Rockledge is a city located in Brevard County, Florida, United States. It is situated on the eastern coast of Florida, just north of Melbourne and south of Cocoa. With a population of around 27,000 people, Rockledge is a thriving community that offers a high quality of life for its residents. The city has a rich history dating back to the 1800s, and today is known for its beautiful homes, excellent schools, and wide range of attractions and activities. Whether you’re a visitor or a longtime resident, there’s always something new to discover in Rockledge, Florida.
In the early 1880s, a group of businessmen from the north, including George F. Ensey and Charles H. Nauman, saw the potential for development in Rockledge and formed the Rockledge Land Company. They purchased large tracts of land and began to promote the area as a winter resort destination for wealthy northerners seeking warmer weather.
The Rockledge Land Company built several hotels and resorts, including the luxurious Hotel Indian River, which opened in 1887. The hotel was a popular destination for wealthy tourists and celebrities, including Thomas Edison and Henry Flagler.
In addition to the hotels, the Rockledge Land Company also built a pier and a railway station, which connected Rockledge to other cities in Florida and beyond. The railway brought more tourists to the area and made it easier for farmers to transport their crops to market.
During the early 20th century, Rockledge continued to grow and prosper. In 1911, the city was officially incorporated, and by the 1920s, it had become a popular winter resort destination for wealthy northerners.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Rockledge experienced another period of growth as the space industry boomed in nearby Cape Canaveral. Many of the workers at the Kennedy Space Center and other space-related companies chose to live in Rockledge, and the city’s population grew rapidly.
Today, Rockledge is a thriving community with a population of around 28,000 people. It is known for its excellent schools, beautiful parks, and vibrant downtown area. Despite its growth and development, Rockledge has managed to maintain its small-town charm and friendly atmosphere, making it a popular place to live for families and retirees alike.
One of the reasons why Rockledge is such an attractive place to live is its location. The city is situated along the eastern coast of Florida, offering residents access to beautiful beaches, warm weather, and plenty of outdoor recreational opportunities. Additionally, Rockledge is close to major employment centers, including the Kennedy Space Center and Orlando, which makes it an ideal place for people who work in these areas.
The real estate market in Rockledge offers a diverse range of options for homebuyers, including single-family homes, townhouses, and condominiums. Prices vary depending on the location, size, and condition of the property, but overall, the cost of living in Rockledge is relatively affordable compared to other cities in Florida.
According to recent data, the median home value in Rockledge is around $310,000, which is slightly higher than the national average. However, this price range offers a variety of options, including newer homes in planned communities, historic homes in established neighborhoods, and waterfront properties with scenic views.
In addition to traditional real estate, Rockledge also has a growing market for vacation rentals and short-term rentals. Many visitors are drawn to the area for its beautiful beaches, outdoor activities, and proximity to major attractions like Disney World and Universal Studios. As a result, some property owners have started to capitalize on this demand by renting out their homes or condos on a short-term basis.
Top Things to See and Do
1. Rockledge Gardens: This family-owned nursery and garden center offers a beautiful botanical experience. Visitors can stroll through the gardens, shop for plants and gifts, or attend one of the many workshops and events held throughout the year.
2. McLarty Museum: Located just north of Rockledge, the McLarty Museum is a fascinating museum dedicated to the history of the shipwrecks along Florida’s Treasure Coast. The museum features artifacts and exhibits from several shipwrecks, including the 1715 Spanish Plate Fleet.
3. Cocoa Village: Just a short drive from Rockledge, Cocoa Village is a charming historic district with boutique shops, restaurants, and galleries. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll down the main street or catch a show at the historic Cocoa Village Playhouse.
4. Beaches: Rockledge is located just a few miles from several beautiful beaches, including Cocoa Beach and Satellite Beach. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, fish, or surf at these popular spots.
5. Golf: Rockledge is home to several excellent golf courses, including the Rockledge Country Club and the Turtle Creek Golf Club. Golfers can enjoy a round of golf while taking in the beautiful Florida scenery.
6. Parks: Rockledge has several parks and recreational areas, including the scenic Riverwalk Park, which offers walking trails and picnic areas along the Indian River.
7. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge: Just a short drive from Rockledge, the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge is a vast wildlife sanctuary that offers visitors the opportunity to see a wide range of wildlife, including manatees, alligators, and a variety of birds.
8. Kennedy Space Center: Located just south of Rockledge, the Kennedy Space Center is a must-see attraction for space enthusiasts. Visitors can take a tour of the facility, see the launch pads, and learn about the history of the U.S. space program.
Community and Culture
One of the hallmarks of Rockledge’s culture is its strong sense of community. Residents take pride in their city and come together for a variety of events and activities throughout the year, such as the annual Christmas parade, the Easter egg hunt, and the Fourth of July celebration.
Rockledge also has a rich cultural heritage, which is celebrated through several historic sites and museums, such as the Historic Cocoa Village Playhouse and the McLarty Treasure Museum. The city has a long history that dates back to the 1800s, and residents are proud of their roots and work to preserve the city’s historic landmarks and buildings.
The city is also home to a variety of ethnic and cultural groups, which contribute to the diverse and welcoming community. This diversity is reflected in the city’s many restaurants, shops, and festivals, which offer a taste of different cultures from around the world.
Rockledge is also known for its strong sense of volunteerism and community involvement. Many residents participate in local charities and organizations, and there are numerous opportunities for people to get involved and make a positive impact in the community.