904 Day: Insider Picks

We asked our Visit Jacksonville social media ambassadors about their favorite parts of the 904.

Ringhaver Park

Jacinda, Po, and Tigress (@kungfuaussies)

From multiple open green soccer fields to a newly opened pickleball court to great nature trail, Ringhaver Park has it all! The nature trail is serene and quiet. It’s about a mile long; you can see gopher tortoises burrowing in their homes; and hear the beautiful songs of the many birds around you. There is also a newly renovated boardwalk that leads you down to the Ortega River. This is the perfect place to bring your family for a little getaway hike.

Po and Tigress at ​Ringhaver Park

The Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens

Jill Cruz (@snackandjll)

The Jacksonville Arboretum is my happy place. It is hidden off of Monument Rd in a small patch of forest between Old Arlington and East Arlington. The arboretum spans 120 acres, offering 7 natural trails through 13 distinct ecosystems. Each trail varies in length so it doesn’t matter what activity or skill level you are at, they’ve got you covered! On any given day you can find families with small children, people walking their dogs, and even serious runners tackling the more challenging trails. My favorites are the Lower Ravine, Upper Ravine, and Jones Creek Trails (a little under .07 miles total). I really enjoy walking through these trails and looking at all of the plants and water rushing by. It’s really amazing how something this beautiful can be located so close to the highway and various neighborhoods.

The arboretum also hosts many different events and educational seminars throughout the year including nature walks, yoga classes, and volunteer workdays. Many are free but some of the larger events do have an entrance fee (which I don’t mind paying since the funds go towards maintaining the arboretum). If you are ever in the area or are looking for something fun to do on the weekend, make sure to stop by and check it out!

Aloha Waffle Bar

Katrice Shorter (@willworkforheels)

Nestled in the heart of River City Marketplace is the Aloha Waffle Bar! Perfect for an after meal treat or a different twist on lunch or dinner, this new spot is full of Hawaiian vibes and great eats! They have several sweet waffle options that you can add your favorite toppings to as well as savory options like my fav, the 3BLT waffle! It’s made with bacon, lettuce, and tomato folded into a bacon bubble waffle with a bacon aioli drizzle. So delicious! There’s also the Tiki Tea and Island Coffee Bar where you can purchase Big Island Coffee favs and boba teas. The restaurant itself is super colorful with tropical decor and tabletop games to keep you busy while waiting for your meal. There’s also outdoor seating with a water view! This is another fun spot to add to your dining to-do list!

Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens

Jacksonville Mom (@jacksonvillemom)

There are endless things to see and do throughout Jacksonville, but one of our all-time favorites will always be the beautiful Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens. With rotating exhibits, 3D shows, and one-of-a-kind experiences — from summer camps to Spooktacular — it’s the best place to be for creating lasting memories with the whole family. The littles can burn off energy at the Play Park and the 4,000-square-foot splash pad, while Mom and Dad can sit and relax at one of the many on-site dining destinations. Don’t forget to stop by the petting zoo and carousel, and take a ride on the train (after feeding the zoo’s larger-than-life giraffes, of course)! Pro Tip: Make the most of your zoo experience by getting a family membership. Trust us, it’s well worth it!

Check out why Jessica loves her zoo membership.

You can feed the giraffes at the Jacksonville Zoo.

The Historic Springfield Neighborhood

Kelly Rich (@norlagirl)

Why do I love Springfield? Let me count the ways…. Art. Music. Culture. Parks. History. Porches. Bikes. Festivals. Food. Shops. Breweries. Neighbors. Friends. It’s the personality and authenticity that make us such a special community within Jacksonville. When’s the last time you’ve been to Historic Springfield?

Check out the full list of things to do in Springfield.

Sweet Pete's

Elle Swim (@5suitcases)

One of our favorite local hangouts is Sweet Pete's, the largest candy store in the southeastern United States. Located in the heart of downtown, Sweet Pete's is a kid's dream come true. The candy shop boasts 3 whimsical floors sprinkled with every sweet treat you can imagine! We suggest their sea salt caramels, decadent chocolates, and chocolate-covered Oreos.

Our kids love participating in the candy-making classes. We've learned how to make gummies, lollipops, and chocolate pizzas. There's nothing more fun than getting your hands a little sticky with sugary goodness while spending quality time together.

Be sure to bring your phone or camera- Sweet Pete's is totally Insta-worthy! The creative masterminds behind the shop's interior design swap out the fun, vibrant, decor with each season or major holiday. You never know what to expect when you enter the doors!

While you're there, stop by the first floor for a bite to eat or a tasty cocktail or enjoy a scoop of smooth, creamy ice cream on the second floor.

Poe's Tavern (Beaches Town Center)

Elly Sandoval (@q33n.elly)

Living it up! #904day

The first time we visited Beaches Town Center, it was love at first sight. This place is known as “Where Atlantic Boulevard meets the ocean, located in the heart of Neptune Beach and Atlantic Beach”. As a Foodie family we absolutely made the right decision when we moved to #904 near Beaches Town Center because there are so many great restaurants very close to home. One of our favorite restaurants is Poe’s Tavern! This spot is American grub & decor dedicated to author Edgar Allan Poe 📖

We like the theme, but we love the food! It was also the first restaurant we visited at the beach when we moved in 2015! The quality and service continues to be amazing! Poe’s Tavern is conveniently located two blocks away from the beach 🏝

Our favorites are (not all captured):
✨ Tortilla Chips With Chili Con Queso
✨ Quesadillas- Grilled Marinated Chicken
✨ Sesame Seared Tuna Salad

PT’s is infamous for 🍔, you could select from Beef, Chicken or Veggie ❤️

Our favorite burger’s:
✨ The Sleeper: Roasted garlic blue cheese & buffalo fried shrimp
✨ Pit & Pendulum: Applewood bacon & cheddar cheese
✨ Tell-Tale Heart- Fried egg, applewood bacon & cheddar cheese

When in Jax, stop by Poe’s Tavern and enjoy some delicious food and drinks 🍹