Boca Raton Travel Guide

USA  #9 in Best Florida Beaches

Free Things To Do in Boca Raton

If you have extra time, Sugar Sand Park is worthwhile.
  • #1
    Things to do in Boca Raton
    View all Photos
    #1 in Boca Raton
    Parks and Gardens, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Parks and Gardens, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    One of the landmarks in Boca Raton and the primary community gathering place, Mizner Park was designed by architect Addison Mizner and reflects his love of Mediterranean architecture. This centrally located park is home to the Boca Raton Museum of Art, an outdoor amphitheater, a movie theater complex, and a wide variety of high-end department stores, designer boutiques and eateries.

    Recent visitors loved the tropical garden vibe of this multiuse entertainment area, saying it's a "must-see" and perfect for strolling. Meanwhile, locals appreciate that parking and select events (such as summer concerts) are free, noting that it's a highlight for out-of-towners.

  • #2
    Gumbo Limbo Nature Center
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    #2 in Boca Raton
    Recreation, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Recreation, Sightseeing, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    This nature center, located at the north end of the boardwalk in Red Reef Park, offers a unique look at the wildlife and natural marine environment of the region. A variety of programs led by naturalists are available for both children and adults, including the popular turtle walk and hatchling release program. Visitors can watch aquarium feedings, hike nature trails or catch a glimpse of local wildlife and indigenous plants on the scenic boardwalk. Florida Atlantic University also operates a sea turtle research and rehabilitation facility here.

    Recent visitors – many of them regulars – loved the scenic boardwalk, the aquarium, the beach area and the nature trails, saying this park offers a great way for kids to connect with native Florida marine life. Some recommended visiting the large tanks when a feeding is taking place, while others enjoyed kayaking through the mangroves. Many recent guests advised visiting during the cooler months, as most of the attractions are outdoors and not as enjoyable during the hot and humid summer season. 

  • #3
    Sugar Sand Park
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    #3 in Boca Raton
    Parks and Gardens, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Parks and Gardens, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    The 132-acre Sugar Sand Park is a family favorite, featuring an array of amenities for both children and adults. Little ones can burn off some energy at the playground, water park, carousel or interactive Children's Science Explorium, while adults enjoy the athletic courts, full gym and nature trails. The entire family will enjoy shows at the Willow Theatre and extensive picnic facilities. 

    Recent visitors to Sugar Sand Park said it's "phenomenal" for all ages, with some even calling it the best park in Boca Raton. Travelers loved the water park, sand box and carousel for young children and the hands-on science center and shows at the theater for older kids and teens. 

  • #4
    Red Reef Park
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    #4 in Boca Raton
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    The oceanfront Red Reef Park occupies 67 acres on one of Florida's most scenic highways, State Road A1A. In addition to swimming, snorkeling and surf fishing, the park also offers the Red Reef Executive Golf Course and the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, as well as extensive picnic facilities.

    Almost all reviewers agreed the easy swim to the reef, great snorkeling and beautiful shoreline are worth the trip, calling Red Reef "one of the best kept secrets" in Boca Raton. Those traveling with kids appreciated that youngsters can view colorful parrotfish near the shore or search for sharks' teeth. Another highlight for parents: Lifeguards patrol the beach year-round from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • #5
    Spanish River Park
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    #5 in Boca Raton
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Swimming/Pools, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Swimming/Pools, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Spanish River Park, also known as "Boca Raton's Lagoon," is named for a stream that once flowed along the western side of the park. The river is now considered to part of the Intracoastal Waterway. Although you can't swim in the lagoon or waterway, there is access to the Atlantic beach and lifeguards are on duty during the day. The park also offers several nature trails and a picnic area with grills, tables and restrooms. Fishing is also permitted with a license.

    Recent visitors loved the picnic areas, playground, scenic nature trails and the clean beach, accessible by a tunnel under Highway A1A. Many reviewers commented on the lack of crowds and unspoiled natural beauty.

  • #6
    South Inlet Park
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    #6 in Boca Raton
    Beaches, Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Beaches, Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    South Inlet Park is an off-the-beaten-path local favorite. The quiet inlet is rarely crowded and offers peaceful fishing from the shore or jetty, a lovely beach, restrooms and outdoor showers, as well as a small picnic area.

    Recent travelers called it a great little secret place for fishing, swimming and snorkeling and said it's a beautiful spot to watch the sunset. Many preferred this stretch of sand to their hotel pool thanks to the peaceful atmosphere.

  • #9
    Town Center at Boca Raton
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    #9 in Boca Raton
    Shopping, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Shopping, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    The Town Center at Boca Raton is a fashionista's paradise, offering a mix of designer boutiques and upscale department stores, including Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's. Browse the glittering offerings at Tiffany & Co. and Cartier or take a shopping break at one of several on-site restaurants.

    While recent visitors touted the array of options at the food court and the fun of window-shopping in the high-end designer stores, many noted this mall is not for those on a budget. People who love to shop, on the other hand, loved the sheer volume of designer merchandise and dining outlets.

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