Amelia Island is an unspoiled paradise in America. If you are yet to discover this island in Florida, you should consider it for your next vacation. The following Amelia Island Guide will help you to understand why this destination is perfect for your upcoming island paradise getaway.
Amelia Island is located in Florida, just a little off the Coast of Nassau County and thirty minutes driving distance to the north of Jacksonville airport. It can be found in the most southern region of the barrier islands on the Atlantic coast which extend from North Carolina to Florida. This vacation destination is rated as a truly unique and enjoyable place because it has miles of untouched sandy beaches, luxurious and magnificent resorts, delightful bed and breakfast facilities, world-class tennis and golfing, as well as a fascinating and rich history.
Speaking of history, this island carries a cherished and rich historical life into a pleasant coastal town setting today. It’s the only North American area to experience a sovereign rule which comes under eight flags. This merges a number of ethnic influences which makes the island very unique. Amelia Island is recognized by The National Trust for Historic Preservation as a unique vacation destination.
Amelia Island Guide
Amelia is a very small island of around 18.2 square miles, but it is divided in three sections. You can find Fernandina Beach towards the north end and this is first section. The middle section is called Amelia Island and the third is made up of the Amelia Island Plantation.
If you are a history buff, you should not miss the historical district in Fernandina Beach that covers a fifty block area. Here you can find a number of restored buildings and homes. Centre Street is in the middle of Fernandina Beach and this
is where you will find Florida’s oldest saloon, as well as a selection of art galleries, ice cream shops, real estate offices and t-shirt stores.
Fun and Activities for Everyone
When you visit this destination there will not be shortage of activities as there is something to satisfy everyone. These activities range from great fishing trips to idyllic scenic tours on charter boats. If you are into fishing you can get a chance to experience a wide variety of wildlife such as whales, dolphins, manatees and sea turtles.
Other outdoor activities include biking, hiking, sailing, golfing, river cruises, tennis, volleyball, horseback riding, nature tours and nature watching.
This island is definitely for nature lovers as it offers a myriad of beautiful flora and fauna that truly embraces its natural tranquility. You can experience beautiful wetland marshes, cool shaded area under the canopy of live oaks which are centuries old, the maritime forest and the calmness of the wide stretches of coastline and beach. You could watch the green and loggerhead turtles which nest along the shores each year if you are visiting between May to October. The Amelia Island State Park offers more than 200 acres of protected, unspoiled wilderness for you to explore and enjoy. It’s also one of the few areas which allow horseback riding on beach along the Atlantic coast.
You can also enjoy a lot of sightseeing during the day. Visit the historic district where you can observe stunning architecture with Victorian styles. This can be done on a horse-drawn carriage, the perfect transportation to experience all the charm that this island has to offer. You could take a thirty minute tour on a carriage to go through the local neighborhoods with guides who will point out the pirates and haunted houses from centuries ago. While exploring this destination you will also see huge ancient trees lining the way, making it look like the road was moved in order to accommodate them.
There are also many annual events in Amelia Island for you to check out. If you are visiting in February you can watch the Annual Restoration Foundation Antique Show. You should not miss the Concours d Elegance at the Ritz Carlton, a car show which showcases antique vehicles in March. Women’ Tennis Tour at the Amelia Island Plantation, Bausch & Lomb, is a must-see event for all tennis enthusiasts. The Isle of Eight Flags is a Shrimp Festival that is held annually in May to celebrate the actual origin of the modern-day shrimping industry. There is also the Chamber Music Festival at Amelia Island in May. The month of June offers the Kingfish Tournament of Champions, Nassau Sportfishing, and this is held in Fernandina Beach at the marina downtown. The Jazz Festival is another event to check out if you are music lover, especially jazz. This event is held annually in October.
Amelia Island also offers a unique nightlife. You will get to enjoy quiet and nice evenings on the beach with acoustical or jazz music. If you want to experience a special night out in the town you could go on the sunset cruises.
There is definitely more than enough activities to keep you happy if you are looking for excitement and fun. When you have had enough of the outdoor activities you can always sit back and relax to watch the waves crashing against the sandy shore on a beautiful pristine beach.
Amelia Island Accommodations
Over the years, the heavy influx of tourists has resulted in many world class resorts opening up all across Amelia Island. These facilities allow visitors to enjoy all that the destination has to offer in luxury. It could be a bit of a challenge for you to find the ideal beach resort in Florida, but this will not be a problem if you are visiting Amelia Island. As a thirteen mile-long barrier island, this area boasts some of the most stunning beaches on the east coast of Florida. Great effort has been taken to maintain the exquisite natural surroundings whilst also ensuring that visitors are provided with luxury, comfort and enjoyment.
You are guaranteed to experience one of the most relaxing time ever if you spend your holiday in one of the luxury resorts. Aside from the serene nature settings and the beautiful beaches, a luxury resort at Amelia Island will offer world class golfing, amazing spas, excellent dining options, a rich history and a lot more.
Some of the top rated hotels in Amelia Island include Ritz-Carlton, Addison and Amelia Island Plantation Inn. Two of the most luxurious resorts in Florida which are eighteen miles long and three miles wide can be found in this area.
In addition to the world class resorts and hotels, you can find a number of rentals which include budget-friendly inns, condos, villas, cottages and bed and breakfasts. It’s worth mentioning that the Amelia Island Williams House is a big bed and breakfast today and it sits on a lot with a size of five thousand square foot with nineteenth century fencing at the entry way. It is Victorian style mansion that was built in 1856 by a rich Boston Banker. Not only is it a good place to stay, but it’s a sight that is worth seeing.
Once you find the perfect accommodation you will have a comfortable base from which to explore Amelia Island’s natural paradise.
Amelia Island Restaurants
There are many restaurants in Amelia Island so you will find some wonderful places to enjoy fine and casual dining. Most of the local restaurants offer outdoor seating, fantastic water views and entertainment which include nightly specials and acoustical music. Here are a few of the options that you can consider:
Sliders Seaside Grill is the only beachfront tiki dining and bar. This place must be on your list of restaurants as it is as popular favorite for visitors. You cannot miss it is as its right on the beach at Fletcher.
The Surf is one more favorite and it is located on Fletcher across the road from the beach. Here you can enjoy meals in a large outdoor seating area. They also have live music on most nights.
Cafe 4750 at The Ritz-Carlton offers an amicable cuisine that is inspired by local influences as well as easy Italian favorites.
Amelia Island Weather
There is an abundance of mild temperatures and sunshine all year round, so it is always the right time to visit this destination. In winter, Amelia Island has a comfortable weather with crisp dry air that is right for long walks on the beach, golfing as well as for watching innumerable varieties of birds or wildlife. Autumn offers constant sea breeze and other changes to the island as the average temperature and rainfall decreases. Summer brings temperatures in the nineties during the days with cool winds. The sun setting in the late afternoons bring even more agreeable temperatures and offer the perfect opportunity for you to enjoy outdoor activities well into the evening. The island will awaken during spring time with highs in the seventies, breezy days, blue skies and afternoon showers. Regardless of the time that you choose to visit, you will get to enjoy the perfect weather in Amelia Island.
All in all, Amelia Island is truly a special place for anyone to visit. This island continues to be a top destination for anyone who is looking for a paradise with its wide sandy beaches and pristine waters, quaint architecture, rich history and natural beauty. From this Amelia Island Guide, you can see that there are a lot of things for you to see, do and experience if you spend your next vacation in this area. You are sure to leave this destination with a lifetime of memories, whether your trip is a short or long one.