FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH
Go if: you learned about Ponce de León in school, and the story caught your childhood imagination. (Or - you have kids and they could use the 'history brought to life' stuff). Otherwise, we're going to align the words 'tourist' and 'trap' in a sentence, and leave it at that. Signs of improvement are promising, though, as the city approaches its 450- year anniversary and focus turns towards education over fairly weak entertainment.
RIPLEY'S BELIEVE IT OR NOT
If you want to see things you can't believe, watch YouTube. If you want to pay for things you can't believe, there's Ripley's. Go here if you need to see a manatee made from pop cans, but Blue Spring State Park has the real thing
ST. AUGUSTINE ALLIGATOR FARM ZOOLOGICAL PARK
Pop quiz: how many members are there in the crocodilian family? Answer - twenty- three. If you've ever wanted to see them all in one day, come on down to the alligator farm.
If you're put off by scaly creatures, the park's Wading Bird Rookery comes as highly recommended as any site in this guide. A self-described "non bird person" ranks it amongst her life's top 10 experiences - how's that for glowing endorsement? Visit between February and late July to see nesting pairs of herons, egrets, spoonbills and crazy feathered hairdos straight out of of a cartoon. Photography contests and updates are found at: https://www.alligatorfarm.com/rookery.
Another particular attraction is the 'Crocodile Crossing' zip-line tour - yep, you'll zip over alligators. Two courses satiate speed-freaks and scaredy-cats alike.