Surprise! South Florida's Hidden Beach

Want to know a secret? There's a State Park and beach in South Florida that no one seems to know about.

Beautiful surroundings, a gorgeous sun-splashed beach … that you might just have all to yourself.

Where is this secluded Florida park and beach? It's actually within easy reach!

Introducing …

… John D. MacArthur Beach State Park. It's a little-known gem north of Singer Island and south of Jupiter Beach on the Atlantic ocean.

This totally amazing Florida state park boasts a tropical dune trail and a beautiful beach. Urban sprawl has not reached here so the beach and the park is quiet most of the year. You might not even see anyone else!

The Park's Interesting Past

The beach has some interesting history, dating back when it was called Air Force Beach during World War II. What is now Palm Beach International airport was an Air Force base back then. Almost servicemen thread some pretty wild beach parties, so it was (unofficially) named Air Force Beach!

Some time later, John D. MacArthur bought the land, wanting to keep a pristine part of southern Florida safe. He donated the land in the 1970's and the park (named after him) publicly opened in 1989.

Barrier? What Barrier?

MacArthur Beach State Park is located on a barrier island, which is long and narrow, separating the mainland from the sea. Although condominiums and hotels have taken over many of Florida's beautiful barrier islands, not this one – it's still "au naturale"!

Be on the Lookout For …

… Sea turtles! Rare species of sea turtles are known to nest here, including the endangered loggerhead and the much rarer leatherback. You probably will not see the turtles themselves but you might see evidence that they have been around. If you'd really like to see the turtles, there are ranger-led walks in May and June. Make advanced reservations through the office – these tours are popular.

You might see some roseate spoonbills at the park. Huh? Roseate spoonbills are fascinating birds; their feathers are rose tinted ("flamingo pink") and the end of their bills are spoon shaped.

Birding tours are also occasionally available, for the ornithologically inclined.

Beaching It!

The most amazing single thing about this glorious Florida state park is that very few people come here. Possibly because there are loads of public beaches just to the north and the south, MacArthur Beach State Park is quiet. Serene. And you are likely to have the two miles of sandy beach all to yourself!

Swim the waters, snorkel the reef or even try one of the park's surfing clinics – the beach holds all kinds of possibilities!

Want to find out more about this hidden gem (and see photos) located in South Florida? Check out: