Blake Walsh

20 Best Things to Do in Palm Coast, FL

  • Published 2022/12/04

Situated within Florida’s Flagler County, Palm Coast is a city blessed with a gorgeous coastline and breathtaking inland nature.

Apart from the seemingly endless number of nature parks you can visit here, it also serves as the home for many historically significant sites in this part of the state.

Discover the many birds and wildlife endemic to the area by visiting nature preserves.

Learn about its history and agri-history by checking out several sites in the area.

Apart from that, have fun in this paradise blessed by nature and time.

Here are the 15 best things to do in Palm Coast:

Spend a Day at Washington Oaks State Park

View of Washington Oaks State Park

Nagel Photography /

Nestled between the breathtaking Atlantic Ocean and the Matanzas River, Washington Oaks State Park needs to make it into your itinerary.

This gorgeous Palm Coast park has a fantastic shoreline with rock formations that you can discover.

Apart from the waters, it also has majestic gardens where you can spend some time strolling through.

This park also has a visitor center that you can check out.

Washington Oaks Gardens State Park

Danita Delimont /

Here, you can learn more about the natural resources the park has.

You can also spend quality time here with your family.

For a relaxing day, you may opt for a picnic or go fishing at the two designated spots – one at the beach, the other near the seawall at Matanzas river.

Lake in Washington Oaks State Park

Christy berry /

If you intend to stay active, you can trek or bike through the numerous trails running across this park.

While doing so, why not try to catch a glimpse of the birds and other wildlife species here?

Spend some time in this amazing park while you’re in Palm Coast.

Beach at Washington Oaks State Park

Jim Schwabel /

Birdwatch at the Jungle Hut Road Park

Interested in learning about the local wildlife?

Stop by Jungle Hut Road Park.

This serves as a wonderful place to stay if you intend to go bird watching.

The park itself measures 2 acres, and you can find it in the Hammock area of the city.

Here, you can spend the afternoon waiting and watching for amazing birds and other wildlife found in this area of Florida.

During summer, you may catch a glimpse of the ruby-throated hummingbirds.

Other usual birds that you can see in this area include gulls, pelicans, shorebirds, and gannets.

However, birdwatching isn’t the only thing that you can do here.

Apart from taking in the beauty of nature, you can also go on a picnic here or sail on a boat.

So bring your binoculars and stop by this amazing nature park.

Venture Into the Graham Swamp Preserve

Florida is blessed with beautiful nature, and Palm Coast is a testament to this.

Another place where you can appreciate the great outdoors is Graham Swamp Preserve.

With over 3,000 acres of protected land, most tourists and locals know this place for its popular bike trail.

Also known as “The Swamp,” you can find numerous challenges – both natural and manmade – when you bike through this 7-mile trail.

As you venture through this trail, you may discover a large number of plants and animals protected in this park.

Apart from those who like a challenging outdoor activity, many wildlife photographers also love this place for the beautiful nature it preserves.

Don’t miss out on spending some time at the Graham Swamp Preserve, whether you want to go challenge yourself on the trail or just to appreciate the beauty of Mother Earth.

Check Out the River to Sea Preserve

Boardwalk in River to Sea Preserve

Andriy Blokhin /

The state of Florida serves as a home to pristine beaches and long ocean coastlines, and many lakes and rivers.

Comprising a whopping almost-100 acres of land, you can find the River to Sea Preserve at North Ocean Boulevard.

This said preserve, as the name implies, is located where the Matanzas River and the Atlantic Ocean meet.

Apart from being a famous Palm Coast tourist attraction, this preserve is an important habitat for local wildlife.

The Sun Sets in River to Sea Preserve

Stephani Elizabeth /

Here, you can find beach access and a boardwalk.

Apart from discovering the creatures that use this place as its habitat, you can also do various outdoor recreational activities, including kayaking and camping, among others.

People having fun at  River to Sea Preserve

Andriy Blokhin /

Learn to Be an Angler With Palm Coast Fishing

Do you like fishing?

Do you want to learn how to fish?

If you answered yes to either of those two questions, then you should know that Palm Coast is a great place to go to.

While you’re in the city, get in touch with Capt. Chris Herrera of Palm Coast Fishing for a guided tour of the shallow water holes in the area.

Apart from fishing in inlets, you may also book nearshore charters for your trip.

Whether you’re a novice angler or an expert fisher, catching fish in the amazing waters of Palm Coast is definitely a must-do.

Discover the PCAF Turtle Trail

When you’re in Palm Coast, you may find several turtle statues scattered across the city.

These turtle statues make up the Palm Coast Arts Foundation’s Turtle Trail.

It features the likeness of an indigenous loggerhead sea turtle as the base model for the statues.

They are then designed and painted by featured artists, making them incredible masterpieces worthy of seeing.

Spend an afternoon walking to the areas where these statues stand and discover their beauty one by one.

