A Guide to Finding the Best Place to Watch Rocket Launch in Cape Canaveral

A Guide to Finding the Best Place to Watch Rocket Launch in Cape Canaveral

A close-up Cape Canaveral rocket launch viewing is one of the most remarkable adventures Florida has to offer. If finding the best place to watch a rocket launching first hand is on your bucket list, stay tuned. We’ve got 7 awesome spots for you to experience this magical moment in Cape Canaveral.

What is a Cape Canaveral Rocket Launch Viewing?

History continues to be made on Florida’s Space Coast. America’s space program has been launching from Cape Canaveral and surrounding areas for more than 50 years. People travel from all over the world to witness a rocket launch, which happens about every month.

Check out: NASA’s full launch schedule here.

Finding the Best Place to Watch Rocket Launching in Cape Canaveral

Kennedy Space Center is known to be the best place to watch rocket launches. However, there are several notable options down the Space Coast for having a memorable experience. We’ve got beaches, parks, and restaurants that offer prime views of launches.

Parks

These beautiful parks keep kids and pets entertained while offering top-notch launch views. If you’re looking for a special date spot, we’ve got an excellent suggestion for you.

Cherie Down Park

This beautiful 7-acre neighborhood beach park offers impressive launch views. Locals and travelers love this park for its 7-acres of beauty and 200-foot boardwalk. While Cherie Down is typically a quiet park, it does fill up for launching so make sure to arrive early.

  • Parking: There is plenty of free parking.
  • Hours: dawn to dusk
  • Amenities: restrooms, showers, picnic tables, parking

Center Street Park

Take in the ocean and launch views at this quaint, waterside park. While you’re here, relax in the gazebo and keep an eye out for dolphins and manatees. Talk about a quintessential date spot! Arrive early on launch days to get settled in before the park fills up.

  • Parking: There is very limited free parking.
  • Hours: dawn to dusk
  • Amenities: no restrooms, a couple of benches, parking

Banana River Park

Located on the picturesque intercoastal river, this large scenic park is the perfect place for anyone to check out a launch. The views are great and if you’re lucky, you might just spot a dolphin.

  • Parking: There is limited free parking.
  • Hours: 7:00 AM - dusk
  • Amenities: picnic tables, soccer field, restrooms, playground, parking lot

Beaches

You can’t check out Cape Canaveral without a day by the ocean. Make launch day a whole affair and enjoy other beach activities, too.

Peacock Beach

This small public beach is off the beaten track. It’s known for its peaceful vibe and wild peacocks. Parking options are somewhat limited. However, it’s a prime location for experiencing a rocket launch if you can get a spot.

  • Parking: There is limited free parking.
  • Hours: sunrise to sunset
  • Amenities: parking, no restrooms

Jetty Beach and Park

Technically located in Port Canaveral right by Cape Canaveral, the Jetty Park is an ideal oceanside spot to settle in and experience a rocket launch. Make an entire day of it and enjoy the pristine beach, a beautiful sunset, and nighttime stars. There’s also plenty of fun for children to have and it’s a great place for leashed pets.

  • Parking: Parking passes are required and a day pass is about $16.
  • Hours: 5:00 AM - 11:00 PM
  • Amenities: restrooms, showers, parking, grills, pet-friendly, lifeguard, playground

Restaurants

Enjoy a delicious meal and a cold drink while checking out a rocket launch in Cape Canaveral. We’ve got a couple of five-star options.

Grills Seafood Deck & Tiki Bar

This neat tiki-style restaurant is the best place to watch rocket launches while enjoying delicious seafood and cocktails. Not only is the atmosphere incredible, but the views are even better. There is plenty of inside and patio seating, but reservations are recommended on launch days.

  • Parking: There is plenty of free onsite parking.
  • Hours: 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM (weekdays) / 7:00 AM - 11:00 PM (weekends)
  • Amenities: restrooms, outdoor and indoor seating, parking

Rising Tide Tap & Table

Last, but not least, on our list of the best place to watch rocket launches is a delicious lakefront restaurant. Rising Tide is known for its cozy atmosphere, made-from-scratch food, and tasty beers. Let’s not forget to mention its waterside seating offers unforgettable views on launch days.

  • Parking: There is plenty of free onsite parking.
  • Hours: opened each day through the evening, check website for varied hours
  • Amenities: restrooms, outdoor and indoor seating, parking

Final Thoughts

With each of these locations surrounding Cape Canaveral’s launch pads, you can’t go wrong with any spot you land. We hope you enjoy the incredible opportunity of Cape Canaveral rocket launch viewing.

Check out more memorable experiences around Florida’s Space Coast here.

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