What's Your Palm Beaches Road Trip Style?

June 21, 2021

As summer arrives, so do summer trips, and many of us are choosing to put our cars in drive and head out for a road trip.

The Palm Beaches is the perfect destination for your road trip, whether you’re planning to spend your whole vacation here or stopping for a day or two on a larger Florida road trip. And no matter if you are traveling with your significant other, a group of friends or your whole family, there are so many great spots and activities to add to your itinerary. Below are a few of my favorites broken up into The Palm Beaches’ three regions so you can better plan your route.

Romantic Road Trip

For couples hitting the road together, here are my favorite spots to visit with my husband.
 
North
For a fun daytime activity, go paddleboarding or kayaking and enjoy the beauty of nature in Jupiter’s Riverbend Park or in the Jupiter Inlet. Check out Jupiter Outdoor Center for rentals. 

Kayaking in Riverbend Park

Next, go visit the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum and take a tour. Learn about the history of the lighthouse and climb to the top for beautiful views of the Jupiter Inlet.

The Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum

After working up an appetite, grab a bite to eat from a local restaurant. One option for sitting by the water is U-Tiki, which serves Caribbean-inspired food and great drinks, and has a huge deck for outdoor seating with views of the lighthouse.
 
Central
For a taste of The Palm Beaches’ signature Gilded Age luxury, dine at The Breakers resort. Take in the history of Palm Beach, the stunning architecture and Atlantic Ocean views while treating yourself at the resort’s amazing restaurants. We enjoy sitting at the Seafood Bar, which features a bar that is also an aquarium, followed by dessert cocktails at HMF, where the décor and hospitality bring you back to the roaring 20s.
 
If you are history buffs like us, stop by the beautiful Flagler Museum, also in Palm Beach. Henry Flagler, founder of the Florida East Coast Railway who was integral to the development of Palm Beach, built the home for his third wife in 1902. Step back in time and enjoy self-guided tours through this impressive home.

The Flagler Museum, Palm Beach

Want to enjoy bird’s-eye views of West Palm Beach and Palm Beach? Head up to the rooftop of either RH in Rosemary Square or Spruzzo at The Ben hotel. Both feature delicious cuisine accented by stylish décor and gorgeous vistas. 

Spruzzo at The Ben
Spruzzo at The Ben; photo by Shannon Smagala

South
Add Delray Beach’s Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens to your itinerary when traveling in the southern portion of The Palm Beaches. Stroll the expansive gardens with winding paths, seating areas, world-class bonsai collection and lakes teeming with koi; and stop into the two museum buildings to see permanent and rotating art exhibits.

Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens

Atlantic Avenue in downtown Delray Beach is another must-stop. Its many restaurants, bars and shops radiate contagiously fun energy as you walk down the street. For a unique date night just over a block off Atlantic, stop at the Silverball Retro Arcade, and play classic pinball machines and arcade games.

Atlantic Avenue, Delray Beach

Road trips can mean a lot of unhealthy food, so grab a feel-good meal at the Farmer’s Table in Boca Raton, which serves food that “energizes the spirt and satisfies the senses, supporting the wellness of people and the planet.”

With Friends Along for the Ride

When road tripping in The Palm Beaches with your friends by your side, get ready for some serious fun.
 
North
For a place where you can shop and eat while enjoying a classic, coastal vibe, make Harbourside Place in Jupiter one of your stops. Nestled along the Intracoastal Waterway, this is a premier destination where you can indulge in shopping and dining, stay in luxury accommodations, and even take a boat tour. 

Harbourside Place, Jupiter

For some live music and another great meal, stop at Guanabanas to take in the lush, waterfront, tropical setting with Intracoastal views. Originally opened by Jupiter surfers as a small sandwich shop, the restaurant is now a local institution.

Guanabanas, Jupiter

Want to relax from all that driving and dining? Try True Rest Float Spa in Palm Beach Gardens. This unique spa allows you to effortlessly float on water for pain relief, profound relaxation and better sleep.
 
