Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Wellington, FL

  • Published 2022/10/21

The village of Wellington in Palm Beach County, Florida, used to be a commuter town with a few shopping centers until it became known for its fantastic tourist attractions.

Locals and tourists can participate in the village’s different shows in the form of arts and culture, equestrian events, and much more.

It’s known as the winter equestrian capital of the world.

The downtown area houses restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques, and other exciting souvenir shops to tickle your fancy.

Incorporated in 1995, the village was first owned by Charles Oliver Wellington, an accountant who purchased roughly 18,000 acres of land in the 1950s.

After his death, his son Roger Wellington inherited the property and began selling and leasing most of the areas.

In the 1970s, the Palm Beach County Board of Commissioners approved a planned unit development, which included a residential area, a country club, a golf course, and Lake Wellington.

Today, the village hosts over 65,000 people, according to the 2019 U.S. Census Bureau, with lots of tourist spots and fun activities.

Here are the best things to do in Wellington, Florida, for a more guided trip.

Watch Polo Tournaments at the National Polo Center

Polo cup at the National Polo Center

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As the equestrian capital, Wellington also prides itself in having a few polo centers, including the National Polo Center.

The center houses five fields, a clubhouse, a grandstand, a restaurant, a gym, and a swimming pool.

The home of polo in the U.S., the center is managed by the United States Polo Association, hosting tournaments and helping polo players develop their craft.

Polo player at the National Polo Center

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Tournaments are scheduled, and if you’re in Wellington, you should check them out, especially the world-famous Gauntlet of Polo event.

You can also enjoy a delicious brunch at the Pavilion, a field-side spot in the center, to enjoy watching a tournament.

The National Polo Center began in the late 1970s and is located on 120th Avenue South.

People at the National Polo Center

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Watch Equestrian Shows at Wellington International

Whether or not you’re an equestrian enthusiast, your visit to Wellington may not be complete if you miss out on Wellington International.

The center is home to the world-renowned Winter Equestrian Festival, held annually, and many other equestrian events.

It also hosts small or large private events at its cozy Tiki Hut or the Wellington Club.

Guests can also spend time at one of the center’s open-air spots while enjoying a sumptuous meal with a great view of the International Arena.

Wellington International has hosted the Winter Equestrian Festival since 1974, making it a household name among horse lovers and equestrian enthusiasts.

You can find it on Equestrian Club Drive in the village.

Step into the Natural World at the Palm Beach Museum of Natural History

The evolution of life, the natural world, and human culture are among the things that the Palm Beach Museum of Natural History focuses on.

Inside the museum is a carefully curated South Florida Archaeological Collection, as well as the preserved natural history and archaeology of the Caribbean.

One of its exhibits is the collection of real fossils from the Ice Age Expedition and an actual dinosaur skeleton.

The museum also features a specialty shop where you can buy unique gift items such as art, jewelry, dinosaur figurines, natural fossil specimens, and many more.

A group of archaeologists, science educators, paleontologists, and museum professionals established the Palm Beach Museum of Natural History in 2005.

The museum is inside the Wellington Green Mall on Forest Hill Boulevard.

Get Closer to Animals at Wellington Conservation Center

It’s always fun to meet and greet animals you haven’t seen before, and Wellington Conservation Center doesn’t disappoint.

The center houses many kinds of animals, mainly from South America and other parts of the world.

Lemurs, sloths, pot-bellied pigs, Brazilian porcupines, and many endangered species are waiting for you.

The center offers guided tours for you to interact with these animals.

If you want to spend some time with one of your chosen animals, the center can make it happen.

All you need is to book in advance so they can cater to your needs.

The Wellington Conservation Center is a home to unwanted and abandoned animals established in 2012 on Palm Beach Point Boulevard.

Stroll around the Peaceful Waters Sanctuary

For a pleasant afternoon stroll, you can do so at the Peaceful Water Sanctuary, which provides solemnity while you’re in tune with nature.

The boardwalks are well-kept, and you can even see different wildlife, such as species of birds, otters, and turtles, among others.

If you’re going there solo, you can take refuge in the shade of a tree, reading a book while listening to the wildlife world.

You can even wait until sunset and experience the gorgeous backdrop of nature without disruptions!

Yes, the Peaceful Waters Sanctuary stays true to its name.

The wetlands park is located in the Village Park Athletic Complex on Pierson Road.

It officially opened in May 2008.

Buy Fresh Produce at Whole Foods Market

If you’re driving to Wellington, Whole Foods Market is one of the best places to go shopping for food and groceries.

You can find fresh produce, vegetables, poultry, meat, seafood, and other ethically sourced food items at the market.

It’s also an excellent place for vegans as it offers outstanding plant-based options in natural and organic products.

It also features a hot & cold bar for your selection of drinks.

Established in 1980, Whole Foods Market is a subsidiary of Amazon.

You can find it at Wellington Green Commons.

Get Your Coffee at Premier Café and Roasters

Start your day with a delicious cup of coffee from Premier Café and Roasters in Wellington, Florida.

This hole-in-the-wall coffee shop uses Miami’s best Panther Coffee roasted beans, which makes its specialty coffees even more stimulating.

Its ingredients are locally sourced to maintain environmental sustainability, health, and wellness.

You can also have a good read while sipping your favorite at the shop, since it features a bookshelf filled with exciting books.

If you find something excellent for a good read, you can swap one of them with your book, which is fantastic!

The coffee shop offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere with its simulated skies, trees, grass decor, and furnishing.

Premier Café and Roasters is in Wellington Reserve on South State Road 7.

