When it comes to choosing a vacation destination that the whole family will love, Amelia Island has activities to offer for all ages. Whether your little one is 6 months or 16 years, the island will keep them occupied and enthralled day by day.
- Take a dip! There's nothing quite like a child's first aquatic experience with Mom and Dad. From the 13 miles of beaches to lesser-known swimming pools, these are the top spots for first dips and first doggy-paddles. The splash park at the Atlantic Recreation Center is the ideal place for wee ones to get acquainted with the water, while older children can swim in the adjacent pool
- We all know there’s nothing like the great outdoors to tire out your little ones. Pack up the stroller and head to the Egan's Creek Greenway. This protected area of over 300 acres, will captivate your child with a variety of colors, sights and sounds with the network of trails suitable for both walking and bicycling. Keep an eye out out for alligators, deer, bobcats and many more animals that call the Greenway home.
- Located not far from Main Beach and adjoining Egan's Creek, check out the Pirate Playground. The securely fenced in playground integrates art, nature, music and imagination to stimulate all ages and physically abilities. The park has restrooms and picnic tables, as well as access to the Greenway. Next door to the park is the Atlantic Rec Center. This community building features a large pool where older children can take a dip, as well as a smaller splash pool for the little ones to cool off in.
The Pirate Park behind Atlantic Recreation Center
- You’ll find the The Nature Centre open to the public and located at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation. Operated by staff with backgrounds in biology and environmental studies, this educating experience offers children a fun and captivating way to learn about the environment around them. Stop by for a Critter Talk and meet Buddy the Parrot. This is a fantastic place where your young ones will come away with a love and respect for the creatures we share our island with.
- Children can come to understand how that delicious local shrimp is caught while learning about local ecology, all while taking in views of the Intracoastal Waterway on a family-friendly Amelia River Cruise. Some may even see dolphins.
Explore what the net pulls in on an Amelia River Cruise
- On a rainy day, children can cuddle up with a lovingly selected book while Mom and Dad sip caffe lattes, browsing a highly curated collection at the new Story & Song Bookstore Bistro. With two levels, an open-air courtyard, and a lively event calendar replete with visiting authors, there's always something happening at this neighborhood bookstore, located within the quaint Amelia Park district. While downtown, the charming Book Loft beckons with its award-winning window display. Inside, find rare editions, a children's nook, and even French conversation classes -- all in addition to best-sellers that are perfect for the beach. In the age of e-readers and e-commerce, what a delight to peruse a real book store!
Story & Song Booktore Bistro
- Who knows fammily fun better than the pigtailed adventuress Pippi Longstocking? Inspired by the story (and by the presence of the Captain's House or the "Pippi Longstocking House," the historic residence in Old Town that was used in the 1988 movie filmed on Amelia Island. Theresa Duncan opened Villa Villekula Toys, a neighborhood toy store in Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach that features room to play and an array of hand-picked, fun, educational, open-minded, outdoor, and eco-friendly toys. The colorful store is a great place to stock up on games and puzzles for car rides, too. For more games, beach toys, and adorable southern fare (think smocked motifs with monograms), Monkey Barrel offers a classic yet innovative selections of gifts at The Shops of Amelia Island Plantation.
The "Pippi Longstocking House"
- Go from pirate park to pirate ship, all while dining on locally caught shrimp. Timoti's Fry Shak serves up wild-caught local seafood and a pirate ship play space in the enclosed courtyard, so adults can kick back at the picnic tables and even enjoy a beer.
- If your children have an adventurous spirit, they are sure to be enthralled by the skate park located at Main Beach. This busy park is a favorite amongst the locals for skateboards, scooters and rollerblades. Whilst the older kids are enjoying the halfpipe, the younger children can enjoy the adjacent play park or swing some golf clubs on the putt-putt course.
- A great option to keep your older teenagers entertained, Amelia Island Escape Rooms is an exciting puzzle room that will have their brains turning in no time. With 3 options to choose from, this is the perfect group rainy day activity. Once you enter the room, you must solve a variety of tasks and riddles to “escape”. Try to complete the task within the set time frame or ask for some clues to help you along.
- Pack up the entire family for a wholesome experience at Florida's first spoken museum: Amelia Island Museum of History. Explore through their exhibits, choose from tours for all ages, and navigate to their interactive children's area. You'll feel as if you lived through Amelia Island’s legendary history from their fascinating storytelling.
- Fort Clinch offers an off road bike trail that’s not for the faint hearted. Have them pack their fishing poles and once they reach the end of the trail, head out onto the beach to see what they can catch. Be sure to obtain a fishing permit prior. Locals know about the "secret", well-shaded playground across from the fort entrance, and everyone can enjoy the reenactors that animate the historic experience. Bet you can't get them out of character!
Reenactors at Fort Clinch State Park
- Surf lessons are also offered by a variety of companies around the island including Island Vibe Surf Shop and Surf Asylum.
- Aspiring treasure hunters can learn from the pros at The Amelia Island Maritime Museum, which brings the maritime history of Amelia Island to life with stories, artifacts and photographs. Pirates and treasure abound!
FOR RESORTS GUESTS
- For guests at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, the Ritz Kids program enriches the Amelia Island experience while allowing parents some time to reconnect. With a diverse collection of activities based on the four pillars of the program – water, land, environmental responsibility and culture – kids are swept away by everything from sand dunes and ancient forests, to recycling and sustainability, storytelling, art and even food.
- If you're staying at on within Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, you have unparalleled access to some of the best parks on Amelia Island. Aury Island continues the pirate ship theme with a nod to French swashbuckler of yore, Louis Aury. Head on your golf cart or bikes over A1A to the marsh side to Drummond Point Park, for gorgeous piers, an observation deck, a new playground ensconced in nature, and open fields for recreation.
Views at Drummond Point Park (Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort)
No matter your age and the number of generations in your group, the possibilities for bonding on Amelia Island are endless. With countless outdoor activities to choose from, you’ll be hard pushed to experience them all. The great outdoors and unique character of this Florida gem await your family.