Sandcastles, State Parks and Other Fun Activities on Amelia Island

July 20, 2021
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Amelia Island is crowned on the north side and draped on the south by two stunning State Parks - with a small jewel of a Park in between.  Savvy travelers know to seek out the history, natural beauty, and array of fun activities Amelia Island and the parks have to offer.

Fort Clinch State Park 

Set on 1,400 acres, this park is home to historic Fort Clinch, one of the most perfectly preserved Civil War forts in the United States.  
  • Explore the rooms, galleries, and spectacular grounds while park staff interpret history and take you back to the year 1864 in the life of a Union soldier.  
  • Enjoy miles of bicycling on the historic oak-canopy drive, or for the more adventurous, hiking & biking the 6-mile off-road multi-use trail.
  • The Park offers a guided nature walk at the Willow Pond Nature Trail every Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
  • Enjoy a shaded playground with picnic tables set behind the parking lot adjacent to Fort Clinch.
  • Building sandcastles, shelling and shark-tooth hunting are popular activities along the St. Mary’s Inlet. (Amelia Shark Tooth Adventures offers tours and workshops.)
  • Experience Amelia Island camping at it's best with 69 campsites and a large group camping facility for unparalleled overnight experiences.
  • Fort Clinch State Park is open 365 days a year from 9am-5pm.  Special events take place year-round. Visit the park events page for more information.
Amelia Island State Park  

Set on the southernmost tip of Amelia Island, the views from this State Park are never anything short of striking.
  • This park protects over 200 acres of unspoiled wilderness with beautiufl beaches, salt marshes and coastal maritime forests.  
  • It's one of the few locations on the east coast that offers horseback riding on the beach and riding tours along the shoreline. (For horseback tour reservations, contact Kelly Seahorse Ranch at (904) 491-5166. Tours are given four times daily. )
  • Fans of fishing can surf fish along the shoreline or wet their lines from the mile-long George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier which spans Nassau Sound.
George Crady Fishing Pier State Park

Located just past Amelia Island State Park this one-mile long pedestrian-only bridge spans the Nassau Sound and connects Nassau County to Duval County.
  • Named for a local Florida state representative and supporter of the Florida State Park system.
  • Anglers fishing here can expect to haul in a variety of fish including whiting, jack, drum and tarpon. Plus, everyone gets to check out what each other is catching… or not catching.   
Fernandina Plaza State Park  

Although small in size, this park contains centuries of Florida history.  
  • The site of the original Spanish Fort San Carlos, the park lies in the middle of Old Town Fernandina, which is the last town platted by the Spanish in the New World.  It became quieter when railroad baron David Yulee convinced residents to move the center of town to Centre Street and the harborfront, now a lively area just to the south.
  • It's a popular (semi-secret) spot for viewing the sunset and musicians often come out to "play the sun down here."
  • The "Pippi Longstocking" House, a private home, borders the park - this historic Captain's home from the 1880s, it played the role of Villa Villekula in the 1980s movie "The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking."

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Located just off the coast of northeast Florida, Amelia Island is easy to reach, but hard to forget. With 13 miles of beautiful beaches, abundant native wildlife, and pristine waters, this barrier island has long been a beloved destination for visitors and residents alike.