The 11 Best Places to Live on East Coast of Florida in 2022 – Latest Update

Some of Florida’s top beaches and most popular cities sit on its eastern shores, so we found the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida. These cities are located right on the Atlantic Ocean and provide residents with easy access to some of the nation’s most beautiful beaches as well as many things to do around town.

We made sure to find places that strike a good balance between offering leisure activities and high quality amenities. We also evaluated these places based on their overall livability, which includes their safety, future job prospects, and general desirability to make sure that we found the cream of the crop.

The East Coast of Florida offers some of the best values and standards of living within the state, so be sure to consider the cities on our list if you are thinking about moving.

So, let’s take a look at the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida so that you are well-informed about where you may want to head next.   

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Best Places to Live on East Coast of Florida

11. Daytona Beach

Best-Places-to-Live-on-East-Coast-of-Florida-Daytona-Beach

Location:  Check on Google Maps

Daytona Beach is the first city on our list of the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida. Located in the northern part of the state and just 1 hour away from Orlando, Daytona Beach offers its 70,000 residents a relaxed lifestyle with access to miles and miles of pristine beaches with white sand.

It is also pretty cheap to live here – the average home costs 17% less than the national average. Meanwhile, there are plenty of things to do and see around the city. It is home to the Daytona International Speedway, which hosts NASCAR’s Daytona 500. There is also the well-known Surfside Historic District right on the beach.

It features the Daytona Boardwalk and Main Street Pier, where locals and tourists go to soak in the sun and the beachtown vibes of Daytona Beach.

10. Miami

Location:  Check on Google Maps

While Miami is usually thought of as being in South Florida, it technically sits on the East Coast of Florida, right on the Atlantic Ocean. Miami is a great place for those looking for things to do at any time. You can catch a game in almost any sport, as the Heat, Marlins, and Dolphins all call Miami home.

You can also enjoy Miami’s famous nightlife scene in one of the many clubs and bars that line the streets of Miami Beach and Downtown Miami.

Or, you can just relax on the beach and enjoy the lively atmosphere of South Beach.

But, Miami is more than just a city of leisure. It offers a growing economy with many job opportunities. Its job market is expected to expand by over 42% in the next 10 years.

9. Port St. Lucie

Location:  Check on Google Maps

Port St. Lucie is a quiet city right on the Atlantic that is located about halfway between Orlando and Miami. Baseball fans may be familiar with this city as it is the Spring Training home of the New York Mets.

It is a great place for nature lovers, as it offers miles of stunning coastline as well as the tranquil Savannas Preserve State Park that is right on the water. There is also Port St. Lucie Botanical Gardens in the center of town and the St. Lucie River and aquatic preserve that runs through the city.

Meanwhile, residents can enjoy festivals and celebrations throughout the year in this tight-knit community.

8. Boca Raton

Location: Check on Google Maps

Boca Raton is a community of just under 100,000 residents that is one of the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida. It sits right between Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach and is conveniently located about 45 minutes away from Miami by car.

It’s best known for its excellent beaches, abundance of parks, and seemingly limitless number of golf courses throughout the city.

 

Boca Raton also has a reputation among foodies as hosting some of the state’s finest restaurants. Additionally, it is a great place for shoppers, who can splurge at the upscale Town Center at Boca Raton mall, which is one of the largest malls in the region.

There are also plenty of job opportunities here. Office Depot has their headquarters in Boca Raton and other top employers include Boca Raton Regional Hospital and Florida Atlantic University.

7. Melbourne

Location: Check on Google Maps

Residents of Melbourne enjoy a quiet lifestyle on Florida’s East Coast right on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. It offers numerous public parks across the city and easy access to the beach that is right across the Indian River. There is also a small downtown area that is lined with small restaurants, shops, and bars.

Melbourne represents a great value, as other cities in Florida with these amenities usually cost a bit more to live in. Perhaps its relatively isolated location is the reason why it’s more affordable, although that may actually be a bonus for some.

And, it’s not that isolated – Orlando is about a 1 hour 15 minute drive away and Miami is about 2.5 hours away by car.

Overall, Melbourne’s relaxed lifestyle, active community, and strong school system make it one of the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida, especially for families.

6. Palm Beach

Location: Check on Google Maps

Palm Beach is one of the most picturesque beach towns in all of Florida. It sits on a barrier island between the ocean and the mainland of West Palm Beach, but it is its own town.

Its 8,800 residents enjoy upscale dining and shopping along its perfectly manicured streets while also indulging on the sandy shores of Palm Beach Municipal Beach. Of course, they also have easy access to the glitz and glamor of West Palm Beach, but can retreat back home to their more relaxed island when necessary.

Palm Beach is also known for its stunning oceanfront real estate options, so be prepared to spend some cash if you are looking to relocate here. The average home price in Palm Beach is over $1.3 million according to the latest figures from Zillow.

5. Fort Pierce

Location: Check on Google Maps

Nicknamed “The Sunrise City,” Fort Pierce’s residents can enjoy beautiful sunrises and sunsets right on the beach as the city is located directly on the Treasure Coast.

