Jacksonville, Florida. The largest city in North Florida, between Jacksonville, Duval County and neighbouring St. Augustine there truly is a wealth of history, culture and unique experiences for visitors. If you are visiting Jacksonville over the summer, read on for our favourite things to do in J-ville.
While St. Augustine is technically just under an hour’s drive south of Jacksonville, the rich history and variety of things to do in this town cannot be passed up. As the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in North America, St.Augustine features a wealth of history visitors can quite literally walk through and experience, with the surviving architecture reflecting the city’s storied past and administration under several countries. In the city is historic Castillo de San Marcos, a Spanish colonial coastal fort, the Colonial Quarter, preserving the atmosphere of Colonial St. Augustine, Ponce de Leon’s famed Fountain of Youth, and Lincolnville, a community founded by freedmen after the Civil War. Also of note are the extravagant projects of tycoon Henry Flagler, the superstition of a large resident ghost population and the competitive local hot sauce industry.
The Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens serve the Jacksonville metropolitan area with over two thousand varied residents, including the Western Lowland Gorilla, Southern White Rhinoceros, Siamang, Reticulated Giraffe, Mandrill, Malayan Tiger, Cheetahs, African Elephants and the Gentle Florida Manatee. Following a strong focus on conservation and maintaining an appropriate habitat for the animals, there is also several well-cultivated gardens mirroring several distinct ecosystems for the strolling pleasure of visitors. For an experience getting close and observing nature and a diversity of animals from around the world, come to the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.
Celebrate the Fourth of July at the festive beach town of Jacksonville Beach! Enjoy Florida sun and beaches in a city reflecting North Florida culture, with the laid-back and beach-oriented personality of the community. Dine on local catches and celebrate the Fourth of July in shorts among the crowds and in that uniquely Florida combination of Caribbean, Beach and Southern influences. Live music, carnivals and food trucks come in full force for America’s birthday, so come to Jacksonville Beach!
Embrace Florida’s fishing heritage and attend the Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament. Whether you are just attending, renting a captain and their services or are an avid fisher yourself, the Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament is a great experience. You can try your hand at catching a Kingfish, or just enjoy the boatique and food festival. One of the highlights is the return to shore and the weighing of the catch, usually with Jacksonville flair and humour. Whether you want to dine on Florida festival fare, become acquainted with the fishing community of Jacksonville or just want to attend a community-oriented event, the Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament is good for all.
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