Manatees glide under the silent shade of mangrove trees. Tropical fish flock together in clear island waters. Out in the wilderness, silence abounds, interrupted only by the jovial voices of tour guides as they point out special landmarks, including the historic Jupiter Inlet lighthouse. At Jupiter Outdoor Center, visitors immerse themselves in local ecosystems through watery sports such as kayaking and standup paddleboarding, embarking on guided tours, or heading out to explore on their own.
Group tours take paddlers out to explore local waterways and stargaze or search for marine wildlife. Guides expound on local history as they pass sights such as the Jupiter lighthouse and Dubois Park. On various trips, they can traverse calm waters in protected waterways through Jupiter Inlet Aquatic Preserve and St. Lucie Inlet Preserve, navigating open streams and mangrove-sheltered estuaries. Staffers also supplement their sport-based excursions in classes, during which they lead night or early morning wildlife-photography safaris or teach yoga workouts aboard standup paddleboards.
Every day, Cynthia, manager of Jupiter Pointe Paddling, opens her hibiscus-adorned rental hut to let adventure seekers set sail from the sandy banks of a crescent-shaped private beach. A complimentary lesson accompanies every kayak or paddleboard rental, letting beginners get their bearings before they glide toward a nearby sandbar to spot sea turtles, manatees, and majestic stingrays. More experienced water skimmers can paddle up to the Jupiter Lighthouse, which grants a glimpse of 120 palm-studded acres punctuated by 25 special-status species of wildlife and one boring labrador. The staff of water warriors also mixes up the aqueous activities with Mommy and Me sessions, standup-paddleboard-yoga classes, and kids' lessons, along with exalting the outdoors with full-moon celebrations and sealife-spotting tours.
Insider tips on tidal patterns and secret surf spots, borne of a lifetime in local waters, are part of the intangible edge offered by Singer Island Surf Camp Inc., in operation for the past 15 years and run by a born-and-raised native of Palm Beach. As a Palm Beach County native, camp founder and owner Paige Parker doesn’t remember a time she wasn’t closely tied to the water. When she and her neighborhood pals were kids, she recalls, “The ocean was our playground and our babysitter.” And though it's probably true that anyone with a lifeguard certification could lead snorkeling tours and sportfishing charters, Parker knows that her inborn understanding of the local tidal patterns makes a difference.
A staff of surf-seasoned EMTs and firefighters who are also certified in ocean rescue, lifeguard, CPR, and first aid help Parker lead private and group surfing lessons for all ages and experience levels as well as provide paddleboarding and kayaking instruction. And when school’s out, kids aged 6–16 years old can dive into summer camps and surf along Singer Island's reef-and-sandbar system or paddleboard to Peanut Island. A full rental shop, meanwhile, fills out its stock of standard surf gear with standup paddleboards, kayaks, water trampolines, and inflatable water wheels.
Pristine beaches, a seemingly endless supply of sunshine, swordfish, dolphins, manatees—like a slideshow of a tropical vacation, Palm Beach has all of these. Yet without the proper guidance, many sights go unseen and many memories go unmade. So Visit Palm Beach acts as the treasure map to the area’s bounty, imploring its customers to take to the sea in search of the damper half of local entertainment. Adventurers can traverse the ocean on waverunners, parasail 800 feet above the cerulean-blue water, or kayak around Peanut Island in search of its elephant mayor. Visit Palm Beach also acts as a hub for catamaran charters and snorkeling excursions so that guests can explore the deep blue for rarely seen marine species.
Riverfront kayaks Paradise Tours leads paddle-propelled expeditions throughout the waters of Southern Florida, from the coastal inlets of St. Lucie, Martin, and Palm Beach counties to the gentle tides of the Atlantic. The company tracks weather patterns and tides to determine the opportune times and location for tours, so guests can enjoy pristine conditions as they gaze at the coral reefs of the Florida Keys or interview manatees about the existence of merpeople. Tours vary from half-day outings to overnight adventures, and Riverfront kayaks caters to paddlers young and old, as well as those interested in fishing during their aquatic excursion.
Cattails and knotty trees shake themselves in the breeze drifting off waterways, where gentle wakes spread behind Riverfront Kayaks’ colorful vessels. The staff presides over a range of single and double kayaks, as well as paddleboards, which let one stand upon the surface of the water. Their gears purring in the sun, bikes also cruise from the shop with easy speed. During eco-tours and other activities, the crew introduces guests to Florida's rippling rivers, fishing hot spots, and official state fishing story.