It’s time to get outdoors and enjoy the beautiful beaches of Greater Fort Lauderdale. To help you decide where to go along our 24 miles of sandy shores, we’ve compiled this breezy list of the best beaches around. With such a variety of things to do in Greater Fort Lauderdale, sometimes it’s the simple pleasures that give us the most satisfaction. So put on that swimsuit, grab your sunscreen, and get ready to reconnect with nature. Don’t worry, we’ve also included a few of our favorite restaurants that are steps away from the sand for when you’re craving a cool beverage and tasty snack.
Located just south of Boca Raton, in the northern part of Broward County, Deerfield Beach is known for its casual and fun beach vibe. Catch all the action at the International Fishing Pier where you can see local fishermen in all their glory and rent a rod to get in on the fun yourself. If you head under the pier for a walk along the beach, don’t forget your phone for a cool Insta-worthy shot—this is a prime spot for sunset pics.
The beachside restaurants here are also incredibly fun. A must-visit is The Whale’s Rib; make sure to order the famous whale fries, their housemade chips that everyone raves about. JB’s on the Beach and Oceans 234, both right on the sand, have a welcoming chic beach house atmosphere where you can enjoy fresh seafood with an ocean view.
Heading further south, Hillsboro Beach has a historic lighthouse that will transport you back in time when the massive structure was a beacon for sailors. Take a tour of the lighthouse and climb the 175 steps to the top for sweeping ocean views. Want yet another way to time travel? Head to Lighthouse Point Marina to catch the shuttle boat to Cap’s Place, the oldest restaurant in Broward County, established in 1928, with fascinating ties to Greater Fort Lauderdale's rum running, prohibition past. Located in a largely residential area, visitors can now enjoy a beachfront stay at the new Hillsboro Beach Resort.
All of Greater Fort Lauderdale's beaches are sea turtle nesting sites between the months of March and October, but since Hillsboro Beach is very quiet, be sure to look out for sea turtle nests along the beach and maybe you’ll even see a few tiny prints in the sand on a clear, moonlit night after hatchlings emerge.
As you continue your journey south, you’ll come across Pompano Beach, a wonderland for diving enthusiasts. It’s home to 18 shipwrecks, each as interesting and mysterious as the next. Pompano Beach is also known for its sport fishing, so charting a boat to head out into the open waters is another fun option.
The lifeguarded beach features a kid’s playground, volleyball court, and interactive water fountain. If you want to take a break from the beach, check out Beach House Pompano, a stylish two-story restaurant and bar that has stadium-seating banquettes and serves fresh seafood.
Located on a barrier island that’s seven feet above sea level, the seaside town of Lauderdale-By-The-Sea features beach views that stretch for miles. Below the water, you’ll find a cool shipwreck snorkel trail where you can dive to see the SS Copenhagen, a British cargo steamer that struck a reef and sank in 1900.
If you want to stay out of the water, visit Anglin’s Pier for relaxing views of the sea and a prime spot to catch some fish. For a casual meal, visit Aruba Beach Café located just steps away from the sand.
With so many things to do in Broward County, it will be hard to choose the activities you want to experience on Fort Lauderdale beach. Located just a little more than a mile from Las Olas Boulevard, this strip of sand boasts a variety of sophisticated hotels, delicious restaurants, and lively bars. If you want to see and be seen, take a stroll down the Beachfront Promenade. During your walk, feel free to pop into any of the Fort Lauderdale beach hotels for a drink or a meal, like the trendy W Fort Lauderdale, The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale, or The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. The W is home to Steak 954, while The Ritz’s Burlock Coast hosts a great brunch, and Lona Cocina Tequileria at The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort serves incredible Mexican fare.
One of the least crowded beaches, Dania Beach’s Ocean Park features a marina and the Dania Beach Pier. Bring your fishing pole and enjoy an afternoon on the pier or simply be a spectator as the fishermen reel in their catches. If you get hungry, pop into Quarterdeck Restaurant right on the pier for a casual bite and pleasant views of the ocean.
Nearby, the Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park offers a place to bike, picnic, walk, and become one with nature. Once you’ve had your fill of the outdoors and need to cool down, head to Jaxson’s Ice Cream Parlor & Restaurant for an unforgettable dessert adventure.
While California’s Hollywood has the Walk of Fame, our local Hollywood beach is known for a different walkable path—its 2.5-mile Oceanfront Broadwalk. It’s also home to several chic hotels, like the Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa and its six on-site restaurants, and Jimmy Buffet’s laidback Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort.
If you have a furry friend, hit the sands at the dog beach that’s open on weekend afternoons. For an elegant evening out, visit Billy’s Stone Crab Restaurant, and if you’re visiting between October and May make sure to try the famous stone crabs claws while they’re in season.
The last beach before crossing over to Miami, Hallandale Beach has two great beach parks: South City and North City. South City Beach Park features a kids playground, volleyball courts, and an outdoor pavilion. The North City Beach Park park may be smaller, but it’s also right on the ocean and steps away from ETARU Restaurant, a sleek Japanese robatayaki eatery that offers diners stunning water views and a beach bar. The restaurant serves a seasonal brunch as well as lunch and dinner featuring tasty sushi and grilled meats and seafood.
So what are you waiting for? Get out and explore the best beaches of Greater Fort Lauderdale today!