The Town of Palm Beach is the easternmost town in Florida, located on an 18-mile (29 km) long barrier island between Lake Worth Lagoon on the west and the Atlantic Ocean on the east. At no point is the island wider than three-quarters of a mile (1.2 km), and in places it is only 500 feet (150 m). The Intracoastal Waterway separates it from the neighboring West Palm Beach and Lake Worth.
In 2018 Palm Beach was ranked the 27th wealthiest place in the United States
The wreck of the Providencia is credited with giving Palm Beach its famous name. The Providencia was traveling from Havana to Spain with a cargo of coconuts harvested in Trinidad, when the ship wrecked near Palm Beach. Many of the coconut were planted along the coast and a grove of palm trees soon grew on what was later named Palm Beach. Today the tallest coconut palms in the United States can be found along this coast.
The Lake Worth portion of the waterway, filled with mega-yachts, was a fresh water lake until Henry Flagler opened it to the ocean. Flagler was the railroad tycoon who opened Florida all the way to the Keys and his Lake Worth mansion, now a museum, is open for tours.
The Story of Mobility in America
Maritime Museums in Historic Towns
The Palm Beach Maritime Museum opened in 1999 with four facilities, following a lengthy restoration and construction program:
the U.S. Coast Guard Station Boathouse and President Kennedy command post and bomb shelter on Peanut Island;
the marine science field office and dock on the Intracoastal Waterway;
an educational center and ferry dock at Currie Park in West Palm Beach;
the Palm Beach Maritime Academy K-8 Charter School on S. Dixie Hwy. in West Palm Beach.
John F. Kennedy’s Bunker was constructed by the SeaBees under the direction of the Secret Service. Peanut Island is very near the Kennedy Compound in Palm Beach and the bunker was a nuclear war contingency facility during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
An innovative Virtual Port includes automated data collection from in situ sensors – salinity, turbidity, pH, tides, current – as well as real-time television both above and underwater.
The Palm Beach Maritime Academy is a Charter School, operated by the Palm Beach Maritime Museum that meets the guidelines for the School District of Palm Beach County, with a focus on maritime studies: science, technology and history.
Connect for Travel to Palm Beach Florida