Beginning of main content
Trip Type
Flight 1
Flight 2
Flight 3
Flight 4
Flight 5

Search over 1,000,000 properties worldwide and 550 airlines worldwide.

Search over a million flights, hotels, packages, and more

No Expedia cancellation fee to change or cancel almost any hotel reservation.

Castillo de San Marcos

Explore one of the the oldest standing masonry forts in North America and watch cannons being fired from the ramparts.

Castillo de San Marcos is a vast stone fortress that has protected the town of St. Augustine since the 17th century. Stroll around the castle grounds and admire the sheer size of the building. Scan the walls for marks left by cannonballs and take a tour to learn about the many different forces that have occupied this fort over the ages. Enjoy stunning views over the river and watch a demonstration of ancient cannons being fired. 

The fort is St. Augustine’s most historically significant structure. Originally constructed by the Spanish between 1672 and 1695, it has changed little since its completion in 1756. It was built using locally quarried coquina, after Admiral Pedro Menendez de Aviles discovered that this type of rock absorbed the blast of cannonballs rather than crumbling. 

Explore the grounds and notice the many different elements of the castle’s design. The star-like layout ensured there were no blind spots for guards in the sentry boxes. Stand in one of the boxes and imagine keeping watch for enemy invaders. Make your way to the top for scenic views across the Matanzas River.

Learn more about the castle’s unique history by taking a self-guided tour or listening to one of the talks given by park rangers throughout the day. Listen to tales of sieges and fires and discover what happened when the British finally conquered Florida. Don’t miss the cannon firings, when these ancient weapons are set off by soldiers in period dress. Come on July 4 to see an even more spectacular show as fireworks light up the skies around the castle.

Castillo de San Marcos is open every day of the year except for Christmas Day. It is located a short walk east of St. Augustine’s town center. Parking is available for a fee. There is a small charge for entry, however children under 15 enter free. Please note that wheelchair access is limited in some parts of the castle. 

Want to make your time spent at Castillo de San Marcos even more special? Don't forget to try out one or two of these things to do:

Your next epic adventure is right in front of you! You may like to try a St. Augustine & Pirate Museum Tour from Orlando or a Fort Matanzas & Old Downtown Helicopter Tour.

Check out our St. Augustine things to do page to find even more activities while you're in the area.


Guide to Exploring around Castillo de San Marcos


Map

Best Lodging Options Near Castillo de San Marcos

See all 1,553 Properties near Castillo de San Marcos
Villa 1565 $87
Villa 1565

Villa 1565

137 San Marco Ave, St. Augustine, FL
     
    2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in the heart of St. Augustine, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Mission of Nombre de Dios and Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park. Castillo de San Marcos and Lightner Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km).

    The Ponce St. Augustine Hotel $89
    The Ponce St. Augustine Hotel

    The Ponce St. Augustine Hotel

    1111 N. Ponce De Leon Blvd, St. Augustine, FL
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated near the airport, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Limelight Theatre and Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park. Castillo de San Marcos and Lightner Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km).

      Casablanca Inn on the Bay $139
      Casablanca Inn on the Bay

      Casablanca Inn on the Bay

      24 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in St. Augustine Historic District, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of St. George Street, Castillo de San Marcos, and Lightner Museum. Flagler College and Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park are also within 1 mi (2 km).

        Days Inn by Wyndham St Augustine/Historic Downtown $68
        Days Inn by Wyndham St Augustine/Historic Downtown

        Days Inn by Wyndham St Augustine/Historic Downtown

        1300 N Ponce De Leon Blvd, St. Augustine, FL
           
          2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in the historical district, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Limelight Theatre and Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park. Castillo de San Marcos and Lightner Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km).

          Best Western Bayfront $126
          Best Western Bayfront

          Best Western Bayfront

          16 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL
             
            2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in St. Augustine Historic District, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Wolf's Museum of Mystery, Castillo de San Marcos, and Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine. Lightner Museum and Flagler College are also within 10 minutes.

            Holiday Inn St. Augustine - Historic $112
            Holiday Inn St. Augustine - Historic

            Holiday Inn St. Augustine - Historic

            1302 N Ponce De Leon Blvd, St. Augustine, FL
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in the heart of St. Augustine, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Limelight Theatre and Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park. Castillo de San Marcos and Lightner Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km).

              Villa Victor, Ascend Hotel Collection $115
              Villa Victor, Ascend Hotel Collection

              Villa Victor, Ascend Hotel Collection

              42 San Marco Ave, St. Augustine, FL
                 
                2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in the heart of St. Augustine, this hotel is steps from St. Augustine and St. Johns County Visitor Information Center and Ripley's Believe It Or Not.

                The Bayfront Inn $132
                The Bayfront Inn

                The Bayfront Inn

                138 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL
                   
                  2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in St. Augustine Historic District, this motel is within a 5-minute walk of Aviles Street and St. George Street. Lightner Museum and Flagler College are also within 10 minutes.