Amelia Island, situated just off the East Coast of Florida and about 45 minutes away from Jacksonville, has been a popular vacation and 2nd home destination for years. Baby boomers are also now considering it as a potential retirement community destination.
Known as the “Isle of Eight Flags”, Amelia Island has a rich history. It has seen the flags of France, Spain, Great Britain, France once more, Patriots of Amelia Island, Green Cross of Florida, Mexico, Confederate States of America and the U.S.A.
Amelia Island's rich history makes it an idea place for those who would like to actually tour a 19th century brick fortress, which can be visited inside Fort Clinch State Park on nearby Fernandina Beach. Others might like to partake in a walking, Segway or a carriage tour of the island.
There are plenty of water sports to go along with all that history. From pleasure boating, to water skiing, parasailing, kayaking and fishing. Anglers can try their hands at beach front fishing or on a sporting excursion where you can land a marlin or sailfish.
Those who enjoy outdoor sports will find no shortage of venues. Tennis is widely available there. The Island was home to the Women's Tennis Association Bausch & Lomb Championships for 28 years. There are six golf courses located on Amelia Island alone: the Royal Amelia Golf links, the Amelia River Course, the Golf Club of Amelia Island, the Long Point Course, the Ocean Links Course and the Oakmarsh Course.
If nature is something you like to enjoy, then the nature center at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is ideal. Hiking is also available on the island. Or enjoy the beauty of Little Talbot State Park or nearby Fort George Island Cultural State Park.
Shoppers will take great delight in what Amelia Island has to offer. Forget about claustrophobic, closed-in malls with cheap florescent lighting. Amelia Island offers something entirely different to shoppers. Charming retail stores, galleries and boutiques are what you'll find.
And everyone can take delight in those most beautiful sunrise as it appears from the east over the Atlantic Ocean. Or, my favorite at the right time of the month, a moonrise while enjoying a fabulous meal and glass of wine overlooking the ocean.
All the activities, shopping, dining, and rich history that make Amelia Island a great vacation and leisure destination are the same qualities that make it an attractive choice for retiring boomers looking to stay here permanently.