Amelia Island is a coastal retreat for residents and visitors alike. Miles of natural coastlines circumference the shore always reminding you’re on an Island. Lush, brilliant green, marsh grasses are breathtaking at sunset, and a drive down the narrow roads canopied with aging oaks, creates an unparalleled peacefulness in one’s soul.
A beachside bicycle or horseback ride, surf fishing, paddle boarding, or reading a book with your toes in the tide are favorite Island activities. A host of other attractions include casual and fine dining, award-winning spas, Big and Little Talbot Island State Parks, and Amelia Island is renowned as a best destination for golfers. The Island offers an extraordinary selection of public and private schools from pre-K through graduation.
Historic Fernandina Beach is the city on Amelia Island whose architecture offers a walk back in time while the dining and shopping remain contemporary. Victorian homes made Bed and Breakfasts line the downtown cobblestone streets as Fernandina Beach boasts its rich history with its nickname, “Isle of 8 Flags.” Eight powers have ruled the area since the 16th century. Hear all the secrets of its history and best-preserved architecture on a walking tour, horse-drawn carriage ride, sunset cruise around the Island, or with a visit to the Amelia Island Museum of History or Fort Clinch. Fernandina Beach’s Harbor on Amelia River invites boaters and sight-seers who enjoy live entertainment and sunsets at the waterfront dining.
Awards & Accolades:
- COME FOR SUMMER STAY FOREVER (#1) - Coastal Living, 2017
- BEST COASTAL SMALL TOWN (#3) - Fernandina Beach - USA Today - 2016
- TOP 10 ISLANDS IN THE U.S. - Trip Advisor 2016
- 10 BEST BEACHES IN FLORIDA - 2016 Conde Nast Traveler
- TOP 10 US ISLANDS (#5) – USA Today Travel, 2014
- 11 SMALL FLORIDA TOWNS YOU NEED TO VISIT (#11) - Buzzfeed.com 2014
- AMERICA’S FAVORITE BEACH TOWNS (#3) – Travel & Leisure, 2014
- AMERICA’S MOST ROMANTIC TOWNS (#3) – Travel & Leisure, 2014
- AMERICA'S QUIRKIEST TOWNS (#19) – Travel & Leisure, 2014
- BEST BEACH TOWNS IN FLORIDA – HuffingtonPost.com, 2014
- TOP 25 GOLF ISLANDS IN THE WORLD (#13) - LINKS Magazine, 2014
- “TOP 10 ISLANDS IN THE UNITED STATES” (7th Consecutive Year) - Condé Nast Traveler 2013 Readers’ Choice Awards
- “TOP 25 ISLANDS IN THE WORLD” - Condé Nast Traveler 2013 Readers’ Choice Awards
- "Top 10 Islands in the United States" - TripAdvisor.com 2013 Travelers' Choice Awards
- 2013 BEST BEACH TOWNS (#6) - Parents Magazine
- ROMANTIC BEACH GETAWAYS - Travel + Leisure 2013
- AMERICA'S FAVORITE TOWNS (#5) - Travel + Leisure - 2013
- BEST FAMILY VACATION DESTINATIONS - Away.com, 2012
- 8 Treasured Islands for Serene Living - Where to Retire
- “Best Small Town Getaway” - Southern Living
- “Best Little Beach Towns” - Coastal Living
- 10 Best Spring Break Getaways - Yahoo!
- 10 CHARMING ISLAND TOWNS WITH LOCAL FLAVOR - Smarter Travel.com/USA Today, 2012
- TOP 10 MULTI-GENERATIONAL VACATION DESTINATIONS - Next Avenue.org
Just a half-hour drive south, Jacksonville is the “big city” available to Amelia Islanders. Full of its own history, culture, nightlife, dining and shopping, Jacksonville overflows with urban appeal. Situated on the St. Johns River and nicknamed, “The River City,” it radiates natural beauty and is known for its State Parks and is home to the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars and The University of North Florida. Visitors enjoy a roster of cultural events including multiple theaters, museums, and live entertainment tours. With world-class medical facilities, including The Mayo Clinic, Amelia Islanders are at peace that all of their needs are met in the city of Jacksonville a short drive away.
Twenty miles of Atlantic Coast belong to the Jacksonville Beaches. Full of entertainment, visitors play beach volleyball, surf, fish from the Jacksonville Beach Pier, or enjoy the party in front of the seaside stage. A favorite destination is Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park which offers a 60-acre freshwater lake that begs for picnics and paddleboats.
Georgia's largest and southernmost barrier island. Here pristine maritime forests, undeveloped beaches and wide marshes whisper the stories of both man and nature. Natives, missionaries, enslaved African Americans and Wealthy Industrialists all walked here. Cumberland Island is also home to over 9,800 acres of Congressionally designated Wilderness.
Mayport & Fort George Island
Between Jacksonville and Amelia Island rests Mayport and Fort George Island. Mayport is a historic fishing village that continues to boast excellent seafood at its dockside restaurants. The Mayport Naval Station is the third-largest naval facility in the United States and is home to hundreds of families who serve our country. A ferry ride across the St. Johns River and you arrive at Fort George Island which shares 10,000 years of stories at its Ribault Club and Kingsley Plantation – an original cotton plantation where salve cabins still reside. The best part of traveling to Amelia Island via A1A and Fort George Island is the magnificent beauty of A1A / Heckscher Drive’s ocean views, treasured oak foliage, and wildlife.
Ponte Vedra Beach & St. Augustine
Just an hour south of Amelia Island brings you to Ponte Vedra Beach and St. Augustine. Ponte Vedra Beach is home to the PGA Tour’s National Headquarters and The Players Championship annual tournament at TPC Sawgrass. A bit south is St. Augustine, home of World Golf Village and the World Golf Hall of Fame. Golf is the contemporary side of St. Augustine, while the city’s rich history is reason for her fame. Often referred to as, “The Nation’s Oldest City,” St. Augustine’s is the oldest permanently occupied European settlement founded by the Spanish in 1565. The best part is the plethora of opportunities to see the history live through Castillo de San Marcos Fort, the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse in the U.S., the historic Casa Monica luxury inn, just to name a few.