This article is Part 2 of an article series. You can read Part 1 here.
In the first part of this article, I explained the first 5 of the top 10 places you’d love to visit in St. Augustine. Now, Part 2 will explain the rest of the places you should see when you visit. Not only does St. Augustine offer immersive and educational experiences, but it is also one of the most beautiful cities in America. While St. Augustine is a romantic destination with many gorgeous views, there are also many family friendly places to visit.
Top 10 Places You’d Love To Visit In St. Augustine, Part 2
To learn about the many attractions in historic St. Augustine, I traveled there with my husband and two kids. We spent two days exploring the attractions that make this city special. Check out these five places that are perfect for visiting with (or without) your kids.
6.) The Castillo de San Marcos
First, the Castillo de San Marcos offers a beautiful view of the water, while also providing a unique, immersive educational experience. Built in 1672, this fort offered the Spanish protection against the British. From its unique construction materials – coquina, a stone made out of broken shells – to its location across the water from the St. Augustine lighthouse, the fort was very important to the history of the city.
When you pay for admission, you can enter the rooms at the bottom and walk to the top. Since the fort does not have a fence around the top, you should be careful with small children.
If you come at the right time, you can see reenactors firing the cannons. I went live on Facebook here to show the reenactment. Give yourself about 15 minutes to watch the reenactment. Since the weather can be quite hot at the top of the fort, you should dress appropriately and bring water.
My daughters were captivated by the reenactment. Even though they were overwhelmed by the heat, they sat still in anticipation. Samantha, my oldest daughter, said visiting the Castillo was her favorite part of the day.
Watching the reenactment is a very engaging activity that I can highly recommend to visitors in the area. Visiting the fort is a good opportunity to learn about the history of Florida, while taking in the scenic view.
7.) The Pirate & Treasure Museum
As I mentioned in Part 1, you can spot the Pirate & Treasure Museum from the lookout at the Colonial Quarter. Visiting is well worth your time! This is one of the most fun spots for kids to visit in Historic St. Augustine.
One of the biggest advantages of visiting is that the displays are very interactive. You can touch a 400 year old chest, see how heavy it feels to lift gold, and fire a canon. When I visited, I went live on Facebook here to show the interactive canon display. Since kids love being able to interact with the displays, the museum is a fun way to engage kids in learning about history.
In the souvenir shops, kids will enjoy picking up replicas of many of the neat things they saw. My kids bought pretend gold and toy mermaids to help them remember the real gold and the mermaid statues that they saw at the museum.
In addition to seeing artifacts from old Saint Augustine, you can also visit the movie memorabilia room. There, you can see the sword that Johnny Depp used as Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean, a hook replica from the movie Hook, as well as items from Goonies.
We visited the Pirate & Treasure Museum after a three day trip to Walt Disney World. My family and I loved discovering fun, interactive displays in a setting that was much less crowded than an amusement park. We had almost the whole museum to ourselves!
8.) The Oldest Wooden School House
For a look into the history of education in America, visit the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse. Located on St. George Street, the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse was built over 200 years ago when the area was ruled by Spain.
Walk inside to discover what education really used to be like for students in early colonial America. Seeing the classroom was shocking to my children. We noticed a teacher chiding a student who wore a dunce cap, while the teacher explained that the student was not intelligent enough to do what the other students would do with their education.
Another shocking part of the exhibit was the child who sat in a place called The Dungeon, a hole in the wall where he was enclosed for misbehaving.
During my visit to the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse, I liked that it was a quick, simple place to visit with the kids. There were plenty of activities to amuse them, while the displays also appealed to adults who can better understand the content.
9.) Ripley’s Believe It Or Not
Another place that appeals to adults as well as children is the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not in St. Augustine. Located inside a historic castle, the Ripley’s of St. Augustine is the first permanent Ripley’s attraction. You can visit three floors of unique exhibits that will impress you, gross you out, and make you laugh.
Eyecatching Optical Illusions and Unique Creations
One of the neat parts about many of the exhibits is that they are optical illusions. For instance, look at the photo of Frank Sinatra in the below photo. Notice how the portrait is stylized and colorful, while it also has pretty accurate coloring.
You can visit exhibits that relate to many different topics. Below, you can see a model of the International Space Station that was made with matchsticks. The dedication and artistic creativity that went into these exhibits is very impressive.
While some of the displays totally grossed me out, they caught my attention and made me laugh. I spotted two headed animals, a person with a snake coming out of his mouth, and more.
Remember, not all of the exhibits are repulsive! I discovered many beautiful displays.
While at Ripley’s, you can participate in many interactive exhibits that capture kids’ and adults’ attention. We had fun creating shadows on a wall, walking through a tunnel, and fitting ourselves into small boxes.
One of the best parts about Ripley’s Believe It Or Not is that there is a huge range in the type of exhibits you will see. Whether you are interested in religion, science, or art, there is something to appeal to everyone.
10.) The Cathedral Basilica
On a more serious and thoughtful note, the Cathedral Basilica is a beautiful spot to visit. Located across from the Casa Monica Hotel, the Cathedral Basilica is where America’s first parish was located. This is the oldest church in Florida as well as the oldest Catholic church in St. Augustine.
Even if you aren’t a practicing Catholic, the Cathedral Basilica is worth visiting for its beautiful artwork and serene interior.
I hope you enjoyed learning more about the top 10 places you’d love to visit in St. Augustine! From family fun to a romantic getaway, this city offers something for everyone.
I received a free item, but it in no way influenced my opinion.