Humans are not just the ones with secrets. Places have lots of secrets too, specifically treasures. Have you ever heard of Mel Fisher? Well, he’s an American treasure hunter who discovered one of the most valued treasures in the Florida waters. Do you want to be like him and find lost treasures in Florida? If your answer is a big yes, then keep reading.
The 15 Best Places to Find Lost Treasure in Florida
1. Vero Beach – Vero Beach, Florida – Google Maps
Vero Beach has an estimated population of 15,220 and is 135 miles north of Miami. (source)
This city has a dense suburban feeling that makes it a perfect place for those who want to relax and have a getaway. Henry T. Gifford was one of the first residents in Vero Beach during the year 1887. (source)
Vero Beach is known to be the paradise and home of the wealthy. You can find three billionaires in Vero Beach included in Forbe’s list of the wealthiest people in America. (source) However, you don’t only see rich people in Vero Beach; rich people are also created here, given how many have found millions of dollars worth of treasures here.
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2. Wabasso Beach Park – Wabasso Beach Park – Google Maps
Wabasso Beach Park is an excellent location for both treasure hunters and surfers. This beach is known to have silver coins buried in its sand. (source). But that’s not all that makes this beach so great. Wabasso Beach also has giant waves making it perfect to surf on.
A man was said to have found at least 13 million dollars worth of treasure within the waters of Wabasso Beach in Florida. He distributed the treasure he found to his fellow treasure hunters and even donated some of it to museums. (source)
Though, if you’re planning to go and scout for treasures here, make sure to take note of the opening and closing times of Wabasso Beach. It opens at around seven in the morning and closes at sunset. (source)
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3. Bonsteel Park – Bonsteel Park – Google Maps
Bonsteel Park is a community beach and a great location if you plan to fish or have a hike. Of course, it’s also a great place to find treasures, as people believed that there was a small Spanish vessel that got shipwrecked in the waters of Bonsteel Beach Park. (source)
4. Melbourne Beach – Melbourne Beach – Google Maps
Melbourne beach is one of the oldest community beaches in Florida. This beach is known for its white sand and crystal-clear waters that keep tourists coming back. However, several prohibited activities on Melbourne Beach include sunbathing, sports, and lying on blankets on the sand.
Pieces of silver can be seen on the shores of Melbourne Beach. You can also take a deep dive into the waters of Melbourne Beach to discover silver platters, just like previous divers on this beach. (source)
5. Aquarina Beach – Aquarina Beach Dr – Google Maps
Aquarina Beach is located in Brevard Country’s barrier island between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River Lagoon. Various activities, including golfing, tennis, and boat launching, are available on Aquarina Beach.
However, the fun begins when you bring out your diving gear, such as jewels and coins from a shipwreck near the waters of Aquarina Beach. (source)
6. Sebastian Inlet – Sebastian Inlet – Google Maps
Sebastian Inlet was a district formed in 1919 as a legislative power to maintain the connection between the Indian River and the Atlantic Ocean. (source) It is located about 90 miles away from Orlando and about 95 miles away from West Palm Beach. (source)
Sebastian Inlet is located in central Florida and is known to be a good fishing spot. But fish aren’t the only thing you can find in Sebastian Inlet. Pieces of jewelry and other artifacts were found near Sebastian Inlet in 1988. (source)
7. Fort Pierce Florida – Fort Pierce – Google Maps
Fort Pierce is one of the oldest communities in Florida and was incorporated in 1901. (source) It has been known as the Sunrise City and the hub of St. Lucie County for over a hundred years. (source) This location is the best place to go if you’re looking to find cultural attractions, recreation spots, and nature hubs.
The area near Fort Pierce also contains a lot of treasure. Discovered in the Atlantic ocean, located just north of Fort Pierce, was a cannon. (source) Apart from this, a family of treasure hunters found gold artifacts near Fort Pierce. The golden artifacts were said to be worth more than a million dollars. (source)
8. Pompano Beach – Pompano Beach – Google Maps
Pompano Beach is the fifth oldest city in South Florida. The city’s population rose massively in the 1920s. (source) The name of the town takes the name from the pompano fish. (source) Pompano Beach sits between Palm Beach and Miami.
