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Fort Pierce, Florida: Spontaneous Weekend Roadtrip Destination

If you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen me post about disappointment that Memorial Day would look different than what I’m used to. Typically, on a long weekend, we’d head to the Keys or somewhere a little farther from home to take advantage of the extra time off of work. Even though much of the state had started to re-open, the Keys were still closed. This ended up pushing us to get creative and we ended up in the Fort Pierce, Florida area.

How we ended up in Fort Pierce, Florida

My husband and I made a plan to make ourselves feel better about not being able to travel like normal. I would choose destinations 1, 2, 3, and 4 hours away. Then, Saturday morning, my husband would choose how far away he was in the mood to travel. He had been working a lot of overtime lately so we weren’t sure how far he’d be wanting to adventure and hotels were plentiful as out-of-state travelers hadn’t started trickling in much by that point. We love to be spontaneous, but I also love researching new places because it builds excitement to a new destination and that’s half of the fun! So this plan was perfect for us as I got to loosely plan fun things to do while being spontaneous at the same time.

The morning of our trip, my husband chose 3 hours so we put all of the 3 hour options into a bowl. He drew Port Saint Lucie, which was an area I really wanted to go to and thrilled that he picked. When we were about halfway to our destination, we searched breweries in the area. Right away, Islamorada Beer Company popped up, which is one of our favorite stops in the Keys! We immediately plugged it into the GPS; Islamorada Beer Company is technically in Fort Pierce so we figured we’d start there and make our way to Port Saint Lucie.

Spoiler alert – we didn’t!

I’m going to share our weekend in the Fort Pierce area, but please know that this isn’t a comprehensive guide. We love to be spontaneous, and obviously this trip was just that. That means that we didn’t worry about checking off everything there is to do. In fact, missing a few things is OK with us because then we have an excuse to come back!

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Islamorada Beer Co: Fort Pierce, Florida

Islamorada Beer Company is located in Fort Pierce, about 30 minutes north of Port Saint Lucie. If you’ve been to their location in Islamorada and loved it like we did, then you’ll love their Fort Pierce location as well. It’s big, bright, and fun with great beers. My favorite is the Coconut Key Lime Ale. It tastes like vacation in a can. We had just finished our last Coconut Key Lime Ale at home from our last trip to the Keys, so it was great to pick up another 6 pack to keep in our fridge.

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Sailfish: Fort Pierce, Florida

From Islamorada Beer Company, we googled nearby breweries and Sailfish popped up at the exact same time that someone on Instagram recommended we stop there next. This place has the best atmosphere! Everything was so different in the world because of the pandemic, and this place handled it wonderfully. They had a very organized one-way traffic flow throughout their indoor area and plenty of outdoor seating. I don’t know what it looks like in normal, non-pandemic times, but it was so lovely and not too crowded. We loved their beer – my favorite was Pikey’s Red, and enjoying it with live music was icing on the cake. While sipping our drinks and listening to the music, my husband and I agreed that we weren’t going to be making it to Port Saint Lucie. We’d fallen in love with Fort Pierce and decided to stay there for the night.

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Harborcove Bar and Grill: Fort Pierce, Florida

We headed to Harborcove Bar and Grill for dinner. There was a 45 minute wait, so we grabbed a drink and wandered the marina looking at the yachts. It’s the happiest I’ve ever been having to wait for a table before. The location of this restaurant is spectacular. The only downside of this restaurant was that every time we walked by the restrooms, there was a very long line. And I’m assuming that the restaurant was at approximately half capacity given social distancing restrictions. If I’m correct, I’d hate to see how long the lines would be under normal circumstances. Again – very slight issue, but worth noting. We’ll definitely stop here for dinner again.

After dinner, we called it a night, and the next morning we woke up early ready to explore. Our first mission was to find coffee, but apparently we were up too early because most coffee shops weren’t open yet so we went on with our day, hoping to find a good place to find along the way. We crossed the bridge to A1A and thoroughly enjoyed the drive going to a destination we were unsure of – we just kind of knew we’d know when we found it. It was a cloudy day and it looked like the skies would break at any point in time.

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BunkHouse Coffee Bar: Jensen Beach, Florida

After traveling south enough, we found a coffee shop in Jensen Beach, BunkHouse Coffee Bar. It seemed to be the place to be by locals and everyone knew each other by name. Meanwhile, the dog (who I’m pretty sure owned the place) knew which customers would be providing her bits of their food. We got acai bowls for the very first time and brought them and our plant-based coffee to the beach.

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The beach was absolutely breathtaking. Living on the Gulf side, we are used to calm waters so we thoroughly enjoyed watching the waves roll in. There was a storm brewing in the ocean, so they were large waves and the only time I’ve seen waves this large was in Hawaii. The entire time we were there, the sky looked like it was going to break open at any second, but it never did. We left after a couple hours but agreed that we could have stayed there all day.

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Castaways Gastropub: Jensen Beach, Florida

We left the beach unsure whether we’d stay area another night. We headed to Castaways Gastropub for a couple of flights and discuss whether we’d stay or go. Their food looked delicious and I’m sad that we weren’t hungry because I think we really missed out. We also loved our waitress, who was patient as we picked through their long list of craft beer options. Another place we’d love to come back to!

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Ocean Republic Brewing: Stuart, Florida

Next, we went to Ocean Republic Brewing. Perhaps I’m biased because it would take a lot for me to dislike a brewery dedicated to the ocean, but I loved this place. I have about 10 breweries that I exclaim are my favorite, and this has to be one of them. I’d never be able to actually pick a favorite, so please don’t make me, but this one would definitely be in the running. Our waiter was amazing and so were the mac and cheese egg rolls. The only disappointment was that it started to rain and we couldn’t enjoy their beautiful outdoor space. After Ocean Republic, we decided to head home as the weather was calling for rain the rest of the weekend and we decided that one full day at home would be nice to clean and meal prep before the work week.

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We found Fort Pierce, Jensen Beach, and Stuart to be incredibly charming. I know we missed a lot, but it was a perfect, relaxing weekend getaway. It was exactly what we needed, and we can’t wait to get back!

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