2020 had it's challenges. Who are we kidding, it was one for the record books. I think we're all optimistic that 2021 will be a bright and glorious new year and we welcome it. That being said, Amelia Island is ready to see you. We hope your travel plans will include us because it's time to dust off your suitcase, head this way and take advantage of these top-10 Amelia Island highlights in 2021. See you soon!
1) FEET IN THE SAND
Start your journey with what’s on everyone’s mind: 13 miles of Atlantic Coast punctuated with plenty of public accesses and parking provide the chance to do as much or as little as you want, set to the backdrop of the waves. Walk out at sunrise for a view that you'll never forget, make sandcastles and kick up the surf. Hunt for shells and shark teeth and, during the late spring and summer, possibly see a sea turtle nest during an excavation led by the AMELIA ISLAND SEA TURTLE WATCH
. The beaches of Amelia Island
are waiting for you.
2) GET BACK TO NATURE
Our beaches are what we’re known for but that isn’t all that nature has to offer on Amelia Island. Hike, bike and explore Egan’s Creek Greenway which consists of more than 300 acres of protected land for birdwatching and wildlife viewing. Take a guided kayak or SUP tour of the marsh and surrounding waters or enjoy the peaceful tranquility of the Amelia River on board an Amelia River Cruise
. To see the island from a bird’s-eye view, take a hang-gliding
tour for a completely different perspective. Go to AmeliaIsland.com/Nature
for more Amelia Island natural wonders.
3) DINE ON DELIGHTS
Over 100 local restaurants
are serving up dishes representing all corners of the globe and taste profiles. Hungry guests can enjoy everything from Asian street food to French crepes and Spanish tapas to a New York-style deli, and of course, a whole lot of local seafood in between. AMELIA ISLAND RESTAURANT WEEK
, January 22 – 31, is the perfect time to sample a little of everything or check out signature events, with special menus at special prices.
4) ARM YOURSELF FOR FUN AT FORT CLINCH
Regarded as one of Florida's best State Parks, FORT CLINCH
takes visitors back in time to garrison life during the Civil War, from the view from the ramparts to the blacksmithing, woodworking, and occasional cannon firing that takes place during monthly Living History re-enactments. Drive in under a lush canopy road, bike on the trails, fish from shores, or take a nature walk along secluded paths. Campsites for tents and RVs are available, and the beaches are some of the most secluded (and richest in shells and sharks' teeth) on the island.
5) DISCOVER AMERICAN BEACH
Founded in 1935 by Afro American Insurance Company President A. L. Lewis, American Beach was for “recreation and relaxation without humiliation” during the era of Jim Crow. In its heyday, American Beach drew luminaries from art, music and sports, and generations of families continue to enjoy it. The AMERICAN BEACH MUSEUM
tells the story of this place and that of one of its most spirited advocates, Mavynee Betsch, the great-granddaughter of A. L. Lewis, better known as “The Beach Lady.”
6) FIND YOUR OHM
What could be healthier for the soul than a good dose of sun, surf, and vitamin D? From yoga classes on the beach to a healthy cooking class at the Amelia Island Culinary Academy to an organic smoothie at The Mustard Seed Cafe & Juice Bar. Take a look at some of the WAYS TO WELLNESS
on Amelia Island and the GREAT SPOTS FOR YOGA
7) CAST A REEL
The AMELIA ISLAND GUIDES ASSOCIATION
brings together Charter Boat operators, fishing guides, kayak guides and tour guides to take you on your Amelia Island adventure. Working together, they offer a variety of trips available to suit groups ranging from a small family to a large corporate meeting. If it's heading offshore or fishing the backwaters of Amelia Island, AMELIA ISLAND CHARTER BOAT ASSOCIATION
also has an outstanding group of experienced charter captains to provide everything your family or group need for a day of deep sea fishing, backwater fishing or sailing. Lots of Amelia memories to be made on the water!
8) GET IN THE SWING
Amelia Island is truly a golfer’s paradise. Named a “Silver Medal Golf Resort” by Golf Magazine, OMNI AMELIA ISLAND RESORT
boasts 36 championship holes, each course recognized as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. Oak Marsh offers 14 holes that meander along serpentine salt marsh creeks and through the moss draped heritage oaks for which Amelia Island is famous. The members only Long Point course, home of the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Golf Academy, incorporates primal marshlands and the towering sand dunes of the Atlantic. THE GOLF CLUB OF AMELIA ISLAND
features an 18-hole championship course located next to Ocean Place. The 27-hole FERNANDINA BEACH GOLF CLUB
is considered one of the finest public courses in the Southeast. AMELIA RIVER GOLF CLUB
is an 18-hole, 6,823-yard Tom Jackson design, where ball control and accuracy are key to a great round.
9) SHOP 'TIL YOU DROP
Amelia Island is home to an eclectic collection of local STORES, SHOPS, GALLERIES AND BOUTIQUES
, as well as some well-known retailers. Head to the Historic District and walk down and off Centre Street to discover the uniquely local shops and antique markets, all within easy walking distance and stretching up to the Beech Street Shoppes on 8th and Beech streets. On the south end, PALMETTO WALK SHOPPING VILLAGE
and the SHOPS OF AMELIA ISLAND RESORT
offer an array of options set under the live oaks with welcoming porches.
10) HAVE AN UNFORGETTABLE HOLIDAY
While our traditional Dickens on Centre street festival did not take place in 2020, the holiday season remained cheery and bright with new, reimagined and a few unchanged events. However, in 2021, the Historic District of downtown Fernandina Beach will once again become a twinkling Victorian wonderland when DICKENS ON CENTRE
arrives with costumed characters, entertainment, children's games and of course visits and photos with jolly old St. Nick. Click here
for a complete list of upcoming events.
What are you waiting for? Start planning
your next visit to Amelia Island. We look forward to seeing you!