Courting again to the sixteenth century, St. Augustine is America’s oldest metropolis. This charming seaside city is stuffed with historical past, lovely structure, and plenty of actions. One factor is for certain there isn’t a scarcity of issues to do in St. Augustine, Florida.
Moreover the historic features of St. Augustine, there are lots of different points of interest for guests too. Our checklist covers the entire greatest actions, each previous and new, and for all pursuits. No matter you select to do in St. Augustine, you might be certain to discover a enjoyable time.
1. Castillo de San Marcos
It’s onerous to overlook this large stone fortress looming over Matanzas Bay. In-built 1672 by the Spanish, Castillo de San Marcos is the oldest construction in St. Augustine, in addition to the oldest masonry fort in the complete United States.
All through the 1700s, British forces desperately tried to beat the fort, though its thick Spanish stone partitions might by no means be taken. Nevertheless, the fort was handed over to the British in 1763 when Florida turned a British colony.
The fort is now open to the general public to discover. It’s one of many must-see issues to do in St. Augustine. Guests can tour the staterooms and jail cells and take part in cannon firings and weaponry demonstrations. In case you’re on the lookout for among the best views in St. Augustine, climb to the highest of the gun deck; from right here, you’ll have panoramic views of the town skyline and crystal blue waters.
2. St. George Road
Working by St. Augustine’s coronary heart is St. George Road, a bustling space crammed with cafes, historic sights, and quite a few points of interest. In any respect hours of the day, you’ll discover locals and vacationers shuffling alongside this pedestrianized street for sightseeing, buying, and easily soaking within the vibrant environment of the town.
On our most up-to-date journey, we stayed at St. George Inn, situated proper on St. George Road. We had a stunning balcony on the second ground overlooking St. George Road, and so many points of interest and the perfect eating places in St. Augustine had been inside strolling distance.
A number of the highlights alongside St. George Road embody the Outdated Metropolis Gate, the Oldest Picket Faculty Home, and the Pena Peck Home. You’ll additionally discover quite a few museums dotted alongside the way in which, just like the Medieval Torture Museum and the Colonial Quarter.
A number of the greatest eating places in St. Augustine could be present in and round St. George Road. If you need a small chew head to Pizza Time, you received’t miss it as there may be normally a line. It was lately named #2 within the USA for the perfect pizza on Journey Advisor.
3. Hop-on Hop-off Trolley
Whereas most huge cities have hop-on-hop-off bus excursions to take individuals round to the key sights, St. Augustine has one thing somewhat bit totally different. Soar aboard their hop-on-hop-off trolley excursions, which is able to information you thru city on an old school trolley!
Your conductor will drive you previous greater than 100 St. Augustine points of interest whereas sharing real-life tales and commentary in regards to the totally different sights within the space.
In style St. Augustine points of interest alongside the route embody the Castillo de San Maros, Flagler Faculty, the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, and the St. Augustine Historical past Museum. Better of all, you’ll be capable of get off at any of the 22 stops to discover the points of interest and museums at your personal tempo. Whenever you’re prepared to maneuver on to your subsequent location, you possibly can board any of the scheduled trolleys to take you to your subsequent vacation spot.
4. St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum
Situated on Anastasia Island, the St. Augustine Lighthouse is a powerful sight to behold. The huge 165-foot tower is painted in black and white stripes, which could be seen for miles round. Because the oldest brick construction in St. Augustine, the St. Augustine Lighthouse is an enchanting perception into the town’s wealthy historical past.
In case you’re up for the problem, you possibly can climb the strenuous 219 steps to the highest of the lighthouse for breathtaking views of the town and Salt Run Lagoon. Or you possibly can go to the neighboring Maritime Museum, which comprises in depth reveals on WWII shipwrecks, the U.S. Coast Guard in St. Augustine, and a standard wood boat constructing.
The lighthouse can also be rumored to be haunted by the previous lighthouse keepers, making it a well-liked cease on many ghost excursions of St. Augustine. It’s been featured in a number of ghost-hunting exhibits and paranormal TV collection through the years, so don’t be afraid should you hear unusual noises throughout your go to!
