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Peanut Island Florida Snorkeling: West Palm’s Secret Snorkeling Spot

peanut island florida snorkeling

Planning a Peanut Island Florida Snorkeling Trip? We don’t blame you! Peanut Island, Florida, offers a remarkable snorkeling experience for both beginners and experienced snorkelers alike. Known for its rich marine life, rocky shoreline, and crystal clear waters, this gem of a location entices visitors from all over the world to explore its underwater world.

As a long-time Florida resident and snorkeler, I can personally vouch for the captivating beauty found beneath the waves surrounding Peanut Island. The enchanting lagoon on the southeast tip provides a safe, shallow-water snorkeling environment for all ages, while the artificial reef on the east side attracts a diverse array of marine life, such as crabs, lobsters, shrimps, sea urchins, sponges, and various coral species.

No matter your skill level, Peanut Island’s inviting waters, and colorful residents make for an unforgettable underwater adventure. As you prepare to dive in, remember that you’re not just exploring a fascinating ecosystem — you’re also experiencing firsthand the magic of Florida’s stunning underwater world.

About Peanut Island

Located in the heart of Palm Beach County, Peanut Island is an 80-acre tropical paradise perfect for a day of snorkeling and outdoor activities. With its clear waters and unique marine life, you’ll find it hard to resist the allure of exploring its underwater treasures.

On the island, you’ll have the opportunity to snorkel in two main locations: the beach and the reef, as well as the lagoon on the southeast tip. The lagoon offers an easy and safe shallow-water snorkeling experience for both kids and adults. If you head over to the rocky breakwaters on the east side of Peanut Island, you’ll find an artificial reef teeming with marine life such as crabs, lobsters, shrimp, sea urchins, and various coral species.

Besides snorkeling, Peanut Island offers a range of activities for you to enjoy. You can kayak, fish, and take advantage of both guarded and unguarded swimming spots around the island. Plus, there are picnic areas and trails where you can relax and take in the beautiful scenery once you’re done snorkeling.

Remember that Peanut Island is open from 7 am to 7 pm, allowing you plenty of time to indulge in all the fun activities it has to offer. If you aim to beat the crowds and arrive early, you’ll have the chance to enjoy the stunning beaches and clear waters all to yourself.

Getting to Peanut Island

While planning your Peanut Island snorkeling adventure, it’s important to know how you can reach the island. In this section, you’ll find the necessary information to help you decide on the best method for your trip, so you can arrive swiftly and ready to explore.

Shuttle Boat

Your first option is the Peanut Island Shuttle, which departs from the Riviera Beach Marina. The shuttle boat fares are as follows (subject to change):

  • Adults: $18 round trip
  • Children: $9 round trip (up to 9 years old)
  • Large wagons: $5

The boat ride to Peanut Island takes about 10 minutes, and shuttles run daily from 10 am to 5 pm, departing every 25 minutes. Enjoy the scenic views and take some pictures as you make your way to the island.

Water Taxi

Another convenient option is the Peanut Island Water Taxi, which is co-located at Sailfish Marina on the east side of the Intracoastal. Water taxi rates are $15 round trip for adults, and children under 6 pay $6. Passengers often appreciate the competitive prices and ease of travel.

Sailfish Marina

If you prefer more privacy during your journey, Sailfish Marina also offers private charters. These boats can accommodate up to 48 passengers and are available for corporate events, weddings, and other special occasions. Make sure to inquire well in advance to secure your preferred dates.

With these transportation options at your disposal, you’ll have no trouble reaching Peanut Island and starting your exciting snorkeling adventure. So pack your gear, and get ready to explore the beautiful marine life that awaits you.

Peanut Island Florida Snorkeling

peanut island florida snorkeling

Now let’s get to the snorkeling! If you’re looking for an unforgettable underwater adventure, then Peanut Island snorkeling in Florida should be at the top of your list. This beautiful island offers numerous snorkeling opportunities for all skill levels in the Snorkeling Lagoon, Artificial Reef, and abundant Marine Life.

Snorkeling Lagoon

The Peanut Island snorkeling lagoon, located on the southeast tip of the island, is perfect for beginners and experienced snorkelers alike. With its shallow waters and calm conditions, you can explore the underwater world without any concerns. Make sure to bring your snorkel gear, and prepare for an easy and enjoyable snorkeling experience suitable for both kids and adults.

