Fernandina Beach is sometimes considered one of the most beautiful cities in Florida, and its rich history is part of that. It’s a history of eight different flags, of exploration, piracy, and bootleggers. Decorated sea captains have lived here, and movies have been filmed here. Fernandina Beach is proud of its history, which is why so many of its historical sites still stand today. Here are the must-see historical sites and landmarks for you to visit:
Amelia Island Lighthouse
Looming over the northern tip of Fernandina Beach and in fact Amelia Island itself is the Amelia Island Lighthouse, famous for its long life — nearly 200 years old — and the fact that it’s called not one but two islands its home throughout that time. Originally named the Cumberland Island Lighthouse, it stood was planted on, well, Cumberland Island, Georgia from 1820-1838. The purpose was not just to guide ships home but to curb piracy and slave smuggling. But the channel it lit drastically changed in those 18 years, so by 1838, Cumberland Island was no longer a convenient location for the lighthouse. In a rather unique decision, Congress moved to disassemble the lighthouse and rebuild it on Amelia Island, where it still stands today as the Amelia Island Lighthouse.
You may have heard of the Captain’s House, but you may not know it by that name. Around the area, the house is also known as Downes House or the Pippi Longstocking House, as it was famously a set for the 1980s Pippi Longstocking movie. The home dates back to the 1800s and shows in its traditional architecture. The high tower and classic gables of the house can be seen from the river. Though it was once white with blue trim, the house has since been renovated, painted green with red trim. It does, however, retain all of its old world charm and is still one of the highlights of Old Town Fernandina.
Fort Clinch State Park
This 1,400 acre park blends military history with natural spectacles. Here you can visit Fort Clinch, a structure that dates back to 1864, and watch as reenactors play out battles from the Civil War. The rooms and galleries inside provide an insight into the daily lives of the soldiers in those days and help to transport you into times long past. There are also several maritime hammocks throughout the park, tied to sturdy Spanish Oaks. When you’ve finished exploring the fort, you can walk through the coastal grasslands, dunes, and nearby shores. There’s a vast variety of wildlife that calls Fort Clinch State Park their home, from deer to bobcats to alligators and different types of birds.
Fernandina Beach is full of historical attractions. Even if you’re not visiting Fernandina Beach to find a home, you may just be charmed into it once you visit these historical sites.
To learn more about their expertise or how they can help you buy or sell your home, contact The Barclay Team today.