St. Augustine, FL

Travel Guide
St. Augustine Beach showing a sandy beach and general coastal views as well as a family

America's “Ancient City” is famous for its historic streets and colonial-era monuments as well as its beaches, wildlife and water sports.

St. Augustine is the oldest European settlement on the U.S. mainland, hence its nickname the “Ancient City.” It was founded by the Spanish explorer Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, all the way back in 1565 and has been plundered and conquered several times. Visit the sunny Florida city to discover influences from the Spanish, English, Greeks, Africans and Native Americans.

Find traces of nearly five centuries worth of history in St. George Street alone. Admire the Spanish-style buildings, the Oldest Store museum and horse-drawn carts traveling along cobblestone streets. Visit the 1740s-themed Colonial Spanish Quarter, a living museum. Stop for a break in one of the old taverns; some have dining by candlelight only. St. Augustine’s many 19th-century buildings still display the splendor of the “Gilded Age.”

Don’t miss the chance to visit Castillo de San Marcos: The oldest standing European fort in continental America. Book a scenic cruise from the Municipal Marina to see the fort from the water and get pictures of the old lighthouse. While you’re at Castillo de San Marcos, take the kids to the Pirate and Treasure Museum to see artifacts such as treasure chests, maps and flags.

St. Augustine has barrier islands accessible via two bridges: Francis and Mary Usina Bridge in the north, and the Bridge of Lions in the south.

Head south to Anastasia Island to enjoy the white sand of St. Augustine Beach. Stop by St. John’s County Pier when you visit Anastasia State Park with its bird sanctuary, beaches, nature trails, picnic areas and camping grounds. The quieter northern barrier island has Vilano Beach. Come here for beachfront restaurants and fishing excursions.

In St. Augustine most attractions are within walking distance of the city center. Join a narrated hop-on, hop-off trolley tour for a faster, and affordable, way to see more of the city and learn the history. It’s best to rent a car if you plan to visit the barrier islands.

Where to stay in St. Augustine

Villa 1565
Villa 1565
3 out of 5
137 San Marco Ave, St. Augustine, FL
The price is $119 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Located in the heart of St. Augustine, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Mission of Nombre de Dios, Castillo de San Marcos, and Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine. ...
4/5 Very Good! (666 reviews)
"Large room but a few things missing No TV channel list. The packets that contain sugar, creamer, etc had no stirrers in them."

Reviewed on Jan 21, 2022

Villa 1565
Guy Harvey Resort on St Augustine Beach
Guy Harvey Resort on St Augustine Beach
3 out of 5
860 A1A Beach Blvd, St. Augustine, FL
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $125 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3
Nestled on the beach, this St. Augustine hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Tolomato River, St. Augustine Beach, and Anastasia State Park. Butler Beach and St. Johns ...
3.9/5 Good! (1,650 reviews)
"Much of the property has been recently renovated.the beds were extremely comfortable and the bathroom clean and modern. Hot water was excellent and a/c and heat worked properly. Ate breakfast at their restaurant and found it to be good and pretty reasonable. Only 15 minute drive to the St. Augustine ..."

Reviewed on Jan 20, 2022

Guy Harvey Resort on St Augustine Beach
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Augustine Historic District
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Augustine Historic District
4 out of 5
116 San Marco Ave, St. Augustine, FL
The price is $149 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Situated in the historical district, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Mission of Nombre de Dios and Castillo de San Marcos. Cathedral Basilica of St. ...
4.4/5 Wonderful! (971 reviews)
"Although this is an older hotel, it is well maintained with a friendly helpful staff. We enjoyed a very good breakfast for a modest fee. From the hotel we were able to walk a short distance to an excellent restaurant with large outdoor space. We also walked less than a mile to explore the city’s ..."

Reviewed on Jan 9, 2022

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Augustine Historic District
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Home2 Suites by Hilton St. Augustine I-95
Home2 Suites by Hilton St. Augustine I-95
3 out of 5
270 OUTLET MALL BOULEVARD, St. Augustine, FL
The price is $93 per night from Feb 7 to Feb 8
Located in the heart of St. Augustine, this aparthotel is 1.1 mi (1.8 km) from St. Augustine Premium Outlets and within 6 mi (10 km) of Royal St. Augustine Golf ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (202 reviews)
"The property was clean and the room was great. Unfortunately there was a family staying there making terrible noise. The walls are paper thin and you can hear everything. The staff was very accommodating and helpful. Breakfast was good and we enjoyed our stay."

Reviewed on Jan 21, 2022

Home2 Suites by Hilton St. Augustine I-95
Homewood Suites by Hilton St. Augustine San Sebastian
Homewood Suites by Hilton St. Augustine San Sebastian
3 out of 5
10 PRAWN STREET, St. Augustine, FL
The price is $141 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3
Situated in St. Augustine, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Tolomato River and Flagler College. St. George Street and Cathedral Basilica of St. ...
4.2/5 Very Good! (176 reviews)
"Everything was wonderful!!!! Great location and super friendly. Room was clean and bed was comfy. Would highly recommend this hotel"

Reviewed on Jan 19, 2022

Homewood Suites by Hilton St. Augustine San Sebastian
Bluegreen Vacations Grande Villas at World Golf Village
Bluegreen Vacations Grande Villas at World Golf Village
3.5 out of 5
100 Front Nine Dr, St. Augustine, FL
Situated in St. Augustine, this golf vacation home is within 1 mi (2 km) of World Golf Hall of Fame and World Golf Village. King and Bear Golf Course is 1 mi ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (260 reviews)
"Beautiful area, good customer service. Rooms needed a little Xtra cleaning. And some sheets looked a little old."

Reviewed on Jul 12, 2021

Bluegreen Vacations Grande Villas at World Golf Village
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Getting around St. Augustine

St. Augustine is often described as the oldest city in the United States, and you can travel around the center in vintage style with a ride on one of the city’s retro trolleys. Pedicabs – a type of cycle rickshaw – offer a relaxing, but slower, way to travel, or you can even take a horse and carriage from the harbor. The old streets of the historic center make for a lovely stroll. Visit the Florida Department of Transport website.Browse St. Augustine rental cars.

Best time to visit

Like much of Florida, St. Augustine is subject to a tropical climate with hot, wet summers, and mild, dry winters. Thunderstorms carry on into the fall, making spring the best time to visit. If you do come at this time of year, however, you won’t be the only one with the idea, and you’ll have to contend with bigger crowds and higher prices. Winter is still pleasant, but quieter and cheaper.

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