Author: Mort (---.tampabay.res.rr.com)
Date: 09-17-08 21:04
Flamenco is far and away the safest major beach. It's protected by reefs, and even when the surf is "heavy", there are sections of Flamenco that are very mild.
Zoni can be rough. But you'll know right away if it's too rough for you. Just looking at it will tell you, most likely. The surf tends to vary day by day. You'll likely find some calm days and some rough days.
As for being a strong swimmer... What are you planning to do? If you're going to mainly play in the waves, then it's easy to decide... Just don't go in the water when the waves are too high. If you're wanting to "swim laps", Zoni is probably not the best place to do it.
Flamenco has lifeguards, at least on many days (and honestly, they aren't really needed.... Their main role seems to be to stop everyone from having a good time when the waves are high enough for decent body surfing.)