Warm, dry days with temperatures around 75 degrees make winter the most enjoyable time to visit the Palm Beaches. Activities and events pack the winter calendar, offering so much to do in this winter playground that encompasses 39 cities and towns along 47 miles of beach from Boca Raton north to Jupiter. Not to mention, some good deals for travel now through the holidays.
• There's more to West Palm Beach Food Tours than tasting top dishes at half a dozen locally owned restaurants and meeting the chefs. It's an off-the-beaten-path walking tour, too. Guides tell stories, show off street art and nearly hidden gardens. Prices start at $65 per person. Receive $5 off beginning Dec. 1 through March 31 with discount code "winter."
• Simply want to walk and learn? For $10, guests will learn about the influence of fashion and architecture on this historical tour of Worth Avenue with Palm Beach historian Rick Rose, who guides tours every Wed. at 11 a.m. from December through April.
Rick Rose guides walking tours of Worth Avenue from November through April. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dirk Rheker
• Winter is the best time to see manatees, as it's the time when they migrate to warm water. Best bets are Nov. 15 through Mar. 31 at Manatee Lagoon, a Florida Power & Light Eco-Discovery Center in Lake Worth in West Palm Beach. Visitors are almost guaranteed to see "sea cows" and can learn more about them in the 16,000-square-foot educational attraction. At the Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society, the two-toed sloth is a fan favorite and one of the animals that visitors can sign up for an up-close experience (starting at $35, in addition to $19.95 zoo admission).
• Winter is also the best time to practice yoga outdoors. All ages and levels are invited to join a gentle yoga class Mondays on the deck at the Jupiter Lighthouse, in the shade of the banyan tree overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway. Check the calendar since the class is timed to sunset. Fee is by donation and participants need to bring their own mat.
• From Nov. 26 to Dec. 2, the Canvas Outdoor Museum Show will be showcasing more than 20 world-renowned and emerging street artists from around the globe as they turn the city into an artistic canvas with street murals and art installations. Get the low-down on the packed schedule by downloading the official Canvas Outdoor Museum Show app.
• Holiday-related events are plentiful from Thanksgiving through New Year's Eve and include everything from tree lightings to boat parades. Some standouts are Carols by Candlelight in Delray, the 35-foot-tall holiday tree sculpted from sand in West Palm Beach and riding the Polar Express in Boca Raton. Find all of the events and a list of select hotel discounts here.
Sandi, the 35-foot tall white-sand Christmas tree, is the center of holiday activities in West Palm Beach. Photo Credit: Courtesy of the Palm Beaches
• Swank Table and Swank Farm Brunch are a unique series of al fresco dinners and Sunday brunches that take place on Swank Specialty Produce's farm in Loxahatchee from Nov. 26 through May 13. Calling on the best ingredients from the state's farmers, ranchers, artisanal producers, microbrewers, distillers and organic wine makers, chefs produce multicourse dinners of the highest quality underneath the hand-built outdoor pole barn, immaculately transformed with beautiful table settings and decor. Each dinner is helmed by local and nationally honored chefs who create multicourse prix-fixe meals; brunch is a more casual, affordable and family-friendly experience. Local bands and brewers are part of all events, and a portion of the proceeds from each dinner will benefit a local charity. Details and tickets at www.swankspecialtyproduce.com/swank-table-dinners/.
• The Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival is Dec. 14 to 17 and features some of the nation's most notable chefs in the destination's best restaurants and venues. The lineup really is a who's who in the culinary world. Tickets are still available for some events.
• The FTI Winter Equestrian Festival at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington runs Jan. 10 through April 1 and is billed as the largest and longest-running horse show in the world.
• The 12th annual Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival returns on Jan. 26 and 27. In addition to the main festival, there are two alternative events planned: Field of Beers on Jan. 26, a ticketed event that pairs hyperlocal food and beer, and Craftoberfest on Jan. 27, which is free and pet- and family friendly and features German food and music and plenty of local brews.
• Some 50,000 tennis fans are expected to flock to Delray for the 26th annual Delray Beach Open, Feb. 16 to 25. The ATP Tour event is expected to draw some of the top players in the world, including Milos Raonic, Juan Martin del Potro, Jack Sock and Florida's own Bryan Brothers. Local musicians and artists, area food favorites, Ladies Day Luncheons and Kidz Day activities, parties and VIP happenings are also on tap.
• The PGA Tour stops by for its annual visit to the PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens for the Honda Classic, Feb. 19 to 25.
• More than 600 chalk artists converge on downtown Lake Worth to transform the streets and walls into a city-size canvas during the Lake Worth Street Painting Festival, Feb. 24 and 25.
• Four Major League Baseball teams make the Palm Beaches their home for spring training in March. In Jupiter, Roger Dean Stadium hosts both the St. Louis Cardinals and the Miami Marlins, while in West Palm Beach, the Washington Nationals and the world champion Houston Astros will inhabit the recently opened Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Information and tickets are available at www.rogerdeanstadium.com and www.ballparkpalmbeaches.com.
• The Palm Beach International Boat Show, scheduled for March 22 to 25 on the waterfront in downtown Palm Beach, features hundreds of boats, ranging from small tenders to super yachts.
For a complete listing of winter events, go to https://www.thepalmbeaches.com/events.