West Palm Beach is a city trapped between two worlds. To the east, there’s the wealthy island of Palm Beach. To the west, there’s a suburb that stretches twelve miles, all the way to my high school home of Royal Palm Beach. Though there aren’t many similarities between the two areas, the one thing that they have in common is a love of the city’s downtown.
The half-dozen or so blocks between Clematis Street and polished City Place make up the popular area of the city. If this is your first trip, and you only have three days, this is where you’ll want to spend a lot of your time.
Summer showers are fast and furious, so pack an umbrella along with your sun hat.
If you only have time for one thing, make it a serene catamaran cruise.
No soul on the shoreline will blame you for making the beach your first destination. Start by getting a great view of West Palm Beach from high in the sky on a parasailing adventure (which technically launches from nearby Riviera Beach).
Once you return to West Palm Beach proper—after a little sunbathing, of course—get to know the ins and outs of the lavish side of the Island on a sightseeing tour. A private, customizable tour can take you past envious addresses you’d have a hard time finding without help.
If you’re nursing a tan that’s crisped into a sunburn, you won’t be alone in this city. Consider spending the day wearing more than a swimsuit and taking a tasty food tour. Key lime pie and fantastic Colombian coffee are just a few of the treats on the menu here.
Make sure to leave a room for a little more dessert. A tour of the Bulk Candy Store is the sweetest way to spend time indoors. And when the sun starts to fade, you can end the day dining outdoors at a swanky place like the rooftop restaurant above the RH home furnishings store.
Today’s the day to make your social media followers jealous. Start with a few cute snaps of you and your party at the South Cove Natural Area or sipping coffee at a Clematis Street cafe. Then, get dressed in your best for a private photo shoot on glamorous Worth Avenue.
A quick wardrobe change back at your hotel, and it’s time for the grand finale: a sunset cruise on a dreamy catamaran. Stunning city views create an all-too-perfect backdrop. Watch the sunset, snap some envy-inducing photos, and say “see you soon” to fabulous Palm Beach.