Found in The Palm Beaches: Outdoor Experiences Worth The Drive

August 28, 2020

If you’re ready to explore and embark on your next escape, we’ve compiled a few ideas to get you closer to nature, and in the fresh air.

Did you know Palm Beach County is the largest county east of the Mississippi River? That’s right – it’s larger than the states of Delaware and Rhode Island, spanning more than 2,300-square-miles. With so much land to see, there are vast adventures to be had. And as locals, we want to share Palm Beach County’s greatest outdoor adventures with you! 

Before we jump in, please remember to follow CDC recommendations when out and about. We encourage you to bring hand sanitizer and/or hand sanitizing wipes when possible, follow social distancing practices and adhere to local facial covering mandates when exploring to keep local businesses open, and members of our community as well as visitors safe. For availability, business guidelines and hours of operations, we recommend that you reach out directly to businesses of interest for the latest safety guidelines and offerings. 

Watersports

Jupiter Outdoor Center’s Wild & Scenic Loxahatchee River Tour offered at Riverbend Park
Dress comfortably, because you’ll want to stay longer than expected. We recommend bringing sunscreen, bug repellent, a hat and packed picnic. Offering the perfect picnic setting, this site is home to the Loxahatchee Battlefield - also known as the Second Seminole Indian War, and one of only two National Wild and Scenic Rivers in the state. Choose from canoeing, kayaking, walking or cycling here, or do them all. Canoe, kayak and bicycle rentals are available to explore the varying terrains of this park via Jupiter Outdoor Center, though visitors are welcome to bring their own as well. Nearly 10 miles of hiking/biking, seven miles of equestrian trails and five miles of canoeing/kayaking trails await to be journeyed. Equestrian parking is available, too. 
 

Kayaker at Riverbend Park
Kayaker at Riverbend Park; Photo credit: Todd Easterbrook

Visit Palm Beach

Explore the West Palm Beach Waterfront as you take in the sights from above, nearby or in the water. Sunscreen, hat, and packed picnic can come in extra handy here as well. Bring a dry pair of clothes for post-activity exploration. The surrounding area is very walkable, with trendy restaurants, superb fine dining and casual eateries lining the downtown area, meaning you can try a new place no matter what direction your feet take you. Enjoy the Catamaran Sunset Cruise, Family Fun Ultimate Adventure, a Private Charter option, or a handful of additional cruise selections. Snorkel, Kayak and paddleboard rentals, as well as a guided tour options are available including a Guided Snorkel Tour at the Blue Heron Bridge. Oh, and they have bike tours, too! 

Hakuna Matata Catamaran Cruise
Hakuna Matata Catamaran Cruise; Photo credit: Visit Palm Beach

Jupiter Dive Center

Dive into the clear waters of Jupiter, Florida and get ready to cross off a Goliath Grouper encounter from your bucket list! Often referred to as “puppies of Poseidon” these gentle creatures can stretch up to eight feet and weigh up to 500 pounds. Impressive right? Now, imagine seeing a group of 60 of them. Here, in The Palm Beaches you can! Jupiter is one of the few known places where they gather to spawn each summer. You can read more about Goliath Groupers in Jupiter from the experts at Jupiter Diver Center, read on here. Five sea turtle species can also be spotted in Palm Beach County though the most abundant types to spot are the loggerhead, green and hawksbill. The likelihood of seeing these is heightened between the months of March and October. Daily dive charters, scuba certification, a wide array of classes, and equipment rental and repair are available at this PADI 5 Star Center and SCUBAPRO Platinum Dealer shop.  

Goliath Groupers
Goliath Groupers; Photo credit: Walt Stearns for Jupiter Dive CenterCaption

PuraVida Divers
Whether you’re already certified, looking to become scuba certified, or seeking to become a PADI Instructor, this PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Center offers conservation enthusiasts and adventurers the ability to explore the depths of Palm Beach County’s waters as well as its marine biodiversity. Daily scuba charters, private charters, blackwater excursions, technical dive charters, and educational opportunities are led by a team of dedicated and passionate dive professionals. Equipment rentals and sales, and gear service as well as training and professional level instruction make Pura Vida Divers a one-stop-shop for all things diving. But that isn’t all that they offer, guests can also discover the Snorkel Trail at Blue Heron Bridge with a Guided Snorkel Tour, or explore Palm Beach's beautiful waterways on a rental Stand Up Paddleboard. Tip: over the summer months, divers can look forward to Sea turtle nesting season, Lobster Mini Season during July and the Goliath Grouper aggregation from August through September. 

iOutdoors Fishing Adventures

Whether you’re interested in offshore, deep-sea or inshore fishing, this fishing charter company offers opportunities for new or experienced fisherman to enjoy time on Palm Beach County’s waterways. Saltwater fishing can score you a mahi-mahi, grouper, sailfish, or snapper, while freshwater fishing can hook you a snook, tarpon or trout. As Florida’s Largest Charter Operation, these charters are available in Belle Glade, Boca Raton, Jupiter and Palm Beach.   One of the most unique experiences available can be found fishing in the state’s largest lake, Lake Okeechobee, where exotic peacock bass and wide-mouth bass are present year-round. This Lake also ranks within the top 10 largest lakes within the United States. 

