Located on the “Isle of Eight Flags”, Fernandina Beach is an alluring seaside settlement and the northernmost city on Florida’s Atlantic Coast. It features charismatic architectural landmarks and a unique heritage museum, as well as strong associations with the much-loved character, Pippi Longstocking.
Things to do in Fernandina Beach
Visit the first spoken history museum in Florida at the Amelia Island Museum of History, which offers fascinating walking tours around Fernandina Beach. Learn about the Timucuan Indians who first settled in the area and its 16th-century conquest by Spanish missionaries, as well as the role Amelia Island played in the Civil War.
Want to see Florida’s oldest existing lighthouse? Admire the whitewashed architecture of the Amelia Island Light, which illuminates St. Marys Entrance in the north of Fernandina Beach. This historic monument was built in 1838 using materials sourced from the old Little Cumberland Island Light.
If you’re a fan of Pippi Longstocking, visit Captain Bell’s House, used as her home, Villa Villekulla, in the 1988 film “The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking”. It was built by river captain James Bell in 1870 and its gingerbread-style architecture stands across from the Spanish Fort San Carlos parade grounds.
Head to the late-19th-century Nassau County Courthouse, where the striking red-and-white exterior features impressive Corinthian columns and a massive steeple. Its immense bell was cast by New York company Meneely and Co and was used as the city’s fire alarm for many years.
Getting around Fernandina Beach
Jacksonville International Airport is a 40-minute drive from Fernandina Beach and the journey into Jacksonville’s city centre takes around 50 minutes. Cars are the main means of getting around Amelia Island, while Fernandina Beach is easily explored on foot.