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Northeast Region
Amelia Island State Park
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Amelia Island State Park © Ebyabe / CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Amelia Island Amelia Island State Park Entrance
Amelia Island State Park © jmd41280 / CC BY-ND 2.0
Amelia Island State Park © oliver.dodd / CC BY 2.0
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State Road A1A
Jacksonville, Florida   32226
(lat:30.521 lon:-81.4403) map location

Phone: (904) 251-2320
An easy drive from Jacksonville, the park protects over 200 acres of unspoiled wilderness along the southern tip of Amelia Island. Beautiful beaches, salt marshes, and coastal maritime forests provide visitors a glimpse of the original Florida. Amelia Island State Park is the only state park in Florida to offer horseback riding on the beach; a 45-minute riding tour through the forest and along the Atlantic Coast beach. Although the view from the park is breath-taking in itself, most of our visitors come for the fantastic fishing opportunities. Fishermen can surf fish along the shoreline or they can wet their line from the mile-long George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier which spans Nassau Sound. Visitors can also stroll along the beach looking for seashells or relax and watch the numerous bird species that feed in the area. For horseback tour reservations, contact Kelly Seahorse Ranch at (904) 491-5166. Tours are given four times daily. Amelia Island State Park is located seven miles north of Little Talbot Island State Park on State Road A1A, or eight miles south of Fernandina Beach.
Nature of the Area
Wildlife Viewing

Amelia Island State Park is the perfect place for viewing shore birds. Black Skimmers, piping plovers, terns (including the threatened least tern), brown pelicans, and many other birds can be observed in the park. You may even catch a glimpse of a rare Right Whale or a Bald Eagle during the winter and early spring. Please obey posted signs that protect critical shore bird nesting areas!!!

Amelia Island State Park is one of the premier sites along the eastern section of the Great Florida Birding Trail. If you would like to know more about Florida's birding opportunities, visit Great Florida Birding Trail.

Plant Life

Amelia Island State Park encompasses approximately 230 acres along the south eastern tip of Amelia Island. The beaches, dunes, and adjacent upland communities have plant life typical of a barrier island. Railroad vine, morning glories, and the protected sea oat are some of the vegetation that have adapted to the harsh, high salt environment of the coast. Upland areas are forested with live oak, red cedar, and pine trees. The understory is dominated by yaupon holly, wax myrtle, and palmetto.Area Geography

Amelia Island is a sea island in a chain of barrier islands that stretches down the southeast coast of the US from South Carolina to northeast Florida. Sea islands are short, curved barrier islands separated from each other by inlets and waterways, and divided from the mainland by well developed marshes or estuaries. Sea islands consist of both a recent Holocene geologic component on the outer edges and an older, or Pleistocene, core at the center. The core of Amelia Island's Pleistocene sediments has distinct soil profiles consisting of fine sands with little shell material. Unsorted sand with silt and shell layers overlays this older material, creating patches of clay and silt.

Barrier islands are dynamic systems formed by the interaction of wave, wind, and tidal energies that erode, transport, and deposit sediments (Leatherman, 1982). These islands contain ecologically significant habitats that undergo continuous changes due to erosion and accretion (build up) of sediment.

The physical geography of the beach at Amelia Island is somewhat inconsistent with those of other barrier islands. This is due to the presence of erosion control structures that have been placed along the island, the periodic addition of beach fill material, and the development along the coastline north of Amelia Island State Park boundaries.Resources

The effect of wind and wave energy upon a barrier island is clearly illustrated at Amelia Island State Park. These dynamic forces continually alter the shape of the shoreline removing and depositing sand in an endless cycle. A beach walk observation in September can become a very different observation in April.
History of the Area
The park was established in 1983. It spans over 200 acres on Amelia Island's southern tip. Known for its diverse ecosystems, it features beaches, marshes and maritime forests.

The area has a rich history dating back to Native American habitation around 1000 AD. Later colonized by French explorers during the mid-16th century, it changed hands between Spanish and British rule multiple times before becoming part of U.S territory after Spain ceded Florida in 1821.

