Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (2024)

My family and I would visit Hutchinson Island, Florida, quite often during my childhood. It’s no wonder that visiting Martin County felt like coming home. I love strolling along the vintage shops downtown, and admiring the beautiful sunrise along the 22-mile stretch coastline gives me a sense of nostalgia.

Martin County, Florida, was also named “America’s Happiest Seaside Town,” by Coastal Living Magazine. It’s one of those slightly off-the-radar places that constitute a local gem. Whether you’re planning a day trip from Miami, or if you’re looking for a quiet getaway, here are some of the best things to do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (1)

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida

Martin County is located in the Treasure Coast region of Florida. The area comprises 10 communities including Stuart, and the more popular Jensen Beach. Although it might not receive the same publicity as Miami or Orlando, Martin County is the perfect place for a coastal getaway.

What to do in Stuart Florida

Wondering what the heck there is to do in Stuart, Florida other than chilling at the beach. Here are some things this city has to offer.

Explore Downtown

The downtown area of Stuart is the perfect place for solo travelers and families alike. Catch a show at the Lyric Theatre, which was once a former silent movie house from the 1920s. You can also explore your inner artistic side by taking in the local art scene at one of the area’s many galleries.

Stuart Heritage Museum

The Stuart Heritage Museum is a free and fun way to learn more about the history of Stuart. Here, you’ll learn why Stuart is the Sailfish capital of the world, and what the deal is with all the pineapples.

Address: 161 SW Flagler Ave, Stuart, FL 34996

Visit the Elliott Museum

Museums tend to be a big hit or miss for me. But the Elliot Museum on Hutchinson Island did not disappoint.

If you are an old car lover, this museum is for you. Having been around for over 60 years, the museum showcases a large collection of classic cars. The best part? The car vending machine--where you pick a car from the chart, order it on a computer, and it’s delivered right to you. (I ordered a 1931 Ford Model AA and a Milk Delivery Truck, because why not?)

Address: 825 NE Ocean blvd Stuart, FL 34996

Go Stand Up Paddleboarding on the St. Lucie River

For outdoor adventurers, paddleboarding on the St. Lucie River is one of the most incredible experiences you don’t want to miss out on. Not only will you feel like you’re in Jurassic Park, but you’ll also more than likely run into a manatee or sea turtle. And because it’s my duty to disclose this… you may or may not run into an alligator, giving you that extra adrenaline rush. This was one of my favorite activities and I highly recommend it.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (6)

Sail on the Schooner Lily

Sailing on the Schooner Lily is a one-of-a-kind experience. Built by a man named Rick Brown in the 1970s, this old-world sailing vessel now sails as a Coast Guard Certified passenger boat. Embark on one of Treasure Coase Sailing Adventure’s tours, or turn up the volume rent the boat out for a private party for up to 20+ of your closest friends.

Go on a Segway Tour

Probably the scariest thing I did on this entire trip was going on a segway tour. Segways just scare me after I fell off one in Poland. I know, I know… I’ve done a lot of crazy things on my travels. I’ve jumped out of planes, hitchhiked in Myanmar with two strangers, I’ve have even come face to face with a growling lion. But get me on a segway and I’ll hold on for dear life!

I’m happy to say that my segway tour went smoothly and safely. On top of that, it was a great way to discover Stuart. A one-hour tour costs $59, and it begins at Memorial Park in Downtown Stuart. The tour takes you through parks, historical residences, and waterways. Be sure to book your tour a day in advance.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (7)

Visit Hutchinson Island

Hutchinson Island is a barrier island lined with miles of beautiful beaches. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a slow-paced day. Beach parking is easy and free in Martin County, and the city’s ordinance on building height offers beach-goers unobstructed, breathtaking views of the ocean.

Spend a Day at Jensen Beach

Pack your beach towel and a good book and head on over to Jensen Beach. The public access beach is officially called Jensen Sea Turtle Beach but locals refer to it simply as Jensen Beach. If you find yourself at Jensen Beach on a Thursday, be sure to head downtown for Jammin Jensen from 6-9:30 PM where you can enjoy the local art and music scene free of charge.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (8)

Hobe Sound

The amazing murals at Hobe Sound are a collection of hard work from over 40 skilled artists. The project was sponsored by locals and local businesses to encourage creativity and promote local culture. There’s a free printed guide for you to do a self-guided tour, or choose a private tour guided by artists.