Artificial Reef

Feeling a little more adventurous? The rock breakwaters on the east side of Peanut Island form an artificial reef that attracts a wide variety of marine life. Here, you can observe an underwater ecosystem teeming with activity. Grab your snorkel gear and dive into this captivating environment to see this thriving underwater community up close.

Marine Life

Your Peanut Island snorkeling adventure will expose you to an array of fascinating marine creatures. As you explore the underwater world, you can expect to see crabs, lobsters, shrimps, sea urchins, and sponges, among many other species. Keep an eye out for these unique creatures and admire their colorful presence amongst the coral reefs.

Fish Species

You’ll be delighted by the diverse and colorful fish species that call Peanut Island their home. During your snorkeling adventure, look out for barracuda, parrotfish, rays, and even jellyfish. Don’t forget your underwater camera so you can capture these stunning creatures and treasure your memories of Peanut Island snorkeling for years to come.

So, gear up for a fascinating underwater adventure and immerse yourself in the wonders of Peanut Island snorkeling. The Snorkeling Lagoon, Artificial Reef, and a plethora of marine life await your discovery. Have fun and explore the vibrant and captivating underwater world off of Florida’s beautiful coast.

Camping and Picnic at Peanut Island

peanut island florida camping

If you’re looking for a fantastic camping and picnic experience, look no further than Peanut Island, Florida. This beautiful island offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor fun, including snorkeling, kayaking, paddleboarding, and fishing.


At Peanut Island Park, you’ll find 17 tropically landscaped campsites perfect for your stay. Each campsite includes:

  • A tent pad
  • A grill
  • A picnic table

Camping at Peanut Island is available by reservation only, so make sure to book in advance. The campsites are $28 per night and have a maximum occupancy of six people. Campers are allowed to stay up to three nights, with a limit of one three-night stay every two months.

Picnic Areas

Whether camping or just spending a day at the beach, you can take advantage of the numerous picnic areas available on the island. Feel free to set up a tarp, blanket, or chairs in one of the provided areas and enjoy your meal surrounded by lush greenery and warm sand.

Amenities and Facilities

While enjoying your stay at Peanut Island, you’ll have access to a variety of amenities and facilities that will make your time more enjoyable, including:

  • Restrooms with hot indoor showers
  • A picnic pavilion
  • A large fire ring
  • Kayak and paddleboard rentals

If you’re interested in snorkeling, you can rent snorkel gear for about $20 a day. Additionally, shuttle boat services to and from Peanut Island cost $18 for adults and $9 for children, up to nine years of age.

Remember, adhering to the park’s policies, including restrictions on alcohol, will help ensure a pleasant experience for you and other visitors.

Other Outdoor Activities at Peanut Island

peanut island kayaking

Besides snorkeling, Peanut Island offers a variety of outdoor activities for you to enjoy during your visit. In this section, we’ll explore kayaking and paddle boarding, fishing, walking paths, and boardwalks, as well as beaches and swimming opportunities.

Kayaking and Paddle Boarding

If you’re interested in exploring the island from the water, kayaking and paddle boarding are excellent options. You can rent a kayak or paddle board near the shuttle boat area, and experience the beauty of the clear waters surrounding Lake Worth Lagoon. Keep an eye out for local marine life, such as manatees and other fish species, as you paddle through the calm inlet.


For fishing enthusiasts, Peanut Island offers great opportunities to cast a line. Designated fishing areas can be found along the pier, providing access to the Intracoastal Waterway’s abundant fish population. Remember to bring your own fishing equipment and to follow local fishing regulations during your visit.

Walking Paths and Boardwalk

Exploring the island by foot is a great way to soak in the stunning natural beauty. Meander along the well-maintained walking paths and boardwalks that traverse the island, offering picturesque views of the surrounding waters and the West Palm Beach skyline. You might even catch a glimpse of a spectacular sunset during your walk.

Beaches and Swimming

Of course, no visit to Peanut Island would be complete without spending time on the beautiful sandy beaches. There are both guarded and unguarded swimming spots for you and your family to enjoy. The beaches are equipped with amenities such as showers, making it convenient to rinse off after a refreshing swim in the turquoise waters.

Peanut Island Park

Peanut Island, located in West Palm Beach, Florida, is an idyllic destination for snorkeling enthusiasts like you. The park is full of naturally picturesque sites and fascinating man-made structures.

