Looking for a Jacksonville story angle? We've got you covered. From hip new neighborhoods and local beer tours, to romantic resort getaways - learn more about all the diverse experiences and activities that make Jacksonville such an attractive destination.
African-American Heritage: Significant African American historic sites populate Jacksonville, including the LaVilla neighborhood, once known as the “Harlem of the South,” American Beach, the first resort community in the nation for African Americans, and Kingsley Plantation, the last remaining plantation house in Florida. Visit the new Jacksonville Heritage Trail Tour for an online journey of the city's most significant African-American attractions and museums.
Best beaches in Florida: Jacksonville has more shoreline than any other city in the nation with 1,100 miles of navigable water and 22 miles of relaxing beaches. Each beach has its own unique personality and flavor. Atlantic Beach is the quintessential Florida beach community with a vibrant dining and nightlife scene, fun beach dive bars, boutique resorts and friendly family atmosphere. Jacksonville Beach is a party destination with great nightlife, chain hotels and surf shops. Huguenot Park lets beachgoers drive on the sand and bring the party with them. Boneyard Beach at Big Talbot Island is a must-see with dozens of Live Oaks resting on the sand reminiscent of white skeletons. So many miles of beaches, each one with a different vibe but all beautiful and unique to Jacksonville.
Family Friendly Destinations: Bring the kids and enjoy an affordable and fun getaway in Jacksonville. A trip to Adventure Landing will have the entire family engaged as they mini-golf, drive go-karts or play in the water at their ShipWreck Island waterpark. The Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is one of the most visited attractions in Northeast Florida and one of the top 9 animal attractions in the nation. Kona Skate Park is the oldest operating skate park in the nation and lessons are available for all skill levels. Jacksonville’s beaches are family-friendly with dozens of activities for the entire family to do including paddleboarding, kayaking and fishing.
Farm to Bar: Not only are Jacksonville’s restaurants creating delicious dishes with the help of local farmers, so are the local speakeasies and bars. Enjoy signature cocktails at The Volstead, Dos gatos, Black Sheep, Orsay and many other lounges across Jacksonville. Salud!
Hip Florida: Jacksonville has Florida’s youngest population and they know how to have a good time. Jacksonville’s nightlife is filled with unique bars, pubs and live music venues. The Guardian named Jack Rabbits and Underbelly, located in Jacksonville’s historic districts, as two of the best live music venues in Florida. Jacksonville’s young population thrives on the sentiment of being “local” and helping local businesses and attractions succeed. The local craft beer scene has doubled in the past few years and it continues to expand, with two new micro-breweries coming to Jacksonville in 2014, with one owned and operated by local war veterans. Engine 15 Brewing Co., Intuition Ale Works, Aardwolf Brewing Co. and Pinglehead Brewing Co. all won medals at the Best Florida Beer Championship in February. In Jacksonville, we are pioneer hipsters… minus the Brooklyn accent.
Historic Getaways: Jacksonville is the ideal destination to discover Florida’s and America's history. Visitors can experience unique places with French, Spanish, Native American and African American history and learn while they have a great time in the "River City by the Sea.” Highlights include the site of the first European settlement in the New World dating back to 1564 and the arrival of the first French explorers at Fort Caroline, now a national monument. Significant African American historic sites populate Jacksonville, including the LaVilla neighborhood, once known as the “Harlem of the South,” American Beach, the first resort community in the nation for African Americans, and Kingsley Plantation, the last remaining plantation house in Florida. Jacksonville is also the first Hollywood. In the early years of the 20th century, the warm climate, striking natural surroundings, diversity of architecture, inexpensive labor, and easy rail access attracted more than 30 movie studios to Jacksonville; this earned the city the title of “Winter Film Capital of the World.” All historic sites are included in several tours available to the public.
Jax Ale Trail: Jacksonville leads the Florida craft brewery scene with dozens of award winning brews. The local craft beer scene has doubled in the past few years and it continues to expand, with two new micro-breweries coming to Jacksonville in 2014, with one owned and operated by local war veterans. Engine 15 Brewing Co., Intuition Ale Works, Aardwolf Brewing Co. and Pinglehead Brewing Co. all won medals at the Best Florida Beer Championship in February. The Jax Ale Trail is connecting the local craft breweries with everyday visitors to give them a wider variety of flavors unique to our breweries.
Let's Golf: With over 1,220 holes of golf, Northeast Florida is the perfect getaway for golfers looking to take advantage of pristine course conditions, affordable rates, great fall deals and comfortable weather all year. Home to 72 public and private courses, making up 488,000 yards of greens -Northeast Florida is truly a golfer’s paradise-, so bring your clubs and tee off at area courses designed by greats like Tom Fazio, Pete Dye, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player and Mark McCumber.
Nature & Outdoors: The abundant parks and ecological preserves in Jacksonville provide an unforgettable opportunity to escape city life and relax in nature’s playground. Jacksonville is the city of parks, with more than 80,000 acres of green spaces including 10 state & national parks and more than 400 city parks and gardens. No matter where you are in Jacksonville, you are never more than 15 minutes away from the eco-adventure of a lifetime! Highlights include the Timucuan Preserve, the Jacksonville Arboretum, the Baldwin-Jacksonville Trail, the Intra-Coastal Waterway and the guided kayaking and paddleboarding tours available at Kayak Amelia.