Out of all the activities you can do here, treasure hunting is the most interesting. There is a Shipwreck Park in Pompano Beach that promises you a box of gold if you manage to swim 126 feet underwater. (source)
9. South Beach Park – South Beach Park, Boca Raton – Google Maps
South Beach is a part of Miami Beach and is visual near the bay of downtown Miami. People who reside in Miami often say that the safest part of the city is in the west. (source)
South Beach’s sunny climate was used as a land for growing coconuts from the late 1800s to the early 1900s. (source) The Lum brothers who purchased 160 acres of the land, left it in the year 1886. They left the land to a man named John Collins. (source)
South Beach Park is the most popular beach in Florida, with lots of restaurants, boutiques, and bars, making it a popular tourist spot.
South Beach is the place where the young and wealthy often gather. Beach Park has a large pavilion that allows you to breathe fresh air.
10. Amelia Island – Amelia Island – Google Maps
Amelia Island takes its name after King Princess Amelia, the daughter of King George II. (source) You can see many million dollars’ worth of houses and resorts on Amelia Island. (source)
Amelia Island is known for its amazing beaches and clean water. However, it’s also known as an island with buried treasures.
A little girl from Amelia Island found while making mud-pies in their backyard silver and copper coins from 1683-1772. In the same backyard, a man also found 17,000 silver coins, grapeshot, arrowheads, cannonballs, and human bones. (source)
11. Pepper Park Beach – Pepper Park Beach – Google Maps
Pepper Park Beach is a 52-acre park located behind the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum. (source) Pepper Park Beach’s name comes after the late senator from Florida named Claude Pepper. (source) Do note that dogs are not allowed in Pepper Park Beach; however, there is a doggy beach nearby called Walton Rocks.
12. La Playa Beach – LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort – Google Maps
La Playa Beach is full of clear and sparkling water, making it an excellent stay when you’re trying to relax. However, that’s not all there is to this beach. La Playa is also known to be a treasure trove.
A man in Florida once found 56 diamonds and 16 emeralds by using his metal detector in La Playa Beach. Another treasure-related incident occurred in La Playa when a man found a penny from the 17th century and sold it for a million dollars at an auction. (source)
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13. Seagrape Trail Beach – Seagrape Trail Beach Access – Google Maps
Seagrape Trail Beach is a secluded beach estimated to be half a mile away from Country Road 510. Many silver coins from the 1715 shipwreck are said to be visible near Seagrape Trail Beach. (source)
14. Florida Keys – Florida Keys – Google Maps
The Florida Keys is located on the southern coast of Florida and is 91 miles away from Miami. Apart from scuba diving, boating, and fish sporting, you can also go treasure hunting in the Florida keys, as the missing gold, silver coins, and emeralds from a Spanish shipwreck has yet to be found. (source).
However, it’s best to avoid the Florida Keys from June to November, as those months have the heaviest storms. Also, it would be challenging, and a hassle to metal detect in wet and sticky sand. (source)
15. Lori Wilson Park – Lori Wilson Park – Google Maps
Lori Wilson Park is a 32.43-acre beach park with six dune crossovers. (source) Lori Wilson Park is located inside the heart of one of the prettiest beaches in Florida called Cocoa Beach in Brevard County. Lori Wilson Park has soft and clean sand, making it great to go barefoot and metal detect on the sand.
Treasure In Florida
- During her little sister’s birthday, Eric Schmitt found one million worth of gold in Fort Pierce, Florida. His little sister came down to Standford to be with their family and told Eric that they would find gold that morning. They hadn’t found treasure in the same area for years and were surprised by their discovery. (source)
- A man found a portion of the two major treasure fleets that the late King Philip V of Spain lost in the Florida Keys. He found eight Spanish pieces and a piece of gold from Mexico City. (source)
- Mel Fisher and his crew found almost half a million worth of gold, silver, and jewels in 1985. Mel Fisher had to endure an eight-year legal battle to keep his treasures. However, while he did win this case, there was a provision that he had to donate 20% to the state of Florida. (source)
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Is It Legal to Metal Detect in Florida?
