Located in the heart of Florida’s Treasure Coast, St. Lucie County has everything you need to get away from it all. With endless activities including fishing, golfing, hiking, canoeing, horseback riding, watching professional baseball, diving, boating or just plain relaxing on the beach, St. Lucie County – the county seat is Fort Pierce – is the perfect getaway.
Surrounded on one side by cattle ranches and citrus groves and 21 miles of pristine beaches on the other, St. Lucie County is known as the Treasure Coast due to the wealth of gold and silver that was buried offshore after a 1715 hurricane sent 11 Spanish ships to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. Artificial and natural reefs present perfect environments for lobstering, treasure hunting and wreck diving. The nearby Gulf Stream, as well as the brackish waters of the Indian River Lagoon, house trophy-size catches including sailfish, snapper, kingfish, wahoo, dolphin, snook and more.
Just minutes away from the coastline, vacationers can enjoy the links on more than a dozen area golf courses, including the PGA Village – home to 54 holes of award-winning fairways and greens designed by Pete Dye and Tom Fazio. Golfers of all abilities will be able to expand or discover their game with the new PGA Learning/Education Center – a one-of-a-kind facility dedicated to teaching the game’s techniques.
History buffs will revel in the refurbished architecture of Downtown Fort Pierce, and historical facts housed inside the St. Lucie County Historical Museum, which includes exhibits of Spanish treasure, a Seminole Indian encampment and turn-of-the-century photographs. Located on the same beach where the first U.S. Navy Frogmen prepared for the beaches of Normandy in 1943 is The Navy SEAL (Frogmen) Museum, which serves as a tribute to the Navy’s underwater demolition teams of World War II and the present Navy Sea, Air and Land teams (SEALS). The museum displays hundreds of artifacts from Navy combat missions, along with historical publications, photographs and videos.
Those looking for an educational vacation can bring the family to several learning centers in St. Lucie County. Oxbow Eco-Center provides educational hiking and canoe tours, while the Manatee Observation & Education Center gives visitors a chance to discover the Florida Manatee – an endangered species disappearing from Florida’s waters. The Smithsonian Marine Ecosystem Exhibit is home to a 3,300-gallon living Caribbean Coral Reef exhibit with hundreds of plants and fish along with five other displays featuring mangrove and sea grass communities similar to those in the Indian River Lagoon. For those wanting to reach for the stars, don’t miss the Hallstrom Planetarium at Indian River Community College.
In addition to golf, sports enthusiasts can enjoy spring and summer baseball in Port St. Lucie at the newly renovated Tradition Field – home of the New York Mets and St. Lucie Mets. For an even faster game, Fort Pierce features one of the few remaining Jai-Alai centers in the country with live action January through April.
St. Lucie County’s Savannas State Preserve
One of the most unique wilderness spots in Florida is St. Lucie County’s Savannas State Preserve – the last freshwater lagoon system existing in the state. The Savannas features secluded freshwater fishing, hiking, biking, bird watching, camping and horseback riding. There are also more than 6,000 acres through the county’s Environmental Resource Division featuring miles of trails, boardwalks and observation towers. St. Lucie County is one of the few places in Florida that offers horseback riding along the Atlantic on the beaches of Hutchinson Island.
Historic downtown Fort Pierce
Historic downtown Fort Pierce supplies shoppers with novelty stores and fine art galleries, including the A.E. “Bean” Backus Museum & Gallery. The northern part of St. Lucie County also features several distinctive antique shops for those looking for ancient treasure on dry land.
All attractions are conveniently located near affordable accommodations in Fort Pierce, Port St. Lucie and Hutchinson Island Beaches.
St. Lucie County is serviced by scheduled flights into Palm Beach International Airport to the south and Melbourne International Airport to the north as well as general aviation flights into St. Lucie County International Airport in Fort Pierce. Less than a 90-minute drive from Central Florida’s main attractions (Disney, Universal, Sea World and Kennedy Space Center), St. Lucie County is off of both Interstate 95 and the Florida Turnpike.