Stuart was recently touted as the best coastal small town in the US, and the new ranking is well deserved. Beautiful Stuart, Florida, offers a fantastic lifestyle. Many people love and adore the city and believe it’s the perfect place to escape. Below are a few reasons Stuart, Florida, ranks first among all coastal small towns in the country.

Stuart, Florida: Off the Beaten Path

US Today referred to Stuart, Florida, as under the radar. The town is off the beaten path and a hidden gem on the Treasure Coast. Residents appreciate the city’s manageable size and love the smaller population. The population is just under 20,000, which gives residents the opportunity to form a community and get to know their neighbors. The smaller population also means less congestion and traffic, making the coastal town a more relaxing place.

Another reason Stuart, Florida, ranks number one is that the town has all the conveniences of a larger city but with small-town charm. Locals can easily find things to do, as the town has excellent amenities that provide a convenient lifestyle.

Stuart also has a wonderful mild climate. Many Northerners head to the city during winter, and Stuart is a popular destination for purchasing vacation property. Stuart, Florida, is a tourist destination, but it’s also a great place for daily living.

Stuart’s Prime Location on the Water

The city is also well-positioned, in a great location close to the ocean. The beach is a beautiful place to relax and rejuvenate. The water provides a tranquil escape from the stress of life. For many, being on and in the water is an incredible experience. Easy access to places like Stuart Beach and the tranquility of the Atlantic Ocean makes Stuart, Florida, a fantastic top-rated city. US Today highlights the town’s access to the St. Lucie River, perfect for water lovers who enjoy kayaking, paddle boating, and other water sports.

Stuart has waterfront niches like Port Salerno and isn’t far from other amazing cities on the Treasure Coast. Residents are only a short drive to other unique coastal towns like Jensen Beach, Jupiter Island, and Vero Beach, Florida. The Treasure Coast is filled with hidden gems that Stuart’s residents can easily access. Additionally, Stuart is less than an hour’s drive to Palm Beach International Airport.

The Best Place to Fish on the Treasure Coast

Stuart, Florida, is known as the Sailfish Capital of the World. A journalist who worked for the Miami Herald gave the town that moniker in 1938. The journalist reported that an estimated thousand sailfish were caught during a strong migration season.

During the 1940s and 50s, people came from around the world to catch sailfish in Stuart. Sailfish are usually caught in the colder months, but Stuart’s mild climate makes it easy to catch them year-round. In 1957, the Stuart Chamber of Commerce officially named the city the Sailfish Capital of the World. Countless fishermen have visited Stuart for the beautiful waterways filled with abundant fish.

Charming Shopping, Restaurants and Entertainment

Downtown Stuart offers residents the opportunity to visit unique stores, boutiques, restaurants, and entertainment. Locals can shop at family-owned stores such as the April Daze Boutique, The Island Cotton Company, or High Tides Clothing Boutique.

Another factor that sets Stuart apart from other coastal cities is the fantastic restaurants all over town. The town has abundant seafood restaurants, but there’s a broad range of places to get cuisine, from the Stuart Boathouse to the Riverwalk Cafe and Oyster Bar to the Waterfront Restaurant. There are a variety of great options for foodies in Stuart, Florida.

Stuart is also known for its Lyric Theater. The venue hosts concerts, plays, orchestras, and a broad range of entertainment for the city. The Lyric Theater is a fantastic venue that sets Stuart, Florida, apart from other coastal towns. Residents also have easy access to great golf courses. Locals can play at The Shores of North River Golf Club, Champion’s Club, and the Florida Club, which have beautiful courses.

Although Stuart ranks as the no. 1 coastal small town in the US, it wasn’t the only city in Florida to make the list. Key West, Florida, came in at number three. Florida was the only state with two coastal cities ranked as the best seaside towns in the nation. The Sunshine State’s Treasure Coast is one of the best regions of the state and ranks high as one of the best places to live.