It is also just 25 minutes north of Port St. Lucie, which we ranked as the 9th best city on the East Coast of Florida.

So, what can you expect in this tranquil beach town of 47,000 residents? Folks here can enjoy Fort Pierce’s historic downtown district that features one of the “most idyllic and historic main streets” in America, according to USA Today. You can find local boutiques, galleries, cafes, restaurants, and a farmers market along its walkable, palm tree-lined streets.

Or, you can head straight to the beach and enjoy the sandy shores at South Beach Park or Blue Heron Beach that are just a 10 minute drive from downtown.

Additionally, you can witness the natural splendor of the Heathcote Botanical Gardens and visit one of their many themed gardens, including a butterfly garden, a Japanese garden, and a rainforest.

4. Stuart

Location: Check on Google Maps

Stuart is another quaint town located on Florida’s Treasure Coast on the eastern shores of the state.

This small community of roughly 17,000 residents has earned many nicknames and accolades, including the “Sailfish Capital of the World,” as well as “The Panama Canal of Florida,” and “America’s Happiest Seaside Town.”

What is there to do in this well-acclaimed beach town?

Residents can enjoy Stuart’s Historic Downtown, a pedestrian-centric district that feels like Old Florida and is filled with locally-owned boutiques, cute little cafes, and tasty dining options with outdoor seating.

The nearby St. Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon are other tranquil sights for locals, where you can spot dolphins and take in the sunset.

Additionally, the town is quite affordable. The cost of living in Stuart is about 6% lower than the US average, with home prices that are 23% lower than the rest of the US.

All of these facts make Stuart one of the best places to live in the East Coast of Florida, especially for those looking for a charming small town by the water.

3. Fort Lauderdale

Location: Check on Google Maps

Fort Lauderdale is the crown jewel of the southeastern part of Florida. Located just a  40 minute drive north of Miami, the “Venice of America” features a never-ending list of amenities and things to do that keeps locals busy all year-round.

With a population of 183,000, it is the 10th largest city in the Sunshine State and one of the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida for those looking for big city vibes outside of Miami.

So, what does this vibrant beach city offer its residents?

Many argue that Fort Lauderdale delivers the perfect Florida experience, with an ideal blend of relaxation, great food, and a thriving arts scene that makes it one of the most livable cities in the state.

It also features many different neighborhoods to discover, including the 

FATVillage Arts District, Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale, and the famed Las Olas Boulevard that are located among the bustling urban core and quiet residential communities within the city.

There are also numerous events and festivals in and around the city every month that help the community come together.

Of course, there is also Fort Lauderdale’s world-famous beachfront with over 20 miles of golden shores that is just a 10 minute drive away from downtown.

2. Amelia Island

Location: Check on Google Maps

Amelia Island is one of Florida’s northernmost locations and offers 13 miles of pristine coastline right on the Atlantic Ocean. This barrier island is home to three tranquil beach communities, American Beach, Amelia City, and Fernandina Beach, and is located just 30 miles away from Jacksonville.

While Amelia Island is known for its legendary beachfront, it also offers plenty of other amenities for its residents.

For example, there is Fernandina Beach’s charming historic district that spans 50 blocks and features local shops and restaurants in Victorian-styled architecture. It is also home to the oldest saloon in Florida.

There are also numerous events and festivals throughout the year that help bring its residents closer together. Don’t miss the famous Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance or the Amelia Island Jazz Festival.

Amelia Island is a great place for families as well, with an A+ grade for safety and education from AreaVibes, along with many quiet residential neighborhoods to choose from across the island.

1. St. Augustine

Best-Places-to-Live-on-East-Coast-of-Florida-St-Augustine

Location: Check on Google Maps

St. Augustine claims first place on our list of the best places to live on the East Coast of Florida. In fact, we even named it the best place to live in the whole state.

What makes St. Augustine so great? Let’s start with the city itself. There is the charming, 144 block historic downtown core that features small shops, excellent restaurants, cozy coffee shops, and lively bars.

It also has built up an extensive community for arts and culture, which makes it perfect for families and retirees alike.

On top of that, St. Augustine sits right on the Atlantic Ocean and offers some of the best beaches in the entire state.

Location-wise, St. Augustine is just 45 minutes from Jacksonville, while you can get to Orlando in under 2 hours.

St. Augustine is truly one of the most complete cities in Florida. The fact that it also offers miles of beaches makes it an unbeatable place to live.

Summary – Best Places to Live on East Coast of Florida

Overall, these are the best cities to live in Florida’s East Coast:

  1. St. Augustine
  2. Amelia Island
  3. Fort Lauderdale
  4. Stuart
  5. Fort Pierce
  6. Palm Beach
  7. Melbourne
  8. Boca Raton
  9. Port St. Lucie
  10. Miami
  11. Daytona Beach

There are many fine places along Florida’s Atlantic coast to call home, but we think that these 7 are your best choices that provide you with many things to do at a good value.

You really can’t go wrong with any of them. It will largely depend on your preferences and whether you want a large, urban center like Miami, or a more laid-back community like Melbourne. Either way, they all offer you a slice of the beach life that makes Florida famous, so you don’t have to worry about making the wrong call.