Situated on Florida’s Atlantic coast, Stuart is a beautiful resort city that’s the ideal place to bring your family for fun in the sand and surf. One family-friendly beach is Bathtub Reef, named for its warm and calm waters. Snorkel, hunt for shells, and swim in the shallow lagoon. When you’re ready to move beyond the beach, head for Riverwalk, which is home to a fountain with a leaping marlin statue as well as shops, farmers’ markets, and restaurants. Speaking of restaurants, for fine dining head to the Chef’s Table for high-end American cuisine, or Courtine’s, which serves American and French food. For cheap eats, the Flamingo Diner and Maria Cafe are the places to grab a bite. Popular vacation rentals are located right near the water and often have their own backyard swimming pool. Book a stay at a Stuart vacation rental today. Here are nine of the best locations in Stuart to check out.
1. Palm City
A walk from Stuart to Palm City is a consideration on a coolish day, for the cities are less than three miles from each other. Family golfers can play a few rounds at Hammock Creek Golf Club, and there are a number of farms and ranches for the kids to enjoy. They include D&D Family Farms, which has rides for the kids and Shadowood Farm, a lush and tranquil place where you can buy fresh produce and enjoy concerts and other entertainments.
2. Port Salerno
Another very short trip from Stuart, Port Salerno offers boat tours around the harbor. The kids will absolutely love the ghost tours, which offers a good, spooky time as well as history about the city. For vittles, go to Brothers’ Q BBQ and the Manatee Marina on the waterfront.
3. Jensen Beach
Just north of Stuart, Jensen Beach is surrounded by wildlife preserves such as Savannas Preserve State Park, the North Fork, St. Lucie Aquatic Preserve, and the Jensen Back to Jupiter Inlet Aquatic Preserve, so this city is a treat for nature lovers. Jensen Beach Park, Waveband Beach, and Normandy Beach are just three of the beaches for swimmers and surfers. There’s even a dog park at Walton Rocks Beach.
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4. Port St. Lucie
Port St. Lucie is a big city with big vacation rentals. You can find a mansion with at least five bedrooms and its own enclosed pool, a villa on the golf course, or a sweet little guest cottage that affords you some privacy. Go catch a game at First Data Field, which is the spring training home of the Mets. Take the family on a boat tour around the bodies of water around the city or hike and bird watch at Savannas Preserve State Park.
5. White City
Found just outside Port St. Lucie, White City is right on the border of the Savannas Recreation Area. Here’s a place to indulge in some light hiking, canoeing, or kayaking. The lake is stocked with bass, and you’ll need to take the boat out to get to them. The kids can run around in the playground, and there are not only dog parks but separate parks for small and big dogs.
6. Hobe Sound
Hobe Sound is the home of Blowing Rocks Preserve, whose sandstone boulders have been carved into interesting shapes by the water and the wind. The rocks get their name because there are times when the water geysers out of them. Make sure you have on your wet wear when that happens. After the beach, take the family on a day trip to visit the manatees on the Loxahatchee Queen II.
7. Jupiter Island
This little town on its own barrier island is a great place for biking and the home of some very rich people. If you can’t nab a rental in one of their guest houses, try the houses, townhouses, apartments, and condos, most right on the water. As for the biking, the island has little traffic. Ride out to the lighthouse, and get a glimpse of the mansions along the way.
Tequesta is the home of Coral Cove Park, which is a continuation of the Blowing Rocks Preserve and has the same type of features. Family friendly, you can search for shells and wade in the water, but wear water shoes to protect your feet from the coral. The town is full of eateries at all price ranges. For fine Italian cuisine, go to Evo. For good, cheap, American grub, head to the Dune Dog Cafe or the Crafty Crust.
9. Fort Pierce
Bring the military buffs in your family to the Navy Seal Museum in this big city. For relaxation, head to Jetty Park or the Savannas Recreation Area. Both you and the kids will be enraptured by the St. Lucie County Aquarium and the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, and, learn about manatees and other maritime life at the Manatee Observation & Education Center. Eateries in the city include 12A Buoy, which serves seafood and soups, the Tiki Bar & Restaurant, and the funky Archie’s Seabreeze.
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