Cocoa Beach is renowned for its stunning beaches, quality surfing, and proximity to Kennedy Space Center and Port Canaveral. With a sweet location and gorgeous scenery, it is no wonder Cocoa Beach is such an excellent vacation spot. The only question is where to stay.
Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort recently hosted us for a stay. Does the resort rise like cream or sink like an anchor?
Immediately upon pulling into the parking lot, Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort gives off a tiki hut or Polynesian vibe. I have hopes for a relaxing stay. The lobby is clean, a quaint store offers essential snacks and supplies, and the friendly staff is helpful. So far, so good.
After obtaining a key, we proceeded to our room. We opened the door and received a shock.
Westgate’s 2 bedroom suites in Cocoa Beach, Florida, are far more spacious than we imagined. The floor plan felt so open.
Everything was clean, fresh, and modern in appearance. Most of all, I could not get over how much space we had. Our villa included:
- Two bedrooms
- A sleeper sofa
- Two bathrooms
- A fully-equipped kitchen
- A living room
- A dining area
Luxury indeed! Although Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort is an excellent luxury resort option for any traveler, it is perfect for families. With separate bedrooms and bathrooms and a spacious living area, you can actually relax on your vacation.
How often have you envisioned a relaxing trip only to discover the reality was different? Picture your family fighting over the bathroom and squeezing onto a sofa in a cramped living space. I fear we have all been there.
Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort comes to the rescue, efficiently resolving these issues. Kids and adults each have private sleeping and bathroom areas. The whole family can spread out and enjoy time together in the living and dining sections.
Larger Travel Parties
If your travel party is larger and you are searching for hotels with four bedroom suites and fully equipped kitchens, Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort has you covered here as well.
These suites include two king beds, four twin beds, and two queen sleeper sofas, accommodating up to 12 guests. There is plenty of space for privacy, yet enough communal space for friends to hang out or families to bond.
Wakulla Falls Water Park
After basking in the glory of our room, we decided to catch some rays and explore the resort. Wakulla Falls Water Park is a resort highlight.
My wife and I love lazy rivers. In the past, we have only experienced these at theme parks or water parks. So, discovering a lazy river at the resort was a welcome treat.
Floating in a tube around the 335-foot loop, soaking up rays and tropical vibes is a delight. I was so relaxed my worries drifted away.
If the kids want something more entertaining, Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort has a surprise for them. Their children’s splash pad features water slides and plenty of props with spraying water features. Kids will have a blast in this fun zone.
The whole family can dip in the pool to cool off or splash around. Adjacent to the swimming pool is a shallow kiddie pool for younger children.
Aloha Tiki Bar & Cafe
The Aloha Tiki Bar & Cafe sits conveniently near the pool and serves tasty cocktails and beach fare. Appetizers include wings, shrimp, and kalua pork nachos. Trust me, they do not skimp on the nacho toppings.
The cafe serves chopped Asian salad and tuna poke bowls. Or, you can eat handhelds like a hamburger, hot dog, kalua pork sandwich, or Aloha chicken sandwich.
Kids can choose from a hamburger and chicken tenders. Of course, the Tiki Bar offers a variety of island drinks, frozen and on the rocks, including margaritas, daiquiris, and other specialty cocktails.
We sampled a few food items and drinks. The service is fast and friendly. You should find the atmosphere relaxing and the drinks flavorful and refreshing. Considering the food is served poolside and at a tiki bar, it is good. You will find ample portion sizes and flavors on point.
My favorite is their grilled chicken sandwich. It comes with Aloha sauce, which has a touch of sweetness up front and a bit of underlying heat on the back end. The sauce pairs nicely with the chicken, sidewinder fries, and a fruity cocktail.
Adult Relaxation Zone
Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort provides an area called Makua Lanai Adult Relaxation Zone at one end of the lazy river. It is the perfect place to unwind after a day of exploring.
The area comprises comfortable lounge chairs around a hot rock firepit. Laughs abound as you relax poolside, sip drinks, and share the day’s events.
Although you can enjoy the adult relaxation zone any time of day, the welcoming oasis beckons to you in the evening. There is no need to resist. You are on vacation, after all.
Steps from the Beach
The luxury resort sits mere steps from the beach. With a short jaunt along a direct access path, we dug our toes in the sand and listened to the peaceful sound of rolling waves. There is nothing quite like a stroll on the beach to induce a sense of calm.
The wide beach yields plenty of room to lounge, play, search for shells, or build sandcastles. We spotted dolphins swimming and playing just off the shore during our morning strolls. It set the tone for a beautiful day.
Cocoa Beach Resort offers easy access to many essential local attractions. The famous Ron Jon Surf Shop is 0.3 miles away. For anyone taking a cruise, Port Canaveral is a short 4.5-mile drive. One of the area’s top attractions, the Kennedy Space Center, is 12 miles away.
Cocoa Beach Pier
If you want a beach with more entertainment, Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort provides complimentary trolley transportation service to and from the world-famous Cocoa Beach Pier.
The boardwalk harbors eateries and places to enjoy tropical drinks. Views from the pier and beach are excellent. Surfers ride waves and people play sand volleyball on the beach—electric energy dances in the air.
Seek Adventure or Relax?
You can customize your day at the Cocoa Beach Pier. For those who want to try new adventures, take surfing lessons through Cocoa Beach Surf School by Flohana. With their guidance, you will have a fun day riding the waves.
Suppose you prefer a day of pampered relaxation on the beach, watching others surf. You can stay under an umbrella, canopy, or cabana with beach VIP treatment from One Click Concierge. Now, this is a relaxing beach day!
