Ultimate Guide to Blowing Rocks Preserve, Florida (Tours, Pricing, History, Map)
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If you are yearning for a once-in-a-lifetime trip in Florida, then we would say that Blowing Rocks Preserve should be right on top of your list. The 73-acre conservation area on the Treasure Coast of Florida receives more than 50,000 visitors annually.
Blowing Rocks Preserve, Florida
The main attraction of the Preserve is the mile-long rock formation between the sea and the sand. It can be enjoyed during both high tide and low tide. Many prefer to come during high tide as the ocean remains choppy, and one would see plumes of water shooting up to a height of 50 ft in the air!
History of Blowing Rocks Preserve
Blowing Rocks Preserve came into existence in 1969 when The Nature Conservancy got a donation of 73 acres of the barren island from the generous and loving residents of Jupiter Island. The initial plan was to change the zoning of the place from single-family dwellings to high-density apartment buildings, but this found no favor with the local citizens. The application was denied, but due to the consistent efforts of Nathaniel Reed and others, the land was sold to the residents. The residents then decided to donate the land for the creation of Blowing Rocks Preserve.
In the 1980s, the Preserve started a period of native habitat restoration. A massive restoration effort was undertaken to remove 500 Australian pines and planted 14 acres of native plants like mangrove, coastal strand, and salt marsh on the eastern side of the Preserve. The next step was to develop the western side of the Preserve, and for the next 15 years, more than 3000 volunteers worked hard to reconnect the Preserve to the Indian River Lagoon and install a dozen of tidal culverts. Seeds of another 15,000 native plants were planted in the Preserve grounds.
In the 1990s, the staff understood the opportunity to share the importance of the fragile native habitats found at the Preserve. The Nature Conservancy team placed educational signage along the Preserve trails and at the beach to highlight the native species, such as the endangered sea turtles. The Hawley Education Center was gifted by the philanthropist Rosita Hawley which houses staff members, an exhibit gallery, and the Nathaniel Reed classroom. It also hosts public lectures and workshops from time to time.
Geological Cave Formations in Blowing Rocks Preserve
Blowing Rocks is geologically significant as the rock formations here are the largest of this type on the Atlantic Coast. Scientists agree that Anastasia limestone extends from St Augustine to Boca Raton along the Florida coast. The preserve is the largest outcropping on the coast of the Atlantic.
The exposed rock of the Preserve is not unusual because Anastasia limestone is quite rare and is usually found underwater or underground. One would see small fossils on the rock faces, but there is no definite answer to why so much limestone is available above-ground at the Blowing Rocks. The underground sea caves here have decent geological formations, which can be seen during low tide.
Wildlife in Blowing Rocks Preserve
The beautifully maintained sanctuary is home to several endangered plants and animals such as loggerhead, leatherback, and green sea turtles. Visitors will be able to spot exotic species like ospreys, brown pelicans, and numerous small marine animals.
Is Blowing Rocks Preserve Haunted?
Blowing Rocks Preserve is one of the most beautiful places and is not haunted.
How Big is Blowing Rocks Preserve?
The preserve is spread over 73 acres of land.
Blowing Rocks Preserve Tours
The Dune Trail is a scenic way to get to the beach and enjoy the aquamarine waters of the Atlantic Ocean. You must try to come here during the low tide to have enough time in hand to explore the sea caves that have been carved out of the shore. Unfortunately, some of these sea caves have crumbled over the years and now ledges only.
When there is low tide, you can take a walk along the beach and around the fallen rocks. You can go inside these caves and come out, and you will also love to watch waves crashing against them. If the weather is rough, especially in winter, the waves through the caves burst as high as 50 ft in the air.
Some of these caves are so tall that you can stand within them, and some even have natural benches formed by erosion caused by tides! But one thing is common – all have natural chimneys exposing the sky. You will be lucky to spot the sea urchins on the walls of the caves or in the nooks and crannies. When you reach the cave’s end, you will know that you have touched the southern end of the Preserve.
