Posts Tagged With: Melbourne Florida

Christmas Trip Recap

This is simply a rollup of our trip….

Two tickets on Southwest paid with cash and 1 ticket with points.  We booked these is early September to avoid high prices.

Two nights at the Radisson Resort at the Port free on points.

Three nights at the Radisson Oceanfront hotel, two on points and 1 on cash AAA discount.

The rental car was through the mousesavers discount and the lowest I could get was a little over $200.

Hands down our largest expense on the trip was dinner each night.  With two seafood lovers in the family the nightly bill usually topped $50+.  I need to increase my food budget for future trips now that Daughter is older and not stuck on Mac-n-cheese.

You cannot put a price on spending a week together in the warmth relaxing.  I think we did alright on expenses like paying for fishing, a Christmas light festival and mini golf during the week.  I would have liked more Groupons for dinner but I was unable to find any for local seafood restaurants.

We are tossing around where to go next winter.  Husband wants to go back to Texas, I want a new state and Daughter wants to eat rock shrimp.  Might not be lucky enough to go at Christmas again, that did not go over well with a few people. Husband wants to go over his birthday instead. Next time I guess I would do it in reverse and be in the very touristy area of Cocoa Beach on Christmas day.  Toss up between waking up on the ocean or having breakfast options outside the hotel.



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Grills Riverside for Rock Shrimp

We had eaten some very good meals while on vacation and wanted our final meal to top our trip off.  We settled on Grills Riverside in Melbourne because they had shark on the menu.  Husband has a food bucket list and shark was on it.

We arrived around 5:30 since we had skipped lunch.  We had been too full from Sun on the Beach to even consider lunch! The indoor restaurant tables were pretty empty but the outdoor bar area was busier.

Our server was great, very quick and helpful with our menu questions.  Daughter and Husband started with a rock shrimp appetizer.  They died and went to heaven!  It was their first sample of rock shrimp and once they got them peeled they were in love. Daughter was hoarding them on her plate and there might have been some food stealing going on.

Grills Riverside rock shrimp

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For our entrees Daughter got a burger, Husband had the shark kabobs and I had the chicken.  Daughter even like the piece of shark she tried.  My chicken was very good and Daughter inhaled her burger.  We even discussed getting another order of rock shrimp for dessert but then Husband figured they were full enough.

Grills Riverside shark kabob

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When we were heading out a band was setting up to play outside on the deck. We had visited the Grills in Port Canaveral before but we think the one in Melbourne is much better!

More information here:

Grills Riverside
6075 N. US1
Melbourne, FL 32940

Lets just end with IF you have the opportunity to try rock shrimp, do NOT pass it by.  Today again Daughter commented on how she wished she had some rock shrimp right now.

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Melbourne Super Flea

We had nothing planned for Friday really.  We wanted to hang out on the beach a little and do whatever came along.  We saw an ad for the Super Flea and decided to check it out.  It was an easy 20 minute drive from the hotel.

Being right after Christmas some vendors were not set up, not surprising really.  This place had pretty much anything you wanted.  We found a couple cheap souvenir T-shirts.  Vendors had mostly new items but some people were selling vintage.  There was also two bars and many food locations.  Used books, new knives, cell phone accessories and sun glasses.  You could even get your car washed in the parking lot.

Melbourne Super Flea

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Melbourne Super Flea

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Lots of fresh fruits and even some pets for sale.  Also several booths selling plants and one with orchids.


More information can be found here:

Renninger’s Super Flea
4835 West Eau Gallie Blvd.
Melbourne, FL 32934

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Sun on the Beach for Breakfast

Some food experiences stick with us for years.  Breakfast at Sun on the Beach is one of those experiences, Daughter said it was like “Joe’s but for breakfast!”  (Joe’s is legendary in this family for seafood lunches.) We were so impressed we tried to get Husband to go back the next morning.

I found Sun on the Beach through Groupon.  I paid $12 for my Groupon for $20.  I figured they would be closed on Christmas and they were. But we visited them the day after while Husband was relaxing at the hotel.  He is not much of a breakfast person.

We arrived a little before 9 and the place was packed. We found two stools at the bar instead of waiting for a table. A few minutes later the line was getting quite long for a table.

The menu had so many savory options, that was nice to see.  Shrimp and grits, Cajun fried crab and filet and eggs.  I love crepes so I was very excited to see several crepe options.

Daughter was excited by the whipped cream pile on her french toast and hot cocoa.  She was almost licking the plate.  She ate everything!!!!! The portions were huge.  My wild berry crepes were so delicious!



Our total was $20.25 before our Groupon.  We couldn’t have done that if we tried to hit $.25, too funny!

