Fernandina Beach & Amelia Island


Awake before dawn on Tuesday — a good start for a short roadtrip! When Katy was with us we had talked about bopping up to Amelia Island and making a circle route through St. Augustine and considering all the other things we wanted to do with here that idea fell flat.  This was our opportunity to see one more spot in Florida about which we’d been curious so we took advantage.amelia_island_florida_map

Amelia Island might not be our normal hangout but it’s popular island with a very cute historic district — Fernandina Beach.  It’s easy to see spending a few days browsing the shops and galleries.  We weren’t here long and we couldn’t resist a couple of the galleries — even without any available wall space on which to hang new art.2016032212103530 2016032211084113

There’s a lovely marina, with a river cruise excursion boat that does regular narrated tours. There is plenty of mooring space for those arriving by boat, and there are kayak rentals available as well as jet-ski rentals as well2016032211163920.

Beyond Fernandina Beach, the rest of the island is hotels, resorts, condos, and rentals.  It was busy this time of year and I can see it being jammed to the gills during the summer vacation seasonfile!

The beaches on Amelia Island are absolutely gorgeous with incredibly white sand.amelia-island If I was a beach-lounger I could see spending hours and hours on the beach soaking up the sun.  Alas — in recent years I have not found sunning to be the same relaxing kick it once was — but I can still appreciate a splendid beach!

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While in Fernandina Beach we stopped for a bite of fresh seafood at the Salty Pelican Grill & Bar.   On a weekday at noon it wasn’t all that busy but the food was tasty and fresh and sitting on the patio on the second floor we had a great view of the harbor.

From Fernandina Beach we took A1A to the south end of the island where we hopped on the Jacksonville Ferry ($6.00 for car and riders) for a 10 minute ride across the St. Johns River.  barnacle bills exteriorThe ride from there to St. Augustine was short and we got settled into our hotel in short order.  For dinner we opted to find a place that we could walk to so we chose Barnacle Bill’s Seafood Restaurant.  Fresh Mahi and Fresh Flounder filled our tummies and the Pina Colada cake wasn’t half bad either.

2016032211170925This hasn’t been the winter we expected but it’s still been fun! We didn’t end up in New Mexico, we didn’t end up volunteering for the Ocala National Forest.  We didn’t end up with the temps that we would have liked — but — Boy Oh, we have had fun.  I think we’ll end up having driven the car about 2700 miles since arriving in Florida.  The coach has put on about 110 miles since January — going back and forth to RV dealers while we were living in Ocala — but the reward for that ‘extra’ mileage was getting some annoying little repairs taken care of that have been on our hit list for a few months.

All in all I’d say we have had a pretty decent winter.  I don’t know how soon or whether we might return to Florida.  It’s not exactly our kind of state — we feel comfortable saying that now.  There is a top notch coach remodeler here — we might end up returning to have work done on our floor at some point but that needn’t bee an entire winter.  But, our time here is running down and we’re glad to have been here.

Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll be here to chat again tomorrow.

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13 Comments

  1. You two really have seen a lot, especially since you are located more north than south. Okeechobee was not a short jaunt! Couple that with multiple trips to St. A, the Tampa RV show, Cedar Key…plus the trip in from the Panhandle….that’s a lot of Florida!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jim, you guys have a lot more Florida background than we do so it was important to maximize our take-away from this visit. At the moment — as a result of all that chasing around — I don’t really see ourselves returning to Florida for an entire winter — or longer. That’s what we wanted to determine.
      Of Course…. all things are open to change …. but it’s just not who we are even though there are parts of me that want desperately to say, let’s become Floridians. I just can’t though. So, we continue our search.
      You guys clearly like it differently than we do. And that’s great. We are all free to settle or not, to like or not, to change our minds or not and that’s the great part about retirement. We get to re-make our lives in our own form instead of the pattern that family or circumstances forced us into earlier in life. Right?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad you had fun! After visiting California for a week I found I truly miss the hills and mountains. The only thing that keeps me in Florida is Rick and my project house…but mostly Rick! 😀 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have had fun here but it’s not a/the place for us to settle down, that’s a certainty. No matter how much I want to be able to walk to a cafe 12 months a year and have coffee and a croissant at a sidewalk cafe — I fear it’s not going to be FL where we do that. If we ever do. Anywhere…… sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m working on my plan to retire…so I can act upon the fever 🙂 I guess I’m a little jealous, even though I would not choose the RV lifestyle, I envy your freedom.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well, you know, we have no idea how long we’ll do this. Our talks about ‘how long’ are very serious and dependent on a myriad of details — some of which we are fulfilling now, others which we are not. I am quite sure we’ll continue RV’ing for another 24 months. But 6 month doctor checks could change that. And we still haven’t found a place that we can afford without an RV for winters if we decided to to back to stick & brick living. It’s a big quandary. We’re enjoying ourselves and not FRETTING about the future but we are seriously wondering what would work for a couple as weird and out-of-the-box as ourselves.

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