The chic and upscale city of Delray Beach has been nicknamed the “Village by the Sea” and continues to be one of the most glamorous destinations in South Florida. Delray Beach boasts some of the best nightlife in the region and is home to a very large, free public beach. From the cultural downtown area to the scenic sites around the coast, Delray Beach offers a wealth of things to do, enjoy and experience throughout the area year round. The city has grown to become a first-class destination with some of the finest beaches in America. It’s the perfect place to experience the Old South Florida lifestyle, modern amenities and just relax on the sunny shores.
The history of Delray Beach as we know it today can be traced to the late 19th century when the Orange Grove House of Refuge by the United States Life-Saving Service was constructed to assist survivors of shipwrecks off the coast of Florida. By 1884, a small group of African-American settlers had started farming west of the house of Refuge and built the first school in the area. The small town stayed relatively small until a man named William Linton, a postmaster from Michigan, decided to invest in a large amount of land near the coast and started selling off parcels of land to farmers.
The farming community flourished in Delray Beach and in nearby Boynton Beach. In fact, Boynton Beach soon became a premier supplier of citrus fruits and vegetables. To accommodate for the increase in agricultural shipments, Henry Flagler decided to build a train station so that the Florida East Coast Railroad could help in transporting goods to the rest of the country.
William Linton eventually left in 1898 when a very cold winter killed off all the crops in Delray Beach. The area was soon named “Delray” which means “of the King” in Spanish. The state of Florida officially chartered Delray in 1911 and during the 1920s, the economy shifted from pineapple and tomato crop distribution, to tourism and real estate. It was during this time that Delray Beach became known as a resort destination and soon accommodated for travelers from around the country. By 1923, the area between the Florida East Coast Canal and the ocean became known as “Delray Beach”.
Delray Beach’s tourism and residential neighborhoods continued to grow at a steady pace and much of what you see in this area today was a result of this growth. The city is home to several resorts, hotels, waterfront restaurants, and even some entertainment venues. You’ll also find a lineup of historical sites around the region, and numerous homes and buildings located in the Marina Historic Distric.t
Whether you’re visiting Delray Beach for a leisurely weekend getaway or a weeklong retreat in South Florida, you can look forward to dozens of attractions, activities, and unique sites to explore during your visit.
Delray Beach Weather and Best Time to Visit
The tropical climate attracts beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts year round, but this part of South Florida does experience some cold fronts. Most of the year is warm and humid, with average temperatures hovering in the upper 70s to low 80s. The coldest season runs from November through March, but temperatures rarely drop below the mid-60s during this time. “Winter” season in Delray Beach is much cooler and runs from December through early March. Highs during this time of year range from the mid-60s to mid-80s, so you can still enjoy many of the outdoor attractions and beach.
The best time to visit Delray Beach is during the transitional months which run in November, March, and April. You can expect fairly warm and dry weather during these times, and even take advantage of off-peak season rates at many hotels and resorts. Avoid hurricane season that runs from June through November so that you don’t encounter too many thunderstorms, rain showers and high humidity levels. If you’re traveling over Christmas and the holiday season, you can expect to encounter peak season rates at most of the hotels and resorts in the area.
Experience Delray Beach
Delray Beach is located in Palm Beach County, just a short drive from Boca Raton on historic U.S. Highway 1. The easiest way to get around this region is by car, but you can also take advantage of the Tri-Rail light rail service that stops in Delray, West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, and Miami. If you just want to shop and explore the downtown area, hop on the Downtown Roundabout free shuttle that stops at the Tri-Rail station and treks all the way east to the beach. The shuttle runs from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. and runs on several different routes.
Most people flock to this area to enjoy the nightlife scene or to relax on Delray Beach. You’ll find public access points to the beach along A1A between Linton and Atlantic Avenue, and metered parking is available along A1A. This city is within easy reach of Boynton Beach which is home to the Arthur C. Marshal Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge Preserve, an idyllic location to enjoy Florida’s wildlife and natural settings.
One of the best ways to explore the coast is to go on a yacht cruise around the Intracoastal Waterway. These cruises typically pass along luxury homes and parks, and some offer brunch and dining options onsite.
The Pineapple Grove Arts District in downtown Delray Beach is home to dozens of restaurants, bars, and boutique shops. It’s the perfect place to shop for designer fashions, enjoy a delicious brunch at a sidewalk café, or just relax in a local pub for some drinks and casual fare. Downtown Delray Beach is always abuzz with activity and you can find plenty of fun and interesting things to do in this district year round.
Whether you’re planning a short-term stay in Delray Beach or an extended stay vacation, you’ll be treated to the good life of South Florida throughout your visit. From the recreation areas to the nightlife scene, Delray Beach offers a wealth of interesting things to do and enjoy year round.
The resort city of Delray Beach is home to miles of white sandy beaches and exudes small town charm. Head here to enjoy some great food, explore the historic district and to experience the Old South Florida lifestyle. The area attracts more than one million visitors every year and is a popular destination for water activities, shopping and special events on the Florida coast. Enjoy an unforgettable vacation at this All American City in Florida.