The ingredients of a perfect day in The Palm Beaches are easy to come by and pair perfectly: one hearty dose of art and culture finished off with a memorable meal as the cherry on top.
Whether you opt to climb 105 steps at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse or step back in time at the Historical Society of Palm Beach County, enjoying the area’s top-notch cultural institutions will work up an appetite.
Luckily, The Palm Beaches is peppered with restaurants on par with the excellent arts experiences nearby—and this year, Discover The Palm Beaches will host The Palm Beaches Restaurant Week from August 16 through 31, so you can score great deals on meals. Participating restaurants will offer discounted menu items and prix-fixe two- to three-course meals.
Below, find a few favorite cultural establishments and nearby Restaurant Week-participating restaurants to complement them.
Historical Society of Palm Beach County + City Cellar, West Palm Beach
Palm Beach County is undoubtedly a beautiful place to visit (and live), but it hasn’t always been a developed destination. To get a bit of context and understand the history of the area, head to the Historical Society of Palm Beach County, which houses a permanent collection of objects that stretch as far back as 12,000 years into Florida and local history. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Following your self-tour through the various exhibits (and maybe a bit of shopping in the museum store), bring yourself up to speed by heading to City Cellar. It’s located in Rosemary Square, a neighborhood that serves as a shining example of both the current moment and future direction of downtown West Palm Beach. Relaxed yet refined, City Cellar is the perfect place to sip wine thanks to its superb people-watching and views of The Wishing Tree by Symmetry Labs and Jeppe Hein’s Water Pavilion West Palm from above.
Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum + Beacon/Lucky Shuck, Jupiter
Jupiter is beautiful from the ground, but climb to the top of the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and you’ll be truly blown away. First lit in 1860, the lighthouse remains a local favorite even today thanks to its 360-degree views of the Jupiter Inlet and the turquoise Atlantic Ocean beyond. The gorgeous grounds also house a small museum with various exhibits devoted to local history.
As you gaze across the inlet from the viewing deck of the lighthouse, you may spot a particularly lively-looking complex: that’s the recently debuted Charlie & Joe’s at Love Street, home to several restaurants, including Beacon, Topside at the Beacon, Lucky Shuck Oyster Bar & Taphouse, and The Tacklebox, a casual eatery and seafood market.
Pair your lighthouse climb with a meal at any eatery at this popular spot; you can even add on a kayak or paddleboard rental or a guided eco-tour from the onsite Love Street Outdoor Center if you’re feeling adventurous.
Old School Square + Sundy House, Delray Beach
There’s something for everyone at Old School Square in Delray Beach: the block-long campus comprises the Cornell Art Museum, the Crest Theatre, The Pavilion, and the Creative Arts School. Whether you want to attend an event or performance, take an art class, or browse a gallery of thought-provoking art (including works by local artists), you’ll find what you’re looking for at Old School Square.
When you’re ready to refuel, walk five minutes south along Swinton Avenue to Sundy House, where a boutique inn and restaurant are hidden in a lush tropical garden. Taru at Sundy House serves “new Florida cuisine,” so expect fresh delights like blackened mahi and key lime pie.
Taru at Sundy House is open Monday through Saturday for dinner and cocktails and on Saturdays and Sundays for brunch. Pair your meal of choice with an Old School Square experience for a perfectly South Floridian day—and a feast for all the senses.
Henry Morrison Flagler Museum + Henry’s Palm Beach, Palm Beach
For a day themed after Palm Beach’s founding father, explore Whitehall, the tycoon’s 75-room Gilded-Age mansion—now open to the public as the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum—and then head to a restaurant named for him.
Henry Flagler, who was responsible for the Florida East Coast Railway that transformed eastern Florida from untouched jungle to world-class destination, built the 100,000-square-foot home in 1902 as a wedding present for his third wife. Today, it’s a National Historic Landmark filled with antiques that offers a peek into what home life would have looked like for the tony Flaglers.
Nearby, Henry’s Palm Beach by The Breakers (a resort Flagler founded in 1896 and another Palm Beach institution that carries his legacy into the modern day) celebrates the man who shaped Palm Beach into a high-society hotspot. The menu reflects comfort food held to high standards—dishes fit for the tables of Whitehall—and a drink menu themed after this glittering period of history.
Flagler’s private railcar (Railcar No. 91), which was built in 1886 for his personal use, is also on display at the museum—check it out and then grab a namesake Railcar #91 martini at HMF at The Breakers for a full day of all things Flagler.
Think you’ve got a taste for arts, culture, and food in The Palm Beaches? Start planning your trip today and consider us your maître d′ and local insider for exceptional cultural experiences here in The Palm Beaches.
Skye Sherman is a freelance travel writer based in South Florida. She is also a private pilot, scuba diver, bookworm, and world traveler whose curiosity and eagerness to explore send her all over the globe.