Dining-FineDining-OutdoorFoodiesOutdoor RecreationRestaurants & Bars
If you’re a real “foodie” then your travels are less about all the activities a destination offers and more about planning your next meal. It’s all about trying new foods in new places. Whether you’re craving southern fried food in a mom and pop setting or a delicious candlelit dinner by the sea, Amelia Island’s diverse food scene will keep your taste buds happy and your mouth watering for more.
Check into a real home away from home for the next three days by reserving a vacation rental on Amelia Island. Whether it’s a beach front condo, home on the golf course, or bungalow in the historic district, that perfect property is awaiting with all the comforts of home and special amentities such as stunning ocean views, tennis courts, marsh front lanai’s and of course your own kitchen to whip up some gourmet meals if the mood strikes you. If you would rather be waited on, try one of the downtown Bed & Breakfasts where daily breakfast and happy hour come with the room!
If chicken fried to crispy yumminess is what you’re craving, Big Al’s Chicken Shack won’t disappoint. Of course they also have non-breaded hickory smoked chicken wings as well as house-made chicken salad served with lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles. Even their fried chicken livers and gizzards get rave reviews. Check them out for breakfast or lunch but don’t leave without a slice of delicious Florida key lime pie!
INSIDER TIP: The crispy fried chicken with biscuits & gravy and collard greens is what’s for lunch!
Whether it’s chasing ghosts or learning all about our island’s storied past, Anchor Trolley & Transport will have you clamoring for more fun Fernandina facts. The knowledgeable tour guides offer a wealth of information to share about the island as they take you from historic downtown to Olde Town to the beaches. This is one tour you won’t want to miss.
Take a shopping break in downtown Fernandina Beach. Full of eclectic and independent shops that stretch from the harbor-front up and around Centre Street, it’s a good bet that you won’t leave empty handed. Go nuts over Watanut for the best gourmet nuts, pralines, and made-from-scratch-daily pecan shortbread cookies. Then, pop into Olive Amelia for an array of premium extra virgin olive oils, balsamics, seasonings, and gifts. Extend your pinkie at The Spice & Tea Exchange where they offer a wide variety of loose leaf and custom spices and teas made in house daily.
Back and better than ever is the Beech Street Grill, a beloved favorite with visitors and locals alike for over 30 years! Located on, you guessed it, Beech Street, the restaurant is as enchanting as the old Victorian home it sits in. To quote a recent diner, “Beautiful atmosphere, friendly staff and a number of delicious selections on the menu to choose from. Their charcuterie board is amazing as well as their desserts!” I couldn’t have said it better myself.
Day 2 begins with a delicious breakfast at Leddy’s Porch located within The Florida House Inn. With a unique selection of breakfast and/or brunch items, Leddy’s Porch makes your tastebuds as happy as your eyes are to be dining in this notorious place so full of history. Built in 1857, the Florida House is the oldest continuously operated hotel in the state of Florida where the likes of Ulysses S. Grant, Henry Ford, Laurel and Hardy, and Mary Pickford have laid their heads. Breakfast & Brunch is served on Saturdays & Sundays only.
INSIDER TIP: Try the Shrimp & Grits made with local Fernandina Beach shrimp, country ham, cherry tomatoes, scallions, and sherry cream reduction. You won’t be sorry.
Every Saturday, rain or shine, the Fernandina Beach Market Place takes place on south 7th street. It is pet-friendly and features live music, spirited promotions, and the most delicious fresh fruits & veggies (as well as treats) to be had on Amelia Island. The Arts market offers an eclectic mix of visual and decorative art, home decor, jewelry, and more and is open on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of each month. It has been proven nearly impossible to walk the market without buying something and smiling at least once.
Coquina is The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island’s ocean front restaurant where salt not only seasons your food but also lines the rim of your margarita and lingers in the sea salty air. Coquina’s menu is inspired by our Spanish roots when Spain was one of the eight flags that flew over Amelia Island. Try the Crispy Mahi sandwich served with Tomatada and topped with Coquina Aioli or the ceviche made from freshly-caught fish. It’s muy delicioso!
A 3-hour sunset cruise on a comfortable catamaran is just what the doctor ordered. It’s the best way to see Amelia Island and the most relaxing way to spend a late afternoon. See dolphin, Fort Clinch from the water, and horses grazing on the Cumberland Island seashore. You bring your own beverage and Follow That Dream Sailing will take care of the complimentary hors d’oeuvres, charcuterie tray and snacks!
Specializing in traditional flavors from Spain and Portugal, Espana Restaurant & Tapas is a favorite with locals and visitors alike. Featuring just-caught local seafood, an array of hot and cold tapas and the traditional Spanish paella, leaving hungry is not an option. The always homemade sangria, crusty bread, and desserts are made with love from family recipes and are so authentically good. Dine in the cozy main dining room or outside on the patio overlooking the garden.
Begin your day with a lovely breakfast at Marche Burette Deli, located at the Shops of Omni Amelia Island Resort. This adorable shop not only features a delicious breakfast and lunch menu but also offers a wide selection of groceries, one-of-a-kind gifts, craft beers and wines. Sit on the oversized waterfront deck and talk about the day’s activities. May I recommend the Cold Smoked Salmon Bagel served with cream cheese, tomato, capers, red onion and mixed greens? I think I just did.
See the island on your own time and at your own pace on a scooter, golf cart, or electric bicycle. The fine folks at Roadshark Powersports are ready when you are. They are friendly and knowlegable and will thoroughly explain how everything works before you take off. Heck, they’ll even deliver your rental to you!
Located at the Amelia Island Yacht Basin, Kitchen 251 specializes in down home food with a cajun twist and offers up amazing waterfront views. Dine on local wild caught shrimp, Po’ Boys, or the always delicious Fried Green Tomato BLT on Texas Toast. All in an open-air atmosphere. Photo credit: Kitchen 251
Gregor MacGregor 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.
Recognized with a AAA Five Diamond award, Salt, located at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, is the crème de la crème in dining experiences. Oozing romance and class, the view over the water is just a hint of what’s to come. Serving fresh fish, aged steaks and unique culinary creations, this fine dining restaurant uses more than 40 salts from around the world to add depth and flavor to its already wonderful dishes.
These suggestions are just a sneak peek of all Amelia Island has to offer as you plan your Foodie Getaway. Discover more and plan your perfect trip on AmeliaIsland.com for a complete list of places to stay, eat and play. This is Foodie Itinerary, part two (check out part one here). We’re looking forward to seeing you back here for years to come.