Florida, United States

Florida Day 2: Peanut Island

Wednesday brings us to day two in Florida!

Because we were a few towns out of downtown Palm Beach/West Palm Beach, we used public transportation quite a bit. It worked out perfectly because the nearest bus station was less than two blocks from our Air BNB. This is part of the Palm Tran system. Route 1 is primarily what we took, as it went up and down and coast and brought us right into town. It was about an hour on the bus to get into town, but it was extremely cheap: $2 for one ticket ($1 senior for my dad) or $5 (and $3.50) for an unlimited day ticket. We took Ubers occasionally, but when going long distances, this was a super affordable option. It also was worth being a few towns out because the cost of Air BNBs in West Palm Beach were extremely expensive, especially since we booked one just a couple weeks before.

Day two’s adventure was heading to Peanut Island. This is one of the sites I had researched ahead of time and planned on being a day trip. We left around 10 AM and headed to the bus stop we’d be using frequently throughout the trip. We had 1.5 hours ahead of us on the bus, 78 stops! It gave us a nice time to just see what the city was like, talk to locals, and enjoy the warm weather. Keep in mind we had just left Maine, where the temperature was ranging from 0 to 10° F (-17 to -12° C).

We were originally going to take the Peanut Island Shuttleboat and rent snorkeling gear. It ended up being a little bit cold for that, so we rethought our plans. We decided to rent a kayak, which you can get from a shop a little ways down from the Shuttleboat company. We went to Riviera Beach Marina and rented a half-day double-kayak for $60, got instructions on the layout of the island, and took off!

We pulled the kayak on the beach and walked around on the sand and then settled in for a picnic lunch. Peanut Island is very popular for fishing, boating, snorkeling, kayaking, camping, and its nature trail. Its part of the Intracoastal Waterway near the Lake Worth Inlet and is 80 acres. In addition to its paved trail around the island, it is also home to the JFK Bunker (which has been blocked off for a few years and not accessible to the public – we looked hard for it though!)

Aerial View of Peanut Island. Photo Courtesy of visitflorida.com

After our lunch, we left the kayak and began a trek around the walking trail and enjoying some of the nature sites, the warm weather, and the breeze.

We had a few nice spots to stop and look at the water. West Palm Beach is also notorious for its yachts, so we stopped to admire some of those.

We went back for the kayak after about 1.5 miles of walking and started a full loop around the island, which takes about an hour. We got caught in some heavy currents and decided to dip into the island in some of the rivers and waterways that cut through it. Finally, we stopped at a nice swimming and relaxation beach area on the eastern side of the island. I took a swim, and we both kicked back and enjoyed the sun before kayaking back to land and taking the Palm Tran back to Lake Worth.

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