Shh. We’re spilling the beans on the best secret beaches in Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches. Even as locals, we know there’s something thrilling about stumbling upon a new stretch of sand. Quiet, except for the crash of waves. Uncrowded, except for the birds floating overhead. While so many flock to lovely and lively Flagler Beach, we sometimes crave a little slice of solitude. Here are 6 secret beaches in Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches to visit when you need a quiet escape.
Scurry down the wooden walkover that protects our sacred dunes, and you’ll see Jungle Hut Park’s expansive beach. This section of cinnamon-colored sand has large coquina rocks cropping up along the shoreline, making it more popular for lounging than swimming. Get in the Zen zone by watching the tide pools that appear around the ancient formations.
Spot pelicans diving for lunch, turtles surfing the waves, and dolphins frolicking from this unspoiled beach. Mala Compra’s shoreline is peppered with coquina rocks, so you’ll want to stick to the sand. Equestrian Adventures of Florida also uses this portion of the beach for its horseback rides—book one and enjoy the natural beauty from atop a gentle giant.
Most recognized by its colorful, Jetson-esque out-building, Varn Park is a quiet spot just outside of Flagler Beach’s more popular stretches of sand. Here, you’ll find plenty of room to build sandcastles, toss a ball, swim, or relax and tan. This dog-friendly beach is also a prime location for shelling.
With soft white sand, you’ll want to go barefoot at River to Sea Preserve—just be sure to tiptoe carefully around the gray coquina rocks. The formations are full of nooks and crannies that fill with water as waves rush in, making them ideal for exploring. There’s also a lengthy boardwalk for those who want to stand and enjoy the views. We suggest grabbing a hot coffee from the nearby food truck, Ragga Surf Café, and watching a beautiful Florida sunrise.
Each winter, endangered right whales are often spotted in the waters off Flagler Beach. If you’re hoping to see one, your best vantage point is from an elevated area—like the observation deck at Bay Drive Park. The deck provides a breathtaking, unobstructed view of the water. Stationary binoculars are also available for an even closer look.
The verdant gardens at Washington Oaks are always a popular draw (and for good reason), but visitors often miss the beach portion of the park. Located across A1A, the area is equally beautiful. Like at some of the other secret beaches in Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches, outcroppings of coquina rock stretch down the shoreline. The rocks are majestic during high tide, the waves creating huge splashes as they crash against them. At low tide, you can peep around the crevices in search of sea life. (As part of a state park, this beach does require a small entrance fee.)
Craving a beach break but can’t get to Palm Coast and the Flagler Beaches right now? Check out our live surf cam for a virtual vacation whenever you need it.