Old Florida: There is a sense of history and southern hospitality that can only be found in our city. From the friendly people you encounter on the streets while walking downtown to the rustic fish camps that populate our extensive shoreline, so many sites in Jacksonville are authentic and offer an “Only in Jax” experience. Visitors can explore the historic districts, like Riverside, San Marco and Avondale, and enjoy local hot spots and unique boutique shops.
Only in Jax Food Scene: Jacksonville’s dining scene is an eclectic hybrid of inspired casual elegance and classic southern comfort. The city’s young and talented new wave of chefs have trained nationally and internationally. Today, they are reinventing the region’s best flavors and dishes to create a whole new breed of Southern restaurants infused with modern flavors and textures using locally-sourced organic ingredients. Dining hotspots include Bistro AIX, Taverna, Black Sheep, Moxie Kitchen + Cocktails, Azurea, Matthews, Medure, The Grotto, The Brick, Metro Diner, Pele’s and Ovinte.
Romantic Getaways: Jacksonville is the ideal destination to ignite romance, either on a couple’s getaway or as the backdrop to a destination wedding. The extensive selection of elegant hotels, boutique resorts, theaters, nightlife, restaurants and spas makes it the place to visit for passion to blossom.
Local Experts | All Blogs
Blogs by Visit Jacksonville
October 20, 2014 10:17 am EDT
Unless you’re an expert on our fine city (and who knows? You might be, it is pretty awesome here) here are some things you probably didn’t know about Jacksonville, Florida.
October 06, 2014 12:17 pm EDT
Summer months have come and gone, but the fun has just begun.
September 23, 2014 12:36 pm EDT
From easy to hard, historic to championship, beach to river – Northeast Florida offers more than 1,200 holes of golf on 70 public and private courses, pristine course conditions, affordable rates, great fall deals and comfortable weather all year.
August 31, 2014 1:14 pm EDT
Music, art, fun, food, beer, sports, adventure, and fun await you in Jacksonville on any given day, and the best part? We guarantee it won’t break your bank!
August 19, 2014 12:47 pm EDT
Some people might call them fish shacks, holes in the wall, dives- but here in Jax we call them Fish Camps!
Blogs by Denise M. Reagan
December 12, 2014 4:18 pm EST
Angela Strassheim creates images that are more like paintings than photographs. “I don’t take pictures. I make photographs,” Strassheim said. “Everything in a photograph is there because I decided it would be there.”
October 22, 2014 12:32 pm EDT
Artists have been working in the realist style for centuries. In this age of technology, what would inspire contemporary painters to embark on the painstaking process of creating art in this style?
October 16, 2014 1:45 pm EDT
A small theater in the heart of the Five Points neighborhood has made a big impact on Jacksonville’s movie tastes.
September 30, 2014 12:05 pm EDT
MOCA Jacksonville ‘Project Atrium’ artist explores the mind’s circuitry in a monumental textile installation
September 22, 2014 2:05 pm EDT
Pick a day and a neighborhood and you’ll find a place to absorb local art.
Blogs by Gary Sass
December 01, 2014 11:47 am EST
The local historical societies celebrate the holidays and offer fun activities. It is also a chance to buy unique gifts for the lovers of history.
November 05, 2014 3:12 pm EST
We call it the “First Coast”, home of the first European settlements and a region steeped in history. Read on for a brief description of some of our local museums and sites which are free or have a nominal fee.
October 10, 2014 2:56 pm EDT
The most spectacular annual air show is right here in Jacksonville.
August 13, 2014 11:05 am EDT
“On location in Jacksonville”, has been part of movie production history for over one hundred years. From the silent movie era to today’s modern films, it is entertaining to watch scenes with Jacksonville in the background.
July 16, 2014 5:24 pm EDT
Where can you find the best volunteer lifeguards in the world? Just go to Jacksonville Beach and look for the iconic white tower (a.k.a. “The Peg”) along the ocean. This is home for the American Red Cross Life Saving Corps.
Blogs by Void Magazine
September 12, 2014 3:08 pm EDT
According to critics, the most problematic feature of our region is the geographic size of Jacksonville. It’s just a really big city. If you drove from Baldwin in West Jacksonville, all the way to where Atlantic Boulevard dumps you on the ocean, it would take you almost an hour – and you would have never left the city limits of Jacksonville.
September 12, 2014 2:49 pm EDT
Over the past two years, Shad Khan and the leadership of the Jacksonville Jaguars have made extensive efforts to transform the team from relative obscurity (for those outside Duval) into one of the most visible franchises in the league.
July 10, 2014 4:55 pm EDT
Out with the old, in with the bold! Bold Bean Coffee Roasters has just opened its second location in South Jacksonville Beach, ironically where the old Starbucks was located. Bold Bean specializes in handmade, single-origin coffee, espresso beverages, craft beer and a community-orientated atmosphere.
June 10, 2014 5:31 pm EDT
What makes a restaurant romantic? If you’re not sure, you probably ought to ask someone female. When I asked my husband for his suggestions for this article, he said, “Is Guzzle Pipes and Gutty Works open yet?” Having an excellent beer list is not usually high on the list of most women’s romance requirements.
June 02, 2014 12:02 pm EDT
We all love a nice summer night with friends and a cool beer in our hand. This list will be your locally-brewed beer guide for the summer, no matter the occasion.
Blogs by Local Expert Guest
December 19, 2014 12:36 pm EST
Soaking up the craft beer scene in Jacksonville, Florida.
June 26, 2014 1:57 pm EDT
I’m thrilled to let all of you theater fans know about some great shows coming up in the FSCJ Artist Series’ 2014-2015 Broadway in Jacksonville Season, sponsored by Chase!