The beaches are connected to three city parks -- Spanish River, Red Reef and South Beach -- which include such amenities as playgrounds, grills and picnic tables. Palm Beach County runs a fourth park, South Inlet. Hit the beaches in the early morning and you'll feel as if you're on your own private island. The beaches are that isolated and serene.
- Florida Beach Guide Pictures: Boca Raton
Visiting Boca's beaches
Activities: Swimming, snorkeling, fishing, picnic areas, nature walks
Driving time: 46 minutes from Miami
Map: How to get to Boca Raton
Surf cam: Watch the waves, live!
Lodging: Hotels in Boca and south Palm Beach County
Eating: Restaurants in and around Boca
Weather: South Florida forecast and conditions
Web site: Beach information
- Musical Theater
- Tourism and Leisure
Red Reef Park is an ideal spot to teach a child to snorkel. Man-made limestone boulders create reefs as close as 10 feet off shore. Their curves and crevices are home to tropical fish, turtles, eels and stingrays. This 60-plus acre park has a mile of beachfront with surfers claiming the south end.
Kids get a feel for Florida's plants and animals when they visit Gumbo Limbo Environmental Complex, which is no boring museum. Located on 20 acres within Red Reef Park, this nature center is a good spot to glimpse endangered or rare species, including manatees and brown pelicans. The center also features a butterfly garden and a four-story observation tower. Be sure to catch the live feedings at the marine aquariums stocked with sharks, sea turtles and lobsters.
Nonresidents pay a premium for park admittance, which is how most visitors get to the city's public beaches. By going early, you'll find free, on-the-street parking near Spanish River and South Beach parks. Depending on which parking space you grab, it's just a block or two to the ocean.
Interstate I-95 cuts through Boca Raton so plenty of lodging is available along this corridor in addition to chain hotels, including Best Western, Hilton, Holiday Inn and Marriott, within the city limits.