When you continue North along the beach, you will get to the dune crossover. While walking, you will notice the unusually eroded rock surface, and there are twisted stalactites and stalagmites in the weathered rock. To untrained eyes, it would look like a mini version of an underground cave that has been turned inside out.
Tour Prices and Discounts
There are no entry fees, but an optional USD 2 per person donation helps the authorities to maintain the Preserve for the people and wildlife.
Is Blowing Rocks Preserve Cold?
Winter is a pleasant time for Blowing Rocks Preserve, with an average temperature of 69 degrees F. Summer months are warmer and can be hot at times.
What to Wear?
Casual clothes can be worn here, but we recommend that you wear water shoes only for your comfort.
Blowing Rocks Preserve Hours
The Blowing Rocks are open seven days a week from 9 am to 4:30 pm. It remains closed on Thanksgiving Day, Easter Sunday, Christmas Eve & Christmas Day.
What to Do (Beside Tours)
Blowing Rocks Preserve one place which the whole family can enjoy as there are numerous amazing things to see and do here.
The boardwalk on the lagoon side will lead you to a platform that has benches overlooking the Indian River Lagoon. Here you can sit and enjoy scenic views of the Rocks Preserve.
You can enjoy swimming or snorkeling at the Blowing Rock beach, but you would be safer swimming at another beach if there is a high tide. If the sea is calm, then the rocks are a perfect setting for a great session of snorkeling.
You may pack a picnic lunch and enjoy it with your family at the Coral Cove Park, south of Blowing Rocks Preserve, as food is not allowed in the Preserve. The beach at Coral Cove Park is an extension of the submerged rocks that you see at the Blowing Rocks. It is an excellent place for snorkeling too.
The Preserve has five short hiking trails, and Dune Trail is the most popular one. It is a 0.4-mile trail that leads visitors to the top of the beach dune. From here, one will enjoy sweeping views of the beach.
Best Time to Visit Blowing Rocks Preserve
Although Blowing Rocks Preserve is worth a visit every season, the best time still would be winter. The wave-carved limestone forms burrows, blowholes, chimneys, and rocky pools. These offer a rare window to experience the natural history of Florida.
The sea turtle nesting season is from March to October. You can come during this time to marked nests or the new hatchlings but refrain from touching or disturbing them.
Many people prefer to come in the summer as the waters are calm and ideal for swimming while winter brings rough seas and large waves.
How to Get to Blowing Rocks Preserve
From Florida’s Turnpike, one needs to exit at Jupiter, also known as Indiantown Road. Now follow the road in an East direction to US 1. On US 1, turn North to Jupiter inlet. There would be a bridge which you need to cross. After crossing that, take a right turn on the South Beach Road. Drive for two miles till you come across the Blowing Rocks Preserve sign on your right. The parking lot would be ½ mile further ahead on the right.
Hotels near Blowing Rocks Preserve
People who would want to stay near the Preserve can consider Jupiter Beach Resort & Spa, which has a poolside bar and a private beach, among other amenities. Hampton Inn by Hilton is also closely placed to the Preserve.
Blowing Rocks Preserve Fun Facts
- The Blowing Rock Preserve attracts an average of 55000 visitors every year.
- Food and drinks are prohibited on the Preserve.
- The sea turtle nesting season is from March to October.
- The beach at the Blowing Rocks is full of craggy rocks, similar to those found in Hawaii.
Blowing Rocks Preserve Details
- Length: 73 acres
- Time Recommended: 2 to 3 hours
- Difficulty: Easy
- Kid-friendly: Yes
- Dog-friendly: No
- Fees: USD 2 as donation
- Hours: 9 am to 4:30 pm
Visiting Blowing Rocks Preserve
Do you need more information before visiting Blowing Rocks Preserve? Call (561) 744-6668 or email Blowing Rocks Preserve for an information packet.
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