Parks & Natural Sights

John D. MacArthur Beach State Park
Take in the fresh air, natural setting and scenic vistas at Palm Beach County’s only state park. Just under two miles of pristine coastline beaches with bathtub warm water beckon for swimming, snorkeling and fishing. Tip: Bring your kayak(s) or canoe(s), as dolphins, manatees, mullet and many bird species are known to frequent the park’s estuary waters. If you’re comfortable paddling, we recommend venturing over to Munyon Island for shelling, swimming or island lounging. More of a landlubber? Step into the lush oasis provided by the park’s nature trails, which preserve the natural heritage of subtropical coastal habitat that once dominated the southeast Florida coastline. Pack a mini cooler for a day out on the beach or on the water. 

Snorkel Trail at Phil Foster Park
Voted one of the 50 Best Dive Sites in the World as reported by SportDiver Magazine in 2013, it’s usually news to many that the area beneath the Blue Heron Bridge at Phil Foster Park is teeming with marine life. From gentle giants such as sea turtles and manatees to wonders of a much smaller scale like lobsters and octopus, this spot is a gem when it comes to exploration beneath the water. Bring your snorkel gear or scuba wear for a day of coastline lounging, packed lunch, and in-water exploration. Tip: visiting during weekdays is highly encouraged as the park is busiest on weekends and often fills up fast. Fortunately, Palm Beach County has six additional beach parks for continued snorkeling adventures. We encourage you to check the status of parks and facilities ahead of your visit for the most optimal experience. 

Snorkelers at Phil Foster Park

Environmental Resources Management’s (ERM) Natural Areas
Pack your binoculars and venture on in your choice of any of Palm Beach County’s natural areas. Many of them are beaming with native wildlife sightings and greenery like you may not have seen in years, ranging from Mesic flatwoods, and cabbage palm hammock, to wet prairies, and dome swamp. More than 31,000 acres of paths less traveled await from the county’s northern area of Jupiter to Boca Raton, providing the perfect playground for outdoor adventures under the sun. Remember to stay hydrated, and dress for the Floridian heat and subtropical climate. We recommend wearing comfortable shoes you’re not afraid to get dirty. Tip: consider visiting during the morning or evening hours for the best scenery and weather conditions. A map of the Natural Areas can be found here. The map allows visitors to access trail information and know where they are on the trail in real time from their phone.  

Pine Glades Natural Area
Pine Glades Natural Area; Photo credit: Captain Kimo

Palm Beach County’s (PBC) Parks & Recreation
A day of outdoor recreation awaits at PBC’s park facilities. With more than 80 parks, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy ample space, and activity options to suit the varying interests of those looking to spend more time outdoors. A brief sampling of activities includes kayak and canoe rentals, disc golf, basketball, volleyball, racquetball, tennis, waterskiing, dog parks and equestrian trails, among others. Some socially distant park facilities include Jim Brandon Equestrian Center, John Prince Golf Learning Center, Okeeheelee Golf Course, Osprey Point Golf Course, Palm Beach Training Center, Rick Macci Tennis Center, and Shark Wake Park. 

Boating Excursions

For ways to explore The Palm Beaches, by water, check out 14 Boating Experiences You Must Try. Highlights include Pontiki Boat Cruises – a tiki boat cruise with beer on tap, waterslide and more, Lots of Yachts – private boat charters available for rental, and Delray Yacht Cruises – a sightseeing cruise offered in Delray Beach. Additionally, add Palm Beach and Jupiter Dolphin Tours to your bucket list of Palm Beach County things to do, and experience an interpretive tour led by dolphin scientists with over 30 years of experience studying dolphins and witness the beauty of dolphin sightings in the wild.  

Bike Rentals

Island Living Tours

Get to know the ins and outs of the enchanting Town of Palm Beach as Leslie Diver takes you on a private narrated tour. Tours can be by bicycle or car, and range from 1 hour to 2.5 hours in length. Beginning in October, you can opt for an Architectural-themed tour, though there are currently eight tour options available. You’re welcome to bring your own bike or rent one at the island’s Palm Beach Bicycle Trail Shop at The Royal Poinciana Plaza. Afterward, stay a little longer at “The Royal” to enjoy a coffee, smoothie or complete meal. With open courtyards and a unique collection of shops and boutiques it’s easy to spend the entire day here. 

 

sponsored content
sponsored content