17 Free and Budget-Friendly Activities

March 31, 2015
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If you follow Amelia Island on Facebook, you've seen some of the great ideas that came up recently when travelers planning special spring trips asked for recommendations for activities that were both amazing and affordable.  Here are some of our fans' picks including unique tours, the best views, restaurant recommendations, and insider tips.
  1. "Get up early and watch the sunrise...it's worth it."  Beach accesses with parking are open and free up and down the island, and many places to stay are right on the "quiet and natural" beach or within walking distance.
  2. "I like taking  guests to the salt tasting at The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island - every day at 2pm in their Salt Shop- free and free valet parking! They serve bottled water and buttered baguettes and you sprinkle different flavor salts and sugars and eat while learning all about the benefits of natural salt and how the chef makes his own infused salts...salts are for sale, addicted to them!  Delish!"
  3. "Grown-ups should do the Mixology pub tour downtown...great bars with amazing atmospheres." Amelia Island Tasting Tours offers these (and tours of great local restaurants.)
  4. "The farmers' markets on Saturday mornings, then Sliders or The Surf for afternoon drinks and music in the sun."
  5. "We really enjoyed Fort Clinch State Park...paid $6 for the park and $2 per person to tour it was well worth the money!   Beautiful and tranquil."
  6. "Drive down to Boneyard Beach."  This is just south of Amelia on Big Talbot Island and connects to the Timucuan Trail, which stretches just under five miles to Little Talbot Island and is perfectly suited for biking or walking (and makes for amazing pictures.)
  7. Stroll downtown Fernandina Beach and "spend a few hours combing through the many treasures at the antique stores, then go shopping at the shops in the historic district and on Beech Street."
  8. "Taste your way through the delicious world of ultra-premium olive oil at Olive Amelia - shop alone is worth a look."
  9. "Putt-putt, shopping and pizza at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation is always fun."
  10. "Bring the family to play for free at Villa Villekulla Toy Store, pick up some awesome beach toys for under $10 and play at the beach! Also Pirate Playground is an awesome hidden gem."
  11. "Take pictures with the pirates and shrimp you can find around downtown."
  12. "Try Geocaching. Get the free app and the GPS takes you to where they are... Like a scavenger hunt!"
  13. "Try a ghost tour."  Experience them with the  Amelia Island Museum of History and Amelia Island Ghost Tours.  With or without a tour, you can visit Bosque Bello Cemetery, established by the Spanish in 1798 and is known for its stunning natural beauty and tranquility.
  14. "Tastings at the new Marlin and Barrel Distillery downtown are free."
  15. Some wallet-friendly restaurant picks from our fans included T-Rays and Ms. Carolyn's for breakfast, pizza at Arte's downtown, and the Salty Pelican at sunset.  Also:  "Try ordering a pizza from Townies for beach access delivery for an easy picnic."  You can search for restaurants by location, cuisine and price here.
  16. "After dinner, don't forget dessert at Denucci's on Sadler Road...has a playground."
  17. "Sunsets at the marina are a must see. Grab a cocktail from Brett's and sit on their rocking chairs on the porch and watch the show...look backwards towards the shops to see the warm sunlight on their old brick facades."
To get more ideas, take a photo tour of Amelia Island (also free!)      

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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.