Growing up, I had always known of West Palm Beach. It was where my great-grandma lived and I unknowingly associated it with “old people,” but now I know that I was doing the area a great disservice in thinking so! In fact, the Palm Beaches are considered America’s First Resort Destination and encompasses 47 miles of beachfront across 39 towns. Needless to say, we just had to check it out after our cruise on the Norwegian Encore from Port Miami. During our quick trip from Miami to Palm Beach, we unfortunately didn’t have the time to hit up all 39 towns, but we did have a fantastic time exploring two of them: West Palm Beach and Delray Beach.
Splashing into the Palm Beaches!
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How to get to West Palm Beach from Port Miami
Getting from Miami to Palm Beach couldn’t be easier, particularly if you’re coming from Port Miami! While you could fly or rent a car, I personally wouldn’t recommend either of these things. In fact, I recommend taking a train. If you remember, earlier this year I used Brightline’s Select “Train-to-Port” Experience to go from Fort Lauderdale to Port Miami and – guess what – they also have a stop in West Palm Beach! Whether you are going from Palm Beach to Miami or Miami to Palm Beach, Brightline makes it easier (and comfier) than ever.
I highly recommend purchasing the Select ticket, which is the equivalent of a business class flight, but at a fraction of the price. With the spacious lounge, atmosphere, snacks, and beverages, taking Brightline from Port Miami to West Palm Beach certainly won’t disappoint! The station is located just 10 minutes from Port Miami (which is perfect if you’re getting on or off a cruise), and will drop you off in the heart of West Palm Beach. You can check out my full Brightline review here.
The best way to “go” from Miami to Palm Beach
Considering how easy it is to go from Palm Beach to Miami, I actually recommend flying in or out of Palm Beach International Airport before or after your cruise, as it is one of the least hectic airports that I’ve been to. Despite flying the night before a big holiday, everyone was lovely and efficient. You can get the best price for your flight to Palm Beach here.
How to get around the Palm Beaches?
The beautiful thing about the Palm Beaches is that everything is very easily accessible. In fact, you don’t even need a car! And that says a lot coming from this road trip lover. But, it’s true! Upon arriving at the Brightline Station in West Palm Beach, it was only a five minute Uber to our accommodation, and just about everything we did was in walking distance (or a short ride away if you don’t feel like walking). We even used Uber when we transferred from West Palm Beach to Delray (thirty minutes south) too, as we found it to be incredibly time and cost efficient. I highly recommend it, and it will save you the hassle of dealing with parking too.
While I wish that we had more time to explore on our trip from Port Miami to Palm Beach, we definitely made the most of the time that we had! Plus, I already know that we will be back 🙂 I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite activities, accommodations, and restaurants throughout West Palm Beach and Delray Beach for you to consider during your next trip to the Palm Beaches…
West Palm Beach
Greetings from West Palm Beach!
Things to do in West Palm Beach
There are so many things to do in West Palm Beach, whether you feel like relaxing on the beach, doing a bit of shopping, or going on an adventure! While we didn’t get much beach time this time around, we did have the opportunity to checkout some fun and unique activities.
1. Paddle Boarding
Paddle boarding has become one of my favorite water sports this year, so I was incredibly excited to get out on the water with Visit Palm Beach! You have the option of joining a guided tour or renting your own paddle board for your own little adventure. We went on a tour past the mansions and over to the estuary, and it was absolutely beautiful. I personally find paddle boarding to be incredibly peaceful while also being a great core workout. Don’t worry, if paddle boarding isn’t your thing, Visit Palm Beach also offers Kayaks, Jet Skis, and Catamarans too!
Paddle boarding with Visit Palm Beach – Things to do in West Palm Beach
2. Lion Country Safari
Being the adventurer that I am, when I discovered Lion Country Safari, I simply had to go! It is located about 45 minutes inland, but so worth the journey. In not having our own transportation, we took an Uber over, which was far easier than renting a car for the day. Lion Country Safari is Florida’s only Drive Through Safari Park and gives you the feeling that you’re on an African Safari! Lion Country Safari prides themselves on their animal conservation efforts and works to provide you with the most authentic experience you could have without interfering with the animals’ natural habitat. Once you finish up your drive through safari, I highly recommend checking out the walk-through safari, where you will even have the opportunity to feed giraffes! But, be warned, their tongues sure are slimy!