The state of Florida allows metal detecting. You don’t need to get a permit before you metal detect and are free to do so on public beaches in Florida. However, you’re not permitted to destroy or remove neutral elements from parks and beaches. (source)
Moreover, you’re not allowed to metal detect in specific places, such as wetlands, environmentally sensitive locations, and historical places. (source)
Can I Keep Treasure Found in Florida?
Generally, Florida allows treasure hunters to keep half the amount of their findings. (source) However, some counties, parks, and private beaches may require you to report the item you’ve found to check if it is lost treasure or belongs to someone. (source)
Florida Treasure In the News
- William Bartlett explored a three-hundred-year-old shipwreck. He found his first Spanish gold coin in the year 2017. He and another treasure hunter named Dan Beckingham found 4.5 million dollars worth of gold in the shallow waters of Florida. (source)
- A 17-year-old boy from Florida, Nick Amelio, found a Mexico City Gold 2 Escudo during one of his dives. (source)
- There’s a shipwreck in Florida that contains 3,000,000 silver coins near the treasure coast of Florida. A hurricane destroyed 11 ships that carried various treasures, including gold coins, artifacts, and silver coins. (source)
Stories Of Treasure In Florida
- Blackbeard, who often went by Edward Teach, visited the Isles of Shoals in 1710. It was said to be his first visit to the island. He would often visit the island ever since, but in 1715, it is believed that he had buried an immense treasure on White Island. (source)
- More than a hundred and fifty years ago, pirates roamed around the island of Useppa. This island was once a prison for a sixteen-year-old girl with noble Spanish blood and is the youngest daughter of the Viceroy of Mexico. Gasparilla brutally murdered her. (source)
- Jean Lafitte, a famous pirate, buried his treasures along the coasts of Florida. Many of his consorts sailed along the Florida coast and planned to make a settlement in the Tampa Bay area in 1810. (source)
Books About Treasure in Florida
Guide to Modern Metal Detecting: Three Free Bonus Sections on Ocean Beach Detecting in Florida by John Rapp
This book is great for those with little to no experience in metal detecting. You can find many helpful tips and insights on getting started on your metal detecting journey in Florida in this book.
Metal Detecting in Florida: Metal Detecting Log Book for Local Backyard Treasure Seekers by Emily Reyes-Ellis
This book can help you track your metal detecting progress. It provides a guide, a checklist, and a journal for you to monitor your metal detecting performance within a specific timeframe accurately.
Lost Mines and Treasure Tales of the Southeastern United States: Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina by Ivan Herring
This book is an excellent choice for both entertainment and education if you’re a treasure hunter of any level, as it provides 89 stories about stories and legends about lost treasure in four states in the US, orienting you to different places where you could potentially find a gem.
My Found Treasures in Florida: Metal Detection Log Book by R Suchona Publications
This book is excellent for those who want to keep a metal detecting journal with them while doing the actual activity.
It’s so handy that you can track your updates, findings, and inventory on the fly with this portable and convenient and portable tracking journal. It also comes with room for pictures to help you document your journey.
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David Humphries, Writer and Creator of METAL DETECTING TIPS. After borrowing my son’s detector and finding $.25. I felt like a treasure hunter. FREE MONEY! I was seriously bitten by the metal detecting bug.
