On Amelia Island, you can choose to get away from it all, while getting back to what’s important: each other. So much to do or not to do… but best of all, you get to do it as a FAMILY.
Check in to THE RESIDENCE INN AMELIA ISLAND, your home away from home for the next three days and just a short walk to the beach. Looking for a beachfront retreat? Try AMELIA HOTEL AT THE BEACH. Or for those planning a luxurious getaway, book a stay at THE RITZ-CARLTON, AMELIA ISLAND or OMNI AMELIA ISLAND RESORT.
Head downtown and grab lunch at TIMOTI’S SEAFOOD SHAK, dedicated to serving fresh local and wild-caught seafood on Amelia Island. Everything is delicious, but some favorite menu items include shrimp tacos, lobster rolls, seafood baskets and poke bowls. Dine family-style in a fun outdoor atmosphere. Parents can discuss what’s next on the agenda while kids check out the enclosed pirate ship play area.
INSIDER TIP: If you need more pirate play, check out the PIRATE PLAYGROUND behind the Atlantic Recreation Center. It’s a community-accessible playground which integrates exercise, art, nature, music, imagination, and local history for children of all physical and mental abilities.
Before you begin strolling our historic downtown area, you’ll want to pick up some helpful information and brochures from the friendly staff at the WELCOME CENTER. Located in the old train depot at the foot of Centre Street, the Amelia Island Welcome Center is where your family vacation begins and where you can see and learn about all eight flags that Amelia Island has flown under since 1562! Grab a free Visitor Guide and download the Augmented Reality App to take a free tour of the island that appeals to history lovers, techies and kids of all ages.
Spend the afternoon exploring all the nooks and crannies of downtown Fernandina Beach. Stop in VILLA VILLEKULLA, a unique toy store inspired by the pigtailed adventuress Pippi Longstocking. Or, venture into THE BOOK LOFT for the latest bestseller and beach-time read. Need an Amelia Island logo’d souvenir? HARBOR WEAR OF AMELIA ISLAND has you covered. If you’re ready to sit a spell, FANTASTIC FUDGE, ISLAND TIME FROZEN YOGURT, or NANA TERESA’S BAKE SHOP are here for your mouthwatering yummy pleasure.
INSIDER TIP: Nana Teresa’s Cotton Candy Milkshake is ridiculously good!
GREGOR MACGREGOR’S MINI LINKS & DRINKS combines some of Florida’s favorite pastimes: a round of golf, a tasty drink and beautiful scenery right in the heart of historic downtown.Bring out a little family competition on this lush garden putt-putt course where you can also enjoy beer on tap, wine by the glass, soft drinks, and signature frozen drinks. Dine on corn dogs, hot dogs, popcorn, jumbo pretzels, and novelty ice cream treats. The winner gets braggin’ rights for the rest of the trip! If you need to play another round to make things easy, you can enjoy mini golf at HERON’S COVE ADVENTURE GOLF, ISLAND FALLS MINI GOLF and PUTT-PUTT AMELIA ISLAND.
Enjoy freshly baked goodies and a complete breakfast menu at the PARKWAY GRILLE on the island’s south end. This “down home” family-run restaurant welcomes you like they were feeding you in their own kitchen. Large portions at a great price. If you like big breakfast sandwiches and crispy bacon, this is your spot. Load up… you’ve got a busy day ahead!
Located on the northern end of Amelia Island is FORT CLINCH STATE PARK, a Civil War erafortand state park providing daily fort tours, trails for biking and hiking, beachcombing, sunbathing, swimming, and surf fishing. Adults and kids alike will love traipsing around the fort as soldiers reenact what life was like back in 1864. Spend the morning taking it all in. If you happen to be around on the first weekend of the month, you’ll witness a soldier garrison firing cannons and demonstrating other battlefield skills. It’s cool.
Because morning traipsing and hiking can work up an appetite, SALT LIFE FOOD SHACK is here to help. Located just outside the gates of Fort Clinch and across the street from the beach, Salt Life dishes out an eclectic menu perfect for all tastes and appetites. Everything from burgers, sushi, and southern fried shrimp to salads, oysters, and street tacos. Get a table upstairs on the rooftop for an amazing ocean view.
INSIDER TIP: Order a couple of sides of Avocado Fries for the table because sharing your own is out of the question.
Come face to face with history and nature when you get the family out on the back waters, marshes, and creeks on a guided kayak tour. Kayaking is an excellent way to view the many birds of the marsh, including egrets, herons, osprey, hawks, and even the majestic Peregrine falcon. Check out AMELIA ISLAND KAYAK EXCURSIONS, KAYAK AMELIA, and UP THE CREEK XPEDITIONS for guided and independent tour options. If you happen to be here during summer months, check out these exciting KIDS CAMPS!
Everyone will love NATURAL SLICE for dinner because who doesn’t love pizza? Located within the Shops of Omni Amelia Island, this surf-inspired pizza joint and shop serves up the freshest ingredients on hand-tossed dough. Between specialty pizzas and create-your-own options, the perfect pizza is right at your fingertips! Don’t forget to check out the array of surf-inspired merchandise including T-shirts, shorts, swimwear and accessories.
Get ready to enjoy the freshness and taste of good home cooking from MS. CAROLYN’S, located just down the road from the Residence Inn. Ms. Carolyn’s is known for her old-fashioned buttermilk pancakes dripping in sweet syrupy goodness. Other specialty menu items include French toast, quiche, crab benedict and eggs Florentine. If you’re trying to be good, the seasonal fruit bowl or oatmeal may be just the ticket. Are you full? Let’s head to the beach!
Amelia Island is known for pristine, beautiful beaches with ample accesses to get to them. Probably the most visited family beach area is MAIN BEACH PARK. Main Beach offers visitors two sand volleyball courts, a playground, several picnic shelters, restroom facilities, and outdoor showers. Lifeguards are on duty from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. If you get hungry, wander next door to SANDBAR AMELIA ISLAND for a burger and drink, just as you are.
If you need a break from the beach and want a FAMILY EXPERIENCE that’s unique and fun, take a guided tour on an electric skateboard from AMELIA ISLAND BOARD RENTALS. It’s like a regular skateboard but motorized and way cooler. They’ll start you out with a quick lesson and then take you to some of the best points of interest on the island. It’s totally rad.
It’s always a good time for ice cream and after a day at the beach, it’s time to hit up DENUCCI’S. Located across the street from the Residence Inn, DeNucci’s will satisfy that sweet tooth perfectly with your choice of soft serve or hand-dipped ice cream, malts, floats, shakes and more. Eat outdoors by the children’s play area or in the air-conditioned indoors.
INSIDER TIP: “The Elvis” is a large vanilla custard sundae with bananas, peanut butter cups, hot fudge, whipped cream and a cherry. Split it with a family member or eat it all yourself. It would make the King proud.
Round out your trip with a casual ocean front dinner at SLIDER’S SEASIDE GRILL where parents can sip on a tasty cold beverage and plan their next trip to Amelia while kids play on the ocean front playground. It’s a win-win for all! Or, for a different view all together, enjoy a beautiful sun set over the Fernandina Harbor from BRETT’S WATERWAY CAFÉ. Either way, you’ll leave with a full tummy and beautiful family memories.
These suggestions are just a sneak peek of all Amelia Island has to offer as you plan your Family Getaway. Discover more and plan your perfect trip on AMELIAISLAND.COM for a complete list of places to stay, eat and play. We’re looking forward to seeing your family here for generations to come.