Cocoa : Florida


What It Is Like to Retire in Cocoa

Cocoa is a small town of 18,603 on the central Atlantic coast of Florida. Cocoa Beach on the barrier island to the east from the mainland has 11,700 citizens. Nearby Merritt Island is nearby. Several stories circulate among Cocoa old timers as to how the town got its name. One story says that the mail used to come by river boat and was placed in an empty tin box labeled Baker's Cocoa. The box was nailed to a piling in the river next to downtown. Additionally, an early hotel in the area, located on the Indian River lagoon, was named Cocoa House. The historic downtown area is called Cocoa Village along Florida Avenue and Stone Street. It has shops and restaurants, and is surrounded by historic buildings and the Cocoa Riverfront Park. The Florida Historical Society is headquartered in the historic Cocoa Post Office, originally built in 1939 by the Works Progress Administration. Photo of the Aladdin Theater is from Wikipedia in the public domain. Photo of welcome sign courtesy of COCOAFL Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0/


Where to Retire in Cocoa and Home Prices

There are active adult communities in Cocoa and in nearby Merritt Island. See Find a Community for the Florida Directory. The Zillow Home Value Index in mid-2021 was $221,095 in Cocoa, whereas on the barrier island of Cocoa Beach the prices were much higher at $377,095.


What Is Special about Cocoa

Living on the barrier island is pretty special. Cocoa Village is interesting. People like its low-key atmosphere.

What Is Not Special about Cocoa

Household incomes are relatively low and crime rate high in certain areas. Tourism is big in the downtown historic business district with cruise passenger tourists coming from Port Canaveral on excursions or day trips.

Who Will Like Retirement in Cocoa

A Topretirements Member reported that she and her husband retired to Cocoa Beach because they liked that it has more of a small-town atmosphere than many areas of Florida. People who like the beach will love it here.

Local Economy Is Driven by

Construction and retail trade are the two largest industries by employment in Cocoa as of 2017.

Climate and Physical Environment

Cocoa and Cocoa Beach are located midway down the Atlantic side of Florida, just below Cape Canaveral and near Merritt Island. It is hot and humid in summer and warm in winter.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Cocoa Village is home to the Historic Cocoa Village Playhouse, which was originally called The Aladdin Theatre. Tourists are attracted to the historic sites and local attractions such as the Brevard Museum of History & Natural Science, the Eastern Florida State College Planetarium and Observatory, Historic Cocoa Village, Indian River Queen (excursion boat), Indian River Drive scenic bypass, the Aladdin Theater, Historic Porcher House, and Riverfront Park. Historic Cocoa Village has shopping and two Golden Spoon award-winning restaurants, and boutiques.


The crime rate is higher than the U.S. and the Florida averages.

Medical Facilities

Rockledge Regional Medical Center is in Cocoa. Health First has an emergency room in Cocoa Beach.


The Florida East Coast Railway runs through Cocoa. A planned Brightline higher speed rail expansion is designed to connect Orlando to Miami making a turn in Cocoa (designated the "Cocoa Curve"). Melbourne International Airport is 22 miles away.

Valuable Links

Cocoa Florida

Cocoa Beach Florida

Wikipedia page on Cocoa


What people are saying about Cocoa

No Comments

Leave a Comment

To comment you must be a registered member of

Login Here


Create Your Free Membership Account

Suggest a community we want to know about your top retirement spots
Please note that all contributions to Topretirements may be edited, altered, or removed by other contributors. If you don't want your writing to be edited mercilessly, then don't submit it here. By submitting content and/or photographs here you agree to give the rights to use them in any manner without cost or attribution.You are also promising us that you wrote this yourself, or copied it from a public domain or similar free resource (see Project:Copyrights for details). DO NOT SUBMIT COPYRIGHTED WORK WITHOUT PERMISSION!

Copyright © 2006-2021 All Rights Reserved.