- Five billionaires on the Forbes list have Treasure Coast ties. (2010). TC Palm. https://archive.tcpalm.com/news/five-billionaires-on-forbes-list-have-treasure-coast-ties-ep-389633322-345782452.html/
- Blumberg, P. O. (February 29, 2020). Silver Coins from 300-Year-Old Shipwreck Discovered in Wabasso Beach, Florida. Southern Living. https://www.southernliving.com/news/local-news/silver-coins-300-year-old-ships-discovered-wabasso-beach-florida
- The Treasure Guide. (May 21, 2022). 2/19/17 Report – Theories About the Cobs of Bonsteel Park Beach. The Democratization of Archaeology and Our Cultural Heritage. Treasure Beaches Report. http://treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com/2017/02/21917-report-theories-about-cobs-of.html
- Landry, M. (November 23, 2021). Florida’s Treasure Coast: History & Tips. Garden Communities FL Blog. https://blog.gardencommunitiesfl.com/2021/09/01/floridas-treasure-coast/
- Foreman, K. (April 28, 2022). The Best Treasure Hunting Beaches in Vero Area, Florida. Travel Tips – USA Today. https://traveltips.usatoday.com/treasure-hunting-beaches-vero-area-florida-22607.html
- The History of Sebastian Inlet. (2022). Sebastian Inlet District. https://www.sitd.us/the-history-of-sebastian-inlet#:%7E:text=On%20May%2023%2C%201919%2C%20the,valid%20until%20December%2031%2C%201923.
- Sebastian River Area Chamber of Commerce. (March 25, 2019). Treasure Hunting. https://www.sebastianchamber.com/treasure-hunting/
- Florida history: Cannon from 1715 Spanish fleet on view in Fort Pierce (tcpalm.com)
- Sun Sentinel – We are currently unavailable in your region. (2020). Sun-Sentinel. https://www.tribpub.com/gdpr/sun-sentinel.com/
- Reyes, K. (February 15, 2021). History of South Beach, Miami | The Local House Miami Beach, FL. The Local House | Miami. https://localhouse.com/blog/the-history-of-south-beach-miami#:%7E:text=In%20the%20late%201800s%20and,small%20number%20of%20residential%20properties.
- Poynter, B. (August 24, 2021). A Brief History of Amelia Island. Timoti’s. http://www.timotis.com/news-1/history-amelia-island
- Amelia Island Affluence: Average Household Income $80,000, Net Worth $700,000 – Amelia Island Living. (2013). Amelia Island Living. https://ameliaislandliving.com/fernandinabeach/2013/04/amelia-island-affluence-average-household-income-80000-net-worth-700000/
- Press Release. (April 12, 2021). Looking for treasure on Amelia Island. Fernandina Observer. https://fernandinaobserver.com/2021/04/12/looking-for-treasure-on-amelia-island/
- https:\/\/visitstlucie.com\/author\/hardisont\/#author. (November 26, 2019). Pepper Park Beach | Visit St. Lucie. Visit St. Lucie | Visit St. Lucie Tourism. https://visitstlucie.com/places/united-states/florida/fort-pierce/beaches-2/pepper-park-beach/
- By Louis Berney, Naples News. (March 2, 2019). Buried treasure? Naples metal detectives seek to unearth beach artifacts. Naples. https://eu.naplesnews.com/story/news/local/2019/03/02/metal-detectives-seek-find-treasures-naples-beaches/2995848002/
- J. (December 9, 2021). 17 Things You Need to Know Before Visiting Key West, Florida. Destination Daydreamer. https://www.destinationdaydreamer.com/17-things-you-need-to-know-before-visiting-key-west-florida/
- Zimmer, J. (May 18, 2020). Florida Laws for Metal Detecting. Legal Beagle. https://legalbeagle.com/7219970-florida-laws-metal-detecting.html
- Green, J. (April 28, 2022). How to Find Gold in Florida Beaches. Travel Tips – USA Today. https://traveltips.usatoday.com/gold-florida-beaches-107761.html
- Fox News. (December 6, 2016). Divers find $4.5 million worth of gold coins in a sunken 1715 Spanish ship off the Florida coast. https://www.foxnews.com/lifestyle/divers-find-4-5-million-worth-of-gold-coins-in-sunken-1715-spanish-ship-off-florida-coast
- Orlando, F. (September 24, 2021). Florida teen finds rare gold coin during treasure dive. FOX 35 Orlando. https://www.fox35orlando.com/news/florida-teen-find-rare-gold-coin-during-treasure-dive