“High season” in Daytona means whenever there’s an event scheduled; rates at hotels, normally pretty modest, go stratospheric during race weekends, bike events and spring break. Summers are long and extremely hot—90s during the day and sometimes not much cooler than that at night. This is the prime time for families, though, with kids out of school, a big beach to loll on and the ocean warm as bath water. Summer, and especially the July 4 weekend with the Coke Zero 400 and Rolex Grand Am races, is the high season for the city. Hotels are most crowded and rates are high.
Once the winter temps settle in around mid-December, beachside activity slows to a crawl until the festivities leading up to the Daytona 500 get cranking in February.
Daytona doesn’t have a grand winter season like other Florida resorts. It’s a bit farther north, so while it rarely experiences extreme cold, it can get too nippy for frolicking on the beach from December through March. Those months are marked with alternating spells of delicious, dry 70-degree days and the occasional cold snap that sends temps down into the 50s during the day and the low-40s at night. Rare cold fronts can push nighttime temperatures to freezing. That does make the perfect combination for bikers, however, and the city attracts a lot of touring groups during the fall and winter between the season-opening Biketoberfest and Bike Week in February and March, around the same time as the Speed Weeks and the Daytona 500. Generally, from St. Patrick’s Day to Memorial Day the weather goes from warm to hot, the ocean temps rise into the tolerable range and the humidity is low, making it a great time to visit. The weather stays hot and ocean temps reach their zenith in August and September, when afternoons are marked by thunderstorms. The crowds fall off considerably after Labor Day. From late-September through October, and often up until Thanksgiving, the weather is grand, with daytime highs in the 80s, nighttime temps in the 60s or 70s and less humidity. The ocean is still warm and, with no wait at the restaurants or attractions and low room rates, it’s a nice time to visit.