Amelia Island, Florida: Serene history and coastal charm.
Arts & Culture
Amelia Island, Florida, offers a serene coastal haven with sun-kissed beaches, historic charm and a vibrant cultural scene. From the 19th-century architecture in Fernandina Beach to the inviting local eateries, it's a delightful blend of natural beauty and Southern hospitality, beckoning visitors to bask in its timeless allure.
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Where to stay in Amelia Island
Omni Amelia Island Resort
A luxurious oceanfront destination in Florida, offering world-class amenities, golf courses, a full-service spa, and breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island
Refined beachfront property with high-end rooms and suites.
$100 hotel / resort credit.
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Things to do in Amelia Island
Explore the Beaches: Bask in the beauty of the beach just steps from your hotel, or venture further to discover Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island State Park.
Discover Historical Sites: Visit the Amelia Island Museum of History and explore the historic district of Fernandina Beach with its well-preserved 19th-century architecture and charming shops.
Discover Fort Clinch State Park, where the well-preserved 19th-century Fort Clinch invites visitors to step back in time, experience Civil War reenactments and enjoy insightful guided tours, all within a rich historical setting.
Ghost Tours: Embark on a thrilling ghost tour (or haunted bar crawl) in Fernandina, where the town's haunted past comes to life through chilling tales and eerie encounters, leaving visitors enthralled by its spectral mysteries.
Engage in Outdoor Activities: Engage in a range of outdoor activities, including scenic hikes and biking adventures at the renowned Egans Creek Greenway, where nature enthusiasts can revel in the island's breathtaking landscapes and tranquil ambiance. Watch out! You may ever spot a gator!
Golf Enthusiasts: Enjoy a golfing paradise, with top-notch courses like the prestigious Amelia River Golf Club and the Golf Club of Amelia Island, offering players an exceptional experience surrounded by the island's stunning natural beauty and expertly designed fairways
Kayak: There are numerous waterways to kayak in Amelia Island. Offering an immersive experience through serene waterways, allowing enthusiasts to observe diverse marine life and local bird species, all amidst the breathtaking coastal vistas.
Boat Tours: Indulge in an array of boat tours on Amelia Island, suitable for all ages, including sunset aults-only BYOB cruises, excursions to Cumberland Island, shrimp eco tours, cruisin’ tikis and thrilling fishing charters.
Attend Festivals and Events: Check out local festivals and events that celebrate the island's culture, such as the Amelia Island Jazz Festival (October), the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance (February/March) and the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival (May).
1. St. Augustine, the oldest city in the U.S., boasts historical landmarks like Castillo de San Marcos and St. Augustine Lighthouse, while its cobblestone streets house charming shops and eateries. Visitors can enjoy the scenic St. Augustine Beach and Anastasia State Park, along with cultural attractions such as the Lightner Museum and the immersive Colonial Quarter. Moreover, you have the unique opportunity to sip from the Fountain of Youth. Trust me, I've done it!
2. Discover the diverse offerings of Jacksonville, Florida's largest city, including family-friendly attractions like the Jacksonville Zoo, scenic areas such as Riverside, historical sites like the Kingsley Plantation and engaging exhibits at the Museum of Science & History.
Places to eat & drink in Amelia Island
The Patio at Fifth and Ash: Offers a charming and relaxed outdoor dining experience with its delectable cuisine and inviting ambiance, perfect for enjoying a delightful meal in the heart of the town. My friends and I loved the “Charcuterie for Two” especially because it fed way more than two!
Sliders: Enjoy a casual dining experience with your feet in the sand, as the enticing aroma of their signature sliders and the gentle sea breeze create a perfect beachside ambiance for a relaxed and enjoyable meal. My families favorite is the Bangin’ Shrimp, be sure to try it!
Salt: Located in The Ritz-Carlton, offers a sophisticated yet inviting dining experience, where guests can relish expertly crafted contemporary coastal cuisine and savor the fresh flavors of the sea in a stylish and elegant setting. Just be aware, there is a dress code!
The Palace Saloon: Transport yourself through time in Florida's oldest bar, where history and spirits blend seamlessly, promising a lively night filled with laughter, stories, and perhaps a ghost tale or two. Be sure to try the world famous Pirate Punch!
Bob’s Steak & Chop House: Offers a luxurious dining experience, serving the finest cuts of steak in a stunning coastal setting.
Verandah: Offers an elegant dining experience, blending delectable flavors and impeccable service with the island's serene ambiance. The grouper has been a favorite of mine for years!
Green Turtle Tavern: If you're seeking a vibrant and lively hotspot, look no further!. It exudes a welcoming energy, serving a delightful fusion of flavors and refreshing libations, making it the perfect place to immerse yourself in the vibrant nightlife of the island. Try to go on a Friday or Saturday for the best bands!
Salt Life Food Shack: Boasts a vibrant and laid-back atmosphere, where diners can savor a delectable array of fresh seafood dishes and coastal-inspired flavors, all while soaking in the relaxed beachy vibes and lively energy of the island
Fantastic Fudge: A charming shop renowned for its delectable handcrafted fudge and irresistible ice cream, making it a must-visit for anyone craving a sweet treat in the area. It’s been my family’s go-to spot for years for desert after dinner!
Need to Know
For more travel tips, check out Fora Advisor Ann Pappas’s guide, 5 Days of Beaches & Happy Hours in Southwest Florida.
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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Florida.