Kennedy Space Center
You will find many things to do in Cocoa Beach. Due to Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort’s location and on-property amenities, many guests will likely savor time at the resort and Cocoa Beach Pier.
We recommend visiting the Kennedy Space Center if you decide to venture out. I had yet to see the Kennedy Space Center and was blown away. The experience is an absolute thrill.
We enjoyed viewing the rockets, exhibits, and artifacts. The place is much larger than we anticipated and contains a lot of fascinating history. You can easily spend a half-day to a full day here.
We suggest participating in the Chat with an Astronaut experience. It was a highlight for us. You meet an astronaut and can ask questions such as what it is like to be an astronaut or have you seen aliens.
Norm Thagard was the astronaut on hand for our session. He provided fantastic insight and honest answers to our many questions. Trust me, we pelted him with all sorts of questions. Norm recounted various tales, keeping us all on the edge of our seats.
The beautiful area is called the Space Coast for a reason. It has the Kennedy Space Center and a rich history of rocket launches. However, not everything space-related lives in the past. Currently, SpaceX launches rockets regularly.
When you visit Cocoa Beach, check out the rocket launch schedule. With a bit of luck, you may observe a launch.
During our stay at Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort, we had the good fortune to see a SpaceX rocket launch. It was surreal and something we will never forget.
The good news is you will have an excellent view of the rocket launch, whether hanging out at the resort, beach, or pier.
Disney Day Trip
Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort sits one hour east of Orlando. You can easily take a day trip to explore the city or one of its many theme parks. After touring the Kennedy Space Center, you can further fuel your space fantasies by visiting the Star Wars-themed area in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. You will discover rides, attractions, shops, and more based on the space-themed franchise.
Suppose you love animals, we suggest visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The park features outstanding rides, shows, and attractions based on animals. Kilimanjaro Safaris, one of the park’s most popular attractions, is like a drive-through zoo with many exotic animals.
After an adventurous day trip, you can return to the resort to relax.
Where to Eat
We had an opportunity to dine at a few places near Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort. We suggest the following restaurants based on our fantastic experiences.
Café Surfinista is an eclectic coffee shop and cafe with delicious and healthy food. The shop offers organic, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free options. Their specialty bagels, acai bowls, and smoothies are outstanding.
All coffee is organic and locally roasted to create delicious, vibrant drip coffee and espresso drinks. I had the bulletproof coffee, an Americano with grass-fed butter and coconut oil. The elevated cup of java has a smooth and slightly creamy texture. In a word, it is delicious.
Cafe Surfinista serves lunch items, including salads, wraps, sandwiches, lunch bowls, burritos, and street tacos. Although the atmosphere has a laid-back beach vibe, Cafe Surfinista is serious about providing healthy options. You will find many dietary alternatives on the menu.
Lunch & Dinner
Pier 62 Oceanfront Restaurant & Bar, located on the Cocoa Beach Pier, serves excellent cuisine, tasty cocktails, and oceanfront views. I have dined at many beach and oceanfront view restaurants, only to be disappointed in the food. Pier 62 breaks the norm, serving delicious food to go with the view.
The upscale oceanfront restaurant features local seafood in poke bowls and sushi. Their menu includes soups, salads, burgers, beach-inspired sandwiches, and more. You will find many beach cocktails and frozen drinks to pair with your meal.
If you save room, their menu carries tempting desserts like key lime pie, strawberry cake, and Florida orange cake. I had an opportunity to sample each of these.
Although I am a huge key lime pie fan, their Florida orange cake surprisingly won the day. It melts in your mouth with a delicate orange flavor, drawing a satisfied smile.
Do not judge this book by its cover. The Pompano Grill does not strike you as anything special from a daytime drive-by, possibly looking like a dive. At night, the eatery transforms into a dreamy luxury restaurant.
String lights hang over the outdoor seating area, setting a relaxed atmosphere. Indoors, you will discover a quaint and welcoming dining room. Heavenly scents of expertly prepared food drift through the air.
The restaurant advertises that they prepare creative and casual cuisine. Please do not think for one second that casual means average or lazily prepared.
The food at Pompano Grill is outstanding. Dishes shine in presentation and taste. Although the atmosphere is relaxed, I would classify Pompano Grill as fine dining.
Appetizers include millionaire bacon, deep-fried brie, escargot, mussels, and their signature tuna. Due to a shellfish allergy, I played it safe and did not sample the mussels or escargot. Based on my travel cohorts’ facial expressions and sounds, I did not need a decoder ring to determine that both dishes were excellent.
I sampled the millionaire bacon and deep-fried brie. The mouthwatering appetizers are divine, a precursor of what is yet to come.
Entrees include a Cheshire pork chop, filet mignon, black Angus prime, creamy shrimp pasta, and cioppino. I had the filet, one of the best steaks I have ever had.
My fellow diners ate the other dishes, giving them all rave reviews. Broad smiles surrounded the table as we polished off plates that looked so lovely you almost felt guilty eating them.
Pompano Grill carries an extensive list of wines to pair with your meal. The service is excellent. Everything about the experience is fantastic. If you want a relaxing evening with top-notch food, Pompano Grill hits the bullseye.
Plan Your Stay at Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort
Whether you seek adventure or want to relax, Cocoa Beach’s premier luxury resort is the perfect place for your getaway. Spacious rooms, luxurious amenities, friendly service, and easy beach access await you. Explore the beautiful Space Coast and experience the tropical island vibes at Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort. It’s time to launch your next vacation!
Scott and Julie blog at Miles with McConkey. After nearly 30 years, they took a leap of faith to leave the corporate world to enjoy a life of travel and adventure. They hope to inspire you to find ways to travel more and enjoy life now.