Jupiter residents love their waterways. Between the surrounding Intracoastal Waterway and the Loxahatchee River, water sports and activities are more than a daily occurrence; they’re a necessity.
Now, kayakers and paddleboarders who take to Jupiter’s crystal clear waters have another piece of nature to enjoy on the Intracoastal Waterway: Fullerton Island.
Restored to what Jupiter looked like before its development, the recently opened Fullerton Island is located about one-third of a mile north of the Indiantown Road bridge and due east of Dune Dog Café in Jupiter. The entire restoration of the island cost $3.1 million, WPTV reports.
There’s no bridge to reach the island by car or by foot; the only way to get there is by paddleboard, kayak, canoe or a small boat. Two boat slips can be found at the entrance to accommodate small watercraft, but only at high tide. And if you choose to rent a paddleboard, the island is less than a half-mile from the launch point of Blueline Surf & Paddle Co.
If you arrive by paddleboard or kayak, drift under the walkway west of the boat slips to access the interior of the island. There, you’ll find mounds of sand peppered with planted mangrove seeds that should soon turn into mangrove islands. These will provide a sanctuary for fish and shellfish and act as a snorkeling destination.
Picnic tables line the south side of the island, making Fullerton an ideal place to take a lunch break on the water. Look out at the Intracoastal to admire the boats passing by, or face the interior of the island and scout out the wildlife instead. A pavilion also sits near the picnic tables to give travelers a much-needed break from the sun.
The project should benefit wildlife and the natural environment, too.
The island was cleared of invasive plant species to allow native plants and animals to flourish in the area. In addition, sand dredged out of the middle of the island has been moved to Bryant Park in Lake Worth to create a natural wetland habitat.
Check out these photos of Fullerton Island by editorial intern Alison Eckerle:
Eat lunch at one of the many picnic tables, or find shade under the pavilion.
Two boat slips can house small boats near the entrance to the island.
Mangrove islands seem bare now, but they’ll soon flourish with native trees.
There’s something new to see around every corner of Fullerton Island, so make sure you bring your kayak or paddleboard.
Stone jetties form the island’s entrance, giving way to natural South Florida habitat that seems untouched by outside development.
Exiting the island leads you to the Intracoastal Waterway and the scenic landscapes it has to offer.