While the spring and summer months continue to be abuzz with families, couples, and businesspeople visiting, those who come to Amelia Island in the fall and winter know these seasons can be just as wonderful, if not actually better than their popular counterparts.
We’ve looked at the main reasons to visit Amelia Island in the winter before and those reasons have not changed – fewer crowds, the temperate weather, many outdoor recreational options, and Amelia Island Restaurant Week every January. However, there are more reasons than you might first imagine as to why Amelia Island is a coveted location for those temporarily relocating to warmer weather during the cooler months.
First, Amelia Island is unlike any other place in the United States and is rich in history and heritage. For full-on history buffs or those who just love a good backstory, come escape to the only place in the country that has had 8 flags fly over it. The island, which was named for a princess, was once where Native Americans lived, pirates plundered, gilded age millionaires frolicked and dwelled, and African-Americans came as a refuge from segregation. Where better to start than the Amelia Island Museum of History? It exhibits various stages of Amelia Island history in the old Nassau County Jail near historic downtown Fernandina Beach. The super affordable museum offers various tours around the island. Don’t miss Ron Miller’s Coast One Black Historical Tours, guiding you to historic sites like American Beach, Fernandina Beach, and Kingsley Plantation.
Second, some neat Amelia Island events happen during the cooler months, like the Amelia Chamber Music Festival and Amelia Island Book Festival that take place during the winter.
Foodies will want to save the dates for the Omni Amelia Island Resort’s annual Fish to Fork experience and the younger Amelia Island Cookout hosted by the Ritz-Carlton during the shoulder seasons.
Third, these cooler fall and winter months are also the most fair choice for donning those long-sleeve, sun-shielding golf polos to hit the many prestigious golf courses on and near Amelia Island.
Amelia River is known for its incredibly smooth TifEagle greens, the Fernandina Beach Golf Club is known as one of the most popular municipal golf courses in the Southeast, and the Oak Marsh Golf Course is regarded most for its resort setting boasting tight fairways and small greens.
Fourth, the cooler weather and less-busy seasons also mean less competition for reserving tennis lessons, booking fishing charters with professional guides, or getting kayak rentals for a slow paddle through the marsh.
Fifth, Amelia Island is the ultimate home base for explorers looking to plan and enjoy frequent day trips! Just south of the Florida-Georgia border, Amelia Island has convenient access to the coastlines in both states and is only a short drive from central Florida spots like Ginnie Springs, Mount Dora and Micanopy. If traveling north into Georgia, you can be at the Golden Isles within about an hour. St. Simons Island, Little St. Simons Island, Sea Island and Jekyll Island are some of Georgia’s most beautiful vacation destinations and they are all a day trip from Amelia Island! The iconic city of Savannah is so close you could easily reach it before lunchtime. Want to head south? The First Coast’s many attractions await, including downtown Jacksonville, Marineland, and St. Augustine, which is probably the top day trip from Amelia Island because this historic town offers so much to do and see. Then there’s Cumberland Island, the beautiful, protected barrier island just north of Amelia Island. There are no mechanized vehicles allowed and nearly 10,000 acres of federally protected wilderness in the park, with great shelling, picturesque ruins, and wild horses.