During my visit to Port St. Lucie, located in the beautiful St. Lucie County, I had the pleasure of exploring the iconic scenery that makes this part of the United States so renowned. This charming destination offered an abundance of opportunities to immerse myself in the breathtaking Florida wetlands and mangroves, ensuring an unforgettable experience.
One of the best ways to appreciate the remarkable natural beauty of Port St. Lucie was by venturing onto the water. Cruising along the Indian River provided a front-row seat to the awe-inspiring landscape. As I embarked on this aquatic adventure, I marveled at the stunning wetlands, eagerly searching for glimpses of the area’s unique wildlife. The chance to spot alligators and perhaps even encounter wild dolphins added an extra element of excitement to the journey.
Beyond its captivating waterways, Port St. Lucie boasted an impressive array of parks and nature preserves. These pristine havens provided the perfect opportunity to connect with nature on a deeper level. Exploring the local flora and fauna firsthand was a delight for anyone seeking a tranquil escape and a chance to appreciate the wonders of the natural world.
From scenic trails that wound through lush forests to observation points offering panoramic views, Port St. Lucie’s parks and nature preserves catered to outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds. Whether it was birdwatching, hiking, or simply finding solace in the serenity of the surroundings, there was something to suit every nature lover’s preference.
If you find yourself in Port St. Lucie, make sure to embrace the chance to explore the best that this captivating destination has to offer.
1. Tradition Field
I had the exciting opportunity to visit Tradition Field, renowned as the training ground for the New York Mets. If you find yourself in town from February to March, you’re in luck, as you can witness the Mets in action during their training sessions.
Tradition Field also offers a fantastic summer experience with its minor league baseball games. The locals had mentioned that attending a game here was a must-do, so I eagerly made my way to the stadium. The atmosphere was electric as fans gathered to cheer on their favorite teams. I found myself captivated by the thrilling display of talent and skill on the field.
To enhance the experience, I followed the advice of the locals and headed to the tiki bar to grab a refreshing drink. With beverage in hand, I made my way to the grassy picnic area, where I spread out a cozy blanket. It was the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the game while basking in the warm sunshine.
As the game progressed, the cheers of the crowd echoed throughout the stadium, creating an infectious energy. The spirited camaraderie among the fans added to the overall excitement and made me feel like part of a close-knit community.
2. Treasure Coast Boat Rental
I had the pleasure of spending an unforgettable afternoon with Treasure Coast Boat Rental, where I embarked on a delightful adventure aboard a pontoon boat. Our destination: the renowned Indian River Lagoon.
As we set off on the calm waters, I couldn’t help but be captivated by the natural beauty that surrounded us. The Indian River Lagoon, with its picturesque islands and hidden coves, beckoned us to explore its secrets. With each turn, we discovered new sights and immersed ourselves in the tranquil ambiance of Fort Pierce.
One of the highlights of our journey was the opportunity to anchor at various pristine beaches scattered along the breathtaking coastline. We had our pick of these beautiful sandy shores, and we chose a few to pause and relish the serene atmosphere. Swimming in the crystal-clear waters was an invigorating experience, while others in our group indulged in their passion for fishing. For those seeking relaxation, the deck of the boat provided the perfect spot to bask in the warm sun and soak up the tranquil surroundings.
Throughout the excursion, the friendly and knowledgeable crew from Treasure Coast Boat Rental ensured that our experience was nothing short of exceptional. They shared fascinating insights about the area, adding depth and meaning to our journey.
3. Woodstork Trail and Hillmoor Lake Park
During my visit to Port St. Lucie, I had the pleasure of exploring the serene and expansive Hillmoor Lake Park. Spanning an impressive 56 acres, this park offered a picturesque escape from the bustling city.
As I ventured along the trail system, I was greeted by the beauty of nature unfolding before my eyes. The highlight was the mile-long sidewalk trail, which provided a scenic pathway for me to immerse myself in the tranquil surroundings. The gentle breeze rustled the leaves of the surrounding trees, creating a soothing ambiance as I strolled along.
For those seeking an encounter with the local wildlife, Hillmoor Lake Park provided two observation decks. From these elevated vantage points, I had the opportunity to observe various species in their natural habitat. It was a treat to witness the vibrant birdlife and other fascinating creatures that called the park home.
I couldn’t resist visiting the fishing decks scattered throughout the park. With my fishing gear in hand, I found a peaceful spot along the shoreline and cast my line. The tranquil waters of the lake mirrored the surrounding beauty, creating a serene atmosphere that made fishing a truly enjoyable experience.