Traverse the Mala Compra Trails

If you like biking, check out the Mala Compra Trail, located in the city’s Hammock area.

To get here, you can go park at Bing’s landing.

From there, you can find the start of an amazing 1.5-mile trail that leads you to the gorgeous beach.

It lets you traverse through the oak hammock and ocean scrub.

If you want more of a challenge, however, you can ride through a more technical trail that spans 5.5 miles long.

If you don’t have a bike, do not fret.

You can also opt to hike through it and admire the wonderful nature that surrounds you as you stroll by.

Explore Princess Place Preserve

Beautiful Landscape in Princess Place Preserve

Tiffany Katz /

If you want to see more historical sites in Palm Coast, the Princess Place Preserve needs to stay high on your list of places to visit.

At 1,500 acres, construction of the Princess Estate dates back to the latter part of the 19th century.

This hunting lodge featuring an Adirondack style of construction once belonged to royalty, as its name implies.

It once belonged to Henry Cutting and, when he passed on, became the property of his widow, who remarried an exiled Russian prince.

Native American Festival in Princess Place Preserve

Tiffany Katz /

Originally called “Cherokee Grove,” this place offers its visitors a breathtaking view of the Matanzas River.

Interestingly, you may also find that the house itself is made of coquina shells, Florida cedar, and the cabbage palm trunks.

If you want to experience this place in-depth, you can book a tour of the lodge.

Father and daughter hiking through Princess Place Preserve

Tiffany Katz /

Shop for Goods at the European Village

Shopping is one thing you shouldn’t forget to do when traveling.

If you’re in Palm Coast, stop by European Village to discover the best finds in the area.

A mall housed in a building featuring European architecture, this place boasts many attractions, including numerous restaurants, bars, shops, and even salons.

Most locals and tourists come here to unwind, eat great food, and shop for amazing finds.

If you want to find locally produced goods, come by the Gourmet Farmer’s Market that this mall hosts weekly.

It’s a great place to look for souvenirs you’d want to remember Palm Coast by.

Experience the Outdoors at Waterfront Park

More parks await you in Palm Coast, and you shouldn’t miss checking out Waterfront Park.

Spanning 20 acres, you can find this part close to the Intracoastal Water Trail.

It’s one of the many great places in the city where you can take your entire family.

This park features a covered patio and two pavilions, where you and your companions can sit down, relax, and have a picnic.

For bored kids, they can go to the playground for hours of fun.

Meanwhile, outdoor junkees can spend hours discovering the many trails people find here.

As a cherry on top, you can go to the Intracoastal Waterway Trail, where you can find a dolphin jumping up from the waters.

Have an awesome time spending the day at this park when you happen to be in the area.

Learn Something New at the Florida Agricultural Museum

Outside Florida Agricultural Museum

Ebyabe, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Another popular tourist attraction, the Florida Agricultural Museum in Palm Coasts educates its visitors on the state’s rich Agri-history.

It lets you find out about how the people of the state lived back in the 18th century.

When you come here, you can go on a guided tour of the museum, which takes place while you ride a wagon.

The museum shows you the equipment used by Floridians back in the day and how they used it.

Dairy Barn at Florida Agricultural Museum

Ebyabe, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Many farm animals also roam the museum, and you can meet them while watching horses and cattle graze.

You can even find pigs during their mud bath!

The said tour will show you everything housed in the museum’s five restored buildings.

It’s one of the many places visitors of all ages can enjoy.

Find Beautiful Works of Art at Art LaMay Studios

For lovers of art, you won’t be left wanting when you visit Palm Coast.

A great art gallery you can visit is Art LaMay Studios.

This small art gallery features the works of Art LaMay, the studio’s owner and namesake.

LaMay’s art focuses and highlights what most people think about this part of Florida: the beauty of the outdoors.

Since LaMay owns the place, you may even see him working on a piece in his studio once you visit.

His masterful technique of showcasing his fascination with nature should be enough for anyone to consider visiting his intimate studio.

Cruise Through the Waters With Tropical Kayaks of Palm Coast

Get in Touch with Tropical Kayaks of Palm Coast.

This place provides rentals of stand-up paddleboards, kayaks, electric boats, and water bikes so that you can explore Palm Coast through its waterways.

Apart from this, they also offer kayaking lessons for beginners and tours for those who want to get to know the area more.

For its services, Tropical Kayaks of Palm Coast caters to people of all skill levels.

So, what are you waiting for?

Consider adding this to your list of things to do!

Stroll Through Bing’s Landing

A Sign in Bing’s Landing

Ebyabe, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Apart from nature sanctuaries, Palm Coast has its share of historical places.

Consider going to Bing’s Landing when you happen to visit Palm Coast.

This place formerly served as the plantation home owned by Brig. Gen. Joseph Hernandez, who was also the state’s first congressman and the first Hispanic U.S. Congress member.

Hernandez bought the Mala Compra Plantation for $1,500, but it ended up being destroyed in 1836 as the Second Seminole War broke out.

