Open for Business: Welcome to the "Secret Season"
Amelia Island has emerged from Hurricane Matthew more beautiful than ever. With minimal damage, we're happy to report that we're nearly 100% operational and that the island is welcoming visitors. We like to call October and November the Secret Season, with uncrowded beaches, warm days, low humidity, temperate ocean, slower pace, nights just cool enough for a light jacket. To celebrate, enjoy these deals and insider secrets.
Amelia Island has emerged from Hurricane Matthew more beautiful than ever. With minimal damage, we're happy to report that we're nearly 100% operational and that the island is welcoming visitors. We like to call October and November the Secret Season, with uncrowded beaches, warm days, low humidity, temperate ocean, slower pace, nights just cool enough for a light jacket. To celebrate, we've gone around the island and collected an array of deals as well as a special selection of insider secrets you won't want to miss.
Stretch your stay and enjoy a free night (terms apply) at one of Amelia Island's hotels, motels bed & breakfast inns or vacation rental properties with the Free Night, Any Night promotion.
Or enjoy a special offer from the Fairbanks House, with their post-hurricane "Gratitude Sale".
EAT AND DRINK
Amelia Island's dining scene is burgeoning, with over 90 dining options on Amelia Island, from the classics to the newest in eateries.
- Try one of our new and notable restaurants, from Puerto Rican to loaded picnic baskets.
- For a romantic evening, TripAdvisor rounds up some top dinner spots.
- If you'd prefer to stroll while induldging, join a downtown Mixology Tour for unique cocktails with a splash of local flavor and a twist of history.
- Or meet Chef Bill Thompson for a Farmers' Market tour, where you'll collect locally-farmed ingredients for a dish prepared back at the cozy Amelia Island Culinary Academy.
ON THE WATER
- Add something extra special to your evening out with a two-person private sailing excursion with Windward Sailing. Pick the time and (bring along your favorite wine and appetizers) to enjoy while you sail, then return to the dock in time for dinner reservations. Two people enjoy this two-hour sale for $150, valid through March 2017.
- Take a family-friendly sunset cruise with Amelia River Cruises. This tour offers a relaxing way for the whole family to take in Florida’s first sunset and hear the history of the area.
- For a more adventurous experience, navigate Amelia Island's surrounding waterways on a charter. Island Charters Unlimited offers fishing trips ranging from family-friendly, half-day outings for redfish and black drum to 15-hour Gulf Stream adventures.
- Amelia Island Paddle Surf Company shows you all the island has to offer from the deck of a paddleboard, enjoy 10 percent off through December or choose to get $25 off your second tour or a 3-tour package for $150.
NATURE & OUTDOORS
- Roll up your pants and stroll Amelia Island's 13 miles of pristine Atlantic beaches. Hunt for shark's teeth or shells, most bountiful as cooler weather returns, with advice from a shell-seeking pro. Better yet, bring alone Rufus on our pet-friendly beaches and treat your pup to one of the country's top dog parks.
- Hit the trails: Biking in mild weather under a tree-lined canopy is just one reason that Amelia Island is known as one of Florida's best places to bike. As for trees, Amelia Island's live oaks have quite a history.
- Stroll through Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach, with its 50 blocks of charm, protected under the National Historic Register.
- Perfect your golf and tennis swings. With 117 holes and seven that play along the Atlantic (think of it as a 42 million square foot water hazard), the links of Amelia Island offer irresistible play for golfers of every skill level. Tennis lovers sharpen their skills at clinics on clay courts shaded by live oaks with Cliff Drysdale tennis at Omni Amelia Island Plantation. There, visitors can even pick up pickle ball, one of the country's fast-growing sports.
- Ride horseback along the beach. Amelia Island is one of the few places in the country this is possible. Check here for companies that lead these unforgettable tours.
- Challenge your balance on a stand-up paddleboard with the Kayak Amelia Island Yoga Retreat.
ARTS & CULTURE
- Stroll the galleries of downtown Fernandina Beach while enjoying wine and hors d'oeuvres at the monthly Artrageous Artwalk, where you can mingle with the masters of mixed media.
- Immerse yourself in the visual arts while sipping fine libations at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort's inaugural Cocktails & Canvases November 11-13.
- See the spirited side of Fernandina with the weekly Friday evening Ghost Tours.
- Sit back and take in a show. Local theatre is thriving on Amelia Island. "On Golden Pond" will be on stage at Amelia Community Theatre and the collection of short plays "Love/Sick" by the author of "Almost Maine" will be at Amelia Musical Theatre along with the annual October tradition of presenting the musical "The Rocky Horror Show."
- Spend a splendid afternoon in the grass at Amelia Island Jazz Festival's Free Concert in the Park, and don't miss the rest of the season's performances.
- As the holidays approach, don't miss the arrival of the world's largest gingerbread pirate ship -- a family favorite -- at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. Their annual Christmas Tree Lighting is truly spectacular and a wonderful way to kick off the holidays in style.
- Get ahead of holiday gift-giving with the truly unique from Amelia Island's downtown shops, or browse a variety of boutiques and merchants throughout the island.