With the prices of gas and general travel commodities skyrocketing (gas is nearly $5.00 USD as I write this on June 12, 2022!), I’m looking for more local excursions in my current city, Jacksonville, Florida. I had originally planned to make more visits to Orlando, Gainesville, Savannah and even places a little further away, but that no longer seems possible.
Despite Jacksonville being a “smaller” and less well known or popular city in Florida, there is still quite a bit to do here that I want to explore! Here are a few places and experiencing that I’m hoping to visit this summer:
Sunset Cruise along the St. Johns River
I’m a sucker for a sunset cruise, or any boating outing, and I think that a sunset cruise with the St. Johns Taxi + Tours would be really fun!
The Caffeinated Cat
A rather niche place that I want to visit is the The Caffeinated Cat – a coffee shop that is home to adorable adoptable kitties. I believe that there is also a wine bar, if you don’t want coffee. I am a cat lover at heart, although I love all animals, so naturally I want to go play with some kittens and be tempted to take one home (even though I have my own cat Fred, whom I adore).
Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park
This park is on everyone lists of “best places to visit in Jacksonville” that I still haven’t been to yet, so of course it has to make my list now. Apparently you can go hiking, fishing and swimming at this park, and it’s a short drive from Atlantic Beach.
Speaking of beaches, the Beaches Museum sounds interesting. I adore museums, history and learning about the places that I’m currently living.
Museum Of Contemporary Art
Another museum in Jax that I’d like to visit is the Museum of Contemporary Art, or MOCA. Owned and operated by the Cultural Institute of the University of North Florida, this art museum looks like it has some cool art installations. I’m not very well versed on contemporary art, but it’s definitely something new to learn and be exposed to.
On my list of “Places that I really want to visit in Florida this year” that I published at the beginning of the year is Amelia Island. Amelia Island, as I understand, is typically a place where rich people go to visit and spend vacations. While I am neither rich nor vacationing, I really want to visit the Amelia Island Lighthouse, which is meant to be the oldest lighthouse in the state of Florida.
Also on my list of “Places that I really want to visit in Florida this year” that I published at the beginning of the year is Cumberland Island, Georgia. Technically located in Georgia but only a 45 minute drive from downtown Jax, Cumberland Island National Seashore is home to the Dungeness ruins and wild horses! It looks beautiful and I’ve never seen wild horses before.
Jacksonville Zoo + Gardens
Again, also on my list of “Places that I really want to visit in Florida this year” that I published at the beginning of the year is the Jacksonville Zoo + Gardens. The Jax zoo apparently “occupies approximately 122 acres and has over 2,000 animals and 1,000 plant species in its collection.” As I mentioned earlier – I’m an animal lover at heart and I REALLY LOVE manatees and would love to see their rescue and rehabilitation center.
A few other state parks and national monuments that are 1-1.5 hours drive that are on my list that I would like to visit but are a little farther away (but maybe worth it if prices go down a bit):
- Fort Clinch State Park
- Bulow Plantation Ruins State Park
- Fort Matanzas National Monument
- Washington Oaks Gardens State Park
- Jennings State Forest
- Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, in Georgia
This list became much longer than I was expecting so I think that should be enough to keep me occupied for a few weeks this summer! Stay tuned to see if I actually make it to any of these places!
Thank you for reading! Have you ever been to any of these places? Let me know in the comments below and like this post if you want more like it!