5. Colonial Quarter
Step again in time with a go to to the Colonial Quarter to study all about St. Augustine’s 500-year-old historical past. This dwelling museum comprises quite a few points of interest that specify how each day life was performed through the sixteenth, seventeenth, and 18th centuries through the European settlement in America. On tour, you’ll see real-life blacksmith forging, musket loading, shipbuilding, and leatherworking demonstrations.
Moreover the guided tour, the Colonial Quarter is residence to quite a few eating places and outlets. Seize some tacos and a margarita on the Taberna del Caballo, an 18th-century-styled Spanish tavern the place you possibly can sit back and benefit from the sunshine on their out of doors patio. The Colonial Quarter additionally hosts reside live shows all year long – you possibly can verify their on-line calendar for actual dates.
6. St. Augustine Helicopter Tour
St. Augustine isn’t simply the oldest metropolis in the USA – it additionally occurs to be probably the most lovely! And what higher technique to see the spectacular panorama than from excessive within the air on a scenic helicopter flight? Examine charges now.
Your skilled captain will whisk you over the sandy shoreline and offer you a birds-eye view of St. Augustine points of interest, like Vilano Seaside, Conch Island, Porpoise Level, and St. Augustine Seaside. Throughout your flight, you’ll be capable of spot well-known landmarks just like the towering St. Augustine Lighthouse and fortified Castillo de San Marcos.
Though it’s not essentially the most budget-friendly exercise on this checklist, it’s nonetheless assured to be essentially the most memorable. Don’t neglect to carry your digital camera, since you’re going to wish to keep in mind these jaw-dropping views for years to come back!
7. Fort Mose Historic State Park
Though St. Augustine is principally identified for its Spanish affect, many individuals are unaware that it additionally performed a significant function in America’s Black historical past. Fort Mose Historic State Park was the positioning of the nation’s first free black settlement for slaves who escaped British colonial rule. The positioning was constructed and established by Spanish governor Handbook de Montiano in 1738, who wished to supply a secure haven for incoming refugees.
The settlement remained undiscovered till an archeological excavation in 1986 uncovered the unique fort. In addition they excavated quite a few artifacts, which may now be discovered within the Fort Most Historic State Park customer middle. As you stroll alongside the path, you’ll encounter a standard cooking hut, a historic backyard, and a Spanish-style boat. As among the best hidden St. Augustine gems, the Fort Mose Historic State Park is to not be missed throughout your journey.
8. St. Augustine Seaside
If crashing waves and white powdery sand sound like your thought of a picture-perfect trip, ensure that to spend a day on the lovely St. Augustine Seaside. Situated 5 miles from the historic downtown middle, St. Augustine Seaside is ideal for households and beachgoers. The 2-mile stretch of extensive seaside has a volleyball courtroom, kids’s splash floor, and a number of other nature trails.
On the north finish of the seaside, you’ll discover the St. John’s County Ocean and Fishing pier. If in case you have bought your fishing license, then you possibly can arrange a line right here. In any other case, the pier is a superb place for a stroll, particularly throughout sundown. In contrast to different seashores in Florida, St. Augustine Seaside isn’t crowded, which is good for anybody seeking to escape the bustle of metropolis life.
9. The Lightner Museum
In a metropolis as historic as St. Augustine, it’s essential to go to a number of museums to grasp St. Augustine’s affect on American historical past. Among the best locations to find out about St. Augustine’s historical past and tradition is on the Lightner Museum, which is housed within the Resort Alcazar (a surprising Spanish Renaissance constructing that’s value visiting in its personal proper).
Contained in the museum, you’ll discover a huge assortment of artifacts and objects from the Victorian period, together with stained glass, sculptures, and furnishings. You’ll even stroll by a Victorian village with recreated storefronts and outlets courting again to the 1800s. Along with the Victorian reveals, the Lightner Museum additionally has an industrial room containing an Egyptian mummy, numerous shells and rocks, and a number of Native American artifacts.
