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Camping Peanut Island Palm Beach

Everything You Ever Need To Know About Peanut Island

CAMPING AT PEANUT ISLAND |WEST PALM BEACH| {EP #031}

Perfect for the outdoor adventurer and the soak-up-the-sun beachgoer, Peanut Island is a top vacation spot. It offers a superior site for water lovers, whether youre looking for a day trip from your South Florida home or are traveling from afar for a Florida vacation getaway.

Peanut Island is located in the major destination of Palm Beach County, Florida, within driving distance of other top spots that include West Palm Beach, Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale. You could choose to spend the bulk of your time enjoying Peanut Island or make it part of a South Florida vacation.

Not only is this island perfectly located within South Florida, but it also has an ideal location on the water. Situated on the Lake Worth Inlet of Lake Worth Lagoon, this spot offers amazing proximity to water-based adventures. You and your family or friends can spend your days on the beach, participating in water sports, having wilderness adventures and visiting tourist sites.

High tides bring ocean water to the inlet, offering the continuing flow of translucent blue water to the island. The gorgeous waters provide perfect conditions for swimming, snorkeling, fishing and water sports or to simply get your feet wet!

Use our comprehensive Peanut Island guide to plan your trip and have a fantastic stay, whether you visit for the day or make a week out of it.

Peanut Island Mangrove Boardwalk

GET LOST IN PEANUT ISLANDS UNTOUCHED WILDERNESS

Near the boat docks on the islands west side, youll find another boardwalk, the 230-foot Mangrove Boardwalk. This pathway takes you over a patch of water filled with beautiful mangrove trees. It brings you from the walking path that surrounds the island to the beach, where you can enjoy the surf and sand. When you look over the railings into the water on each side, you might catch glimpses of wading birds and even manatees. If you get the chance, try riding a kayak in the mangrove channels beneath the boardwalk.

Hang Out On The Beach

The beaches which ring Peanut Island are its primary attraction. But which ones are best?

The beaches on the north and west side are smaller, and the water is less clear. The best beaches are on the south and east side of the island. These beaches are wide and sandy with crystal clear water.

During certain seasons, lifeguards will be on duty on the southeast beaches, making it the ideal spot for swimmers, snorkelers, and families.

To get to the southeast beaches, simply turn left when you get off the Peanut Island shuttle and walk south along the paved path towards the lagoon.

There are many lovely spots along the water, with trees providing natural shade. One of the most tranquil locations is on the last strip of beach next to the lagoon.

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How To Snorkel And Do Other Water Activities On Peanut Island

Snorkeling

Once youre in Peanut Island, youll have to get your own snorkeling rental. Once you have everything you need to explore the snorkeling lagoon, you can also explore all the underwater parts of the park. There are numerous snorkeling lagoons to choose from around Peanut Island so you can select your preferred spot at your own leisure. Peanut Island also offers in-house snorkeling tours so that you let the experts do the exploring for you.

For snorkelers going on their own, then the best time to snorkel around Peanut Island is during the high tide, usually a couple of hours before and after the phenomenon. Its better to research tide charts to find the best time. Lastly, while snorkeling around Peanut Island is relatively safe compared to other beaches, the current can still pose a considerable risk, especially for children and novice swimmers. As such, observe the water currents for up to 20 minutes and determine whether the currents are safe before going underwater. Dont forget to wear your snorkel vest or life jacket before you jump!

Paddle Boarding

Jet Skiing

Kayaking

Boat Tours

Peanut Island Boat Docks

Peanut Island Campground

DOCK YOUR BOAT ON THE ISLAND FOR FREE!

Convenient boat docks allow you to ride your boat to the island and leave it at a boat slip while you enjoy area activities. Best of all, the slips are free to use if you can grab one. These boat docks take you to the west side of Peanut Island, which is a relaxing area with more wilderness to enjoy than crowds or tourist activities. This is where you can rejuvenate your body and mind. Or you can dock your boat, pick up the walking trail that circles the whole island and head to whichever part youd like to visit.

