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There are endless experiences to explore by boat in Jacksonville!
During your stay along the First Coast you'll likely notice that the view from the water is just as great as it is from the land. We've come up with some suggestions for exciting boating excursions that you might not find on standard maps.
Here are three unique itineraries designed for boaters that capture the good life on Jacksonville’s waterways.
Stock up on bait at Sister’s Creek Fish Camp and venture up Sister’s Creek to Clapboard Creek for a day of backwater angling. This is some of the best fishing in the region. The creek cuts through the Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve and past the historic Kingsley Plantation. Continue north to Ft. George River and hit the beach for a picnic and swim to cool off in the Ft. George Inlet. Cruise past Huguenot Memorial Park and up the St. Johns River to the Sandollar Restaurant for cocktails and dinner. If you are looking for something a little more causal, gun it across the river to Safe Harbor Seafood Market or Singleton’s Seafood Shack. A little further down the river where it meets Clapboard Creek you will find Palms Fish Camp, another great restaurant to enjoy a meal and a drink nearby.
Dock Downtown at the River City Marina and grab lunch at the River City Brewing Company. Enjoy the city views then head over the Museum of Science and History next door. Catch a show at the planetarium and learn about the region’s unique ecosystems. From there, head over to Exchange Island located under the Mathews Bridge – it’s only accessible via boat. The island has been recently upgraded with new docks, picnic pavilions and hiking trails. Whichever route you decide to go, when it’s time for dinner, head back to town and dock at the Jacksonville Landing. There are a variety of kid-friendly restaurants and attractions Downtown including Sweet Pete’s. There is also live music at The Landing to unwind after a day of cruising the city.
Want to get in touch with your inner Huck Finn? Paddle your way south on the St. Johns River. In the morning, start at the Southbank boat ramp and then head down river. There are many little creeks to explore along the way. Head up Christopher Creek to Nathaniel Krestful Park to enjoy unique local birdlife. Paddle back out to the St. Johns River and stick to the east bank. The tides are strong, so be careful. Then make your way down to Goodby’s Creek for a taste of old Florida. Once in Goodby’s Creek wrap up your paddle with lunch at Wicked Barley’s Brewery, Florida’s only craft brewery with boater access. Fun place to bring the kids with games like jenga and cornhole to play. Be sure to check out all of the paddling guides to the St. Johns River here! You can also find several paddling trails in the area.
Learn about more unique boating spots in Jacksonville.
Local Expert- Only In Jax