Before I even went to the beach for the first time, I already had a love affair with the ocean. I had only seen it on T.V. shows and in movies, but I was hooked.
When the movie Pirates of the Caribbean came out I became even more enthralled with the ocean. I dreamed of traveling to the Caribbean and bumming on the beaches.
When I got a little older I began reading Nicholas Sparks books (The Notebook, Dear John, etc.), almost all of which are set in the Carolinas near the Atlantic, and I became pretty much obsessed with all things nautical and ocean themed.
Besides the water itself my main obsession is lighthouses. I do not know what it is about them, but I just find them incredibly beautiful.
My husband is from south Florida and his family lives near many lighthouses which gives me many opportunities for viewing and touring these beauties in the future. Just an added bonus of being married to him.
The first lighthouse I toured with my husband was the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum in Jupiter, Florida.
Jupiter is a small town north of West Palm Beach about an hour north of Ft. Lauderdale. The Jupiter Inlet is the spot where the Loxahatchee River and Indian River meet and then flow to the ocean. This creates a beautiful contrast in colors where the different waters meet.
Tours are 12$ for adults and 6$ for children 6 and up (as of 2017) and include great stories of the light’s history from your guide and in the museum, a tour of the grounds including the lighthouse keeper’s cottage, and the climb to the top for the spectacular view. Tours are free for active military and family members!
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They also offer moonlight and sunrise tour, twilight yoga, and other special programs which are listed on the website. Adjacent to the property there is also a hiking trail with a lookout spot and on the property there is a playground.
To climb to the top of the lighthouse children must be over 48 inches tall and able to walk on their own. The trek to the top is steep and strenuous and only recommended for those in good health. That being said, even without the climb, the tour is very interesting and it is still a very beautiful area. The view OF the lighthouse is almost as good as the view from it!
If you are in this area of Florida and looking for something reasonably affordable to do that doesn’t involve being in the water, I definitely recommend this tour. Closer to Ft. Lauderdale there is also the Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse but tours are rare compared to the daily tours offered at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse.
If you are driving up from Ft. Lauderdale proper you could make a day of it and explore the surrounding area and try some different beaches. The area around Jupiter and West Palm Beach has wildlife sanctuaries, state parks, and – what caught my eye- the Manatee Lagoon in West Palm Beach.
This is not an aquarium type set up but a museum and look out spot for wild manatees. This is a FREE educational site that would still be educational in the summer, however, the best time to see manatees is the winter months. More info can be found on its website.
All in all- I enjoyed my tour of this lighthouse very much and was blown away by the gorgeous views at the top. If you find yourself in the area, I highly recommend it!
If you enjoyed this post, check out my post on the steps to prepare for leaving for vacation to ensure a relaxing trip.