Brevard County

Brevard County is in East Central Florida. Because of the presence of the John F. Kennedy Space Center, where the manned missions to the moon and the Space Shuttle are based, Brevard County is also known as the Space Coast.

Cities

Understand

Brevard County stretches 72 miles from north to south, and is relatively thin. It is bordered on the west by vast wetlands which drain into the St. Johns River and on the east by the Atlantic Ocean.

An important distinction between areas in Brevard County is the mainland and "beachside" on the barrier island facing the Atlantic Ocean. On the north end of the county, Merritt Island falls in between the mainland and beachside, bordered on the west by the Indian River Lagoon and on the east by the Banana River Lagoon. (These two rivers are actually lagoons off the Atlantic Ocean and contain brackish water, a mixture of fresh and salt water.)

Get in

By air

By car

Brevard County is over 70 miles north to south, and not very wide. To the west are large unpopulated areas of the St. Johns River, marsh, swampland and ranches. On the other side of this wilderness is Orlando, the hub of Central Florida.

North-South

East-West

Note: The most direct way from the Disney World area to the beaches in Brevard County are 192 and 528, the Beachline. Both dead end at A1A at the beach. 528 ends in Cape Canaveral, while 192 ends in Indialantic.

Get around

By bus

By taxi

Private taxi companies are listed in the phone books. However, attractions in Brevard County are often far apart (the county is narrow, but over 70 miles long from North to South), so the miles add up. A rental car is a good idea for a serious tourist.

See

Saturn V, KSC Visitor Complex

Do

Eat

In Brevard County, there are the fast-food joints and the bad Chinese dine-ins. However, in North Titusville on Garden street, there is a rather infamous seafood restaurant called Dixie Crossroads. It features specialty lobster, crab and most importantly, shrimp. Dixie Crossroads is famous for shrimp – Reds, Whites, Pinks, Brownies, “Hoppers” and, of course, our trademark specialty…Rock Shrimp, the sweetest little delicacy to ever come from the ocean. Their fresh shrimp comes from a fleet of over 25 full time commercial shrimpers. The shrimp are stored then cleaned by hand at our local processing plant, Cape Canaveral Shrimp Company. As various species are seasonal, Dixie Crossroads serves different shrimp throughout the year, depending on what is available at the time. It is quite a challenge to estimate how much of a particular type of shrimp must be put away in order to last until the next one comes in season. In a typical year, Dixie Crossroads will serve up to 7 or more different kinds of domestic shrimp. The restaurant was also visited by President Obama during is 2008 campaign.

Another excellent restaurant of choice, located in historic downtown Cocoa, is the Black Tulip. It offers 4 star Italian dining, in wonderful ambiance and lighting. The food is always prepared fresh and the waiting staff is always quick and friendly. It is a bit pricey, but well worth the wait and visit.

Stay safe

Don't feed the animals! Brevard has some fascinating wild animals, including manatees, dolphins and alligators. All three are protected species, and all interaction (including touching or feeding them) is prohibited. "Friendly" dolphins and manatees seem safe, but they are powerful and unpredictable and may attack humans in the water. Additionally, feeding them interferes with their normal biological drives and reduces the natural fear which keeps them safe from dangerous people. Throwing leftover scraps to a wild gator seems fun - but a gator approaching you for scraps looks just like a hungry gator approaching to eat you! Such gators are inevitably destroyed as nuisance animals, so feeding them is no favor. Other endangered animals such as sea turtles also need your protection - large nests of sea turtle eggs on the beaches are usually marked by wildlife officials and must never be disturbed.

Sunburn can occur even on cloudy days. Re-apply sunblock regularly.

Life preservers are essential for motorized water activities. Even the best swimmers can't stay above water if they are unconscious, and you never know when a rip current could try to pull you under.

Lightning - Afternoon thunderstorms with frequent lightning occur often during the summer. Wait out storms in your vehicle, under dry shelter (not a tree) or indoors.

Hurricanes are not a frequent problem in Brevard County. Hurricanes "headed right for us" usually veer off along the coast without making landfall. A rare evacuation is ordered well in advance so that nobody gets caught on a barrier island. The six-month hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30, with the highest danger in September and October. More Information: National Hurricane Center.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Sunday, January 17, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.