Since we live in Brunswick, GA, we are just a little over an hour away from beautiful Amelia Island, also known as Fernandina Beach, which means it is the PERFECT day trip for our little family. If you don’t know, my husband and I are 29 and we have a little girl, Charlotte Grace, who is just over 2-years-old. We’ve always brought Char along on our day trips since she was a little baby, so she can totally hang during our go-with-the-flow trips!
“Located just off the coast of northeast Florida, Amelia Island is easy to reach, but hard to forget. With 13 miles of beautiful beaches, abundant native wildlife, and pristine waters, this barrier island has long been a beloved destination for visitors and residents alike. Stories beckon from every corner of Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach. This enchanting Victorian seaport village was once a stomping ground for pirates, Gilded Age millionaires, bootleggers, shrimpers, and other colorful characters.” Learn more here.
When I’m planning a day trip, I start with food because I know I want to find the cutest + yummiest spot when in a new location. Prior to our trip, we always search Instagram and/or Google to find 3 specific places: our brunch or lunch spot, a cute coffee shop + a brewery. That’s usually the extent of our day-trip planning + we just let the rest happen naturally!
This was our 2nd day trip down to Amelia Island and both times we headed straight to Historic Downtown Fernandina. I found a super cute restaurant that served both brunch + lunch for us to start at. Garden Street Bistro is located on s3rd Street and prides itself as the best garden courtyard bistro on the island! They have homemade breads, sauces, dressings, local produce, fresh never frozen meats, garden herbs and so much more! I got the Chicken Caesar Wrap + Patrick got a yummy Crab Omelette. I wish I would have gotten a picture of his too!!! They also have delicious mimosas “poor man’s bloody mary,” made with beer in lieu of vodka! You can heck out their full menu here!
Since the restaurant was downtown, we were able to just leave our car there and start walking. We strolled up and down the beautiful Historic streets taking in the art, history and beautiful older buildings. Also sweating to death because it was one million degrees! ? The waterfront is also right off the downtown streets, which is nice because we love walking down and seeing the boats!
After a bit of walking and shopping, we hopped back in the car and drove to a nearby brewery, First Love. We probably could have walked but we wanted the AC and a break from carrying Char! This brand new Brew Pub had only been open for about 5 days. It was an open + clean layout with great beer choices and the food looked yummy too. They had a fancier pizza menu but we opted for a starter of Truffle Fries. While at breweries, Patrick and I usually share a flight. A flight is typically 4 different 5 oz. pours. We love that it gives us the option to try a few different kinds, and we’re able to share because I only like porters and stouts, so I usually get one and he gets 3. I tried the Coconut Porter and it was FANTASTIC. We will be back to this Brewery for sure! You can read more about them here!
After the Brew Pub we stopped by Story + Song which is a cute bookstore + bistro, serving wine, tea, coffee + treats. They were closing up so we didn’t get to browse, but it’s on our list for next time. Here are a few other spots on our list for future visits:
Amelia Island Coffee (we popped our head in here and it’s super cute, but for once, none of us were wanting coffee at the time!)
Two places we went on our first Amelia trip 2 years ago that were great are Amelia Tavern + Brew Pub and Island Time Ice Cream and Frozen Yogurt (they had yummy smoothies).
I hope you enjoyed this simple guide of our Day Trip and that it provides some good resources for you if you’re traveling down to Amelia Island. Be sure to check out the official Amelia Island website for more resources! As usual, feel free to reach out with any specific questions!
PS— you can shop my look from the day HERE! ?