The Southside and Mandarin Areas
The Southside and Mandarin areas offer shopping, riverfront outdoors activities and historical sites.
The Southside is the latest up and coming section of Jacksonville and it's blossomed into a bustling business center. St. Johns Town Center - a 1.1 million-square-foot, open-air lifestyle center offering innovative new retail, residential, hotel, and dining choices for Jacksonville shoppers is one of the highlights of the area. Just around the corner, the Tinseltown area is hopping with a movie theater, restaurants, specialty shops, and thriving nightlife. The area is also home to the large yet elegant Avenues Mall.
The History of The Mandarin Neighborhood
Named for the Mandarin orange in 1830, this neighborhood on the St. Johns River just south of San Marco was once described as “a tropical paradise” by Harriet Beecher Stowe, the author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Both Harriet Beecher Stowe, and painter Lee Adams once lived here. Mandarin is characterized by its magnificent oak trees hung with dramatic Spanish moss and boasts some of the best views of the St. Johns River in greater Jacksonville. Once an important river port for shipping oranges and other citrus fruit northward, today Mandarin is a blend of residential areas and shopping centers. Don't miss the Mandarin Museum and Walter Jones Historical Park. The 10-acre riverfront site is home to an 1876 farm complex with picnic areas as well as a citrus grove.
Getting Here from Downtown: Go South on I-95 for 11 miles. Take I-295 west and exit at San Jose Blvd. South for Mandarin. Jacksonville's public buses also have frequent routes between the most popular attractions and malls in this area.
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