4. Superplay USA
As we stepped inside Superplay USA, we were greeted by the sight of 48 bowling lanes beckoning us to engage in a friendly game or even a thrilling tournament. The lively atmosphere and the sound of strikes and spares filled the air, adding to the excitement of the experience. We enjoyed some friendly competition and created lasting memories on the well-maintained lanes.
In addition to bowling, Superplay USA offered a delightful miniature golf course. We embarked on an adventure through the creatively designed course, navigating obstacles and enjoying friendly banter along the way. It was a perfect activity for the whole family, combining skill, laughter, and a touch of friendly rivalry.
For those eager to practice their swing, the batting cages were a welcomed feature. We took turns stepping up to the plate, honing our skills and experiencing the thrill of hitting the ball. It was a great opportunity to unleash our inner athletes and enjoy some quality time together.
The arcade at Superplay USA proved to be a nostalgic delight, featuring a wide range of classic games that transported us back in time. From pinball machines to air hockey tables, there was something for everyone. We happily indulged in friendly competitions and tried our luck at winning prizes.
To refuel after our activities, we headed to the on-site Premium Sports Grill of South Florida. The inviting aroma of delicious food filled the air as we savored a satisfying meal. The menu offered a variety of options, catering to different tastes and preferences, ensuring everyone left satisfied and energized.
5. Veterans Park
Veterans Park, a place of great significance and emotion. Although not the largest park in the city, its impact was undeniable. As I walked through its grounds, I was reminded of the sacrifices made by veterans of the Vietnam and Korean wars. The park stood as a tribute to their service and dedication.
Among the memorials within the park, I discovered a solemn World War Two memorial and a touching Purple Heart memorial. These monuments served as reminders of the bravery and heroism displayed by those who fought in these conflicts.
One area that particularly struck me was the 24 visitation area. It provided a peaceful space for individuals to come and pay their respects to the fallen soldiers who gave their lives in service to their country. The atmosphere was filled with reverence and gratitude as visitors reflected on the sacrifices made by these brave men and women.
Additionally, the park featured a Ceremonial Pentagon, an arrangement of 12 benches meticulously placed in formation. This symbolic structure added to the park’s atmosphere of honor and remembrance. It provided a place for quiet contemplation, allowing visitors to reflect on the significance of the sacrifices made by our military personnel.
6. Oxbow Eco-Center
When I had my trip to Port St. Lucie, I had the opportunity to explore the remarkable Oxbow Eco-Center, an educational facility dedicated to the preservation of nature in this region of the United States.
Spanning an impressive 225 acres of pristine land, the center provided a wealth of knowledge about the river and forest ecosystems in Florida. It served as both a living laboratory and a wild sanctuary, offering visitors a chance to observe and interact with the diverse flora and fauna that call this area home.
With the guidance of a knowledgeable naturalist, I embarked on a captivating guided tour of the center. The naturalist shared fascinating insights about the various plant and wildlife species found within the preserve. As we meandered through the enchanting floodplain forests, I couldn’t help but be in awe of the lush canopies and vibrant swamplands that surrounded us.
One of the highlights of the Oxbow Eco-Center was the opportunity to get up close and personal with the local flora and fauna. The center’s wild sanctuary provided a sanctuary for these creatures, and observing them in their natural habitat was a truly unforgettable experience. From vibrant wildflowers to captivating bird species, every moment was filled with awe-inspiring encounters.
7. Carmike Cinemas
Carmike Cinemas, a fantastic movie theater that provided the perfect setting for a cinematic experience. The theater boasted 14 stadium seating auditoriums, offering a wide selection of films for movie enthusiasts like me. Whether you were in the mood for the latest blockbusters or independent gems, Carmike Cinemas had something to cater to every taste.
Not only did the theater provide an array of films to choose from, but it also offered all the classic movie snacks that complete the cinema experience. From buttery popcorn to delicious candy treats, the concession stand had it all.
One feature that made Carmike Cinemas stand out was its full bar, which added an extra touch of indulgence to the moviegoing experience. I had the pleasure of sipping on a refreshing bottle of beer or enjoying a decadent glass of wine while immersing myself in the film on the big screen.
The comfortable seating and top-notch sound system further enhanced my enjoyment of the movie. It was a delight to relax in the spacious auditorium, surrounded by fellow movie enthusiasts, and lose myself in the magic of cinema.
