The Amelia Island Lighthouse is considered the oldest structure on the island. First constructed in 1820 on Georgia's Cumberland Island, it was dismantled and moved in 1938 and reconstructed on Amelia Island. Construction was completed in 1839.
For those interested in a closer look, lighthouse tours are offered on the first and third Wednesday of each month at 10:00 a.m. Tours depart from the Atlantic Recreation Center. The cost is $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children age 12 and under.
The Amelia Island Museum of History is housed in the historic Nassau County jail and showcases some 4,000 years of Florida history, including its eight flags of occupation. The museum offers exhibits, educational lectures, walking tours and ghost tours.
233 South Third Street
Fernandina Beach, Florida 32034
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We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
- T.S. Elliot
Welcome to Amelia Island, Florida's Coastal Treasure! Amelia Island, Florida, is a unique paradise among the chain of barrier islands that stretches along the east coast from South Carolina to Florida, including St. Simons Island, Hilton Head Island, Jekyll Island, and Tybee Island to name just a few. Amelia is 13 miles long and 4 miles wide at its widest point, located just south of Cumberland Island, Georgia. Known for its pristine beaches and clean water, natural wildlife as well as world-class resorts, spas, golf and fine dining, Amelia Island was voted #6 among Top 10 North America Islands by Conde Nast Traveler's 2008 Reader's Choice Awards.
Its Victorian homes and cottages are a throwback to Amelia's Golden Era. Adornments that make these 19th Century homes into masterpieces include opulent turrets, gables and gingerbread rick-rack trim. Some of these homes serve as bed and breakfast inns and some are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, but what all seem to have in common is an interesting background. These storied streets can be experienced through self-guided tours or those offered by the Amelia Island History Museum. Horse-drawn carriage tours are also available.
Sightseeing river cruises are another way to learn more about the area history. In the early 20th Century, Amelia Island became the birthplace of the modern shrimping industry. Today, nearly 80 percent of Florida's intake of sweet Atlantic white shrimp is harvested in Amelia's waters and its downtown docks Fernandina Harbor Marina is still home to the shrimp fleet.
While the oldest structure on the island is the Amelia Island Lighthouse, other places of intrigue include the Palace Saloon, the oldest bar in the state of Florida; and, the Florida House Inn, Florida's oldest surviving tourist hotel.
Visitors to Amelia Island, Florida find many accommodation choices with more than 2,500 suites, villas and guest rooms to suit any preference from five-diamond oceanfront resorts and oceanfront cottages to golf villas and historic bed and breakfast inns to camping facilities.
Choose from dozens of Vacation Rentals in and around Amelia Island. Nightly rates to suit all budgets. Whether you're looking for a luxurious penthouse or a laid back beach cottage, we’ve got you covered. Find a great deal on FlipKey today!
History of Amelia Island
Amelia Island, known as the "Isle of Eight Flags," is home to Florida’s oldest continuously operating bar, the Palace Saloon, located within a sprawling 50-block area of homes and buildings on the National Register of Historic Places. History enthusiasts will also have to visit Old Town, the last Spanish Town in the Western Hemisphere and the former Spanish Fort San Carlos, as well as Fernandina Beach with it's Victorian-era architecture and charming historic district.
An easy drive from Jacksonville, the park protects over 200 acres of unspoiled wilderness along the southern tip of Amelia Island. Beautiful beaches, salt marshes, and coastal maritime forests provide visitors a glimpse of the original Florida. Amelia Island State Park is the only state park in Florida to offer horseback riding on the beach; a 45-minute riding tour through the forest and along the Atlantic Coast beach. Although the view from the park is breath-taking in itself, most of our visitors come for the fantastic fishing opportunities. Fishermen can surf fish along the shoreline or they can wet their line from the mile-long George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier which spans Nassau Sound. Visitors can also stroll along the beach looking for seashells or relax and watch the numerous bird species that feed in the area. For horseback tour reservations, contact Kelly Seahorse Ranch at (904) 491-5166. Tours are given four times daily.
Visit Amelia Island State Park this spring and enjoy the ocean breezes along one of the most scenic shorelines in north Florida. Located where Nassau Sound meets the Atlantic Ocean, Amelia Island State Park offers visitors incredible recreational opportunities in a picturesque natural setting. The point at the southern tip of Amelia Island provides a stunning panorama of land and sea. If you really want an exceptional beach experience, visit Kelly’s Seahorse Ranch and take a beach tour by horseback!
While enjoying Amelia Island, please remember that bird nesting season starts April 1st and sea turtle nesting season starts May 1st. By following posted signs we can safeguard our valuable natural resources and enhance future recreational opportunities. Drivers are reminded to stay in designated areas away from sensitive habitat and critical wildlife zones.
Getting to Amelia Island Amelia is only 30 minutes from Jacksonville International Airport. By auto, two bridges connect Amelia Island with the mainland. From I-95, take Fernandina Beach Exit 129, turn east onto A1A and travel 15 miles, cross the Intracoastal Waterway into the heart of Amelia Island.
Visitors traveling from the south may prefer to take A1A north of Jacksonville to the Mayport auto ferry which crosses the St. Johns River, or take A1A farther north to J. Turner Butler Blvd., then north on Hwy 115 over the Dames Point Bridge. Both options continue on A1A north over Big and Little Talbot Island onto Amelia.