Everyone loves to dine amidst the stunning backdrop of an expansive ocean, an idyllic river, or crystal-clear lakes. Given Florida’s tropical climate and several miles of coastline, it offers endless opportunities for waterfront dining with a view. These restaurants are perfect for sharing delicious meals and having fun conversations with friends with the spectacular waterfront views in your surroundings.
Here are the best destinations for waterfront dining in Florida.
The Palm Beaches
The Palm Beaches are synonymous with luxury. It’s a posh coastal neighbourhood adjacent to West Palm, home to world-famous celebrities and politicians. Award-winning local chefs create mouth-watering cuisine at numerous waterfront eateries in this sophisticated area of Florida. And like most of Florida, it enjoys great weather all year. So, while the rest of the US is battling snowstorms, residents and visitors of Palm Beaches relax by the water, soaking up the year-round sunshine and indulging in delicious meals by the waterfront.
Check out the family-owned Blue Pointe at Tequesta, a local bar and grill with a sumptuous menu of a good mix of salads, appetizers, flatbreads, sandwiches, and grilled seafood. If you fancy dining by the river, head to the Lucky Shuck, a famous restaurant with beautiful riverfront views. It specializes in Gulf Coast cuisine featuring fresh shellfish and Southern fare like barbecue ribs, Cajun-grilled steak, and fried chicken. The restaurant is also renowned for its extensive list of beers from local craft breweries.
Despite the neighbourhood’s upscale atmosphere, Palm Beach appeals to many types of diners. It also has casual waterfront eateries, such as Chloe’s Bistro, which prides itself on serving a diverse menu made from fresh ingredients.
Miami’s thriving food scene is constantly evolving. As a culinary melting pot, the food is a diverse mix of Cuban, South American, and Caribbean influences. As a coastal city home to stunning beaches, you’ll find the city’s top dining spots along the waterfront. These waterfront restaurants offer the perfect setting for hanging out with friends and enjoying hearty meals.
The waterfront restaurants in Miami offer every possible cuisine you can think of. If you’re craving Greek specialties, check out Avra Miami. Order a sumptuous serving of grilled octopus and fish that goes well with delectable Greek salads and other dishes. They also have caviar, oysters, jumbo shrimp, lobsters, sashimi, and ceviche. There are plenty of vegan and sustainably sourced options for those that are eco-conscious. It is possible to get well-priced carbon-conscious flights, eat ethically, and stay in eco-friendly accommodations whilst exploring one of the most exciting cities in the US.
Casablanca on the Bay is another go-to spot for seafood lovers in Miami. It’s where you can find the freshest seafood, which you can enjoy in an air-conditioned waterfront dining room looking out to the gorgeous views of Biscayne Bay. Taking pride in the freshness of their dishes, Casablanca offers a range of seafood varieties, from grilled octopus to fresh oysters.
As a top fine-dining destination in Florida, Orlando is a fantastic place for enjoying sumptuous meals. It may not have beaches, but that doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy a delicious meal with a stunning waterfront view. Orlando has many lakes where these waterfront restaurants sit, offering tasty dining options in an idyllic setting.
While many restaurants are well within your vacation budget, it’s worth splurging on extra-special dining experiences, such as Michelin-starred restaurants. In addition, some of the most incredible villa rentals in Florida are in Orlando, offering an ideal place to stay for those looking to enjoy the city’s waterfront dining scene.
The Waterfront Orlando is a delightful bar and grill boasting scenic lakefront views. Voted as one of the United States’ best places for al fresco dining, it specializes in comfort food with delicious cocktails and craft beer.
In the stunning Lake Eola in downtown Orlando, you’ll find Relax Grill, famous for serving delectable selections of American-Mediterranean cuisine. Guests especially love their homemade hummus, the stunning lake views, and the relaxed atmosphere.
Another local favourite is the Boathouse in Disney Springs. Aside from serving delicious meals with a waterfront view, the unique waterfront restaurant offers diners a chance to join a captain-guided tour onboard a vintage car.
If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of big cities like Orlando and Miami, venture into Fort Myers, a stunning city renowned for its family-friendly beaches, lavish holiday homes, and excellent dining options – many boast spectacular waterfront settings.
If you’re craving fresh seafood with a waterfront view, check out the Lighthouse Restaurant & Bar. Overlooking the prestigious Connie Mack Island, the Lighthouse exudes a very relaxed atmosphere with a spacious dining porch and lounge. Aside from seafood, the restaurant serves eggs Benedict for brunch and pork belly for dinner.
Sitting at the base of Sanibel Causeway, Bimini Bait Shack is an al fresco restaurant famous for their pulled pork sandwiches, giant stacks of onion rings, Jamaican jerk chicken, and Bahamian lobsters. With many hearty offerings on its menu, dining here is a feast. The restaurant has a unique bar resembling an aquarium with real fish swimming underneath our drinks!
Dixie Fish Company is a beautiful dining spot along Fort Myers Beach with an expansive circular bar offering great views of the fishing harbour. Aside from the usual “bar food”, Dixie Fish has seafood boil, shrimp burgers, raw oysters, and other seafood specialties.
While the waterfront restaurants of the Florida Keys are famous for their mouth-watering seafood, they also serve the usual American comfort foods, from steaks to deli sandwiches.
Offering a unique fusion of seafood in a casual and stunning setting, Castaway Waterfront Restaurant is one of the most famous restaurants in the Florida Keys. It may be familiar to some since it appeared in the TV show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives”, particularly its King of the Jungle rolls and lobster enchiladas – two of the most popular dishes on their menu. The restaurant has a family-friendly atmosphere and offers indoor and outdoor seating.