Central
If you want to experience high-end shopping (or window shopping), cross the bridge from West Palm Beach over to Palm Beach and stroll beautiful Worth Avenue. With a variety of luxury boutiques and alfresco dining options surrounded by lush gardens and quiet vias, it is a must-stop when visiting the island.

Worth Avenue, Palm Beach

If traveling from January to April, head out west to the International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington to watch polo at one of the world’s premier polo destinations. It hosts the largest field of high-goal teams and the most prestigious polo tournaments in the United States. The champagne brunch on Sundays is a must-do for a group of friends.

Polo match in Wellington

Want to spend a day on your trip indulging in ultimate luxury? The Eau Spa at Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in Manalapan is the ultimate spot to “Pause, Play, Perfect,” as their motto goes.

Eau Spa, Eau Palm Beach Resort
Photo by Frederic Lagrange

South
If you and your friends love craft beer, take a break from driving yourself and hop on the Damn Good Beer Bus for a tour of some of the breweries on the Ale Trail of The Palm Beaches. Some of the potential stops on their South County beer tour include Barrel of Monks, Due South and Prosperity.

Touring Due South Brewing Company

For shopping and restaurants in Boca Raton, Mizner Park offers an outdoor shopping experience, as well as fun and creative eateries including Max's Grille, Yard House and Villagio Restaurant & Bar. At the far end of the center, there is an amphitheater that hosts shows and concerts throughout the year.

Mizner Park, Boca Raton

Kiddos in the Back Seat

No matter how long you stay, The Palm Beaches are a destination that every family member will enjoy.
 
North
No trip to The Palm Beaches is complete without a fun beach day. We love Juno Beach Park (right by the pier), which offers free parking with great facilities, making your beach day easy and enjoyable. We can’t leave the beach without walking out on the pier with an ice cream in hand purchased right there at the snack bar.

Fishing from the Juno Beach Pier

Right down the street from the pier is the amazing Loggerhead Marinelife Center, a sea turtle research, rehabilitation, education and conservation center. See these beautiful creatures up close and learn more about what is being done to protect them.

Loggerhead Marineline Center

Does your family love mini golf? Head to Lighthouse Cove Adventure Golf in Jupiter. Everyone will have a blast playing the two fun-for-all courses. Follow up your games with food, drinks and ice cream.

Lighthouse Cove mini golf course

To cool off from the South Florida heat, check out Rapids Water Park in Riviera Beach. Open daily, the park includes 42 slides and attractions, including a wave pool, dual seven-story speed slides and a quarter-mile lazy river, as well as slides for children and toddlers.

Rapids Water Park, Riviera Beach

Central
The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium is a must-stop in West Palm Beach. Serving Palm Beach County since 1961, the center revolves around a simple premise: Science is exciting! The facility contains more than 100 hands-on exhibits, a planetarium, an 18-hole mini golf course, a splash pad and an early childhood area for the smaller kids.

Fossil dig exhibit, South Florida Science Center

A place that we always take families when they are visiting is Lion Country Safari in Loxahatchee. Drive through the safari to see lions, zebras, giraffes and so much more.  After the safari, check out the amusement park where you can see more animals, ride rides, feed giraffes and cool off in the splash park. 

Lion Country Safari

South
In Boca Raton, spend a few hours at Sugar Sand Park, which features a science playground, a science pavilion, nature trails and a carousel.

Boomers is another fun attraction in Boca Raton for everyone in the family. An amusement park with an arcade, laser tag, mini golf, go-karts, bumper cars, bumper boats and batting cages, Boomers will have everyone smiling for hours.

The Girls Strawberry U-Pick in Delray Beach offers way more than strawberries. Relax in a lush garden setting, where you can see swans and exotic birds and enjoy the petting zoo. Make sure to grab some homemade baked goods for fuel for the drive back home.

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Meg Palumbo
Meg Palumbo
Meg Palumbo is the proud co-owner of Palm Beach Mom Collective, a parenting resource website written for moms by parents in Palm Beach County.