Viking Surf School
255 NE 11th St., Fort Lauderdale
Get the kids in the water for a full day of camp, or go all in on a weeklong program. Either way, Viking keeps the student-to-master-shredder ratio at seven campers per instructor and is following CDC safety protocols all summer. Children as young as five are welcome to join camp sessions, and kids and teens who have outgrown the basics can opt for advanced coaching, or get together in a small group for private lessons—all set on the white-sand shores between Miami and West Palm Beach.
1101 Biscayne Blvd., Miami
For the stir-crazy, Frost Science is open for visits with limited ticketing and masks required, but where the museum shines this summer is with virtual camps and online content. If you’re looking for something to keep kids engaged—and out of the way—for a few hours a day at home, check out the virtual camps for kids in pre-K to fifth grade (August themes include weather and engineering). For shorter projects, check out Frost Science @ Home for activity toolkits that use free science apps and household items, live cams, behind-the-scenes online tours, and thirty-minute virtual science demonstrations. This site is a good one to keep bookmarked in case you’re homeschooling come fall and need a fresh take on science class (virtual demonstrations are STEM-focused and aligned with science learning standards).
11701 Lake Victoria Gardens Ave., Palm Beach
Camp at Craft Haus means a full week of mixed-media exploration: clay, mosaic making, painting, and more, with a different theme each week. Class sizes are limited, temperatures are checked before camp starts each day, and instructors wear masks (children are not required to, though it’s recommended). But what we really love are the Art-to-Go kits—a genius way to keep kids busy in your own backyard. Let your budding artist pick a project from the shop, choose colors, and then have the goods delivered locally or opt for contactless pickup at the store.
Jupiter Outdoor Center
9060 West Indiantown Rd., Jupiter
Satisfy young adventurers and appease older kids and teens craving an adrenaline rush with an afternoon on the water. Jupiter Outdoor Center will deliver canoes and kayaks and take your crew on a tour of Jupiter Inlet to check out alligators, turtles, bald eagles, and fish while staying cool. (This also makes a great fun, safe, and socially distanced summer birthday party.)
501 East Camino Real, Boca Raton
The omakase menu at Morimoto feels celebratory but moves fast. Chef Masaharu Morimoto has sushi master status and a Top Chef win under his apron and knows how to create a well-paced, tasty experience you’ll come back for. The menu features classic Japanese sushi rolls and local seafood like littleneck clams in the miso soup. It’s a small space and immensely popular with hotel guests, so be sure to reserve and request a seat at the center of the action: the sushi bar.
171 E Palmetto Park Rd., Boca Raton
The dining room at Casa d’Angelo is a refined, grown-up affair—with its white tablecloths and floor-to-ceiling wine cases of bottles from what looks like every vineyard in Italy. The choice is staggering. A rotating cast of nightly specials draws a loyal South Floridian crowd. Still, deep down, every guest wants a slab of chef Ricky Piper’s many-layered lasagna with a generous slice of tiramisu for dessert. Pasta is handmade in the kitchen every day, and gluten-free varieties are available. Plus, for the exceptional staff, no request is too much.
199 W Palmetto Park Rd., Suite E, Boca Raton
Bad coffee on any given morning can ruin our mood, but on vacation, it can ruin our day. Boca café and juice bar the Seed is the brainchild of two local women who wanted quality beans and organic cold press to be a daily given, not a rarity. The menu hits all the right notes, with American classics like drip coffee and iced tea alongside Earl Grey, matcha lattes, and nitro cold brew. The acai and dragon fruit bowls are hearty, healthy, and portable for the beach or the airport. And like everything else at the Seed, the cold smoothies and juices—boosted with protein, flax, spirulina, or turmeric—hit the spot on muggy, hot Florida mornings when eggs and toast feel like too much.
Boca Museum of Art
501 Plaza Real, Boca Raton
Museums are the unsung cultural heroes of smaller cities. The lines are shorter, the curation is generally more daring, and thanks to fewer tourists, you can actually see the art up close rather than from deep in a crowd. In that vein, the Boca Museum of Art is an art lover’s gem in Mizner Park that’s very worth driving for. The permanent collection includes sculpture and contemporary, African, and pre-Columbian art as well as a stellar photography collection (don’t miss Dorothea Lange’s iconic images of the Dust Bowl era). March 2020 will see the arrival of a series of self-portraits by prominent American artists and a selection of Edward Steichen murals. For those visiting with children, check out the galleries on Saturday mornings—they offer painting classes for children. And the outdoor sculpture garden is ideal for little legs to run off one too many ice cream cones. Daily docent tours at 2 p.m. are the way to go if you want to fully appreciate the breadth of the museum’s offerings and learn about the intricacies and symbols within each piece.
Boca Raton Resort & Club
501 E Camino Real, Boca Raton
Boca Raton Resort & Club’s sprawling estate is more like a dreamy Floridian village than a hotel, a village complete with a golf course, several restaurants, stretches of manicured gardens, its own marina, and a private beach. And the Waldorf group, which manages the Boca Raton Resort & Club, is not about to rest on the club’s long-established popularity. The resort keeps getting better. The polished Yacht Club—effectively a hotel within a hotel—has reopened following an extensive renovation, and the nautical waterfront rooms, customizable minibars, and next-level service make it an easy favorite. Staying in an ocean-view Beach Club room feels like having a sleepover on a private island—powdery white sand and afternoon naps in a luxe cabana included. For the wellness-led traveler, the cardiologist-run Biostation excels at functional medicine, while sports enthusiasts have their pick of simulated surfing at Flow House, Orangetheory classes, and of course, 365 acres along Lake Boca. All the while, the familial service and clever landscaping across the grounds summon all the intimacy of a boutique hotel.
The Sacred Space Miami
105 24th St., Edgewater
Miami’s energetic design aesthetic collides—gently, sustainably, and with gratitude—with alternative wellness and lifestyle at Karla Dascal’s The Sacred Space Miami. In reality, it’s four spaces in one, five if you count Paradise Farms, the biodynamic farm that services the on-site restaurant (along with a number of other Miami dining meccas). There’s a space for classes and workshops. There’s a sprawling event space. There’s a plant-based restaurant (see two sentences ago). There’s a tropical garden. Visiting the 36,000-square-foot space is very choose your own adventure, with all paths leading through an indoor-outdoor, minimalist environment. A sampling of the classes and workshops on the programming schedule: kundalini yoga, a sound bath, a visit from Wim Hof, mindfulness meetups, and something fascinatingly called a moondance experience. Post-moondance, head to Plant Miami for a vegan and kosher take on South Florida cuisine (and occasionally, live music). Take your oat milk latte to go and spend some time hanging out in the garden, surrounded by bamboo, a guava grove, maybe a talipot palm in rare bloom. Check yourself out in the reflection pond. Maybe even take a photo—a day of clean food and conscious…