Visit a Secret Beach at Blowing Rock Preserve

If you’re looking for a place to unplug and unwind, this is it. Here, you’ll see the unspoiled coastline and rare rock formations. Blowing Rock Preserve was named for its rare Anastasia limestone, which is composed primarily of shells, coral fragments, fossils, and sand. Anastasia limestone is usually found either underground or underwater, so this is your rare chance to view these amazing formations above ground as water blows through the holes at 15 to 20 feet.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (9)

Florida Oceanographic Society Coastal Center

Situated between the Indian River and the Atlantic Ocean, the Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center is a nationally recognized environmental organization that offers great educational programs. Catch a rare glimpse into Florida’s natural habitat history as you learn about Florida’s coastal and aquatic life.

Address: 890 NE Ocean Blvd, Stuart, FL 34996

Where to eat in Martin County

Don’t underestimate Martin county when it comes to food. As far as I know, Stuart has a ton of delicious eateries and restaurants to choose from. Starting with...

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (10)

Conchy Joe’s Seafood

Reliably one of my favorite places to eat in Jensen Beach. I’ve been a sporadic patron since I was in the 7th grade. Serving up American-Caribbean cuisine, Conchy Joe’s caters to seafood and meat-loving eaters, while also having options for vegetarians and vegans. The food is well-priced and you get to enjoy outdoor dining right by the water.

Try their “works” burger, a greasy flavorful burger served on a sesame bun and comes with everything (and I mean everything). They also have a good selection of seafood that is fresh and well prepared. But if you think the experience stops at food, you’re wrong. Come enjoy the outstanding live Reggae music from Thursdays to Mondays. Yeah, there’s a reason why I’m a loyal customer.

Address: 3945 NE Indian River Dr, Jensen Beach, FL 34957-4008

Crawdaddy’s N’awlins Grill & Bar

This award-winning restaurant filled with New Orleans flair and taste isn’t for you if you’re on a diet. But if you’re willing to opt for a cheat day, the clam chowder, cajun jambalaya, and crab cakes need to be top of your order list. The atmosphere is fun, with live music right on the waterfront (only on Thursdays through Sundays). Crawdaddy’s N’awlins Grill & Bar definitely one of the liveliest joins in the historic downtown Jensen Beach area.

Address: 1949 NE Jensen Beach Blvd. Jensen Beach, Fl 34957

Hurricane Grill & Wings

Serving the sunshine state with 35+ varieties of award-winning wings, this is the place to be for carnivores (specifically wing lovers). The location in Stuart is clean, warm, and incredibly welcoming. And in case you’re wondering, prices are affordable and the portions are generous.

Address: 1729 SE Indian Street, Stuart, FL 34997

Jan’s Place Restaurant

Delicious muffins, eggs benedict, pancakes, and french toast… Jan’s is the place to be for a hearty breakfast. It reminds me of the south where I went to college, adding yet another nostalgic element to Martin County altogether. But if you’re here for lunch, order the spuds (which are similar to a loaded baked potato), the cheddar potato with bacon bits, and the latkes.

Address: 1990 NE Jensen Beach Blvd. Jensen Beach, FL 34957

District Table and Bar

For a little change in scenery, this upscale restaurant serves the finest food prepared with the freshest ingredients. The restaurant’s constantly changing menu is based on the availability of produce depending on what the local farmers and fishermen bring in. Enjoy a high-end dinner and uniquely crafted drinks. If you are looking for atmosphere and service, District Table and Bar hit both marks!

Address: 4665 SE Dixie Highway, Stuart, FL 34997

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (11)

Where to shop in Stuart Florida

When it comes to Shopping in Stuart Florida, you can expect to find a mix of charming boutique shops, higher-end brands, and quirky finds.

Historic Downtown Stuart

With dozens of independently owned, quaint, and unique shops, you’ll find everything from souvenirs, decor, and fine art.

