Hotels in Vero Beach, USA
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Vero Beach, Jewel of Florida’s Treasure Coast
A peaceful, coastal town with spectacular beaches and even better sunrises, Vero Beach has preserved its historic charm by carefully limiting development. While travellers will not find the glittering high rises of Miami or Orlando along its shores, or any building at all over four stories high, they will find plenty of natural wonders to explore, delicious fresh seafood, and a lively arts scene, complete with one of the country’s finest private museums and its biggest small town theatre.
Swim, surf, and search for treasure
The Treasure Coast of Florida offers 26 miles of pristine, sandy shoreline, and there are dozens of public access points in Vero Beach; all are quiet and uncrowded in comparison with the state’s more famous, touristy beaches, and yet there are many hotels within footsteps of the sand. Tracking Station Beachfront Park and Wabasso Beach are favoured by local surfers, while families love the wide open spaces, picnic facilities, and playgrounds of Jaycee Beach and Treasure Shores; the latter also offers dramatic sand dunes, while the former has lifeguards on duty during the day. Sexton Plaza Beach treats early birds to dramatic sunrises, while Seagrape Trail Beach is your best bet for finding all that glitters; many silver coins from the Capitana, a Spanish treasure fleet that sunk off the Florida coast in 1715, have been discovered here. Unlike the other beaches, Sebastian Inlet State Park requires an admission fee, but in exchange you will find some of the East Coast’s best surfing and fishing.
Birds, Boats, and Botanical Gardens
Moments from the country’s first national wildlife preserve, Vero Beach is also an ideal vacation destination for travellers who love exotic flora and fauna. The Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge spans over 5,400 acres; hikers can spot over 140 species of birds here, from Great White Herons and Osprey to Purple Sandpipers and Peregrine Falcons. Between the island and mainland Florida lies the Indian River Lagoon, an incredibly biodiverse ecosystem with more than 3,000 animal and plant species. Kayaking, guided paddleboard tours, and chartered fishing boats are all very popular ways to explore its wonders, while the nearby Indian River County Marshland is ideally suited to airboat expeditions. These flat-bottomed vessels sport an aircraft propeller in the stern and typically offer elevated seats, providing passengers with an excellent view of the lush lotus blossoms and toothy alligators. Travellers who prefer dry land should not miss the McKee Botanical Gardens, an 18-acre paradise with 10,000 native and tropical plants, including an extensive collection of waterlilies.
Fine arts and top-notch small town theatre
The country’s largest art museum created by private funds, the Vero Beach Museum of Art is home to nearly 900 pieces. The collection ranges from the early twentieth century to the present, and includes everything from paintings and photography to sculpture and film. The museum is a must-see on any visit to Vero Beach, though travellers looking to add to their own art collections might consider booking their hotels for the first Friday of the month, and joining the locals on the Gallery Stroll down 14th Avenue; in the early evening hours, the art galleries and private businesses between 19th and 23rd streets open their doors to exhibit new work. Florida’s Vero Beach is also home to the Riverside Theatre: “America’s largest small town professional theatre” offers nearly 300 performances on its two stages every year, ranging from lavish Broadway musicals to a distinguished lecturer series and a superb children’s theatre program. Young kids can even enjoy breakfast there with the stars of their favourite show!
Boutiques, bargains, and the “World’s Finest Citrus Fruit”
Not unlike its more famous neighbour, Palm Beach, Vero Beach offers an attractive, historic downtown with an enticing array of locally owned shops, all steps from the beach. Well-heeled shoppers also flock to the Village Shops on Route AlA. Here you will find exceptionally elegant men’s and women’s clothing stores, gift shops, and art galleries, as well as some of the town’s finest restaurants. However, thrifty travellers are not without shopping options: many bargains are to be had at the Vero Beach Outlets, just a few minutes outside town. And no one should leave Vero Beach without a bag full of Indian River County’s exceptionally fine citrus fruit. The Saturday Farmers Market is a charming spot to pick some up, but travellers can also go directly to two historic sources, Poinsettia Citrus and Peterson Grove, to stock up on oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and much more.