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Peanut Island Park & Tent Campground

Choose from 17 lush campsites at Peanut Island Park, featuring tent pads, grills, picnic tables, indoor showers, and a large fire ring. Splash into Riviera Beach and bring snorkeling gear to enjoy the crystal clear waters and the lagoon. Take a lazy afternoon kayak trip and immerse yourself in beautiful nature. Take the afternoon or the week to enjoy this tropical sanctuary.

Snorkeling In Peanut Island

Peanut island has been voted to be one of the top snorkeling destinations in the U.S. across all major tourism websites and surveys from all around the world. For those looking for a fun adventure, then be prepared to get up close and personal with whats beneath as the tropical paradise is the ideal place for snorkeling at any time of the year. The water temperature at Peanut Island stays the same all year round and offers calm waters without strong currents. Underneath Peanut Island are various marine habitats and ever-changing sea life to explore. Majestic marine life such as Parrot Fish, Angel Fish, Sea Stars, Sea Turtles, Moray Eels, and other exciting sea creatures are just some of the creatures that you might encounter.

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Are Dogs Allowed On Peanut Island

Yes! Dogs are allowed on Peanut Island, as long as theyre on a leash which is 6 feet long, or shorter. Additional dog rules can be found on the Palm Beach County website.

To many people, this is the single best thing about Peanut Island. Amazingly, dogs are also allowed on the ferry to Peanut Island.

How Do You Get On Peanut Island

Exploring Peanut Island, West Palm Beach Florida

Peanut Island is a true island, so its only reachable via boat or watercraft. Most people come either with their own boat, or the Peanut Island ferry. Visitors can also get on Peanut Island by kayaking, and even SUP paddleboarding.

If you dont have your own boat, I highly recommend the ferry/shuttle boat! The entire process is simple, fun and easy, and we love the great views from the boat.

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Take The Scenic Route

Disconnect from the fast paced, everyday world and reconnect with yourself in nature. The Palm Beach campgrounds and RV parks create a playground in paradise. Immerse yourself in the sounds, scents, and scenes of the natural landscape. Find tranquility at the waters shore and bask in the balmy ocean breeze. All located near the areas top attractions, youll be able to find the perfect harmony between nature and city life.

Peanut Island Jet Ski Rentals

RACE THROUGH THE WAVES ON JET SKIS!

Looking for a boost of adrenaline during your visit to the island? Rent Jet Skis for the day so you can soar around the lagoon. Youll fly through the beautiful South Florida waters, surrounded by the beauty of the island and the sky beyond. Have the freedom to explore on your own or try Peanut Island Jet Ski tours for a guided group experience.

When you get the excitement of speeding through the waves out of your system, take the chance to slowly circle the island to see its beauty from the vantage point of the water. Or you could get the most out of your heart-pumping Jet Ski experience and switch to a paddle board or kayak for a slow tour of the island.

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History Of Peanut Island

Why is it called Peanut Island?

Many people assume its because of the islands shape, or maybe small size. But, neither are true. The island got its name because it was originally going to be used as a port, to service ships carrying peanut-oil.

The project began in the early 1900s. At that time, lots of infrastructure was being built in Florida, including the creation of the Intercoastal Waterway , the Lake Worth Inlet, and the Lake Worth Lagoon.

The peanut oil port plan was cancelled in 1946, but the island was used to dump soil, dug from the bottom of Lake Worth Lagoon.

At first Peanut Island was only 10 acres large, but over time its grown to cover 80 acres. Today the center of the island is still used as a dumping ground for soil dredged from the Lake Worth Lagoon and Inlet.

For most of its life Peanut island has been a popular local party spot.

Like many beautiful natural areas in Florida, theres a sad history of drunken party-people trashing the place. Pollution and litter became a major problem. Because there were no bathrooms or facilities, people used the island as their bathroom.

In 2005 Palm Beach County opened Peanut Island Park, and has managed it since.

Kayaking At Peanut Island

A family tradition

Ten years ago when we first kayaked to Peanut Island, there was no good put-in spot and we were the only paddlers in the area. Now, the Riviera Beach Marina has become a a great base for paddlers kayaks and SUPs were everywhere.

The newly redeveloped and impressive Riviera Beach Marina is located a 10-minute paddle from Peanut Island. On its northern end, a sandy beach has been developed, where you are free to put in your kayaks. There are two rental operations on this beach, offering kayaks, SUPs and wave runners Nautical Ventures and Blue Water Boat Rental.

The snorkeling lagoon on Peanut Island.

Many kayakers circumnavigate the island, perhaps stopping to snorkel or picnic. From our kayak, even before we left the marina, we peered into the clear water and saw both a small shark and a large sea star.

There is ample free parking near the marina. You will have to drop off your boat and then park your car, and I will warn you that getting your kayak from the drop-off point to the sand is a pain. Its not far, but it involves either taking turns that are tight for a long kayak or going down a few steps. If you have a wheeled cart, bring it.

Peanut Island is a popular destination for partying boats. This floating tiki bar brought a sunset celebration to the shoreline on a Friday night.

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Can You Stay On Peanut Island

You may camp on Peanut Island if you have a camping permit. There are only 17 campsites on the island. You can reserve a campsite up to 90 days ahead.

Its recommended that you make reservations as far out as possible so you have a higher chance of getting a campsite.

If you arent into camping, check out the Hotels Near Peanut Island section above.

Eviction Per Palm Beach County Code Chapter 21

  • Management reserves the right to evict anyone for behavior detrimental to the campground and its visitors, or failing to observe the procedures as per Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Code Chapter 21. A copy is available for review in the office. In accordance with the provisions of the ADA, this document may be requested in an alternate format. Contact Peanut Island Campground at 561-844-4445.
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    Take The Peanut Island Shuttle

    One of the most common ways to get to Peanut Island is the take the shuttle or ferry boat.

    This is the simplest way to get to the island, especially if you have camping gear, coolers, and/or children.

    • The Peanut Island Shuttle runs from the Riviera Beach Marina to Peanut Island from 10 am to 5 pm daily.
    • The ferry runs every 25 minutes
    • If it starts raining, they will come and pick you up
    • The trip only takes ten minutes and the ticket prices are for a round-trip voyage.
    • The last boat to the island leaves at 3 pm
    • The last boat from the island leaves at 5 pm
    • It costs an extra $5 to bring a beach wagon thats over 30 inches long
    • It costs an extra $16 to bring a kayak on board
    • Ticket prices are higher if youre camping
    • You can buy cold drinks, snacks, and sunscreen from the ferry
    • You can also rent Hobie Cats and snorkel gear from this company

    Tip: Check the Peanut Island Shuttle website for the most up-to-date information.

    To find the shuttle, simply head to the southeast end slip numbers at 200 E 13th St Riviera Beach FL, 33404.

    Peanut Island Fishing Pier

    Camping for Christmas on Peanut Island in West Palm Beach

    EXPERIENCE THIS TOP SPOT FOR SALTWATER FISHING!

    If fishing is what draws you to the sparkling waters of Florida, dont miss out on the off-the-beaten-path gem of Peanut Island. Surrounded by water with the entire perimeter as a public park, youll have endless opportunities around the island for your favorite sport.

    Take your pick of spending time on designated parts of the beach with your pole, taking part in pier fishing or fishing from a boat around the shore. Youll have the chance to catch various types of saltwater fish, as well as shellfish, in the clear and beautiful waters of the island.

    On Peanut Island, you can saltwater fish away from the guarded swimming spots of the island. Unless exempt, state residents and visitors need to obtain a saltwater fishing license. To learn more, visit www.myfwc.com.

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    Peanut Island Shuttle Boat

    Where: The Peanut Island Shuttle runs out of the Riviera Beach Marina, located at 200 E. 13th St., Riviera Beach.

    Price: $16 per adult round trip $8 for children six years old and younger

    Times: Trips are every 25 minutes from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. The last boat to the island is at 3 p.m.

