This year, hop aboard and discover a new Fourth of July tradition! South Florida boaters can conveniently cruise past a beautiful slice of American history, located just around the bend at the Jupiter Inlet Light.

Read on as we explore this one-of-a-kind local landmark, and the surprising role it played in defending the United States during World War II. Take a look and cruise along with us!

The perfect location

The beautiful Jupiter Inlet Light was first constructed in 1860, after delays caused by the Third Seminole War—but its unique location, where the Indian River meets Jupiter Inlet, has been known as a strategic meeting spot for thousands of years by those who first called the area “home.” The U.S. Army surveyors who chose the location observed the strategic setting and chose it for their own benefit, a prediction that would prove especially wise over the course of the next century.

An essential Navy asset

During World War II, the Jupiter Inlet Light served as a strategic component in the United States’ Navy defenses. Because ships carrying essential fuel and war supplies would pass by the Jupiter area after departing from Texas and the Gulf, they were often targeted by German U-Boats obscured in the offshore waters—fortunately, the location of the Jupiter Inlet Light was perfectly positioned to help defend these ships from enemy attacks.

Under the nickname of “Station J,” the Light served as the Navy’s Radio Detection Finding Station and would intercept information from the German U-Boats before they could attack, allowing the United States to counter with their own defense and regain security in this region of the Atlantic. Who knew our quiet slice of South Florida played such an essential role in safeguarding the United States during some of its largest war efforts?

Cruising Jupiter Inlet today

Though it no longer serves a military role, the Jupiter Inlet Light and surrounding area are still a marine mainstay for those who cruise the area—a beautiful landmark whose red color, and surrounding bright blue H2O, feel especially worthy of a Fourth of July visit! Though the Light is closed this Fourth of July weekend, you can still cruise along its gorgeous shores and remember its important role in history as you go—plus, you can even experience the view from atop the Light online!

And of course, the fun extends far beyond the Light as well. Venture out through Jupiter Inlet and discover a world-class fishing scene where mangrove snappers, pompano and other favorite catches abound; even further, find a challenge in popular species like sailfish and mahi-mahi, too. The bottom line? You can’t go wrong with a Fourth of July weekend cruise along Jupiter’s lush shores, especially perfect for those craving a safe, socially distanced adventure out on the water.

Wherever you cruise this Fourth of July weekend, we hope you stay safe and enjoy the ride to the fullest!