With the return of leisure travel, summer is the perfect time to discover one of the top US bucket list destinations for families by escaping to a place that has been treasured for generations. Known as America’s First Resort Destination, The Palm Beaches, comprised of 39 vibrant cities and towns throughout Palm Beach County, invites visitors to experience endless sunshine, the natural wonder of 47 miles of crowd-free beaches and historic charm. This gentler side of Florida is an easy-to-reach domestic destination, different than the rest, where visitors feel welcome amidst luxury while surrounded by an abundance of family-friendly offerings. Whether planning a short summer escape or a weekslong getaway, you’ll find enhanced accommodations, fresh culinary concepts, and things to do on and off the water while saving the destination that started it all, The Original, The One, The Only, The Palm Beaches.
This South Florida destination offers a variety of family-friendly hotels and resorts, for every vacation style and budget. Celebrate summer and upgrade the family vacation experience by booking at one of the recently renovated properties. The Boca Raton, a resort collection of five hotels located beachside and harborside, recently underwent a massive $200 million transformation. It’s a posh playground for “kids” of all ages with exclusive and innovative amenities including a private beach, 50,000 sq. ft. Spa Palmera (with 44 treatment rooms designed by Colin Cowie), 18-hole championship golf course, 34-slip marina, Racquet Club with 16 tennis courts and four pickleball courts, retail boutiques, and more. Another perk is the new signature children’s club, Banyan Bunch, where parents enjoy trusted childcare curated by industry experts. Other family favorites on-property involve drifting on the Lazy River, two exhilarating 5-story water slides, an interactive play area featuring an explorable pirate ship, splashing in seven different pools and relaxing in private cabanas with personalized butler service.
PGA National Resort, another top kid-friendly property, recently unveiled a $100 million transformation, providing a “360-degree luxury travel experience.” Adults love unwinding at the new Spa or playing the latest Andy Staples-designed courses, while kids stay engaged with the Banyan Buddies program. The property touts six new culinary concepts, two with celebrity chefs at the helm, and families and friends will stay cool this summer at Big Drip, the specialty ice cream shop.
The iconic, oceanfront property, Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa, also revealed extensive renovations with an emphasis on epicurean experiences, including a new signature restaurant Polpo Palm Beach, ice cream shop Melt and coffee shop Oceana, with more to come. Other exciting happenings include fresh groundbreaking treatments at the Forbes Five-Star Eau Spa as well as a revamped Loggers Kids Club with brand new programming and specialized areas for crafting and culinary activities, an arcade, direct access to the family pool splash pad, a virtual playground with an interactive wall, a cinema and more.
ARRAY OF ACTIVITIES
There’s a reason The Palm Beaches is a bucket list destination – the options for fun both on and off the water are endless.…but at the top of the list of family-friendly activities: the beaches! Clear blue skies, toes in the sand, crystal clear waters and swaying palm trees: that’s the vibe in Palm Beach County. And what makes it so alluring to visitors and locals alike is the proximity to the water. Forty-seven miles of Atlantic coastline and 125+ miles of winding waterways invite families to make a splash while visiting this summer. Beat the heat with an afternoon of thrills at Rapids Water Park, featuring 35-action packed acres and 42 of the biggest, wettest, most thrilling water slides and attractions, or head to Shark Wake Park, where you can try everything from cable wakeboarding and kneeboarding to a floating obstacle course with slides. Cruise through the waterways on a high-speed boat tour, flyboarding experience, or jet ski adventure. Slow things down on a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard in the calm coastal inlets or cypress-shaded inland rivers. Join one of the many fishing charters and head out to the Gulf Stream in search of your next biggest catch. Go deeper and explore the third-largest barrier reef system in the world on a snorkeling or diving excursion with Live Free Diving. Swim alongside sea turtles and tropical fish at Phil Foster Park Snorkel Trail, Peanut Island, or Coral Cove Park in Tequesta.
Back on dry land, there are plenty of ways to play too. At Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach or at Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in Boca Raton kids can learn about the destination’s most beloved residents, the sea turtles. During the summer months, guests can even see nesting sea turtles in the wild on guided Turtle Walks; nesting season begins May 1st and ends Oct. 31st. For more animal encounters, don’t miss Lion Country Safari, where visitors cruise by big cats, rhinos, ostriches and more from the comfort of their car, or Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society, home to nearly 200 animal species from playful otters to cute koalas.
