Ways To Experience The Palm Beaches in '18

February 14, 2018

There are more than 18 reasons to visit The Palm Beaches this year, but we’ve rounded up some new must-dos and old favorites.

18. Find foodie paradise...in a warehouse



The newly unveiled Warehouse District in West Palm Beach already houses a brewery, distillery and the region’s first squash club, with much more on the way. In early 2018, a 15-vendor food hall called Grandview Public Market became The Palm Beaches’ newest culinary mecca. Among the offerings are a Hawaiian-inspired poke “lab,” a coffee roaster and two concepts co-created by Bravo “Top Chef” alum Chef Dale Talde: Clare’s, a premier chicken joint, and The Corner, a Detroit-style pizza spot.


17. An art icon gets a makeover
The Norton Museum of Art has been a cultural landmark in The Palm Beaches since 1941, and it begins a new chapter in early 2019 with the completion of a multi-year expansion and renovation. Explore the state-of-the-art auditorium, 12,000 square feet of new gallery space, dining pavilion and 9,000-square-foot sculpture garden (plus, Art After Dark remains one of the popular ways to spend a Thursday night).
 
16. Scuba dive a 1967 Rolls Royce (yes, really)

An 1985 photo of the Rolls Royce Dive Site



Only in The Palm Beaches will you find an artificial reef made from a sunken vintage luxury car. It can be found just off the coast of Riviera Beach, but the  entire 47-mile stretch of coastline is dotted with man-made reefs (151 in all!) that have helped local marine thrive.

 
15. Take an African safari without leaving Florida

Families have flocked to Lion Country Safari for more than 50 years to visit the resident rhinos, antelopes, big cats and more. The circle of life continues with the birth of a new baby giraffe (weighing in at an impressive 150 pounds), who arrived in August. You can see baby Zuri (which means “beautiful” in Swahili) and her proud mama, Pammella, as you drive through the final section of the preserve.
 
14. Find your Zen at Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens

 

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One of the most interesting chapters in The Palm Beaches’ history lies in Delray Beach at Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens. A former Japanese farming colony from the early 20th century, the property now boasts a cultural museum and six manicured gardens inspired by famous gardens in Japan.
 
13. Public transportation for beer lovers
The tide of craft breweries in The Palm Beaches continues to rise, with a handful of new offerings on tap for 2018 (including Prosperity Brewing in Boca Raton and the West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault). With all these great beers, a safer way to sample them only makes sense. Enter the Damn Good Beer Bus, a brewery tour on wheels that launched in 2017. Hop on and try ’em all.
 
12. Take me out to the Ballgame

 

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For baseball fans, there’s no better way to enjoy America’s Pastime than Spring Training. You’ll get an up-close view of the sport’s top players at the brand-new Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, which plays host to the Washington Nationals and World Series-winning Houston Astros. Just up the coast in Jupiter, see the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals get into the swing of the season at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium.
 
11. Have a cone, a cup or a Kitchen Sink at Sloan’s Ice Cream
A true Palm Beaches original, this over-the-top, sugary-sweet fantasyland offers Instagram-ready décor and dozens of crazy flavors, but the sundaes are things of legend. Here, you can order five scoops piled high in an actual sand pail, or dare to attempt the famous Tracy’s Kitchen Sink—12 scoops, gobs of whipped cream and every topping you can imagine, served in an actual kitchen sink. File it under “things you have to do once in your life.”
 
10. All aboard the Brightline

 

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A "brighter" way to travel around Florida just pulled into the station. Brightline is an express passenger rail service that is zipping travelers between West Palm Beach and Ft. Lauderdale in 30 minutes. Soon, you’ll be able to get to Miami in the amount of time it takes you to finish a podcast and, eventually, to Orlando in just two hours.
 
9. Find a new groove in Pineapple Grove
Just north of bustling Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, this eclectic arts district houses an array of galleries, local boutiques and some of the area’s boldest global cuisine (including AVANT, a new restaurant with a vibe that has been described as “Miami Vice” meets modern Disney). Don’t leave without snapping a selfie in front of the colorful pineapple murals.
 
8. Have fun getting LOST

Get LOST (though not really) on the 110-mile Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail, fit for walking, biking, blading or horseback riding—the Palm Beaches portion even has three places you can camp. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for gators, rare birds and the elusive ghost orchid.
 
7. Dine among sports royalty at 1000 North

 

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Jupiter’s upscale dining scene was elevated higher with the recent opening of 1000 North, a swanky restaurant and bar co-founded by some of sport’s biggest names, including Michael Jordan, Rickie Fowler and Ernie Els—all residents of The Palm Beaches. Enjoy fine modern-American cuisine, panoramic lighthouse views and possible celeb sightings; 1000 North’s upper level is a VIP hotspot.
 
6. Shop local makers at Elizabeth Avenue Station
Another new addition to the up-and-coming West Palm Beach Warehouse District, this abandoned industrial building has been transformed into a vibrant marketplace for homegrown artisans. Browse one-of-a-kind goods and gifts (think pottery, stationery, jewelry and apparel) and stick around for pop-up food vendors and live music.

5. Take a swing at Florida’s toughest golf course
The Palm Beaches are Florida’s Golf Capital, and part of its legend is centered around The Champion, a Jack Nicklaus-designed course in Palm Beach Gardens that’s home to the PGA TOUR’s Honda Classic. This course is known as the most difficult in Florida, due in large part to The Bear Trap, a daunting three-hole stretch that has stumped some of the world’s top golfers.
 
Looking for something more low-key? The area is filled with outstanding courses, like Red Reef Executive Golf Course in Boca Raton, which is perched between the Intracoastal Waterway and Atlantic Ocean for endless views.
 
4. See 50 bands in four fun days at SunFest

 

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At Florida’s largest waterfront music and art festival, you’ll be treated to a huge range of top touring acts (recent performers include Weezer, Duran Duran and The Roots) amid the gorgeous backdrop of Lake Worth Lagoon. Set for May 3-6, SunFest will soon be announcing its 2018 lineup, so get your tickets before they sell out.
 
3. Stay up past your bedtime on Clematis Street
West Palm Beach’s hub of nightlife, dining and entertainment, Clematis Street comes alive after dark. With the colorful neon aglow, you can ride around on a free trolley, hop between bars and have a late-night snack at any number of sidewalk cafés.
 
2. Indulge in a spa day—or spa month
It’s always a good time to visit The Palm Beaches’ many world-class spas, but Spa & Wellness Month in October makes it twice as tempting. In its third year, Spa & Wellness Month offers unbeatable deals at spas like The Breakers, Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa and PGA National Resort & Spa. Stay tuned for this year’s offers.
 
1. A beach for every mood
Maybe it isn’t a huge surprise that beaches top our list, but we’d bet there are a few you still need to experience. With 47 miles of coastline, every beach here truly has its own character—like funky, friendly Delray Beach or Carlin Park in Jupiter, with its cool rock formations and golden sands. You can even sleep on the beach, whether at upscale resorts in Boca Raton and Palm Beach or in the natural beach camping area at Peanut Island, accessible only by boat. Begin the search for your perfect beach here.

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