Getting There . . .The headquarters and visitor center is located on the mainland portion of the Refuge on off U.S. Federal Highway 1, two miles south of Bridge Road (State Road 708) in Hobe Sound, Florida. It is located 20 miles north of West Palm Beach and 20 miles south of Stuart, Florida.in Martin County, Florida. At the headquarters you can visit an exhibit room featuring live animals, gift shop, environmental education classroom, and walk a short nature trail to the Indian River Lagoon. The Hobe Sound Nature Center, a nonprofit partner with the Refuge, operates the exhibit room, gift shop, and classroom. With more than 121,000 visitors a year, children of all ages learn about the beauty of these unique Florida environments and participate in turtle walks, summer camps, evening forums, and scrub tours. For additional information about the Nature Center programs please call 772-546-2067. To contact the refuge manager call 772-546-6141.
Points of Interest . . . The Refuge Visitor CenterJuvenile Gopher Tortoise on exhibit at the Visitor CenterThe Refuge Visitor Center is free and open Monday through Saturday, 9am-3pm. Here you can see a diverse array of reptiles, amphibians, fish and insects along with some interpretive displays. The Visitor Center is operated by a non-profit partner of the Refuge, the Hobe Sound Nature Center, Inc. The Hobe Sound Nature Center, Inc. also operates a gift shop within the Visitor Center. Visitor Center displays
Indian River LagoonThe Indian River Lagoon beach can be accessed from the Visitor Center Parking lot. Here visitors can enjoy the mellow atmosphere with minimal waves. Fishing is also popular in this area. Collectively, the entire Indian River Lagoon is the most biodiverse lagoon ecosystem in the Northern hemisphere and provides habitat for over 2,200 animals and 2,100 species of plants, 35 of which are listed as threatened or endangered.Hiking TrailsLagoon TrailSeveral short trails are located around the Visitor Center. These trails explore the sand pine scrub, hardwood hammock and mangrove habitats. While hiking our trails, it’s not uncommon to see a gopher tortoise munching on grass, an osprey bringing fish to its young, or a mangrove crab scurrying across the sand. In total there are 1.5 miles of trails. Leashed dogs are permitted in this area of the Refuge only.Atlantic Ocean BeachHobe Sound BeachLocated on Jupiter Island at the north end of North Beach Road, we manage one of the largest contiguous sections of undeveloped beach in Southeast Florida. Here you can enjoy the sunshine either while fishing, viewing wildlife, sunbathing, or just taking a nice walk along the 3.5 mile stretch of beach.Know Before You Go . . .
Prohibited Activities . . .Please keep in mind that the Refuge prohibits certain activities, including but not limited to:
For more information, please send an email to: HobeSound@fws.gov
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Florida is the only state in the continental U.S. where leatherbacks (Dermochelys coriacea), an endangered species, regularly nest.