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Posted on 12/05/2020 in Things to Do

Top 10 Space Coast Experiences for Adrenaline Junkies

Top 10 Space Coast Experiences for Adrenaline Junkies

Whether it's free-falling before pulling a parachute or paddle boarding among alligators in Crane Creek during mating season, adrenaline junkies get their endorphins pumping in ways the average person wouldn’t even consider. If you have thrill-seekers on your holiday gift list, the Space Coast is filled with options. 

Here is our Top 10 list of Space Coast experiences for adrenaline junkies. 

Florida Air Tours 

For the most stunning views of the Space Coast, one has to leave the ground. For the past ten years, Florida Air Tours has been sharing that view from their open cockpit biplanes for one or two passengers and helicopters with five tour options catering to all braveries and budgets. Their shortest option offers a Flight Experience Tour that lasts 15 minutes offering views of Merritt Island, the Banana River, and the Thousand Islands in Cocoa Beach. Depending on the time of year you may even see a manatee from the skies! 

See-It-All” tour consists of a sixty minute tour soaring over the beaches, Port Canaveral, St Johns River, and topping it all off with a flyover of Kennedy Space Center and a Space Shuttle runway fly-by where you actually fly down the Space Shuttle Runway. 

For the more daring souls among us, Florida Air Tours offers Flight Upgrades. How do backflips in an open cockpit World War One style biplane sound? With their Aerobatic Upgrade package, the pilot will take you along for a ride performing two wingovers, a barrel roll, and a loop.

If romance is what you’re after, there’s the Sunset Upgrade. Couples searching for the most romantic view of the Space Coast are certain to make memories that will last longer than your relationship.


Shark Fishing

With over 33% of all shark attacks worldwide happening off central Florida’s coast, it’s no wonder why Florida is named the “Shark Bite Capital of the World” but let’s see if they’ll bite your lure. With the annual migration of sharks up and down the eastern seaboard following warmer waters, there’s no shortage of shark fishing. 

Shark Fishing Cocoa Beach offers multiple trips daily out of Cape Canaveral to fish for black tip, black nose, spinner, thresher, lemon, hammerhead, bonnethead, and nurse sharks while occasionally anglers will also land a big ray or redfish as well. Ready to go after jaws? Just be careful pulling the hook out of its mouth. 

Florida law limits you to harvesting one shark per day per person and it limits each boat to two sharks per day. So if you have six people on the boat, only two of you will be able to keep a shark.  To learn more about fishing for shark, visit https://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/recreational/sharks

Another option is to fish for shark from the shore. But to do this legally you must complete the Shark-Smart Fishing educational course at MyFWC.com/SharkCourse and get your Shore-based Shark Fishing permit. Both are required when fishing for shark from shore.

If you fall short of landing a shark of your own or you plan to catch-and-release but would still like to sample a shark check out the shark kabobs at Grills in Cape Canaveral.



Let your feet leave earth as your parachute deploys and you soar 300 feet above the water. Take in some of the best views of the space coast while being pulled along its coast over the open ocean with the wind in your face. 

Though parasailing  is an exhilarating experience, it isn’t a heart-pumping activity. It is like an eagle soaring through the sky at a steady, gradual pace. That is, unless the driver of the boat pulling you decides to drop you to the ocean for a toe-dip in the water! 

What goes up, must come down though. Just remember, Florida is the shark bite capital of the world so it’d be in your best interest to land accurately. 

Fun Fact about Parasailing: In World War II submarines pulled sailors in parasails in order to get a higher vantage point over the battlefield.


Scuba Diving  

Scuba Diving brings to life what a vacation is all about. All your senses come alive. Movement is slower. You actually see the beauty that surrounds you. You can feel your heartbeat and hear yourself breathing. 

Whether you want to dive to explore a shipwreck, swim among the fish or witness the beauty of the reefs, there’s a dive trip for you. On the north end of the Space Coast (New Smyrna Beach/Daytona) you’ll find over a dozen famous wrecks and beautiful reefs. About an hour south of Melbourne Beach in Fort Pierce Inlet State Park is Dynamite Point where you can dive the same waters as the Navy Frogmen who trained there in WWII.  

Our local dive shops offer local, day and overnight scuba tours…. And lessons too if you need to get certified to dive. 




