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A Road Trip to Jupiter, Florida

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Load up the car and road trip to Jupiter, Florida, for delicous eats, spring baseball, a lighthouse, state park, and sea turtle rescue site.

Jupiter is an Atlantic Coast city just north of Palm Beach and on the southern end of the Florida Treasure Coast. The beautiful city is home to golf great (Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, etc.), as well as many other celebrities and athletes. To say the rich and famous call Jupiter their playground would be an understatement. But Jupiter has something for everyone, and without the big crowds of some of its neighboring cities, and great outdoor activities, ecotourism, upscale eats, and unique attractions, I think it is a perfect place to road trip around the Sunshine State. Here is what to see and on your road trip to Jupiter, Florida.

This article was originally published in December 2017 and updated in January 2021.

jonathan dickinson state park waterway
Photo from Florida State Parks: JD State Park website.

Harbourside Place

Harbourside Place is a visually stunning outdoor complex with restaurants, shopping, and entertainment. It has an outdoor amphitheater for events and shows, boat docks for those arriving on the Intracoastal Waterway, and a hotel (Wyndham Grand Jupiter) right smack dab in the midst of Harbourside Place. Unwind with Yoga on the Waterfront at Harbourside Place and don’t miss the weekly farmers’ market.

Harbourside Place offers a dozen or so specialty stores including John Craig Clothier, Marie Antoinette’s Furniture, and Tommy Bahama. Besides a couple of great restaurants, you can also have a wonderful cup of coffee from Subculture Coffee or enjoy a heavenly frozen yogurt from Johnny Swirls.

harbourside place shopping complex and christmas tree

I often drive to Jupiter (an hour from Vero Beach) for a tasty Mexican meal at Calaveras Cantina or to have appetizers and cocktails from The Woods. You’ll want to browse the entire complex as the weather is generally favorable and there is plenty to see; photo ops, too.

calaveras cantina tacos and black beans

A Wonderful Conservation Effort

Loggerhead Marinelife Center serves a hospital, sanctuary, and rehabilitation center for sea turtles, and is absolutely free to visit. You can have a guided tour to learn about the different turtles that call Loggerhead Marinelife their home, and learn how they ended up there. You’ll also hear the plan for healing and releasing them when they are well. It’s a fascinating facility, especially if you are a sea turtle fan.

Loggerhead also has a hands-on area and aquarium that the kids are sure to love. The Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s commitment to ocean and sea turtle conservation is to be applauded.

sea turtle rescue Jupiter

Baseball Fever

The Palm Beaches are where four pro-baseball teams make Florida their spring training homes. In Jupiter, the St. Louis Cardinals and Miami Marlins share the venue at Roger Dean Stadium for their spring training. In addition, Roger Dean Stadium also hosts four minor league baseball teams:

  • Jupiter Hammerheads (Class A-Advanced Baseball Florida State League)
  • Gulf Coast Cardinals (Rookie-level Gulf Coast League)
  • Gulf Coast Marlins (Rookie-level Gulf Coast League)
  • Palm Beach Cardinals (Class A-Advanced Baseball Florida State League)
roger dean stadium

There is nothing like going to spring baseball games in Florida. Prices are cheap, the weather is unbelievably good, and you are up close and personal to the players and action. As someone who travels to many spring training games around Florida, Roger Dean is my favorite stadium, plus it is easy to get in and out of.

Pro Tip: Look for low prices on admission tickets via Razorgator or Stubhub, but bring cash for parking your car.

st louis cardinals spring training game

Get Outdoors

Jupiter Beach is a perfect place to spend your day sunning, swimming, or walking along the sand. The beach is 3.4 miles long, and offers a fantastic off-leash dog beach for 2.5 miles of it. Unlike many of its neighboring areas, Jupiter is pet-friendly in almost every aspect. If you want to jet-ski, fish, go boating, or stand-up paddle boarding, there are plenty of rental options close by.

cavalier on beach

One of our favorite things to do is to visit Jonathan Dickinson State Park in neighboring Hobe Sound, with thick sand pine scrub and back-country Florida. Even if you just take a drive through the park, you may see some exotic animals and wildlife along the way.

walking through Jonathan Dickinson park

There is a spot you can park your car and climb up the Hobe Mountain (observation) Tower, overlooking the park, which is great for photo ops. Or, check out the sandy trails for hiking adventures.

Jonathan Dickinson offers tent camping and rental units if you would like to make an overnight of it.

cottage at jonathan dickinson state park

Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse

Perhaps I am biased, but I think the Jupiter Lighthouse is the prettiest of all of them in Florida. Climb the 105 steps to the top, then visit the museum, included in your admission price. The Jupiter Lighthouse has been lit since 1860. Guided tours are available, or you can do your own tour via smartphone app.

To learn more about visiting the lighthouse, read this post.

jupiter inlet lighthouse

Where to Eat in Jupiter

You can find endless meal ideas from the local eateries throughout Jupiter, Florida. A few I like are Berry Fresh Cafe (the best breakfast, hands down!), The Woods Jupiter, Calaveras Cantina, and Copacabana (Caribbean and Latin). If you desire more of a chain restaurant atmosphere, try Duffy’s Sports Grill, First Watch, or TooJay’s Gourmet Deli.

Berry Fresh Cafe

Only one places tops the breakfast list, and that is Berry Fresh Cafe. From creative omelets to mouthwatering Benedicts, pancakes & waffles to breakfast burritos, Berry Fresh has everything you could imagine. Then—along comes a seasonal menu to tempt you with more goodies.

Pictured here it the Nashville Hot Chicken Hash, perfectly paired with pickles, poached eggs, and Comeback sauce. If you like Bloody Marys, they are a thing of beauty at Berry Fresh Cafe.

Pro Tip: Get on the waiting list via the Berry Fresh website and save time.

nashville hot chicken breakfast berry fresh cafe

The Woods Jupiter

The Woods Jupiter, a swanky sports bar and grill owned by golf great, Tiger Woods, is an excellent place to sit at the bar and enjoy cocktails and appetizers. Bourbons, cognacs, and ryes are their specialty. Happy hour is from 3 to 6 PM daily at The Woods, with drink specials and a small food menu featuring wings, Korean meatballs, calamari, and more.

Calaveras Cantina

My favorite Jupiter eatery is Calaveras Cantina, a contemporary Mexican restaurant known for tacos, craft cocktails, and margaritas. They serve perfect guacamole and even more perfect margaritas (I had strawberry!) in thick, heavy glasses with salt (or sugared) rims. The Queso Fundido (Chihuahua cheese, roasted poblanos, and red chili sauce) is a must, or the Queso Dip that comes with sublime warm tortillas.

Enjoy the outdoor patio or the festive main dining room that is full of cool light fixtures and things to look at. Calaveras Cantina has a huge tequila menu you might want to check out.

Calaveros Cantina in Jupiter serves up fabulous upscale Mexican fare.

Copacabana

If you fancy Cuban or Latin fare, Copacabana is an excellent choice. It is within walking distance of Roger Dean Stadium, if you happen to be going to a game. I love their Cuban sandwiches, croquetas de jamon, and empanadas. Something I eat here that is unique and really filling is the Caldo Gallego, a hearty white bean soup that is full of flavor. Of course you can’t have a Cuban meal without a jolt of caffeine from a tasty cortadito.

cuban food and cortadito

I hope you will enjoy a road trip to Jupiter, Florida, as much as I do. If I missed something you love doing, please drop me a message.

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Check out our other Florida articles:

Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island: A Hotel Review

Best Things to Do in Delray Beach

A Guide to Visiting Fort Pierce

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