Square Grouper, Ocean Deck And Waterway Cafe Three Of The Blogger’s Top Spots
It’s summertime and if you’re by the coast, life’s a beach.
If you’re there, life’s also a series of beach bars. And the best ones are in Florida.
Beach bars in Florida are, in many cases, right on the beach. I love going to the Whale’s Tale in Destin to watch sunsets (and it’s also Happy Hour, which means you can get a bottle of Bud for 2 bucks!); you stroll the on the beach to get to it and then walk a couple of sandy steps on its wood deck – all sides open to the air – and up to the bar.
Florida also has tons of waterways and inlets, and there are bars (well, restaurant/bars anyway) on all of them, in just every town. Boats tie up to docks and afternoons melt into evenings.
I like the Banana Boat in Boynton Beach but my favorite is the Waterway Cafe in Palm Beach Gardens (both of these are in South Florida, about an hour from South Beach, which frankly I don’t like as much as these other towns).
The Waterway Cafe is a large open-air restaurant with a bar on a floating dock in the back, strong rum runners and a reggae band on Sunday afternoons. It’s PERFECT! (Well, except you can’t ride your bike to it; this is one advantage beach bars in California have over ones in Florida.)
Just up A1A from the Waterway Cafe is the Square Groper. It’s a small bar but has tables out on blinding white sand right on the water. It’s where Jimmy Buffett’s video for “It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere” was filmed.
And four hours up the coast is one of my all-time favorite Florida beach bars in one of my all-time Florida beach towns. It’s the Ocean Deck in Daytona Beach. It makes a drink called the Red Tide, served (in typical Florida style) a hard plastic glass with the bar’s logo on it and some silly saying. I’m not sure what’s in the Red Tide but it contains a lot of rum and that’s perfect for when the same reggae band that’s been playing the past 20 years – Caribbean Posse – takes the small stage.
There’s sand on the tiled floor, the seats are little red stools that swivel and it is literally right off the beach. In an ideal location, too, by the Pier. I also know it’s about 100 steps from there to the room I once had at the Mayan Inn hotel next door!
These are just but a few shining examples because everywhere you go in Florida, you can find bars and restaurant/bars on a harbor, with literally boatloads of people piling into it from the docks.
In fact, my friend Eric Stone just bought one in the Florida Keys and when he re-models the Dockside Tropical Cafe, I’ll be spending some time in it. To see more of the Dockside Tropical Cafe, click here!
No other state has as many bars on the water and waterways as does Florida. That’s why it has the best beach bars in the country.