10. St. Augustine Ghost Tour
It ought to come as no shock that the oldest metropolis in America can also be one of many scariest. Haunted by paranormal exercise and forlorn ghosts, St. Augustine has a daunting and eerie historical past hidden deep inside its core. In case you’re all for studying extra about St. Augustine’s darkish aspect, you’ll wish to ebook a night ghost tour of the town.
As you stroll by the cobblestone streets and winding alleys at nightfall, you’ll find out about spine-tingling tales that date again to the seventeenth century. You’ll go to the Tolomoto Cemetary to find out about a number of the well-known souls buried beneath the bottom. You’ll additionally cease by an historical funeral parlor believed to be visited by the our bodies of previous residents. Though the excursions are usually extra academic than downright spooky, it’s suggested to go away any kids (or scaredy cats) again on the resort.
11. St. Augustine Alligator Farm
Courting again to 1893, the St. Augustine Alligator Farm has been entertaining households for over 120 years. What began as a small reptile exhibit on Anastasia Island has grown to be certainly one of Florida’s greatest accredited zoos. The Alligator Farm is the one place on this planet the place you possibly can see each species of alligator, crocodile, caiman, and gharial.
Along with the crocodiles, the St. Augustine Alligator Farm additionally has an unique chicken and monkey exhibit. There’s additionally an on-site chicken rookery, the place wild herons, storks, and egrets roam free among the many gardens. Thrill-seekers can ebook a trip on the Crocodile Crossing, a zipper line course that flies 35 toes over the alligator and crocodile ponds. The place else on this planet are you able to go ziplining over a number of the world’s most harmful creatures?
12. The Fountain of Youth
A go to to the 15-acre Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park is a must-see for any historical past buff. That is believed to be the spot the place Ponce de León discovered the elusive Fountain of Youth whereas touring from Puerto Rico to Florida in 1513. Whereas consuming or bathing within the water received’t technically grant you everlasting life or magnificence, the Fountain of Youth Park stays one of many prime issues to do in St. Augustine.
Though many individuals come to have a refreshing sip from the pure springs, there are many different family-friendly points of interest within the park. Re-created Spanish and Timucuan buildings have been constructed, which make clear what life was like earlier than the Spanish settlements. The park can also be a working archaeological dig website, and a number of other Timucuan burials and artifacts have been found during the last 100 years.
13. Anastasia State Park
Located on the peninsula of Anastasia Island, Anastasia State Park is the right vacation spot for out of doors lovers and nature lovers. This 1,600-acre park is residence to sandy seashores, tidal marshes, and dense mangrove forests. You’ll additionally discover the Outdated Spanish Coquina Quarries, an archeological website crammed with coquina stone used for the Castillo de San Marco fort. Stretching alongside the Atlantic Coast plain, the Anastasia State Park boasts a number of the most gorgeous rural landscapes in all of St. Augustine.
There are quite a few actions to take part in throughout your go to. Swimming, beachcombing, and chicken watching are highly regarded. You’ll additionally discover that the calm waters are excellent for kayaking and arise paddleboarding. In case you’re on the lookout for a little bit of contemporary air and train, you’ll discover a number of nature trails winding by the dunes and seashores. Whereas Anastasia State Park can simply be visiting as a day journey, it’s potential to spend the night time in one of many campsites situated contained in the park.
14. St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum
With greater than 800 artifacts and found treasures, the St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum is believed to comprise essentially the most pirate objects on this planet below one roof. The museum is residence to a number of distinctive artifacts, together with one of many solely three remaining Jolly Roger flags and one of many final genuine pirate treasure chests from Thomas Tew. You’ll additionally get to see Blackbeard’s unique firearm, in addition to actual gold that was found in his ship.
Along with the treasures on show, guests can fireplace an actual cannon off the gun deck (electronically) and watch a customized Disney 3D pirate present. For a singular expertise, we advocate reserving a Pirate guided tour. Led by your very personal pirate information, you’ll discover ways to tie the right knot, elevate the Jolly Roger flag, and take part in different swashbuckling actions.
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We hope we impressed you to go to St. Augustine and gave you a contemporary checklist of issues to do once you get there!