A Saint Augustine family vacation is a fun way to spend some time with your brood in charming deep-Southeast style. It's the oldest European-settled, continuously occupied town in the United States, and it has the cool, antique buildings to prove it. There are also the beach and other Saint Augustine activities to keep your family entertained and inspired. It's a great add-on to a Disney vacation since it's only a couple of hours north of Orlando, but it's also a worthwhile destination in its own right.
This town boasts so many of the oldest sites in the U.S. that a Saint Augustine family vacation is virtually a must for history buffs. Here are just two examples. The Castillo de San Marcos National Monument flanks the northern end of the oldest part of town. This imposing structure is over 300 years old. It has witnessed occupation by three different world powers. Park rangers and historical reenactors fire up the cannons on the weekends for an authentic fort experience. There's also the Ponce de Leon Fountain of Youth National Archeological House, where the famous explorer and conquistador purportedly landed in his ill-fated search for eternal life.
Aside from historical sites, many family attractions in Saint Augustine are just plain fun. Take a Saint Augustine tour of all the supposedly haunted venues (There are a ton!) if that's your thing, or head to Marineland for dolphin encounters. This venue opened in 1938 primarily to help Hollywood producers capture undersea film footage, but it gradually grew into a conservation center. Today, you can book an encounter with the dolphins or just view them in their habitats with a general admission pass.
There are a number of kid-friendly hotels in Saint Augustine to help make your stay comfortable. The Casa Yallaha is an independently owned hostel in the Historic District. Stay here if you are looking for low-key convenience. Free, make-your-own breakfasts are a yummy way to start the day, and a community game room, kitchen and laundry area might make your Saint Augustine family vacation a little easier. The rooms are clean and simple. At the other end of the spectrum is the gorgeous Casa Monica Hotel Saint Augustine. It's one of the oldest hotels in America, and it features opulent furnishings, ornate detailing and plentiful amenities. There's even a gallery with works by famous local and world-renowned artists.
From a historical castle to warm beaches, you'll find no shortage of things to do in Saint Augustine. Choose one of the many kid-friendly local lodging spots, and you're all set to enjoy some quality time with your crew. MiniTime offers an ever-growing resource for tips, tools and even user-made family trip plans in Saint Augustine to help you make the most of your Saint Augustine family vacation.