Florida's largest city, however you measure it, Jacksonville ('JAX' to locals) is a big city with small town, southern charm. Both a university campus and a corporate center, we've outlined a dozen or so reasons to make a day trip 'into town'. While the greater tourist lures are further south in Orlando, time in JAX shows you just how varied 'real life' in Florida can be.
General attractions: the top 3
Any of the following will make an easy and enjoyable day trip all by themselves, especially if combined with any of our restaurant suggestions , or as the end point to a scenic drive up A1A
Jacksonville with children
Should you and your children need a day out of the sun, JAX has some great kids' museums and child-friendly exhibits, for ages 18 months and up. Three favorites:
Like beer? 2X Brewery tours and tap rooms.
Like boats, fishing and the water?
Kayak eco tours: Maybe you're kayaked-out by this point, but two tours on offer are particularly local and unlike any city tour you've yet seen. Choose between:
Like to shop?
ST. JOHNS TOWN CENTER
100 shops in 200 acres! An upscale, outdoor pedestrian mall close to Jacksonville – this is a style of shopping done best in sunny climates. Still shiny and new since its 2005 completion, you'll find all the higher end national chains (Apple, West Elm, Kate Spade, Sephora, Williams-Sonoma and 95 or so other favorites), plus day spas, ice cream shops and great restaurants. Planning ahead for 2014? Guys... Nordstrom is coming. Whether browsing or re-stocking your entire wardrobe, St. Johns Town Center is shopping perfected.
Bringing a dog?