We loved Sun on the Beach.  We will eat here again, it was so good!  We would like to try it for lunch sometime but breakfast was outstanding!

More information here:

1753 North Highway A1A, Satellite Beach, FL 32937

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Space Coast Lightfest

After our filling Christmas dinner we headed five minutes up the street to the Space Coast Lightfest.  I really didn’t know what to expect but figured it was a good way to end the holiday.

The Lightfest is comprised of many light displays wrapped around the park.  After paying a volunteer asks you to turn off your lights and slowly wind around the park viewing the lights.  You are welcome to make the loop as many times as you wish before exiting.


Almost half way through is a picnic pavillion with bathrooms. Also they were selling hot cocoa for $1 and smore’s kits for the kids to grill up.  We paused for a few for Daughter to have a hot chocolate on the holiday.


Space Coast Lightfest

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Some of the light displays, like Santa and his reindeer are so massive its hard to get a photo.

Space Coast Lightfest

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It took us a little over 40 minutes to see everything including the hot cocoa stop.  Perfect ending to the festivities for the evening.  We headed back to the hotel.  The pool and hot tub were empty so we couldn’t resist a soak to end the night.

More information can be found here:

2785 Leisure Way, Melbourne FL

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Christmas Breakfast

We had plans to go out for a nice Christmas breakfast when we woke up.  After the prior nights dinner search I was having some doubts anything would be open but McDonalds.

The hotel offered a breakfast buffet for $15 a person, I would take fast food if I had to vs $45 + tip for breakfast.  We started our causeway tour again, looking at any lot that had cars in it! I was ready to search the gps for a Denny’s.

We finally found a bagel shop that was swamped with traffic! Three workers were up to their elbows throwing out breakfast sandwiches.  When we arrived the line was long and there were two kinds of bagels left. Beggars cannot be choosers!

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Finding Christmas Eve Dinner

Where we come from more things are open than not, especially until 8 or 9 pm on Christmas Eve.  We figured in a tourist area we would have no issue finding dinner.  Boy were we off, LOL!

We found Bunky’s Seafood and Raw Bar after touring around and across the causeways looking for seafood.  I had remembered reading about it and figured it was going to be better than eating fast food or at the hotel.  Texas Roadhouse was also open but we chose not to even park there when we realized by the people waiting it would be over an hour.

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Finding Christmas Spirit in Melbourne Beach

I had read about Florida’s obsession with Christmas lights. there are large festivals like Light up Viera.  And websites that track Christmas displays with maps so you can find them.  I was very excited to drive around and immerse ourselves in lights.

The Brevard County Lights website page showed a hit very close to our hotel on Verbania Court.  Thought we could drive over on Christmas eve and check it out.  OMG, I had no idea what we were stumbling upon!

We typed it into the GPS and were there in under 10 minutes.  It was just turning dark and we quickly parked on a side street. (They must have very understanding neighbors!)  We wanted to walk it and I still didn’t have the whole scope on what was on that road.

It was amazing!  The whole cul-de-sac was lined in  luminaries, it was so pretty.  Arches over the street and so many inflatables!


Each home on the street was decorated to the max!  Several had fires burning and lawn chairs out visiting with everyone.  Everyone wished each other a Merry Christmas.  Little kids were touring with their families in the pj’s.  It was a perfect Christmas Eve!


Even Santa was out listening to Children’s requests.  It was so sweet to see them lined up and so excited!  IF you have the opportunity please make the drive to view Verbania Court to view their display.


Websites for the lights:

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Brevard Zoo in Melbourne, Florida

We purchased a Groupon for a Brevard Zoo membership, I paid $51.  I knew we were planning a trip to Florida to that area and this would be a good value for our family.  They are an AZA affiliate zoo (Association of Zoos and Aquariums) so my membership has reciprocal at many zoos and aquariums.  Normal admission is $16 for adults and $12 for children, we would have paid $44.



Feed the Giraffes for $2, much cheaper than other zoos we have visited!




Feed the Lorikeets for $1.

It started out simple enough…


But then his friends noticed the nectar..


She handled it well but didn’t appreciate the one that landed on her head.


Seed sticks are $1.


But maybe the best part for kids is the splash zone.  The zoo had a water area for the kids included in the price.



We loved this zoo. The staff was so friendly, they told us stories of the animals in their care and how they came to be at the zoo. We asked about hurricanes and the animals.  We spent several hours at Brevard Zoo and will visit again.

And the best part was our AZA zoo membership was good for a year. We visited Tampa Zoo, Milwaukee Zoo and others on the one purchase.

“InspireJoin me on Fridays and see where we've all been!

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