Kennedy Bunker

Housing a fascinating slice of history, the Kennedy Bunker on Peanut Island is a must-visit for those interested in American politics. This bunker was built as a secret fallout shelter for President John F. Kennedy during the Cold War era. Exploring this historic site will surely add a unique touch to your snorkeling trip.

Conservation and Environment Guidelines

While enjoying your snorkeling adventure at Peanut Island Park, it’s important to remember a few conservation guidelines. First, be cautious not to disturb the marine life or its habitat. In addition, Peanut Island has a strict no-alcohol policy that should be respected.

  • Avoid touching or stepping on coral reefs.
  • Keep a safe distance from marine life.
  • Do not feed fish or other sea creatures.
  • Avoid using sunscreen with harmful chemicals.
  • Dispose of trash responsibly.

By following these simple guidelines, you’ll be doing your part to preserve Peanut Island’s pristine environment for future generations to enjoy.

Man-made History

Peanut Island’s noteworthy history is due, in part, to the extensive dredging that took place in the early 1900s, which ultimately shaped the island into its current 80-acre form. A significant aspect of the island’s development is its boardwalk, which offers a relaxing way for visitors like you to experience the island’s breathtaking views and observe the local wildlife.

The island has also undergone an extensive landscaping process, creating an aesthetically pleasing environment where you can fully immerse yourself in the pristine beauty that the park has to offer.

Local Tips and Recommendations

peanut island florida snorkeling tips

Here are a few local tips to keep in mind:

  • When you’re planning to snorkel at Peanut Island, Florida, it’s best to time your adventure around high tide. Visit the island one hour before or after high tide to experience optimal snorkeling conditions.
  • While some areas of the beach are sandy, you might come across a few rocks near the shore. To prevent any injuries, it’s a good idea to wear water shoes while snorkeling, especially if you plan to explore the artificial reef on the east side, which is created by rock breakwaters.
  • Be prepared to encounter a fantastic variety of marine life around the rock breakwaters, including crabs, lobsters, sea urchins, and coral species. Since the area can be crowded during peak seasons, arriving early in the day will provide you with more space to explore.
  • When snorkeling at Peanut Island, be mindful of your surroundings as the currents can occasionally become strong. Wearing a float vest and being a confident swimmer is essential, especially near the pier area. Keep an eye out for exciting marine residents like tropical fish, sea turtles, and manatees.
  • Remember to pack essentials like sunscreen and water to keep yourself hydrated during your underwater adventure. If you plan to stay for a picnic, note that the lovely picnic shelters are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Make the most of your day at Peanut Island and enjoy the beauty of Florida’s marine life!

How to get to Peanut Island?

Peanut Island is located near the Port of Palm Beach in Florida. The easiest way to get to Peanut Island is by boat. There are several water taxi services and boat rental options available in the nearby Riviera Beach Marina and other surrounding marinas. If you have your own boat, there are designated anchorage areas around the island. Remember to check the local tide schedules and weather conditions before embarking.

What to do on Peanut Island?

Peanut Island offers a range of activities for visitors:

Snorkeling: The clear waters around Peanut Island are perfect for snorkeling, where you can explore a variety of marine life.

Swimming: The island has designated swimming areas with calm and clear waters.

Camping: There are camping sites available for those who want to spend the night, but make sure to make a reservation in advance.

Historical Sites: One of the interesting places to visit on the island is the Palm Beach Maritime Museum and the John F. Kennedy Bunker, which was a presidential fallout shelter during the Cold War.

Walking Trails: The island has a walking path that takes you around its perimeter, providing beautiful views of the surrounding waters and the West Palm Beach skyline.

Picnicking: There are picnic areas with grills, making it a great spot for a family outing.

Bird Watching: The island is home to various bird species, making it a favorite spot for bird enthusiasts.

Recap: Peanut Island Florida Snorkeling

If you haven’t visited Peanut Island yet, it’s time to plan your snorkeling adventure. This unique spot in West Palm Beach, Florida, not only offers an abundance of marine life to explore but also provides activities for the whole family.

When snorkeling on Peanut Island, you’ll have the chance to discover South Florida’s vibrant underwater world. The shoreline’s rocky nature and inlet location make it a magnet for a variety of fish and creatures. You can expect to come across colorful species such as sergeant majors, parrot fish, and angel fish, along with occasional sightings of rays, manatees, and small sharks.

So the next time you’re in Florida, treat yourself to a memorable snorkeling trip at Peanut Island. It’s an experience you’ll treasure for years to come.

You might also enjoy these articles about snorkeling too!

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