Peanut Island and Riviera Beach

Since I had to work on Saturday, I decided to stay local and visit a place I’ve only been to once but always wanted to go back to. So Sunday morning, I headed 40 minutes up the road to Riveria Beach, where I took a ferry across from the marina to Peanut Island. I found out that a couple pirate ships were docked by the island and a tour was being offered to go aboard each. This weekend also happened to be the Peanut Island Pirate Fest. After arriving on the island, I did the tour of the HMS Bounty, which is a replica of a 1787 pirate ship that was built in 1961 for Marlon Brando’s version of the classic movie Mutiny On The Bounty. It has been featured in many other movies since, including Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. The immaculate ship was a true marvel to see and explore and the prirate-dressed crew made the experience that much cooler. I next went aboard the Privateer Lynx, another replica of a 1812 pirate ship. Built in 2001, this smaller ship wasn’t as flashy as the Bounty but was still worth checking out.

I then went for a nice walk on the paved path around the island, checking out the various docks and the campground. And speaking of camping, it’s a great place to camp out on the beach, as evidenced by the several tents pitched along the shoreline. I also went on the tour of the President John F. Kennedy Bunker. Built in 1961 during the Cold War, it is rumored that he once brought Marilyn Monroe here. As I got ready to board the ferry back to the mainland, I got treated to a pirate gun-shooting exhibition and some yo-ho-ho pirate hip-hop from Captain Dan & the Scurvy Crew…arghhh!

My next stop was just up the road in North Palm Beach at John D. MacArthur Beach State Park, which was my second time there too. Along with some nice hiking trails and an estuary bridge that takes you over to the beach, they also have the William T. Kirby Nature Center with several aquariums, including one with a small green sea turtle. A bluegrass band entertained the crowd just outside the center, while a few people ventured off in kayaks. It was tempting to rent one, but the cool and breezy conditions and cloudy skies wouldn’t have made for the best kayaking experience. So I passed this time but I’m sure I’ll go back one day to explore more of the park by water. I know I’ll definitely go back to Peanut Island again.

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