When visiting, it’s a good idea to come hungry. Culinary creativity comes courtesy of award-winning chefs and innovative menus spanning from island tiki hut hangs to chic, fine dining, but parents of fussy eaters fear not; There are plenty of kid-friendly options to choose from. Families looking for a variety of dining options need to look no further than Delray Beach Market, Florida’s largest food hall with 27 food vendors, the perfect one-stop-shop. For a taste of what’s new, head to The Square in the heart of downtown West Palm Beach, known for its thoughtfully curated mix of 50+ shops and restaurant attractions. Recent additions include health-friendly options, PLANTA, True Food Kitchen, and sweetgreen, while the highly anticipated opening of El Camino is also slated for summer, along with The Salty Donut, which specializes in craft donuts.
For coastal vibes and waterfront dining, the multifaceted Charlie & Joe’s at Love Street serves up four separate experiences from Jupiter Inlet Village. Enjoy Lucky Shuck Oyster Bar & Tap House or BEACON that are fun for the whole family, or opt-for Topside at the BEACON, a rooftop bar, an observatory, and The Tacklebox, a boutique seafood market – all set against unobstructed views of the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse that are perfect for a romantic date night out. For a more upscale adult’s only option, head to Delray Beach for the newly-opened restaurant by Michelin-starred Chef Akira Back, aptly named Akira Back, providing a multi-sensory dining experience. You can’t go wrong when dining at one of James Beard-nominated Chef Clay Conley’s hotspots, but Grato tops the list – this hybrid dining concept brings together dishes inspired by the chef’s portfolio of restaurants including Buccan and Imoto.
EASE OF ACCESS
Whether flying or driving, getting to The Palm Beaches is a breeze no matter where you’re coming from. If flying, Palm Beach International Airport – consistently ranked one of the best domestic airports in the country with 200+ daily flights – Is located in central Palm Beach County just five miles from the beach, with Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood and Miami International Airport conveniently located nearby. If arriving by car, boat or train, the locale is easily accessible by all. Once visitors arrive, getting around is stress-free with the help of a well-connected transit system, car rentals, app-based ride services, trolleys and even water taxis. The Brightline BrightBike Fleet in West Palm Beach provides a bike-share option, ideal for individuals seeking car-free, eco-friendly transportation, while the on-demand electric shuttle, Circuit, offers free, convenient rides throughout downtown West Palm Beach and the Town of Palm Beach, and WeMoke, an easy-breezy, open-air electric vehicle is available for exploration at The Square and Downtown West Palm Beach. Really, the only problem encountered traveling to The Palm Beaches is convincing yourself you have to leave.
To learn more about The Palm Beaches and save this summer on a family-friendly escape, visit https://www.thepalmbeaches.com/special-offers-and-packages.
About Discover The Palm Beaches
Discover The Palm Beaches is the official 501(c)(6) not-for-profit, accredited tourism marketing organization that promotes collection of 39 cities and towns commonly referred to as The Palm Beaches, which spans more than 2,300 square miles and boasts 47 miles of pristine beaches from Highland Beach and Boca Raton to Jupiter and Tequesta. Tasked with growing visitation and the local tourism economy, the organization works year-round to bring travelers from around the state, country and globe to visit Palm Beach County. The Palm Beaches’ have a rich history in hospitality as America’s First Resort Destination® and tourism is among Palm Beach County’s major industries, generating $7.8 billion in economic impact during 2021.
The Palm Beaches are home to more than 18,000 hotel rooms and feature more than 100 family-friendly attractions, an abundance of world-class luxury, award-winning restaurants, and 125 miles of peaceful waterways for on- or in-the-water activities , including 160 artificial reefs that line the Atlantic Ocean’s Gulf Stream current. 160 golf courses have earned it the moniker of Florida’s Golf Capital®, as well as The Cultural Capital of Florida® due to its thriving entertainment scene of more than 200 art and culture organizations. Sitting along I-95, The Palm Beaches are accessible via Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), which offers more than 200 daily nonstop flights across the United States and seasonal lift to/from Canada. The Palm Beaches are also conveniently located within driving distance of Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood and Miami International airports.
For more information about The Palm Beaches, visit www.ThePalmBeaches.com or on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and TikTok). Visitors and residents can take advantage of county-wide deals via The Palm Beaches Savings Pass. They can also tune in to The Palm Beaches TV for 24/7 streaming content of the destination’s hotels, attractions, restaurants and experiences.