Saint Augustine is a small city positioned in Northeast Florida simply south of Jacksonville and about 1.5 hrs. south of the Florida/Georgia Stateline. It’s believed to be the oldest metropolis in the US. It was first found and claimed for Spain by Ponce de Leon in 1513 who named it La Florida , however issues didn’t work out for Ponce de Leon as he deliberate. It was later rediscovered and renamed St. Augustine, by Juan Mendez Aviles in 1565.
It took me about 5 hours to drive from South Florida to Saint Augustine through I-95, stopping twice. As soon as for a loo break and the following to get fuel. The lodge the place I used to be staying was simply off the 95, simple to seek out. I stayed on the Good Keep Inn, a two story lodge with an satisfactory quantity of rooms and parking. It has a fitness center, a pool, scorching tub, and laundry room, and serves up superb breakfast selections that features scrambled eggs, sausages, slice bread, bagel, make your individual waffles, orange juice, milk, espresso, tea, fruits and cereal. Possibly not the best, however higher than a granola bar and a bottle of water that we had been provided at one other lodge.
The lodge is near the Saint Augustine Shops and though it’s not within the downtown space it was not a really lengthy drive. Even Although it wasn’t my first alternative, I didn’t thoughts it in any respect. I used to be truly extra happy with the selection once I went into city and noticed that parking at these inns appeared a bit tight. That’s undoubtedly one thing to bear in mind when in search of someplace to remain.
There are different inns within the space just like the Consolation Inn which is correct subsequent door, High quality Inn, Pink Roof Inn, Vacation Inn and extra. You too can discover fuel stations and plenty of locations to eat close by.
What to Count on
The Downtown space is the place most sights are. I got here into city on a Friday afternoon, went to check-in on the lodge after which visited the Saint Augustine Shops. After visiting the Shops I needed to go to an attraction, however once I checked the sights, most of them had been already closed. By the way in which, most sights in Saint Augustine closes between at 5:00 and 5:30 PM. I noticed one, the Pirate and Treasure Museum, that was open till 7:00 PM and determined I’d go.
After driving into the Downtown space the Pirate and Treasure Museum was now not on my thoughts. I made a decision I used to be going to go to the Castillo de San Marcos nationwide Monument as a substitute as a result of there was one thing so fascinating about the entire surroundings, with the blue waters of the Matanzas River within the backdrop. The Pirate and Treasure Museum was actually throughout the road however that was for an additional day.
I wanted to try to discover someplace to park and I seen that the left lane was beginning to again up as some folks had been making an attempt to get into a close-by parking zone whereas others had been in a line ready to go over the Bridge of Lions which takes you to A1A. I got here out of the road and went into the suitable lane in hopes I may discover someplace to park. I ended up on a avenue that took me proper into what I assumed was the parking zone of a lodge, however as I drove in I seen the parking areas all marked reserved. Later I noticed I used to be behind Flagler School.
I parked for a bit and acquired out and took just a few footage as a result of it had a stunning architectural design. After pulling out of the faculty, simply throughout the road was a $10 parking zone. I instantly pulled in and paid the attendant, it was factor too as a result of it was beginning to replenish. There are quite a few parking round, however it’s important to drive round to seek out low cost parking. The parking closest to the principle avenue, Avenida Menendez, are costlier. You could possibly get some free parking at a number of the sights along with your ticket buy, like Ripley’s Imagine it or Not provided a 3 hours parking cross with the acquisition of the doorway ticket. I used to be in a position to tour the attraction and afterwards go away the automobile there for a bit and got here again in time to take off.
After parking, I walked a bit methods, not too far via the again streets and on to the principle however earlier than getting there I couldn’t assist however go searching to see what was happening these again streets. I quickly understand that St. George avenue is the place all the pieces was taking place. It’s lined with retailers, eateries, and leisure. I used to be in a position to cease at Tedi’s Olde Tyme Ice Cream and buy a pistachio cup. After leaving Tedi’s simply on the aspect on the nook of Cuna and St. George there was a person who had snakes on show, $10 to carry or pose with a one in every of them for a single particular person and $15 for a bunch. That wasn’t going to be me, I’m not an enormous fan of snakes, so I form of hurried cross there and went on to my vacation spot.