Feed a giraffe at Lion Country Safari – Things to do in West Palm Beach
3. West Palm Beach Food Tour
If you don’t feel like making your way to Lion Country Safari and want to stay local, I’d recommend checking out the West Palm Beach Food Tour. It combines food, drink, architecture, and culture to give you one well-rounded and enjoyable experience. While we unfortunately didn’t have time to experience this food tour first hand, it’s certainly on our list for next time! Authentic Cuban Food and the best key lime pie in town is calling my name…
West Palm Beach Hotels [Where to Stay in Palm Beach]
While there are ample West Palm Beach hotels that cater to every budget, we actually chose to stay somewhere a little cozier. Grandview Gardens Bed & Breakfast proved to be exactly what we were looking for — from its historic charm to its tropical feel, we felt right at home. Grandview Gardens Bed & Breakfast – built in 1925 – is unlike the traditional B&B experience, as each room has its own private entrance with a terrace or balcony. With a Spanish Mediterranean flair, it’s easy to forget that you’re in Florida!
Cozy rooms at Grandview Gardens B&B – West Palm Beach Hotels
And, of course, being a bed and breakfast, we were offered a variety of options for food in the morning from scrambled eggs with vegetables to cheese, jam, pastries, yogurts, and cereals. We chose to eat outside on the patio to soak up the morning rays and the peaceful environment.
Poolside Breakfast – West Palm Beach Hotels
The great thing about Grandview Gardens Bed & Breakfast is that it is within walking distance to just about everything in West Palm Beach, so there will be no shortage of things to do and see from the property!
West Palm Beach Restaurants
Within walking distance from Grandview Garden Bed & Breakfast you will find the best of the West Palm Beach restaurants. Three restaurants stood out in particular…
1. Restoration Hardware
I’ll be honest, when I first heard that Restoration Hardware had a restaurant, I found it a bit bizarre. A restaurant in a hardware store? But, let me tell you, it is so much more than that. First off, the Restoration Hardware building is absolutely exquisite. It’s like walking straight into a magazine and never wanting to leave. The RH Rooftop Restaurant can be found on the fourth floor, which overlooks downtown West Palm Beach and has beautiful lighting, couches, and trees occupying the space. The wine and craft beer list is extensive, and the food was of the highest quality. We started with an Arugula Salad, followed by the best Lobster Roll I’ve ever had, and a Banana Split with Warm Chocolate Chip Cookies for dessert. To say the food was mouth-watering would be an understatement!
Restoration Hardware has the best Lobster Rolls I've ever had – West Palm Beach Restaurants
2. The Regional
Across the street from Restoration Hardware, you will find The Regional. When the Chef of the restaurant was a finalist on Bravo TV’s “Top Chef,” you know that you’re in for a treat! The Regional focuses on bringing your traditionally American food but with a progressive twist, and it surely didn’t disappoint. We started with the Pimento Cheese and Blue Crab dish (which was beautifully prepared beside the table), followed by the Crispy Brussels Sprouts, a Vegetable Greek Salad, and Shrimp on Toast. Despite being thoroughly full, we followed that up with a Key Lime Pie that was quite good.
Shrimp on Toast at The Regional – West Palm Beach Restaurants
3. Grandview Public Market
The Grandview Public Market was just across the street from Grandview Gardens Bed & Breakfast, and was both quirky and fabulous! Situated within a 14,000-square-foot food hall, Grandview Public Market is home to twelve vendors, each offering something different, and they frequently have live music as well! I would’ve loved to have tried everything, but since my stomach is only so big, I had an amazing Poké Fire Pokerrito from Poke Lab Eatery and a Butterfly Pea Lemonade with Boba from Sugar Milk. Both were incredible. Next time I’m eyeing Lokanta and Lechon Tropical!
A delicious Poke Bowl and Bubble Tea at Grandview Public Market – West Palm Beach Restaurants
And now, onto the next town…
Hello from Delray Beach!
Things to do in Delray Beach
I fell head over heels in love with Delray Beach. It’s the perfect beach town with it’s own style and vibe that’s hard to find elsewhere. From sandy toes to boutiques and art galleries, there are so many things to do in Delray Beach! We were given a fantastic tour of Downtown Delray by Laura and BJ of the DDA, and I highly recommend popping into the Delray Beach Visitor Center to make the most of your time in the area.