8. Oak Hammocks Park
Oak Hammocks Park, a premium green space that offered a range of recreational activities and beautiful natural surroundings.
One of the highlights of the park for any avid angler was the presence of two fishing piers. These piers provided the perfect spot to cast a line and try your luck at catching some fish. As I watched the anglers in action, I could sense the excitement and anticipation in the air.
For those who preferred to explore on foot or by bike, Oak Hammocks Park had a network of bike and hiking trails that followed the scenic C-24 Canal. As I ventured along these trails, I was treated to stunning views of the surrounding landscape. The trails meandered through the park, allowing me to immerse myself in nature and enjoy the tranquil atmosphere.
One of the park’s highlights was the Butterfly Garden. This enchanting space showcased the vibrant colors of various butterfly species fluttering among the native flora. It was a delight to witness these beautiful creatures up close and appreciate the interconnectedness of the park’s ecosystem.
The walking trails within Oak Hammocks Park spanned a total of 3 miles, winding through the park’s renowned oak and palm hammocks. As I strolled along the trails, I marveled at the majestic trees that provided shade and a sense of serenity. The hammocks added a unique charm to the park, creating an atmosphere of tranquility and natural beauty.
9. River Lilly Cruises
I also had the opportunity to embark on a memorable cruise with River Lilly Cruises aboard their pontoon-style boat, the River Lilly. This charming vessel had the capacity to accommodate up to 34 passengers, providing a comfortable and enjoyable experience on the water.
As we set sail, the River Lilly took us on a scenic journey, allowing us to appreciate the breathtaking sights of the surrounding area. One notable highlight was passing by the very spot where a scene from the iconic James Bond film, Moonraker, was filmed. It was a thrilling connection to movie history, adding a touch of excitement to the cruise.
The allure of the River Lilly extended beyond film locations. The waters we traversed were teeming with fascinating wildlife, offering us the chance to encounter a variety of captivating creatures. Alligators, turtles, and, if we were fortunate enough, even otters and manatees graced us with their presence. It was a truly magical experience, observing these creatures in their natural habitat and appreciating the wonders of the local ecosystem.
The area was home to an abundance of bird species, captivating enthusiasts with their diverse colors and melodies. I made sure to have my binoculars handy, allowing me to observe these feathered inhabitants up close and fully immerse myself in the beauty of avian life.
10. Jessica Clinton Park
Jessica Clinton Park, a beautiful park dedicated to the memory of Jessica Clinton, a former resident and cheerleader of the city. The park was established as a heartfelt tribute to Jessica after her untimely passing at the age of 17. It serves as a lasting memorial to her life and the impact she made on the community. It was a touching experience to witness the love and respect that prompted the creation of this park in her honor.
One notable feature of the park is the stone dedication program, allowing people to commemorate their loved ones by dedicating stones within the park. It was a poignant reminder of the park’s significance as a space where personal connections and memories intertwine.
Within the park, there is a special memorial area dedicated to celebrating Jessica’s life. This serene space offered solace and tranquility, providing visitors with a place to reflect and find inner peace. It was a deeply moving experience to be surrounded by the memories and remembrances that have been created in honor of Jessica.
11. Dolphin Watch Boat Tours
I had the pleasure of joining a tour with Captain Adam Pozniak, a seasoned resident of over 40 years who possesses an unparalleled knowledge of the region.
Embarking on a tour of the Indian River with Captain Adam allowed me to delve into the rich history of the Fort Pierce area. As we cruised along the waterways, covering a distance of up to 15 miles, Captain Adam regaled us with fascinating anecdotes and insights, painting a vivid picture of the region’s past.
One of the highlights of the tour was the abundance of wildlife that graced our journey. Throughout the boat ride, we had the incredible opportunity to spot a variety of magnificent creatures. Majestic manatees glided gracefully through the water, playful dolphins leapt joyously alongside us, and a myriad of colorful birds soared above, painting the sky with their vibrant plumage. We even caught glimpses of sea turtles and an array of fish, adding to the captivating experience.
12. Port St. Lucie Botanical Gardens
Situated in the heart of the city, Port St. Lucie Botanical Gardens spanned 20 acres, nestled near the serene St. Lucie River.
As I strolled through the gardens, I was immediately struck by the breathtaking sights that surrounded me. The centerpiece of the gardens was a picturesque lake, adorned with a grand fountain that added a touch of elegance to the serene ambiance. Paved trails meandered through the gardens, inviting me to embark on a leisurely journey, immersing myself in the beauty of the local flora and fauna.
