April 1, 2022
Green vacations aren’t just about recycling, reusing guest room towels and drinking out of sustainable plant-based straws (although those are all great). They’re also about reconnecting with nature and seeing ALL the wonderful things mother nature provides. With Earth Day just around the corner, here’s a guide to keeping your vacation “green” on Amelia Island.
All of our island accommodations have some sort of eco-friendly impact on the environment so please check them all out. These are worth a mention.
The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island — In addition to the luxury that they’re known for, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island has been recognized and certified by the state of Florida’s “Green Lodging Program” for efforts to conserve resources and protect our environment. Examples include: Motion sensors in non-guest areas to conserve electrical usage, partnership with Second Harvest Food Bank to receive donations of unused food, and the installation of tinted balcony doors to reduce heat intrusion in guestrooms… just to name a few.
Home2 Suites — This all-suite hotel located just a short walk to the beach, is eco-friendly and pet friendly. Many of their furnishings are made from recycled materials and they use bulk bath products and real dishes to reduce their carbon footprint. They also participate in “Clean the World”, a soap recycling effort that helps reduce waste!
Omni Amelia Island Resort — This 1,350-acre property overlooking the Atlantic Ocean on one side and Intracoastal Waterway on the other, has always been in perfect Harmony with Nature. They were green before green was a “thing” and always do their part to be a leader in environmental stewardship. The property stays as tree-canopied as possible, includes a staff naturalist on site to educate guests on the natural ecosystem in this area, and offers a “farm-to-table” experience with the Sprouting Project (see Dine below).
The Addison on Amelia — As a 15-room bed & breakfast located in the heart of historic downtown Fernandina Beach, The Addison not only provides their guests with a hospitable and welcome retreat but they also make sure to practice “green lodging” as well. They provide recycling bins in each guest room and in the dining room for glass, plastic, aluminum, paper, and cardboard items. Bedding and towels taken out of inventory are donated to the Purple Dove Resale Center for use in their domestic violence shelter.
Sea Cottages of Amelia — Awarded with a One Palm award by the Florida Green Lodging Program, Sea Cottages is a boutique hotel in the central part of Amelia Island consisting of 14 studios and 5 one-bedroom cottages. Purposely situated under an existing tree canopy, the cottages feature use of LED lighting, Energy Star appliances, low voltage landscape lighting, and the use of low energy appliances and implementation of a recycling program. Guests also have the option of keyless entry minimizing the need for plastic key cards.
We would also like to recognize the following lodging partners who have ALL received their Green Certification by Audubon International:
Residence Inn Amelia Island The Addison on AmeliaHampton Inn & Suites Harbor FrontSeaside Amelia InnCourtyard by MarriottSpringhill Suites by Marriott
Lots of environmentally fun things to see and do on Amelia Island. Check out a sample below.
Amelia Island Kayak Excursions — Set up an outdoor adventure with this award-winning family-owned business offering a variety of kayak tours ranging from black water wooded environments, salt marsh estuaries, and intracoastal waterways, to Cumberland Island National Seashore, the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, and the Suwannee River.
Amelia River Cruises Eco Tour — Amelia River Cruises & Charters provides narrated, historic and wildlife sightseeing tours with views of dolphins, manatees, sea otters, alligators, and the wild horses of Cumberland Island National Seashore. Sign up for their Shrimping Eco Tour, an interactive and informative tour of the waters surrounding Amelia Island.
Amelia Naturally Eco Tours — If you want a salt marsh ecology tour, birding tour, or beach walk to learn more about what lives in the ocean and on the sand, do yourself a favor and book a tour with Amelia Naturally Eco Tours. Christina Nelson, a Florida Master Naturalist, is passionate about the environment and a great teacher. Whole day excursions to Cumberland Island, Okefenokee swamp or a combination of local parks can also be arranged.
Yum! Farm to table never looked so good.
The Sprouting Project — Omni Amelia Island Resort’s “The Sprouting Project” is a monthly farm-to-table experience where guests dine on a featured seasonal ingredient grown directly from their on-site organic garden. Prior to a 5-course dinner, guests will tour the garden, aquaponic greenhouse, barrel room and apiary. Monthly featured ingredients include mushroom, fig, watermelon, squash, truffle and more.
Grab ‘n’ Grow — The folks at Grab n Grow Real Food and Juice Bar believe that fast-food doesn’t always have to be junk-food. They proudly provide real and fresh food… fast. Enjoy Acai Bowls, Fresh Juices, Smoothies, Soups and Salads all made from scratch!
Townies Pizza — Where does pizza fit in to the “green” equation, you ask? Townies is an exception. Besides using real cheese, house-made sauce and dough made fresh daily, they have their own garden where they grow all the veggies for their pizza toppings. It’s delicious, too!
The Mustard Seed Cafe — Located inside of Nassau Health Foods is The Mustard Seed Cafe. Get your healthy grocery shopping done and then dine on a delicious menu of the most flavorful and nutritious all-natural and organic food choices on Amelia Island. It’s seriously good.
Get back to nature in these earth-friendly shops.
Pelindaba Lavender — Explore the therapeutic properties of 100% pure, organic lavender essential oil across a wide range of all-natural lavender personal, pet and home care products. They also have a collection of lavender culinary delights to further your adventurous side. This store smells yummy!
Color It Green — Color It Green is an all natural gift shop located on Centre Street in the historic downtown district that is dedicated to preserving our environment and protecting the ocean. Known for its “gifts with a purpose” mantra, Color it Green offers backpacks, wallets and duffels made from old billboards, water and food bowls made from wood and scrap Corian for your four-legged friends, and biodegradable flip flops for Dad!
The Nature Center — Located at Omni Amelia Island Resort, The Nature Center is your one stop shop for all things nature. They have bird watching books, apparel, top-of-the-line binoculars and field guides. They also have local rescued critters you can see, naturalists you can chat with, fishing poles to rent, and tours to sign up for.
The Beauty Bar — Get gorgeous while you’re here! The Beauty Bar is a Green Circle Hair Salon, in downtown Fernandina Beach offering a wide variety of services for hair, makeup and spray tans using only plant derived products that are environmentally friendly and not tested on animals.
Visit Amelia Island where every day is Earth Day.
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