Your Complete Guide To Martin County, Florida
Martin County, Florida is a treasure trove of great restaurants, educational activities, and outdoor adventures. Hobe Sound, Hutchinson Island, Indiantown, Jensen Beach, Palm City, Jupiter Island, Port Salerno Sewall’s Point, Stuart, and Tequesta make up Martin County. Each area is worth getting to know. Whether you can visit for a week or only a weekend, come discover what Martin County, Florida has to offer!
Where To Stay
The Old Colorado Inn is a locally owned and operated boutique hotel in the heart of Historic Downtown Stuart. Built in 1917, the Inn was recently restored. Guest rooms have luxury mattresses, 600-thread count sheets, queen-sized convertible sofa beds, fully stocked kitchens/kitchenettes, and complimentary fresh baked items and orange juice delivered to your door daily.
History buffs will want to stay in the Old Colorado Inn’s Oasis Suite, also known as the Guest House in the Ernest Lyons Compound, a Designated Florida Literary Landmark. It was the town’s first schoolhouse in 1891 and the following year, the site of the town’s first wedding. The Oasis Suite is a 1000 square foot one-bedroom home overlooking the pool and spa. Its amenities include outdoor furnishings, propane fire tables, a gas grill, and playground complete with a swing-set and seesaw.
River Palms Cottages & Fish Camp is a hidden gem on the Indian River. Owned by the renowned Captain Rufus Wakeman, River Palms boasts lush grounds with tropical palms and native plants. It is only minutes away from Historic Downtown Jensen Beach.
Other accommodations in Martin County include Hutchinson Shores Resort, the Jupiter Waterfront Inn, and Jonathan Dickinson State Park for those wishing to camp or rent a cabin. The lovely Hutchinson Island Marriott Beach Resort & Marina is another spectacular luxury choice, along with charming bed and breakfasts and uniquely Florida family-owned owned properties.
What To Do In Martin County, Florida
Whether you want to spend time outdoors, relaxing on the beach, or learning about the state’s ocean life, there is something for everyone to enjoy Martin County, Florida.
The whole family will love the state-of-the-art Sailfish Splash Waterpark in Stuart. Open seasonally from March to September, the Waterpark has private cabanas, 700 lounge and deck chairs, two four-story waterslides, a 1,000-foot lazy river, and 7,326 square foot water playground with jets, sprays, slides, and a 300-gallon “Dump Bucket”.
“Experience the beauty of Florida’s East Coast from the water” with Riding the Waves Treasure Coast. Learn about the local ecosystem and natural environment from a certified Florida naturalist via a guided boat tour.
Martin County has the first consistent surf as you travel North along Florida’s coast, so surfing here is a must. Participate in Surf Camp through the Ohana Surf Shop or create your own outdoor adventure.
The Elliot Museum aims to “inspire creativity through exhibitions and programs about art, history, and technology for the people who live in and visit the Treasure Coast of Florida”. Here, you can see a collection of antique automobiles, vintage boats, and other Treasure Coast memorabilia.
Formerly built for an heiress of Coca-Cola, the beautiful Mansion at Tuckahoe is located in Martin County’s Jensen Beach just inside the Indian Riverside Park, sitting atop the Mount Elizabeth Archaeological Site. It offers fantastic views of the Indian River Lagoon and is a lovely example of Old Florida meets Southern elegance. Tuckahoe is the premier wedding venue for Indian River County and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.
Learn about the people, events, and places in Martin County’s history at the Stuart Heritage Museum. This free museum defines the history of the area’s people, businesses, agriculture, and community spirit.
Learn About Martin County, Florida’s Ocean Habitats
Take a look at Florida’s natural history at the Blowing Rocks Preserve, a restored sanctuary reflecting what South Florida’s barrier islands looked like a century ago. See an intact Florida dune habitat with beach sunflower, bay cedar, sea grape, and sea oats.
The Hobe Sound Nature Center is dedicated to environmental awareness and education. Enjoy walking on the trail that leads to a hidden beach or taking part in a Sea Turtle Walk to see Loggerhead Sea Turtles’ nesting sites.
Participate in an educational program, like feeding the Stingrays, at the Florida Oceanographic Center. This nationally recognized environmental organization conducts research and restoration programs that lead to healthy coastal ecosystems.
Stuart is home to the last remaining shipwreck life-saving station on Florida’s Atlantic Coast, the House of Refuge. On the National Register of Historic Places, come see life-saving equipment over the years and the keeper’s headquarters. The views alone are worth the drive.
Visit Port Salerno, a working waterfront and fishing fleet providing fresh seafood to local restaurants and markets. It was originally the hub for South Florida’s commercial fishing industry.
Martin County, Florida Parks
Indian Riverside Park is the premier family park in Martin County, Florida. It sits beachside on the Indian River Lagoon in Jensen Beach and has a walking path, fishing pier, play fountain, beach, pavilions, banquet space, and more. The Park is home to the US Sailing Center of Martin County and the Children’s Museum of the Treasure Coast.
At the Jonathan Dickinson State Park, see a state park partner with wildlife. There are 13 natural communities and Florida’s first federally-designated Wild and Scenic River, The Loxahatchee, runs through the park. Enjoy hiking, biking, boating, camping, or freshwater fishing.
Arts And Culture
Pick up a Hobe Sound brochure and unlock the mysteries in each of the Hobe Sound Murals. There are 21 scattered throughout Hobe Sound, with a secret hidden in each. The murals take one month to complete and are truly works of art.
