue waters and sandy beaches, you’ll feel like you’re in a whole different world.
The best way to get there is to drive to the end of Key Biscayne. Once you reach the park’s entrance, you’ll find a few steps away from the parking lot which will lead you directly to acres of open sand.
1200 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne
6. North Shore Open Space Park
Sometimes you just need some peace and quiet. The North Shore Open Space Park is located behind lush mangroves and offers stunning views of clear blue waters and silky beige sand. Visitors to the park can enjoy a variety of activities, including swimming, sunbathing, fishing, and picnicking. This is the perfect place to escape the so-be crowds and enjoy some peace and quiet. It’s a great place to relax and get away from it all.
The best way to get to the beach is by parking on Collins Avenue. The parking lot is adjacent to 78th Street to 87th Terrace. You can park your car in this lot. And by parking in one of these lots, you will be able to walk right onto the beach.
85th Street and Collins Ave., Miami Beach
7. Oleta State River Park
If you’re looking for an active beach where you can kayak, bike, and fish, Oleta is the perfect place for you. You can rent all of your equipment on-site so you’re ready to go as soon as you arrive. And if your friend still wants to tan, don’t worry – there’s plenty of space for her to do that too. Just make sure she wears sunscreen!
The best way to get to the park is by car or Uber. It’s located right off 163rd Street in North Miami. To park, you can pay $6 for all-day parking anywhere in the park.
3400 NE 163rd St., North Miami Beach
8. Haulover Beach Park
Venture away from the towering skyscrapers and explore the acres of open shoreline at Haulover Beach Park. Relax under your stylish umbrella with a chair and cooler, or make your way over to the clothing-optional area if you’re feeling free-spirited. Bikini or not, it’s one of the most private beaches in town.
The best way to get to Haulover Park is by taking advantage of the multiple parking lots with hundreds of spots. This is your chance to ditch the parking hassles in Miami. For just $5 during the week and $7 on weekends, you can relax and enjoy your time without having to worry about where to leave your car.
10800 Collins Ave., Miami Beach