Coconut Bay Gifts and SeaShore Decor

Know a nautical naughty in your life (or maybe you are one yourself)? This beach-themed decor store has a great selection to “deck” out any beach home.(I’ll stop with these beach puns)

Address: 3 SW Osceola St, Stuart, FL 34994-2116


Let your inner hippie out at Earthtones. Or simply shop for that music lover, surfer chick, or dirty hippie in your life (these are all terms used by Earthtones themselves… you catch the vibe?)

Address: 43 SW Osceola St, Stuart, FLO 34994-2117

Where to stay in Martin County

Let’s be real. Your accommodation can make or break your entire trip. So what if you’ve had a delicious meal or two? Who cares if you’ve done so much in a day? All of that won’t matter if you don’t have a nice place to rest your head and to prepare for another day of adventure and food. Here are some of the best places to stay in Martin County.

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (12)

Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa

This was where I stayed and I can promise that the Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa is worth every penny. It’s the first new hotel in Jensen Beach in almost 20 years. The rooms feature energy-saving solutions, such as a keyholder that activates the lights only when your card key is in its designated spot.

Overlooking the Atlantic, this property is part of the Opal collection like the Sagamore resort in Lake George, New York. The property consists of 184 luxurious guest rooms and suites, pools, a beach bar, and a pool bar. Not to mention their Signature spa offered an exquisitely crafted experience.

Address: 3793 NE Ocean Blvd, Jensen Beach, FL 34957

Old Colorado Inn

This boutique inn was built in 1917. The Old Colorado Inn offers deluxe studios, spacious and luxurious suites, a charming cottage, and 4 spacious historic guest houses. It’s also a family-run business located in the heart of historic downtown Stuart, steps away from everything you need on a vacation, dining, and shopping.

Address: 211 Colorado Avenue, Stuart, FL 34994

Club Med Sandpiper Bay

If you’re looking for an all-inclusive spot on the water, stay at the Club Med Sandpiper Bay. Unlike most typical beach properties, the Club Med Sandpiper Bay is surrounded by wonderfully lush vegetation. Your all-inclusive stay also includes activities like tennis, water aerobics, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, sailing lessons, and jet skiing. There’s also an adult-only pool close to the river’s edge (it just might be the best view of the river, too).

Address: 4500 SE Pine Valley St, Port St. Lucie, FL 34952

Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (13)

Practical Information for Visiting Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida

The nearest airport to Stuart is Vero Beach (VRB) airport, 33 miles away. You can also fly into West Palm Beach/Palm Beach International Airport (PBI) which is located 45 minutes away. Or opt for Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International (FIL) which is 90 minutes away.

From the airport, you can either take a taxi (which costs around $60-75 from VRB) or rent a car.

The most popular time to visit is in the spring (March through May), but that also means more crowds and higher ticket prices. Summer (June through August) is the second busiest season for tourism in Stuart, and the Fall (September through November) brings humidity and strong wind. In my opinion, visiting in the winter is your best bet, as you get to enjoy fewer crowds, more reasonably priced hotels, and cooler weather ranging in the high 70s.

north america, usa, city guide, Florida

Trusted Travel Girl


Best Things to Do in Stuart, Jensen Beach, and Martin County, Florida — Trusted Travel Girl (2024)


Is Jensen Beach worth a visit? ›

Its coastline and waterways make Jensen Beach a top destination for fishing, boating, sailing, paddling, and scuba diving. Five-star restaurants, boutiques, specialty stores, shopping centers, and family-friendly attractions like the Children's Museum of the Treasure Coast mean there's something for everyone to enjoy.

Is Hutchinson Island worth visiting? ›

Time is easy to spend on Hutchinson Island – with the beach, eco-systems and habitats, fishing, watersports, golfing, and fascinating historic spots and museums. There are plenty of things to do in Hutchinson Island to keep everyone happy. Imagine a Florida beach where your own family is the biggest crowd you'll see.

What is Stuart, Florida known for? ›

Stuart is famed for Sail fishing and all other types of sport fishing, you can enjoy Ocean fishing, river and bay fishing, fresh water fishing. The North and South forks of the St. Lucie River are tropical wonderlands for cruises. Stuart has quaint older neighborhoods in the downtown area.