Surf Guide

The space coast is synonymous with surfing thanks to Cocoa Beach’s hometown hero, 11 time World Champion, Kelly Slater. Rip the same waves Kelly did growing up with Pure Aloha Surf. Run by ex-professional Hawaiian big wave surfer Chacy who knows a thing or two about charging waves for an adrenaline rush, Chacy will take you out at the best breaks from Sebastian Inlet to New Smyrna for those looking for a strike mission to sandy east coast barrels and power hacks. 

For those who have never surfed before or have limited experience, Pure Aloha Surf also offers beginner and intermediate lessons. 


Jet Ski or Boat Rental

If you’re looking to add a little horsepower in your life consider renting a jet ski. Open up that throttle and speed across the water….. Or idle along and enjoy watching the dolphins and manatees.  Wildlife Watersports is right on the shoreline of the Banana River so you’ll be out on the water in no time 

How about an 18.5 foot NauticStar Center Console boat complete with a live well for your catch of the day? Just take the Cocoa Beach Causeway (520) west out of Cocoa Beach, where you will find Merritt Island and Surf & Ski Water Sports. They’ll hook you up with that boat.

Whether it’s a boat or a Jet Ski, you will be blasting across the water and getting that adrenaline pumping.

Keep in mind, as per State of Florida law, anyone born on or after January 1, 1988 must have a valid ID and possess a boating safety education ID card issued by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation. If you do not, Surf & Ski are an authorized vendor and can issue a temporary license by going on their website and filling out the appropriate forms under the “Rentals” tab.  




Sky Diving

If doing a backflip in a plane isn’t enough for you, how about doing a backflip out of a plane? With Skydive Space Center, you will pass over Kennedy Space Center, including flying directly over the Shuttle Launch Pads, for an aerial tour on your way up to 18,000 feet. You’ll also enjoy the scenic view of the Atlantic Ocean and the Banana River

While most skydiving planes take you to 10,000 or 13,000, Skydive Space Center tacks on another few thousand just to insure the hair on the back of your neck stands up when looking out the plane prior to jumping out of a perfectly functioning aircraft and plummeting to earth.

If you’ve never been sky diving, the tandem jump is the way to go but if you’re a dare-devil, take the accelerated freefall training and dive right in! 


Zip Lining 

View Florida’s lush tropical beauty from a birds eye view as you climb up, buckle in and zip through the treetops 50+ feet off the ground! Tree Top Trek offers multiple courses to fit all levels of adventure including one that gives you views of monkeys, parrots and Florida alligators from the zipline!

For an additional twist, don a headlamp and zip through the trees at night. Or test your balance with the high-wire bicycle. Choose from 14 different ziplines for all different ability levels at Treetop Trek. 

Up the road from Treetop Trek is Cocoa Beach is the Aerial Adventure Park which has been voted among the 10 Best Aerial Adventure Courses in the USA two years in a row by USA Today. This is a combination of ziplines and obstacle courses with platforms that range from 12 feet to 40 feet high. There are 7 courses and each course contains 7 to 8 obstacles to conquer. The obstacles include ropes, cables, wood, barrels, stir-ups, cargo nets and a mini zip. The higher up you go, the more difficult the obstacles become. Typically climbers finish 3-4 courses (21-28 obstacles) in two hours.  



Drive a Tank

What weighs 16.5 tons, is twenty feet long, and has a 105mm Howitzer turret on it? The tank you’re about to drive. Welcome to Tank America where you will get behind the controls of a FV433 Abbot tank to traverse jungle terrain, rolling trails, steep hills, mud holes and hair pin turns. In the Advanced Troop package, or Ultimate Combat Experience package you will complete your duties as a tank commander by driving straight over a car crushing it to smithereens. 

Their current location, set on 35 acres, includes a 5-acre deep water lake, jungle terrain, and rolling trails through a forest of trees. The 1/2 mile course climbs up steep hills, rolls over mud holes, whips around hair pin turns and across straightaways. 

They are currently closed but scheduled to re-open in “early 2021” in a new location, which is rumored to be in Osceola County, which is just to the east of Brevard County which is the County the Space Coast is in 


Train a Gator 

"CRIKEY THOSE ARE BIG TEETH!” While Steve Irwin has sadly passed, you can pick up where he left off and have a go with a real live alligator at Gatorland or Wild Florida. Test fate as you come face to face with one of the earth’s oldest and most dangerous reptiles with no fence to save you. 

Both of these experiences are about an hour from the Space Coast. Gatorland is in Orlando and closer to the northern part of the Space Coast while Wild Florida is about an hour from Melbourne, so closer to the southern part of the Space Coast. 



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