    Contact: Call 561-777-0438 or visit the website for more information: www.peanutislandshuttleboat.com

    COVID note: Face masks no longer mandatory on the boat.

    Other Places In Peanut Island To Watch Out For

    Restaurants

    Bringing your own picnic and cooler for a fun beach dine-out is the way to go when youre on Peanut Island. While the Island itself does not include restaurants for dining, you can simply head off the island and grab a boat to the nearby South Florida dining destinations. There are bars and cafes available nearby such as the Johnny Longboats, RafikiTiki, Sailfish Marina, The Islander Grill and Tiki Bar, Frigates Waterfront Bar, and so much more.

    The variety of restaurants near Peanut Island will surely fit your taste and budget should you fancy a glass of wine or a nice cocktail after doing a lot of water activities. You can find additional spots via TripAdvisor for places to eat near Peanut Island if you want to find the best dining experiences nearby.

    Historical Tours

    Did you know that Peanut Island once served as a fallout bunker way back in the 60s? In 1961, Peanut Island became a command center for the then President of the United States President John F. Kennedy. As well as being a command center, it also became the presidents shelter whenever he was staying at his home near Palm Beach, during the Cold War. To this day, a lot of tourists and even locals do not know of its existence, as the hidden entrance to the bunker is hard to notice when youre on the island.

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    The Story Of Peanut Island

    The 80-acre park is man-made, built from earth piled here during dredging for the port in 1918. The only peanuts ever here were part of a visitors picnic! The peanut in the name comes from unfulfilled plans to ship peanut oil from here.

    In 2005, the island was developed into a county park, and it has been improved over the years, with the addition of a very scenic 1.25-mile-long walking trail around the entire island, a snorkeling lagoon, a short boardwalk through the mangroves and a small marina where boats can tie up.

    Because we visited on a quiet weekday, we know we saw a quieter side to Peanut Island. On weekends, Peanut Island is full of dozens of boaters who moor off the beaches for swimming, snorkeling and partying. Whether you love the festive atmosphere or you find someone elses music annoying, I can assure you, if its a sunny weekend, you wont be alone here.

    The lagoon on Peanut Island is popular with manatees in the winter. On a January afternoon, we watched two loll around peacefully.

    Sailfish Marina: Peanut Island Shuttle Service

    Parks &  Recreation Peanut Island Campground

    Where: The Palm Beach Water Taxi runs out of the Sailfish Marina Resort, located at 98 Lake Drive, Palm Beach Shores.

    Price: $15 per person round trip

    Times: Seven days a week departing at 9:45 a.m., 11:45 a.m., 1:45 p.m. and 3:45 p.m. Returning times: 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

    Contact: Call or 561-844-1724 or visit the website for more information: www.sailfishmarina.com/water-taxi

    Important things to take on your Peanut Island day trip

    Chairs, coolers, beach towels, hats, sunscreen, beach umbrellas, floats and snorkel gear.

    Food and drinks. Be aware that alcohol is prohibited on Peanut Island, except in the reserved campsites.

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    Snorkeling In Peanut Island West Palm Beach : Best Spots And Other Activities

    Peanut Island is originally referred to as Inlet Island, and was created by reshaping the land and water features of the surrounding area in 1918, creating the inlet and the port of Palm Beach as we know today. The island was renamed Peanut Island due to a planned launch of a peanut oil-shipping business back in 1946. The venture failed, but the name has stuck since. Afterwards, a $13 million renovation of the island back in 2005 resulted in the beautiful 80-acre tropical paradise that now hosts a crystal clear Caribbean blue backdrop that tourists around the world flock to and spend the perfect holiday with friends and loved ones in.

    If youve already planned a fun weekend getaway with your family to snorkel, dive, and escape the busy city streets, then look no further as were here to guide you with everything you need to know for your trip to this beautiful island starting from getting the best hotels, the tastiest restaurants, the best spots to spend your mornings and afternoons, as well as finding the best activities within Peanut Island to bond with your loved ones.

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