People who make their homes on Amelia Island have been quoted saying things like, “It’s the kind of place that captures your soul.” They describe the area as “the type of place you feel like you spent your whole life searching for.”
That may seem a bit over-the-top, but once you experience Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island for yourself, you will see that those residents are not exaggerating at all.
Located in the far northeast corner of the state, just north of Jacksonville, Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island are stunningly beautiful and filled with history, culture, great shopping, championship level golf, world-class resorts, and a collection of incredible restaurants. That is a pretty impressive list when you consider that the island is only 13 miles long and two miles wide!
History of Fernandina Beach Amelia Island
The history of Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island contains a number of interesting twists and turns that involve the eight different countries that have controlled the island, the Civil War Fort located on the island, and of course its history of local pirates.
History buffs will want to start at the Amelia Island Museum of History. In addition to that, they can also consider visiting the Old Town Carriage Company for a horse-drawn history tour. There are great history lessons available through EcoMotion Tours at Kingsley Plantation and the fascinating walking tours of Fernandina Beach.
Things to Do in Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island
One of the most popular attractions on the island is Fort Clinch State Park. This park contains what remains of Fort Clinch, which is one of the most well preserved American forts from the 19th century. Visitors will regularly find Civil War reenactments happening here, but the park is also a great place for beach activities!
As for cultural activities, you can catch regular shows at the Amelia Community Theatre and the Fernandina Little Theatre. There is also the Amelia Arts Academy, which is one of only four certified arts schools in Florida.
Fernandina Beach contains a historic downtown district that is filled with tons of culture, as well as excellent boutique shopping. On the second Saturday of every month, the downtown art galleries host “Artrageous Artwalks” where visitors can tour all of the local galleries and meet local artists.
For an island this small, there are an impressive number of golf course communities spread across Amelia Island.
One of the more popular communities currently being developed is Amelia National.
This magnificent 24-hour guard gated community embodies exclusive, country club living at its best; from the Tom Fazio-designed 18-hole golf course to championship quality Har-Tru tennis courts.
Amelia National Golf & Country Club also offers its resident members the private and elegant French provincial clubhouse and luxurious fitness accommodations, such as the state-of-the-art gym and resort-style pool and hot tub.
Amelia National Golf & Country club features stunning, award-winning new home plans that range from 1700 – 2700+ sq. ft. The community is located just 15 minutes from the beach and ocean, and just 25 minutes from Jacksonville International Airport.
Dining in Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island
If you are looking for an extremely high-class dining experience, Salt is the place for you. Located inside the Ritz Carlton, Salt has some of the most dramatic food presentation you will find anywhere. It can be difficult to get a reservation here and the meal will be expensive, but the experience is unbelievable!
There are plenty of alternatives if you aren’t in the mood for formal dining. Lulu’s at The Thompson House has outstanding Creole food and Timoti’s Seafood Shak is a great place for American Seafood. You might also want to try Tasty’s Fresh Burgers & Fries, The Happy Tomato Cafe, and T-Rays, which is an old gas station turned burger joint.
Places that combine history, culture, and golfing with great weather and world-class dining can be found throughout Florida.
However, the manner in which those things come together in Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island makes this one place that you truly have to experience first-hand in order to appreciate.
After spending some time on the island, most people don’t ever want to leave!