Amelia Island and Fernandina Step-on Tour
Your tour guide meets you at the hotel for a day in old Florida. Our destination is Amelia Island which was founded by the French, settled by the Spanish, named by the English, and tamed by the Americans. The ride on the way takes you through the old fishing village of Mayport where the early Europeans encountered the Timucuan Indians. We then board the Mayport ferry to cross the St. Johns River to Fort George Island. Our first stop will be at Kingsley Plantation to hear the amazing story of Anna, a former slave who rose to become a property owner. We explore the grounds which include the slave quarters, barn, waterfront, plantation house, kitchen house, and interpretive garden. Then we go to the quaint town of Fernandina to hear the stories from the Fairbanks Folly to Jefferson Davis to Florida’s oldest tavern and resident ghost. The historic town appears caught in a Victorian period time capsule with all the late 19th century architecture. The pedestrian areas along Centre Street make for a relaxing day in the only American city under eight different flags.
Length: 4-6 hours
Variations: combine with a ticket to Fort Clinch State Park or a Cumberland Island river cruise. Consider adding free time for shopping around Centre Street and the historic district.
Jacksonville’s “Top to Bottom” Walking Tour
Your professional tour guide meets you at Jacksonville Landing (or your hotel) to show you Jacksonville from rooftops to beneath the city streets. Once known as “Cowford,” the picturesque city along the river has grown to be the largest city in land area in the continental United States. Hear how Jacksonville rose from the ashes of the Great Fire of 1901 to emerge as an architectural gem of the South. The city was also the first Hollywood for movie making before the talkies. We walk from the St. Johns River to Hemming Plaza taking an insider’s look at the historic buildings and skyscrapers. This unique tour includes the rooftop of the old Florida Theatre to take a step back into the glory days of movie houses. We even go for a peek at the subterranean city that once connected the banks with secret underground tunnels and vaults. Hear the exploits of past Presidents, great American architects, and music legends as we walk through time. This can be a perfect orientation to the city on your first day as we point out many of the local restaurants, attractions, and ways to navigate the River City.
Length: 1 hour, 45 minutes. Distance is 1 mile. Available for scheduling Monday through Friday 8:30am – 5:00pm. Weekend walking tours are also available with different stops.
World Golf Experience – Step-on Tour
Your professional tour guide meets the group at your hotel for an entertaining golf experience. Ponte Vedra Beach is home to the PGA Tour, THE PLAYERS, and many professional golfers. St. Augustine is home to the World Golf Hall of Fame. Our first stop will be inside the World Golf Hall of Fame to meet Walter Hagen. Mr. Hagen gives you some insight into his colorful life and the early professional days of golf; he “never wanted to be a millionaire, just to live like one”. You then start your self-guided tour through the golf museum, a once in a lifetime experience for all golf enthusiasts. Concluding the museum tour, we have our Challenge Hole tournament. This replica hole of number 17, the island green at the famous Stadium Course (THE PLAYERS) is the ultimate par 3. There is still lots more to see in the area. Optionally groups can go to the IMAX theatre at World Golf Village or visit nearby colonial St. Augustine, the Oldest City in America, and the home of the first golf course in Florida.
Length: 2-6 hours
Price: TBD based on group size. Golf Hall of Fame gifts can be arranged with the Challenge Hole tournament.
Variations: this tour can also be combined with a round of golf. The King & Bear is at World Golf Village, the only course designed by both Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus. We can also add a Champagne Toast in the Hall of Fame tower trophy room.
St. Augustine Walking Ghost Tour
Local author and 30 year resident of the Oldest City, Karen Harvey, meets your group in the historic area. Karen takes you on a guided tour and articulates why St. Augustine is considered one of the most haunted places in America. A favorite of TV’s Ghost Hunters, the Ancient City takes on a whole new atmosphere when the moon is out and you walk the dark narrow streets led by lantern. We walk past the graveyards to tell the story of the eternal bride, the restless judge, and others who just refuse to leave. The cobblestone passageways are a perfect setting for the tales of murder and mystery in the historic district. Your guide has written 7 books on St. Augustine including, “Oldest Ghosts”, “Legends and Tales of St. Augustine”, and “Daring Daughters – St. Augustine’s Feisty Females.” We create an interactive tour which is fun for everyone.
Jacksonville City Experience Tour
Come enjoy the history and culture of the largest city in the continental United States! Your professional tour guide meets the group at your hotel for a river city experience that will entertain all your senses. You may be surprised to hear of the 1564 French colony that existed in Jacksonville before the Spanish settled La Florida. We travel to downtown Jacksonville to hear the exploits of the city’s namesake, Andrew Jackson, and the famous architects who descended upon the city after the Great Fire of 1901. From the ashes, skyscrapers were built and a banking center emerged with secret underground tunnels. We tour this period by stepping inside the architecturally rich St. James Building that was once the center for commerce and is today’s City Hall. Our journey then pauses outside the historic Florida Theatre made famous by Elvis Presley. We watch a classic film clip which introduces the fun story of how the city emerged as the “First Hollywood” during the silent movie days. The St. Johns River is the perfect backdrop as we travel along the North and South river banks seeing the EverBank (Jaguar) Stadium, Veterans Memorial Wall, St. John’s Cathedral, Friendship Fountain and Treaty Oak. At sites such as the Veterans Memorial Wall, we have the option to disembark for a more personal experience by bringing the wall to life telling the stories of the fallen heroes. The tour continues in the nearby Riverside/Avondale area that was ranked by APA as a “Top 10 Great Neighborhood in America”. We see the historic houses with their varied architectural styles that make up the picturesque community along the river. The area is famous for chocolate covered popcorn so a stop for the tasty treat is always a hit. Your guide creates an interactive tour atmosphere which is fun for everyone.
Cost: $125.00 per hour. Transportation is not included.
Variations to this tour can include private trips to:
- Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens – 6,000 pieces of art from Rubens to Rockwells coupled with three outside gardens
- Brew Masters Tour – the Anheuser-Busch version of ”behind the scenes,” includes tastings from the large finishing tanks
- Perfume Tour – this custom fragrance manufacturer takes you on an olfactory tour which includes Cleopatra’s perfume
- Peterbrooke Chocolatier – this factory tour includes the famous chocolate covered popcorn of the new hot franchise
- Merrill House – step back into 1903 as we tour gem of the historical society in the glory days of Jacksonville
- San Marco – a quaint neighborhood known for its trendy San Marco Square and boutique shopping