• Dawn Sabato

Martin County Offers Visitors a Diverse Assortment of Self-Guided Tours

STUART, Fla. (August 17, 2020) – Some travelers prefer to follow a step-by-step itinerary, while others like to wing it without any plans set in stone. In Martin County, we allow for visitors to do both. While we have plenty of operators who offer guided experiences, we also offer multiple self-guided tours for people looking to explore Martin County at their own pace. Here are a few of our favorites.

Sip Your Way through the Treasure Coast Wine & Ale Trail

Feeling thirsty? Then don't miss out on the Treasure Coast Wine & Ale Trail! Spanning across Indian River, St. Lucie and Martin counties, the ever-growing collection currently includes 10 craft breweries, one winery, and even a cidery. Some of the most well-known players include Islamorada Beer Company in Fort Pierce, Walking Tree Brewery in Vero Beach, and Ocean Republic Brewing in Stuart (which is also the newest addition to the trail). Thirsty tourists can download the trail map online and then collect stamps as they pay a visit to each location in whichever order they choose. After all the stamps have been collected, they can turn in the completed map at any of the breweries and get a limited edition prize. The trail is only available to participants at least 21 years old, and remember to always drink responsibly.

Follow Martin County's Art in Public Places Tour

Martin County is best known for our pristine, uncrowded beaches, but we also have a creative side marked by gorgeous artwork, dazzling sculptures, and impressive mural pieces. In 1997, Martin County established a public art program that included ongoing funding for new artworks for public appreciation. In 2017, the Martin County Board of County Commissioners appointed the Community Redevelopment Agency Board members as the Public Art Advisory Committee (PAAC). As of September 2018, sixteen sculptures, mobiles, stained glass windows, murals, mosaics, benches and photographs are now on display. To see some of the pieces with your own eyes, you can follow the Art in Public Places hotspots that are scattered throughout our vibrant communities. Let your imagination run wild as you drive from place to place taking in these glorious masterpieces. Some of the stops along the way include the Sea Life Murals of Sailfish Splash Waterpark in Stuart; the Poet Sculpture at the Hoke Library in Jensen Beach; and the Avian Muse Mobile on display at the Morgade Library in Port Salerno.

Brush Up on Martin County's Rich Historic Legacy

Incorporated on August 5, 1925, and named after Governor John W. Martin, Martin County is comprised of many uniquely charming small towns. Take a journey back in time and visit the cultural and historic landmarks that make Martin County a one-of-a-kind destination. Visitors can set off on a self-guided Historic Preservation tour to explore all of the special sites. Some of the most popular tourist attractions include the House of Refuge on Hutchinson Island; Captain Henry Sewall's House in Jensen Beach; and the Historic Seminole Inn of Indiantown.

Take a Self-Guided Paddle Tour in Martin County Waters

Martin County is home to a variety of tour operators that specialize in water-based activities, like kayaking, surfing, paddle boarding, and more. Examples include Zeke's Surf, Skate, & Paddle Sports; Ohana Surf Shop; Stuart Paddle Tours; Native Water Sports; and South River Outfitters. While they all offer guided excursions, visitors also have the option to depart on a self-guided adventure. Stop by Liquid Aloha Paddle Co. in Port Salerno to rent a paddleboard and head into Manatee Pocket. You can also brush up on your paddle skills with a private lesson before you disembark.

Try to Find All of the Hobe Sound Murals

Hobe Sound is more than just a beautiful South Florida beach town. It's a tight-knit community full of creativity and local culture. There is no better proof of Hobe Sound's artistic flair than the stunning murals found scattered throughout the city. The goal of the Hobe Sound Murals Project is to beautify specific locations, enhance civic pride, encourage positive networking, and plant seeds for future cultural accomplishments. Since 2009, this “paint-the-town” initiative, (spearheaded by professional artist Nadia Utto) has provided creative opportunities for over 40 skilled regional artisans along with approximately 100 individual residents and visitors. New additions are regularly added to the ever-growing collection, but there are currently more than 25 murals. Visitors can stop by the Chamber of Commerce for a Mural Tour Map and spend the day on a self-guided tour walking, biking or driving around town trying to spot each of these lovely landmarks. Consider it a real-life scavenger hunt throughout the vibrant Hobe Sound community. For the directionally challenged, there's also an option for participants to join a guided tour.

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