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Key Info

13180 N. Highway A1A

Price & Hours

$2 for visitors ages 6 and older; free for children 5 and younger
10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily

Details

Museums Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 4.5Value
  • 3.5Facilities
  • 3.5Atmosphere

At first glance, Vero Beach may not seem like a destination with a rich history, but dig a little deeper and you'll quickly discover some fascinating facts about the town. In the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, the state of Florida was a Spanish colony. When the famous 1715 Fleet – a group of 11 ships that set sail from Havana to bring a massive haul of gold and silver coins to Spain – shipwrecked off the coast of Vero during a hurricane, the town cemented its place in history. Treasure hunters still come to the town's beaches to search for washed-up coins from the sunken ships.

While your chances for striking gold during your trip are slim, you can learn more about this part of Vero's past during a visit to the McLarty Treasure Museum. Located on the site where survivors from the fleet camped after swimming to shore, this museum is filled with artifacts and displays about the failed voyage and its treasure. The property also features an observation deck with views of the ocean.

Overall, previous visitors raved about this attraction, saying the interesting displays and knowledgeable staff make the small property well worth a visit. Others enjoyed watching the museum's 45-minute film, which explains why this part of Florida is called the Treasure Coast, though a couple of reviewers wished the film was a bit shorter. If you find yourself wanting to learn more about the 1715 Fleet's treasure, one past museumgoer suggested supplementing your visit here with one to Mel Fisher's Treasures in the nearby town of Sebastian.

You'll find McLarty's Treasure Museum a mile north of Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge next to Sebastian Inlet State Park's south entrance. To get to the museum, cross over one of Vero's two bridges to North Hutchinson Island, then take state Road A1A north for about 15 miles. Admission costs $2 per person age 6 and older, and complimentary parking is available in the property's lot. On-site facilities include restrooms and a gift shop. Entry is permitted daily between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. More information about the museum can be found on the Sebastian Inlet State Park website.

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#1 Round Island Oceanside Park and Round Island Riverside Park

One of Vero Beach's main draws is its beautiful beaches, and many consider the town's best to be the beach at Round Island Oceanside Park. Located 8 miles southeast of downtown Vero, this beach park offers everything you need. You'll find covered pavilions with grills, a playground and restrooms, among other amenities. Plus, the wide shore offers plenty of space for stretching out, even when there are sections blocked off to protect sea turtle nests.

But what sets this beach apart from others is its proximity to the Indian River Lagoon. When you want a change of scenery, you can walk across state Road A1A to the beach's sister park: Round Island Riverside Park. This park's amenities include a 400-foot-long boardwalk, nature trails, a fishing pier and an observation tower. Climb up the tower to look for manatees, or go paddleboarding or kayaking to see the gentle creatures up close. Water sports equipment rentals are not available on-site, so remember to bring your own gear or arrange equipment delivery if you want to get out on the water.

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