A quick recap, we recently traveled from Tampa Bay, Florida, to Ormond Beach, Florida. We got in Friday afternoon (read about that here), then we had a full day on Saturday (that’s the part I’m talking about now) and left early Sunday morning. There were no plans for our trip, other than golfing which actually got cancelled due to rain. If you’re new here, maybe this would be a good time to tell you that we love traveling with no plans.
Saturday morning, we woke up early and decided to get coffee. We always look for local, non-chain coffee and let me tell you – this is the way to do it! Nine times out of ten, it leads to adventures or cool areas that we wouldn’t have discovered had we not started our day at a local establishment. Ormond Beach was perhaps the best example of this we’ve ever had.
Ormond Beach Main Street
We went to Gold Leaf Coffee Co for coffee, which was delicious. Unfortunately, I waited too long to write this blog post and now I can’t remember our orders but both my husband and I loved it! Not only did we love their coffee, but their shop was adorable, too. They shared space with a framing shop. and we immediately fell in love with the area. It was a quaint and adorable downtown area very close to the water. Again, this is an area we probably wouldn’t have discovered had we not ventured out for local coffee.
Cassen Park & Riverbridge Gardens
Walking with a morning coffee is always good for the soul, so we decided to walk a little bit to take in the area. It was rather early, so not too much was open, but I noticed that we were a short walk from the water so we decided to walk there before heading back to our car. We were just expecting a quick peek of the water but discovered that it was a park! Cassen Park is a beautiful area with a boardwalk that goes out into the intracoastal waters. It was a quiet and leisurely stroll and the perfect way to drink our coffee. We also checked out Bailey Riverbridge Gardens in the same area and they were also beautiful. Several times we commented that everything was well maintained and so clean!
Cakery Creation and Mini Golfing
On our way back to the car, we noticed a sign that wasn’t there before. While we were on our walk, Cakery Creation had opened (hence the sign). Their sign let us know that they were the winner of Cake Wars. No one had to pull my arm, we stopped in and each got a cupcake!
From there, we did a little shopping at some of the cutest shops! Then went mini golfing at Pirate’s Cove. It was a hot morning so we returned to our hotel to cool off after finishing up. We freshened up, relaxed for a minute, then talked about what to do next.
Palm Coast, Florida
Before our weekend getaway to Ormond Beach, I’d actually never heard of it. After booking our hotel, I did do some research on breweries (one of our favorite things to do!) and fell in love with Moonrise Brewing Company in Palm Coast, Florida. Palm Coast is about 30 minutes north of Ormond Beach and I’m so glad we decided to go because the drive was probably my favorite part of the trip. We loved driving down the coast, taking in the views. It started to rain which was disappointing because we really wanted to stop at one of the many oceanfront restaurants on the way. This is definitely something we want to return to do. I’m not going to lie, we even loved it so much that we also stopped in to check out an open house!
Moonrise Brewing Company is located in the European Village. It is exactly what it sounds like – a bunch of adorable shops, restaurants, and bars in a setting that looks just like Europe. Moonrise Brewing is equally appropriately named as it’s decorated in a moon theme. We really hit the jackpot on breweries in cool places on this trip. I am in love with European Village just like I was in love with Plant Street Market, where Crooked Can Brewery was located, the day before. It rained while we were there but Moonrise Brewing Company had an outdoor covered space that we were able to enjoy while staying dry. Along with our beer, we shared an order of their chicken nachos and they were so good. They truly were some of the best nachos I’ve ever had.
On our way back to the hotel, we stopped at Donnie’s Donuts for a little snack (yes, we had a lot of sugar on this trip). I don’t know what I was expecting but whatever my expectations were, Donnie’s Donuts exceeded them. It was around 4:00 so they understandably didn’t have what my first option would be. And yet it was one of the best donuts I’ve ever had (I know, I keep saying this about the food on this trip!) They were cake donuts with several different flavors – both traditional and unique. We loved the donuts so much that we stopped again Sunday morning before making the trip back home. These donuts were featured on the Food Network and I can see why.
After Donnie’s Donuts, we headed back to our hotel and tried to go back to the glorious hot tub I told you about in my last post. Unfortunately, they closed the pool area due to adverse weather. It wasn’t lightening and we weren’t scared of the rain but I’m sure they have a lot of liability for such things, so I don’t blame them. Instead, we ordered Uber Eats. We got Tipsy Taco Cantina and again, the food was amazing. All of the rain and wind created some gnarly waves which we loved watching – we don’t often get waves over on the Gulf!
We are smitten with the Ormond Beach area and will definitely be back!