Hotel at a Glance: Atlantic Ocean Palm Inn
The southern end of Daytona Beach is usually quieter than the other parts. And that’s exactly where the Atlantic Ocean Palm Inn can be found, offering direct beach access and rooms with views of the water. Feel free to splash into the inn’s large pool or stroll along the sand right outside your door.
- Right on the beach: Guest rooms are only steps from the sand.
- In-room amenities: partial ocean views, mini fridges, and microwaves
- Oceanfront pool ringed with deck chairs for lounging in the sun
- Day trip to Orlando: The world’s most popular theme parks are about 60 miles away.
- Other nearby attractions: the Daytona Beach boardwalk, restaurants, golf courses, and nightlife
Daytona Beach, Florida: Racing Legacy and a Famed Lighthouse
At the turn of the 20th century, motorists began racing on the packed sand of Daytona Beach out of practicality: the beach had a wide, unobstructed stretch and a smooth surface ideal for high-speed sprinting. Today, stock-car racing has moved to nearby Daytona International Speedway, but it’s still possible to park your car along the oceanfront here—one of the few beaches in the world where you can do so.
Hundreds of thousands of racing fans visit Daytona International Speedway each year to watch world-class champions such as Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon. Stock-car, sports-car, and motorcycle events round out the calendar all year, highlighted by the Daytona 500 in February—the first race of the Sprint Cup Series and typically regarded as the most prestigious. On various behind-the-scenes tours, you can explore the speedway’s elevated press boxes, banked infield turns, and decadent hot tubs filled with motor oil.
At Daytona Beach itself, cars toting beach gear roll across the hard-packed sand through oceanfront driving zones; there are also traffic-free areas. South of town, you can see the Ponce de León Inlet Lighthouse. There, a spiral staircase winds up to the top of a 175-foot tower, where you can overlook a 52-acre park filled with armadillos, shore birds, and native wildflowers.