First thing’s first, you have to check out the beach. There is a 2-mile strip of beach that is free to the public, which is pretty incredible when you usually have to pay to access beaches during peak season in the States. The water is incredibly clear, so grab yourself a beach chair and make yourself comfortable. I could’ve spent days just relaxing on the beach.
The perfect beach day – Things to do in Delray Beach
If you don’t feel like being a total beach bum, head on over to Delray Beach Watersports. They offer sailing, surfing, snorkeling, paddleboarding, and kayaking, so we decided to get our snorkel on! What’s unique about Delray Beach is that there’s actually fantastic snorkeling right offshore, as there’s a sunken boat a few yards away from the Watersports Shack. Who knew?! We saw a stingray, sea urchin, pufferfish, and more!
The watersports area of Delray Beach – Things to do in Delray Beach
Now, if wiggling your toes in the sand or getting a bit salty isn’t your favorite thing, don’t worry, Delray Beach has an incredible art scene! Take a walk down Pineapple Grove and check out all of the beautiful art galleries along the way. We popped into the Cornell Art Museum at Old School Square and were blown away by the variety of exhibits — not only were there spectacular fashion pieces, but there were even two original Andy Warhol’s and one original Pablo Picasso! When you pop in, say hi to DJ l’il Marsh for me!
An exhibit at the Cornell Art Museum – Things to do in Delray Beach
To cap off your day, I recommend checking out the Saltwater Brewery for a brewery tour! The building was built in 1952 and even has two separate water fountains outside from when segregation existed; there aren’t many places left in the States where you can see that. Saltwater Brewery makes all of its beers in house and created an environmentally-friendly six pack ring so that their packaging wasn’t damaging to the environment. I’m the first person to admit that I’m not much of a beer drinker, but Saltwater Brewery just may have changed my mind with their “Don’t Get Confused” brew!
Beer flight at Saltwater Brewery – Things to do in Delray Beach
Delray Beach Hotels [Where to stay in Delray Beach]
There are a ton of centrally-located Delray Beach Hotels, so we decided to stay at the brand new Aloft Delray Beach. The Aloft Hotels are a well-known, global brand, so I was excited to check out their newest property! The Aloft Delray Beach is bright and vibrant, with some of the most comfortable beds you will find. The Breezy Suite was quite spacious with a King bed and its own lounging area, but my personal favorite part of the room was the jacuzzi bath!
Aloft Delray Beach – Delray Beach Hotels
There’s also a lovely pool and well-equipped fitness center on site, as well as the W XYZ Bar and Re:Fuel Grab & Go shop. The bar made a delicious mango martini, and breakfast at Re:Fuel was fresh and filling! I’d definitely be happy to stay at Aloft Delray Beach again next time I visit.
Re:Fuel at the Aloft Delray Beach – Delray Beach Hotels
Delray Beach Restaurants
Being so centrally located at the Aloft Delray Beach, we had plenty of Delray Beach restaurants to check out within walking distance! Let me just say this, you won’t go hungry while in Delray Beach…
1. The Foxworth Fountain
The Foxworth Fountain is a great breakfast spot! Not only is it a family-run mom & pop shop, but it’s a fully functional pharmacy too. Talk about unique! This is definitely the first time in my travels that I’ve seen an old-school vintage soda fountain and pharmacy in the same building. While I didn’t have any prescriptions to fill, I did have a belly to fill! The family that runs the Foxworth Fountain and Delray Shores Pharmacy made some of the best breakfast that I’ve ever had. I highly recommend checking out their Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Belgian Waffle Sliders drizzled in Maple Syrup; it’s so delicious that I wish I could have it every morning (or at least every morning that I decide to treat myself!). And, while we were there for breakfast, a little birdie told me that they had fantastic sundaes and “Not Your Momma’s Milkshakes,” which I’ll be sure to order the next time!
Drool-worthy breakfast at the Foxworth Fountain – Delray Beach Restaurants
2. Deck 84
Deck 84 is the perfect lunch spot to break up your beach time. Just a ten minute walk from Delray Beach, Deck 84 is situated right on the water, has a large patio, and an extensive menu. They’re known for their local seafood dishes, so we started off with the House-Smoked Fish Dip, followed by the Thai Tuna Salad, the White-Wine Mussels, and Pistachio Crusted Snapper. Honestly, this was one of the best seafood lunches that I’ve had and absolutely everything on the menu looked fantastic! I wish I had had the time to sit out on the patio for a few hours and work my way through the menu. If you pass by, be sure to say hi to Lauren, the general manager, for me!