After I got here to the Castillo de San Marcos I used to be not in a position to go on the within as a result of it was closed by that point, however I used to be nonetheless in a position to tour the surface. I used to be in a position to stroll round it and observe the cannons that had been lined off in a single space and browse articles about its historical past. Although it was not open on the time, it was nonetheless an attractive place to calm down as a result of the solar was nonetheless up and the breeze that was blowing in from the Matanzas River felt so good. You possibly can sit on any of the seats onsite or on the good and luxurious garden. The one factor is that the garden shouldn’t be going through the water so it could not have the identical impact as sitting on the waterfront.
Issues To DO
There are lots of issues to do in Saint Augustine, regardless of me pondering there could not have been lots to do there. I can’t go into a lot particulars about them right here as a result of I’ve an article that checklist issues to do in St. Augustine, you possibly can click on right here to seek out it, however I’ll go forward and checklist a number of the locations to go to/issues to do;
- Lightner Museum
- Ripley’s Imagine it or Not
- Potter’s Wax Museum
- Castillo de San Marcos Nationwide Monument
- Alligator Farm
- The Torture Museum
- St Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum
- Fountain of Youth
- The Outdated Jail
- Saint Augustine shops for some buying
- Do your individual self strolling tour and admire the structure of some locations like Flagler School and the church buildings
- Go to The Plaza de La Constitucion park
Getting round city in St. Augustine isn’t laborious as a result of most locations are shut by and simple to get to with your individual automobile or by Uber. Should you occur to get a lodge in or close to downtown, it’s a straightforward stroll as a result of all the pieces is correct there, apart from the seashores and alligator farm. Then there may be additionally the trolley excursions.
There are two forms of trollies in St. Augustine, there may be the Outdated City Trolley Excursions and Pink Prepare Excursions. The Outdated City Trolley gives shuttles that picks you up out of your lodge and takes you to the trolley depot, from there you should buy your trolley tickets (in addition to attraction tickets at a reduction) and get on to a trolley. You possibly can select to trip the trolley all day round city or hop on and off as you would like. The Outdated City Trolley excursions sells sooner or later in addition to two day tickets.
The Pink Prepare Excursions is part of Ripley’s Imagine it or Not and likewise gives guided excursions round city permitting you to hop on and off all day. It is possible for you to to get the prepare from the Ripley’s location. The Pink Prepare Excursions gives an all day hop on or off expertise in addition to the Pink Prepare Specific expertise which is a one hour guided tour that takes you to sure websites.
There’s an upside and a draw back to taking the trollies. The upside is that you simply don’t have to fret about driving your individual automobile to every location and having to fret about parking or taking a Uber, and the drivers are very educated in regards to the historical past of town. The draw back for my part is, relying on how far aside the stops are you possibly can spend a whole lot of time on the trolley attending to the following attraction. For instance, I spent nearly 2 hours on the trolley making an attempt to get to my final attraction due to site visitors and likewise as a result of it was the final cease, cease quantity 22, solely to seek out out that the park was solely a few 5 minute stroll from the trolley depot.
Locations To Eat
Alongside the waterfront you’ll find eating places similar to Meehans’s Iris Pub and Seafood, River & Fort Restaurant and Roof High Lounge in addition to Harry’s Seafood Bar and Grille, simply to call just a few. Sadly, I didn’t get an opportunity to dine at any of these on the waterfront, however there are a whole lot of locations round that you’ll find to eat. Alongside the again streets you’ll find small eating places tucked away, just like the Raintree or Drake’s Bistro on San Marco Ave, and St. George Tavern on St. George Avenue. Then there may be all the time quick meals eating places like Bojangles, which by the way in which had some tasty hen wings, Zaxby’s, Burger King, and extra, if you wish to get it rapidly and go.
What I like probably the most about Saint Augustine is that despite the fact that it’s a small metropolis, it holds an enormous historical past and It’s nice for solo vacationers and much more so for households. I’d undoubtedly go to once more and I’ve discovered that the perfect time to go to is throughout Christmas when the entire metropolis is embellished with lights.