This park spans 8 acres along the Intracoastal Waterway.

You can find a boat launch and fishing pier when you visit this park.

Pavilions for picnics are also available for your entire family to use.

Apart from that, you can also explore the archaeological site for the plantation within this park.

Catch a Show at the City Repertory Theater

Fancy a live show.

When in Palm Coast, don’t miss out on catching stage productions organized by City Repertory Theater.

The venue itself provides the audience with a cozy ambiance, but it also goes above and beyond.

While watching a show performed by outstanding artists, you and your friends can also enjoy a glass of wine.

This theater group aims to evoke emotions from its audiences through their performance.

With fascinating and marvelous shows under their belt, any play that you can catch here is definitely worth your time.

Stay Active at the Hammock Community Center

While the outdoors has proven itself as a great venue for keeping active, people sometimes prefer to stay in one place.

If you want to do sports and recreational activities, such as basketball, volleyball, and even swimming, check out the Hammock Community Center.

Located on Malacompra Road, a lot of tourists tend to overlook this facility, but it’s one community site that you shouldn’t miss.

Apart from amazing sports facilities, it also features grounds that provide a great place to stroll through in the morning or to have a picnic and just relax.

So, if you’re not in the mood for heavy-hitting outdoor activities, check this place out.

See Impressive Sculpture Pieces at the Baliker Gallery

Get to view the amazingly detailed art sculptures at the Baliker Gallery on North Ocean Shore Boulevard.

Drop by the weekend and be amazed at the creative works of sculptor Paul Baliker who gets his inspiration from nature.

His wood and bronze carvings are truly an expression of his love for the subject.

See his large and small works of art inside the gallery and the garden area; you can also purchase some pieces you might like.

View the wooden sculptures A Matter of Time, Fishful Thinking, and Blue Illusions, and the bronze pieces like The Dance, Fish Story, Well Spring, and Lion Around.

There are also ornamental pieces and decor on display like the Swamp Master, Treasure, and Wild Magic.

Baliker Gallery also accepts private, public, and commercial commissions with rates and details you can discuss.

Enjoy Outdoor Activities at Long Creek Nature Preserve

Long Creek Nature Preserve offers you lots of opportunities for outdoor activities you can do with the family.

Located at Palm Harbor Parkway, this 9-acre conservation area is now one of the city’s prized nature locations.

The preserve is considered an important archeological area, being part of the Hernandez Landing Site associated with the 1800s Florida plantation era.

It’s also connected to the Long Creek Basin and the city’s saltwater waterway system.

You can enjoy a canoe or kayak ride or go saltwater fishing at the creek; there is also a kayak and canoe launch area, a fishing pier, and a floating dock available for visitors to use.

Enjoy the sights of nature and discover different wildlife on the walking trails.

Long Creek Nature Preserve also serves as a location for various environmental education programs throughout the year.

Spend a Day at Linear Park

Whether you want a place for your family to relax or do some activities together, Linear Park in Greenway Court is a great park to visit.

This 57-acre features amenities guests of all ages will enjoy.

Little ones are free to run, climb and have loads of fun at the playground area.

Play shuffleboard or bocce ball with the family, or go hiking or biking around the huge park area.

If you just want to sit back and relax, you can pack some lunch for a picnic at the pavilions.

Birds are all around the area so it’s also a perfect place to go bird-watching; Audubon Society assigned the park as a Great Florida Birding Trail with over 40 bird species spotted in the park.

If you’ll go for a bike ride, they have a Bicycle Maintenance Station available 24 hours a day equipped with a padded post, tire pump with pressure gauge, and tools in case you need to repair your bike.

Enjoy the park activities at Linear Park.

Look for Palm Coast’s Public Art Displays

The city is well-known for promoting the arts, so it isn’t a surprise if you find several public art displays scattered around Palm Coast.

You’ll find distinct installations at three of the city’s public parks namely the Flight of Life at Waterfront Park, the Panther at Linear Park, and the Burro with a Bird at Central Park.

As you stroll around, you can follow the Turtle Trail and find colorful turtle models each with its own unique themes.

Ten turtle models created by local artists are dotted around Flagler County and five of these are found on Palm Coast.

Take pictures of these lovely public art displays and get to know a little about their history, too.

Catch Thought-Provoking Stage Plays at City Repertory Theatre

City Repertory Theatre is truly all about ART.

This production company offers alternative entertainment themes so you won’t expect to see the usual classical shows, and that’s what makes it a one-of-kind theater company in Northeast Florida.

Catch contemporary thought-provoking stage productions by talented and amazing performers in an intimate setting.

Shows are general admission so be sure to come early for seating preferences and some beverages to enjoy.

Book your tickets and see upcoming shows and schedules on their website.

You’ll find City Repertory Theatre at Cypress Point Parkway.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re craving for sun and sand or whether you want to partake in thrilling outdoor activities, Palm Coast is the destination to go to.

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