Explore Historic Downtown Stuart; a charming area full of shops, restaurants, and the iconic Lyric Theatre. Take advantage of the free Downtown Stuart Trolley/Tram Ride. Enjoy the 45-minute Historical Tour or the transportation to one of five stops throughout Downtown. While in Downtown Stuart, you can also enjoy a Wind Chase Farms Carriage Ride. The horses are professionally trained and receive top-notch care at their farm in Palm City. Stuart is the “Happiest Seaside Town in America” (Coastal Living), “#3 Small Town To Visit” (Smithsonian Magazine, 2015), and “#9 Most Beautiful Small Town in America” (House Beautiful and Country Living Magazines).
Spend an afternoon shopping and visiting enchanting art galleries in Sewall’s Point. Continue your art quest to Can you add The Fish House Artist Studios in Port Salerno and the Art Cottages in Jensen Beach, other good choices.
A little-known fact is that Jensen Beach was once dubbed the pineapple capital of the world. Though pineapple is no longer grown here since 1920, it is where the fruit was packed and shipped north on the railroad years ago. They have a festival in its honor in November.
Visit The Beach
Although Martin County, Florida is full of beaches, the ones on Hutchinson Island are the most desired. Here, you will find miles of peaceful beaches, beautiful water, and natural sand dunes.
Where To Eat In Martin County, Florida
Great food is prevalent in Martin County, Florida! No matter your budget, there is something for everyone here.
Pineapple Jack’s Bistro is a casual, family-friendly restaurant with a whimsical vibe. Everything is made fresh and purchased locally.
The Riverwalk Cafe and Oyster Bar boast some of Stuart’s best cuisine. From USDA Prime Center Cut Steaks to fresh oysters, it doesn’t get much better than this!
Partake in one of the best Mardi Gras celebrations outside of New Orleans at Crawdaddy’s. This New Orleans style eatery serves award-winning dishes like pork chops with bourbon peaches, gumbo, jambalaya, and crawfish étouffée.
When you eat at the Pirates Cove Resort and Marina, you can watch fishermen come in at the end of the day. The dishes pay homage to Caribbean culture.
Martin County’s premier Italian fine dining restaurant is LouRónzo’s. Serving authentic Italian cuisine and an amazing wine selection, you must visit this Stuart staple.
The Gafford is family owned and operated. It is popular with locals and visitors because the restaurant is “passion-ate about quality food, drinks, and hospitality.”
More Places To Eat In Martin County, Florida
For the best fish dip in town, visit Shrimpers Grill & Raw Bar. Other noteworthy dishes are the coconut shrimp, Bahamian conch chowder, Tex Mex dolphin, and watermelon pizza.
The Dolphin Bar & Shrimp House was built by the famous historic movie star, Frances Langford. Over-hanging the river’s edge, the panoramic views of Jensen Beach are spectacular here.
Pusateri’s Chicago Pizza is a cozy mom and pop pizzeria where everything is homemade and prepared fresh daily.
Everyone will love Mulligan’s Beach House, a family-oriented seafood restaurant with two play areas for kids. Be sure to try the famous Monster Fish Fry and Beach House Bloody Mary! Mulligan’s is open 365 days a year.
Another great option for families is the Twisted Tuna. While you take in all that the 10,000 square foot waterfront establishment has to offer, your kids can play games outside. The restaurant seats 600 and accepts reservations for groups of 20 or more.
If you want to feel like a local, head to Jan’s Place. This Jensen Beach staple serves families the finest foods prepared with the freshest ingredients. Their Eggs Benedict are quite memorable. Best of all, Jan’s Place is dog-friendly.
Lures Riverfront Restaurant is known for fresh fish, a fun atmosphere, and the fishing lure decor. Visit for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Enjoy freshly baked vegan and gluten-free treats made with 100% organic ingredients at the Bunkhouse Coffee Bar.
When To Visit Martin County, Florida
The Stuart Green Market takes place on Sundays from 9 AM to 1 PM in the Stuart City Hall parking lot. It is the premier destination for the finest local goods Stuart has to offer. People drive from miles away to shop this event. You can find fresh produce, flowers, honey, bread, pastries, handcrafted soaps and lotions, grass-fed and local beef, poultry, eggs, goat milk, cheese, organic spice blends, artisan crafts, handmade jewelry, gourmet foods, and more at this shopping mecca.
Afterward, visit the Rock’n Riverwalk from 1 to 4 PM along the St. Lucie River Boardwalk in Downtown Stuart. This free, open-air concert highlights the best local talent. Listen to rock & roll from the beautiful outdoor amphitheater or by boat.
On Thursdays from 6 to 10 PM, head to Downtown Jensen Beach for Jammin’ Jensen. This free event hosts a plethora of local artists, crafts, music, and vendors of all types and is a town favorite.
The Indiantown Rodeo takes place in October at Timber Powers Park. Events include bareback and saddle Bronco riding, barrels, Bull riding, steer wrestling, and team roping. The Indiantown Rodeo is endorsed by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association and the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association.
Visit Martin County in March to see the Single Fin Showdown. Run by the Ohana Surf Shop, this event raises thousands of dollars for worthwhile causes. See competitors ride vintage single-fin surfboards selected at random minutes before the competition begins.
Other events in Martin County include the Port Salerno Seafood Festival (January), Martin County Shrimp & Lobster Festival (April), Stuart Sailfish Regatta (May), Music at the Mansion (November), and A Taste of Jensen Beach (December).
Discover Martin County, Florida
As you can see, there is so much to do in Martin County, Florida! I hope you will take the time to get to know this exquisite part of the Sunshine State, showcasing the Atlantic coast and beaches. Let us know what your favorite Martin County spots are!
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Taylor Pittman Hardy wrote this article.
I received monetary compensation for writing this post.