Amazing Thai Tuna Salad at Deck 84 – Delray Beach Restaurants
3. Elisabetta’s Ristorante
Elisabetta’s Ristorante is still considered the new kid on the block when it comes to Delray Beach restaurants, but it sure didn’t disappoint! The interior is simply stunning — it’s sophisticated yet edgy and chic. Offering authentic Italian food, you’re sure to have many options from your antipasti to your main entree and dolce. Our server, Laura, was an absolute joy and gave us the perfect suggestions for our meal and wine to pair with it. I had an incredibly delicious Calamari a la Plancha followed by a Tartufo Pizza and Vanilla Gelato with a Honeycomb and Honey Thyme Sauce. Everything we had was beautifully presented, fresh, and flavorful, and I truly believe that you couldn’t go wrong with anything on the menu!
Tartufo Pizza at Elisabetta's Ristorante – Delray Beach Restaurants
Dada is probably the most fitting of restaurants in Delray Beach, as it really exhibits the artistic vibe of the town. It is situated in a house from 1924 – one of the oldest historic homes in the area – and prides itself on stepping outside the box, and adding those unique twists into their recipes, otherwise known as “creative cuisine.” You can find seating inside the historic home, but I think that it’s their outdoor patio with fairy lights up the trees that really makes it special. If you look close, you’ll even find a bike put up in a tree on site as an artistic installation. They host open mic nights, comedy nights, and poetry slam nights as a way to involve the community too. Aesthetics aside, the food at Dada was unreal — and we tried so many delicious dishes! Some of my favorites were the Grilled Artichokes, Togarashi Seared Tuna, Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes, and Jalapeno-Agave Glazed Salmon. As for desserts, the Warm Banana Bread and Manmud Ray Pie perfectly satisfied our sweet tooth, and the Oreo Martini was just (a very necessary) icing on the cake!
Closing out the night with an Oreo Martini at Dada – Delray Beach Restaurants
Whether you have a few days to spare before your cruise – or a few days after – or you’re simply looking for a relaxing beach getaway and are unsure where to go, look no further than the Palm Beaches! Whether you’re cruisers, families, couples, or riding solo, there is truly something for every type of traveler. I personally cannot wait until the next time I go from Miami to Palm Beach, as one visit just wasn’t enough!
Palm Beach Florida Map
Despite the fact that each of the places listed above is in relatively close vicinity to one another, I put together a Palm Beach Florida map for you so that you can begin to visually plan your trip. Should you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below!
Palm Beach International Airport
Virgin Miami Central (Brightline Station)
Brightline West Palm Beach
Grandview Gardens B&B
Paddle Boarding (Visit Palm Beach)
Lion Country Safari
West Palm Beach Food Tour
Grandview Public Market
Delray Beach Visitor Center
Delray Beach Watersports
Cornell Art Museum
Aloft Delray Beach Hotel
What to Pack for Palm Beach
What you pack will depend on what time of year you visit the Palm Beaches. While your clothing may vary, there are 137 travel essentials that I recommend bringing on your trip. From packing essentials to tech essentials, outdoors essentials, fitness essentials, business essentials, and more… I’ve got you covered! Click here to discover the 137 travel essentials you need to check out before your next trip to the Palm Beaches.
Ready to go from Miami to Palm Beach now?
Do you have Travel Insurance?
I hope you don’t travel without travel insurance! If you do, you better think again. It’s particularly easy to forget to purchase travel insurance if you’re an American visiting Florida, but cruising out to the Caribbean. Travel insurance is arguably the most important thing to have on hand (after your passports and visas). I’ve had to use my travel insurance multiple times on the road, even though I’m healthy. You never know when something might happen; take comfort in knowing that whether your flight gets cancelled or you wind up sick and in the hospital, you will be covered. I recommend World Nomads Travel Insurance for each and every one of you travelers. You can get a free quote here.
Interested in Discovering Palm Beach from Miami? Pin It Please!
Massive thanks to Discover the Palm Beaches for sponsoring this experience! As always, all opinions are my own.
Thank you so much for visiting Delray Beach and your wonderful article showing all that our “village by the sea” has to offer!
I hope that you will come back and visit us again soon!