Eat a Sumptuous Meal at Smokey Bones Wellington

To satisfy your umami cravings, Smokey Bones Wellington got your back!

The smokehouse is famous for its hot jumbo wings, spare rib slab, meaty lunch bowls, and brisket.

What’s more interesting is its neon cocktail menu, which brings you back to the 90s.

The restaurant also offers delicious seafood dishes, salads, burgers, sandwiches, pasta, BBQ platters, and much more.

If you’re a meat lover, Smokey Bones Wellington is your perfect place because “meat is what they do.”

Established in 1999 with few other locations, Smokey Bones Wellington is on Forest Hill Boulevard.

Buy a Personalized Gift at Things Remembered

When you return home, bring your friends and loved ones personalized presents made by Things Remembered.

Whether for a birthday, wedding, or any special event, you can have your gift items here engraved with their recipients’ names to make them more personal.

The shop features gorgeous home decor, jewelry, accessories, and many gift ideas for all occasions, just enough to make your loved ones smile.

Things Remembered has catered to customers since 1967 as a small engrave-while-you-wait shop.

You can find the shop on Forest Hill Boulevard.

Play Golf at the Wanderers Club

In a beautiful village like Wellington, playing golf comes in handy at the Wanderers Club.

The golf club features 18 holes at a par of 72 in a scenic 7,052 yards of the fascinating and natural beauty of the Florida landscape.

The club also features polo and tennis courts and an excellent site for events like weddings, birthdays, and other special occasions.

It also has a specialty restaurant for all families to enjoy a delectable meal while enjoying the sweeping views of lush greens outside the club.

They built the Wanderers Club in 1985 on Aero Club Drive.

Other Things to Do Nearby

You can also go past the Wellington borders to see the other fantastic tourist attractions of the neighboring cities.

Let the possibilities take you to more memorable experiences with only a few-minute drive from the village.

Paddle in the Water at Okeeheelee Park

The waters of Okeeheelee Park

Brittany Mason /

As a change of pace, away from the big city’s hustle and bustle, you can also have fun in the water at Okeeheelee Park.

The park features two lakes with a boat launching ramp where you can start water skiing, boating, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing.

Other fun amenities include a golf course, nature and biking trails, a dog park, picnic areas, and many more.

The park is perfect for a family fun day, especially when you’re taking a trip to Wellington with your kin.

Marshes at Okeeheelee Park

EdwinWilke /

Okeeheelee is a Seminole term that means “pretty waters.”

The Native Americans who settled in Florida are called the Seminole Tribe.

Established in 1973, Okeeheelee Park is managed by the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department.

It’s in West Palm Beach, Florida, only 18 minutes away from Wellington.

Step Back into the Past at Yesteryear Village

For a day filled with rich learning from the past and the history of South Florida, don’t miss visiting Yesteryear Village.

The Village features a massive collection of artifacts, an old school, a general store, a blacksmith shop, a farm, and the Sally Bennett Big Band Hall of Fame Museum.

These items will tell you how the life of early Florida back in the day, or at least from 1895 to the 1940s.

The War Party Paranormal also offers seasonal History & Haunts at the Village during nighttime tours.

If you’re up for another challenging yet fun outdoor activity, the Village will show you a good time.

Yesteryear Village was established in 1990 on Sansbury’s Way in West Palm Beach, a 14-minute drive from Wellington.

See a Large Collection of Plants at Mounts Botanical Garden

A pond at Mounts Botanical Garden

Jillian Cain Photography /

See the biggest and oldest public garden in Palm Beach County, the Mounts Botanical Garden.

At Mounts Botanical Garden, you’ll be rubbing shoulders with more than 6,000 species of tropical and subtropical plants from six different continents.

The former Palm Beach County Cooperative Extension Director, Marvin Mounts, founded the garden in 1954.

Trail lined with flora at Mounts Botanical Garden

Daderot, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Mounts Botanical Garden also houses exotic trees and plants native to Florida.

You can find it on North Military Trail in West Palm Beach, 19 minutes away from Wellington.

Gazebo at Mounts Botanical Garden

Daderot, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Go Wakeboarding at Shark Wake Park 561

Shark Wake Park 561 offers outstanding wakeboarding service with extensive floating obstacle courses for a challenging and exciting outdoor excursion.

The wake park features a five-tower full-size cable and a two-tower cable system that caters to all wakeboarders of all levels.

Shark Wake Park 561 is in Okeeheelee Park on Eshleman Trail in West Palm Beach.

Spend a few hours wakeboarding here, and you’ll never go wrong!

Shark Wake Park 561 was established in 2019 in West Palm Beach, a 16-minute drive from Wellington.

Join an African Safari at the Lion Country Safari

Scenic view of the birds at Lion Country Safari

mariakray /

An exciting drive-through African Safari experience awaits you at the Lion Country Safari in Loxahatchee, Florida.

The park offers a drive-through experience where visitors can drive slowly and carefully while watching the animals from the car.

Giraffes, zebras, and white rhinoceroses roam freely and even cross the road, while lions and chimpanzees are behind fences and water barriers.

A sloth on a tree at Lion Country Safari

Danny Caro /

You’re not allowed to open your car windows, so the animals don’t get furious.

It also features a Safari World themed-park with a petting zoo, an Animal Theater, paddle boats, and more.

The Lion Country Safari opened in 1967 in Loxahatchee, a 12-minute drive from Wellington.

Cars driving by the giraffes at Lion Country Safari

mariakray /

Final Thoughts

Wellington offers fun and exciting adventures to add to your bucket list.

You’ll have the best time in the village from museums, eclectic shops, and historical tourist spots.

Try the best things to do in Wellington, Florida!

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