Palm Beach: Not Your Grandma’s City

Here are our top picks to dine, shop and play in Palm Beach … and don’t worry, there’s not an early-bird special in sight.

Related To:

Photo by: istock


Palm Beach, Florida, has it all: ritzy beachfront mansions, celebrity residents, year-round sunshine and more sand and swaying palm trees than you could imagine. It also has a bit of a sleepy reputation -- a result of the flocks of wealthy, snow-bird retirees who fly here looking to escape a dreary winter.

Younger travelers, for their part, often overlook Palm Beach, opting instead to fly a bit farther south to live it up in Miami. But there’s plenty of hip and happening places all over Palm Beach sure to please the most worldly jet-setter or trendy twenty-something, too. Here are our top picks to dine, shop and play in Palm Beach … and don’t worry, there’s not an early-bird special in sight.

Katherine Lynch, flickr
Buccan, Palm Beach
Buccan is the place for foodies to have small plates and inventive cocktails in a trendy atmosphere. James Beard Award-nominated chef Clay Conley cooks up modern American cuisine with a touch of whimsy in dishes like short rib empanadas, squid ink orecchiette and a hot dog panini.

Palm Sugar features Asian-inspired comfort food, and the extensive menu stars the pillowy char siu pork buns, popular fish tacos and a range of upscale street food. Don’t miss their daily happy hour from 3-7 p.m. -- $5 dollar small plates and a range of affordable sake cocktails make this one of the best happy hours in town.

The Blind Monk is one of Palm Beach’s hidden gems. A few blocks off bustling Clematis Street, this small, dimly lit and intimate bar has a selection of tapas to go alongside its lengthy list of craft beer and wines-by-the-glass. Seating is limited, but the hip and laid-back vibe keeps the drinks flowing into the wee hours of the morning.

Shopping on Worth Avenue
Worth Avenue, Palm Beach
Worth Avenue is the Rodeo Drive of South Florida, and it’s common to see Rolls-Royces, Ferraris and Bentleys line up for valet parking. Just steps from the beach is 150 Worth, a gorgeous courtyard with high-end boutiques like Tory Burch, Gucci and Louis Vuitton. Check out one of the newest additions, Kiosk, for an eclectic mix of clothing, accessories, books, lingerie and more … all designed to help “inspire your fashion lifestyle.”

City Place features more affordable shopping in a lively, open-air downtown district. Stores like Anthropologie, GAP, Tommy Bahama and Pottery Barn are scattered alongside bars, restaurants and a 20-screen IMAX-equipped movie theater. On weekends, there’s often live music in the main plaza … perfect to entertain any “I don’t like to shop” companions.

in downtown West Palm Beach is a food lover’s paradise. Every Saturday, this food, flower and farmers market is set up along the beautiful waterfront. Locals and visitors alike converge on the 75-plus stalls, eager to sample local specialties like tropical teas, jerk chicken skewers, panini-pressed Cuban sandwiches and just-made guacamole. You could fill up on the free samples alone!

Palm Beach Paddleboard
Paddleboarding Palm Beach
A drive along South Ocean Boulevard lets you sneak a peek at how the upper crust lives. All along the miles and miles of scenic roadway are the multimillion-dollar mansions that celebrities like Donald Trump, Rod Stewart, and Venus and Serena Williams call home. Dare to daydream, and pick your favorite among the varied architectural styles.

Paddle Boarding Palm Beach adds a touch of adventure for adrenaline junkies looking to get a workout on the water. If you’re not familiar with this craze, it’s like surfing but without the waves. Instead, you stand on the full-length board, using a paddle to explore the peaceful Intracoastal Waterway and nearby Peanut Island. And it’s a great workout for your core. (Lessons, tours and board rentals are available daily.)

Grassy Waters Preserve covers 23 square miles of pristine Florida wetlands and offers lots of opportunities to get closer to nature. Walk the boardwalk or one of the hiking trails in search of wildlife like bobcats, alligators and an array of birds including bald eagles. Or come back during a full moon and sign up for a “Moonlight Paddle” to explore the wetlands at night by canoe.

Clematis Street is lined with dozens of lively restaurants and bars, making it the perfect spot for late-night bar-hopping. Some favorites include Rocco’s Tacos and Tequila Bar for margaritas, O’Shea’s Irish Pub for a pint in their outdoor beer garden, and lots of spots for dancing, like Off the Hookah, Feelgoods and Respectable Street.

Next Up

All Aboard the New York Botanical Garden's Holiday Train Show

Ring in the holiday season with some track-by-track views around New York City.

Delray Beach Guide

Visit South Florida's most popular and family-friendly beach. See our Delray Beach Guide for the best places to eat and stay as well as some fun activities to do while you're visiting.

Miami's Island Secret

Find out more about what you can things do while visiting Key Biscayne, FL, including biking in Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, kite-boarding near Crandon Park, dining at Costa Med and staying at the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne.  

Things to Do in Cape Cod

Here are 7 ideas for making the most of your visit to Cape Cod.

Vacation Faceoff: Ocean City, MD v. Ocean City, NJ

From sunset-watching to boardwalk-strolling, decide which of these towns can lay claim to being the best Ocean City.

Your Guide to South Padre Island, Texas

What you need to know to plan a trip or to just be inspired to visit the picture-perfect South Padre Island, Texas.

Florida Island Vacations

See our 5 favorite Florida island vacations.

Blog Cabin: Lakeside

Explore DIY Network's Blog Cabin 2014 location: Winter Haven, FL!

10 New Florida Theme Park Attractions to Look for in 2016

Florida's theme parks raise the bar in creative and high-tech attractions. Here's a look at some of the hottest theme park attractions you don't want to miss visiting this year.

Which US State Has the Most Spirit?

You make the call. Tell us what US state has the most spirit.

Trending Now

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.