The gardens were thoughtfully divided into distinct sections, each offering its own unique charm and allure. One of my favorite sections was the butterfly garden, where vibrant flowers and carefully selected plants provided a haven for these delicate creatures. The fluttering wings and vibrant colors of the butterflies added a touch of enchantment to the surroundings. Additionally, the orchid garden was a true feast for the senses, with a captivating array of orchid varieties showcasing their exquisite blooms.
To further enhance my experience, I had the option to join a guided tour, led by knowledgeable experts who shared captivating stories and insights about the diverse plant life on display. Their expertise brought the gardens to life, providing a deeper appreciation for the botanical wonders around me. Alternatively, I could explore the gardens at my own pace, allowing myself to get lost in the tranquility and beauty that enveloped the surroundings.
13. Civic Center Art Gallery
Civic Center, a vibrant hub at the heart of the city. To my delight, nestled within the center was an art gallery that beckoned me to explore its vast expanse of creativity. Spanning an impressive 2,000 square feet, this gallery boasted some of the finest artwork in the entire region.
Stepping into the gallery, I immediately felt a wave of inspiration wash over me. Its mission was clear: to showcase the burgeoning talent that thrived within the local arts scene. The exhibition space itself was a work of art, adorned with grand columns and meticulously carved wood, creating an ambiance that exuded sophistication and reverence for the craft.
Every eight weeks, a new collection was unveiled, ensuring a constant flow of fresh and intriguing artwork. As I roamed through the gallery, I encountered a diverse range of artistic expressions. From stunning paintings that evoked emotions to intricate sculptures that seemed to come to life before my eyes, each piece spoke volumes about the talent and creativity of the artists involved.
The gallery at the Civic Center was truly a treasure trove for art enthusiasts like myself. It provided a platform for local artists to shine, giving them the recognition they deserved. The carefully curated exhibitions showcased the rich diversity of artistic styles, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in a world of visual storytelling and creative mastery.
14. RiverWalk Boardwalk
RiverWalk Boardwalk, a picturesque pathway that meanders along the banks of the vibrant St. Lucie River. This serene oasis provided an opportunity to immerse myself in the captivating beauty of Florida’s renowned wetlands.
Spanning an impressive 2,000 feet, the boardwalk offered a delightful stroll that culminated in a charming pavilion nestled within the Veterans Park at Rivergate. As I ventured along the boardwalk, I marveled at the natural splendor that unfolded before my eyes.
What fascinated me the most about the RiverWalk Boardwalk was its clever division into two distinct paths, each offering its own unique experience. These paths wound their way through lush mangrove swamps, transporting me into a world teeming with life and tranquility. Along the way, I encountered a well-positioned observation deck, inviting me to pause and indulge in a more intimate appreciation of the surrounding landscape.
Standing on the deck, I gazed out across the vast expanse of wetlands, captivated by the intricate ecosystem that thrived in this remarkable setting. The melodious sounds of native bird species serenaded me as I absorbed the harmonious blend of vibrant green foliage, serene waterways, and gentle breezes.
15. Spruce Bluff Preserve
During my visit to Port St. Lucie, I had the opportunity to delve into the rich history of the area by exploring the captivating Spruce Bluff Preserve. Nestled in the charming Southbend Lakes district of the city, this preserve offered a fascinating glimpse into the past.
As I ventured through the preserve, I discovered the remnants of a pioneer settlement that had thrived in the 1800s. It was truly remarkable to witness the tangible echoes of the past that still lingered in this historic site. One notable feature that caught my attention was an ancient Indian mound, standing tall at a height of 18 feet. It was believed to have been constructed nearly 2,000 years ago, serving as a testament to the enduring legacy of the indigenous people who once inhabited this land.
Surrounding the mound, the Spruce Bluff Preserve teemed with vibrant wildlife, providing a captivating experience for nature enthusiasts. Along my journey, I had the pleasure of spotting a variety of creatures, including playful squirrels, majestic alligators, and curious raccoons. Each encounter added an element of excitement and wonder to my exploration of the preserve.
The Spruce Bluff Preserve not only offered a fascinating glimpse into the past but also provided an opportunity to appreciate the natural beauty of the Port St. Lucie area. It was a harmonious blend of history and wildlife, creating a unique and captivating experience for visitors.