A Visit to Historic St. Augustine
Planning on visiting Florida’s oldest city rich with history? Well, there is much to learn in St. Augustine, FL for young and old alike. St. Augustine was founded in 1565 by Pedro Menendez de Aviles. This was the site of many battles, both by land and by sea from opposing armies and pirates during the time of the Spanish, British and American Periods. At the time of my visit, two Spanish pirate battleships were present, as seen the photos, which were available to embark and explore the cannons and workings of a “real pirate ship”.
There are many different ways in which to explore the city, depending upon your preference for adventure, whether it be more family friendly, ghost seeking, or pub crawling. Some may even be combined, such as the haunted pub tour, visit http://www.ghostaugustine.com/haunted-pub-tour.php for more information.
For more family friendly and educational experiences throughout the city, there are many options to delve into. The first and foremost is to tour the Castillo de san Marcos National Monument, in which clashes between countries occurred. The architecture is astounding, with most of the original fort still standing in its origination. Tour the fort, visit the hidden corridors and view presentations of cannons souring into the open waters.
While traveling and touring, well all get hungry, right? After the extensive shopping opportunities, the dining options in St. Augustine are endless, whether you are craving a quick, inexpensive bite or a more formal setting. If you are craving a more formal setting, a place in which to sit down, relax and enjoy the atmosphere, Columbia Restaurant, which is Florida’s oldest restaurant, is the place to go for traditional Spanish cuisine. This includes the famous 1905 Salad that is prepared tableside, with a delicious dressing rich with garlic, which is a recommended purchase at the attached gift shop. Black bean soup, chicken with yellow rice and marinated steaks are served accompanied with your choice of an extensive wine and brewery list. Finish your meal off with a nice slice of Key Lime Pie. Wandering down St. George Street will also offer you everything from hot dogs to pizza to tacos and Greek fare and ice cream and fudge to top it all off.
Be sure to visit other historical attractions that include Colonial Quarters, the oldest schoolhouse, and the oldest jail. For others interested in non-traditional aspects of the city, there are a plethora of places in which to explore, from nearby Marineland, the Alligator Farm and tours of the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum.