A barrier island stretching along the northeast coast of Florida, Amelia Island is the perfect place for a relaxing romantic weekend during the chilly shoulder season. The island, named for Princess Amelia, daughter of George II of Great Britain, has a laid-back vibe, reminiscent of “old Florida.”
When we booked our discounted hotel stay at Seaside Amelia Inn for the last weekend in January, we did not expect to be sunbathing on the golden-sand beaches….but we also did not anticipate the uncharacteristic temperature plummet that occurred. Still, there are enough things to do on the island to make it a great weekend getaway. Here are my Top 11.
1. Sunrise stroll at Main Beach Park
It’s well worth dragging yourself out of bed in the wee hours of the morning for a stroll in the dunes and sands of Main Beach Park. It’s unbelievably brisk during the winter months, so be sure to bundle up in layers so you can enjoy the morning air.
2. Grab a snack at the farmer’s market
On Saturdays, rain or shine, a farmer’s market is on display to the public on North Seventh Street in the historic downtown area. The market is open from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. The market sells everything from pasta to fresh produce to fresh baked goods.
3. Explore Centre Street in historic downtown
The historic downtown boasts over 400 historic structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The street also hosts a variety of art galleries, boutiques offering upscale designer clothing and shoes, and an eclectic variety of eateries from cozy cafes to fine dining. Glittering white lights make nighttime especially festive.