Is Stuart Florida a nice place? ›

Stuart is a with a population of 17,639. Stuart is in Martin County and is one of the best places to live in Florida. Living in Stuart offers residents an urban suburban mix feel and most residents own their homes. In Stuart there are a lot of restaurants, coffee shops, and parks.

What is the ethnicity of Jensen Beach Florida? ›

Jensen Beach, FL is home to a population of 12.6k people, from which 97.6% are citizens. As of 2022, 8.43% of Jensen Beach, FL residents were born outside of the country (1.06k people). In 2022, there were 15.5 times more White (Non-Hispanic) residents (11k people) in Jensen Beach, FL than any other race or ethnicity.

Is the water clear in Jensen Beach? ›

Kick off your visit with a trip to Jensen Beach Park, a beautiful stretch of coastline that offers pristine sandy shores, crystal-clear waters, and excellent swimming conditions.

Who owns the Big Mansion on Hutchinson Island? ›

Robert Eustace and his wife, Elsa, are the owners of the Hutchinson Island Mansion.

Is Hutchinson Island expensive? ›

Hutchinson Island, FL housing market

In May 2024, the median listing home price in Hutchinson Island, FL was $525K, trending up 5.8% year-over-year. The median listing home price per square foot was $371. The median home sold price was $478K.

Is all of Blind Creek Beach clothing optional? ›

Bathtub Beach in Stuart and Blind Creek Beach in Fort Pierce were named among 801 of the country's best places for skinny-dipping. Florida beaches took 21 spots on the list. Blind Creek Beach is the only clothing-optional and nude beach on the Treasure Coast.

What is the crime rate in Stuart Beach FL? ›

Roughly similar to the national average, our analysis shows that your chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Stuart is one in 589. NeighborhoodScout's analysis also reveals that Stuart's rate for property crime is 18 per one thousand population.

Is it expensive to live in Stuart FL? ›

According to the best places' cost of living indices, Stuart scored 99.5 while the national average is slightly higher at 100, and Florida's average cost of living is much higher at 103.1 (a lower score indicates a cheaper cost of living). To be specific, you can enjoy cheaper utilities and transportation costs.

Does Stuart, FL have a downtown? ›

The downtown area around the Lyric brims with eclectic shops, galleries and eateries – many with sidewalk seating. It's a downtown made for walking. Down the street from the Lyric is the Stuart Heritage Museum.

Is Stuart, Florida wealthy? ›

The per capita income in Stuart in 2018 was $41,029, which is upper middle income relative to Florida and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $164,116 for a family of four.

What is the ethnicity of Stuart Florida? ›

Stuart Demographics

White: 72.15% Black or African American: 14.45% Two or more races: 9.99%

Do hurricanes hit Stuart Florida? ›

Stuart has a extreme Wind Factor™ risk based on the projected likelihood and speed of hurricane, tornado, or severe storm winds impacting it. It is most at risk from hurricanes.

Does Jensen Beach have a downtown? ›

Jensen Beach is a quiet ocean and riverfront town with beautiful beaches, great fishing, and a quaint downtown with a small town pace. From the moment you enter the downtown area of Jensen Beach, the town's “Pineapple Capital of the World” heritage becomes strongly evident.

Does Jensen Beach have nightlife? ›

Nightlife on the Treasure Coast may as well be called nightdead because there really isn't any! That said, Stuart and Jensen Beach offer the closest thing to nightlife in the region; local restaurants serve as the centers of after-dark happenings. "Night" ends pretty early here, even on weekends.

How long is the Jensen Beach Causeway? ›

Florida State Road 732
State Road 732
Length1.898 mi (3.055 km)
West endCR 707 in Jensen Beach
East endSR A1A in Jensen Beach
17 more rows

Is Crystal beach worth it? ›

What really struck me was how CLEAN this beach was. We recently visited South Padre Island and the drive-on beach had an insane amount of trash, which was so sad. Even though we only visited for an afternoon, the $10 fee was totally worth it for us.


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