During World War II, parts of this land were used as training grounds for military personnel due to strategic location along Atlantic coastlines.

Today visitors can enjoy fishing from George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park or horseback riding along pristine sandy beaches while observing local wildlife like sea turtles nesting.

Annual Entrance Passes can be purchased at all park ranger stations and museums. If you require immediate use of your pass, this is the best option. Passes can be purchased during regular business hours 365 days a year. Please call the park in advance to ensure availability. Those who are eligible for discounted or free passes may use this method to receive their pass. Annual Entrance Passes may be purchased online by visiting the FLORIDA STATE PARKS ANNUALENTRANCE PASSES web page.
1. Amelia Island State Park offers a variety of swimming options for visitors.
2. The park features beautiful, unspoiled beaches perfect for ocean swimming.
3. Visitors can swim in the Atlantic Ocean with lifeguards on duty during peak times.
4. There are also calm tidal pools suitable for children and less confident swimmers to enjoy safely.
5. For those interested in freshwater swimming, there's Egans Creek within the park boundaries too.


Amelia Island State Park offers over 200 acres of undeveloped sea island recreational opportunities. This beach is a perfect place to relax and unwind, search for seashells, surf fish, and possibly view some rare wildlife such as the right whale or piping plover.
The park offers a variety of boating options for visitors. There is access to the Atlantic Ocean, Nassau Sound and Amelia River where individuals can enjoy fishing or simply cruising on their boats. Kayaking and canoeing are also popular activities in these waters with rentals available nearby if needed. Guided kayak tours provide an opportunity to explore local wildlife habitats up close while learning about the area's natural history from experienced guides.


Long Island Outfitters is Amelia Island State Park's canoe and kayak visitor service provider. Located on AIA between Little Talbot and Big Talbot Island about 6 miles south of Amelia Island State Park, Kayak Amelia offers everything from basic rentals to special focus guided trips. The facility provides local information including maps, safety information, and recommended routes for the experience you desire. Inside the concession you'll find snacks and drinks, restrooms, and souvenirs. Canoe and kayak rentals are available on-site or bring your own and utilize their hand launch ramp ($1.00 per person fee).

Kayak Amelia's guided paddles include birding paddles, tai-chi paddles, sunset and full-moon paddles, and special focus paddles. All guided trips include instruction, snack, and interpretation. Long Island Outfitters is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm throughout the year, but is closed on Wednesdays December through February. For additional information contact Kayak Amelia at 904-251-0016 or the Ranger Station at Little Talbot Island State Park (904-251-2320).

Nassau Sound is one of the best fishing areas in northeast Florida and home to the state record flounder. Fishing is popular from the shore of Amelia Island State Park as well as from the adjacent George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park that spans Nassau Sound. The fishing pier is closed to vehicle traffic and offers the bridge angler a mile of pier to wet their line in hopes of catching the next record fish or tonight's dinner. Many different species of fish, such as whiting, redfish, flounder, speckled sea trout, jacks, and tarpon can be caught.

Redfish and speckled sea trout are available throughout the year, but higher numbers are available in the spring and fall. Popular baits, including mullet and shrimp, and can be caught along the shoreline using a cast-net. Artificial baits are also very popular. Along the south end of the fishing bridge, several small grass flats hold a wide variety of fish. Tarpon follow the fall mullet run into Nassau Sound and gorge themselves before continuing their migration to more southern waters.

Nassau Sound Bait and Tackle is currently closed. Contact the Ranger Station at 904-251-2320 for more information.

Amelia Island State Park offers picnic tables and grills, perfect for a family outing. No pavilions or shelters are available.
Horse Area
Horse Rentals

Kelly Seahorse Ranch offers guided, beachfront horseback riding along the shore of Nassau Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy the beautiful beaches of Amelia Island by saddling up and taking a ride with Kelly's experienced staff, and gentle, well-trained horses. One of the most enjoyable ways to witness many of the island animals in their natural habitat is by horseback. Riders regularly see playful dolphins, soaring Great Blue herons, wood storks, and ospreys. Keep an eye towards the ocean and you might one of our rare visitors, the endangered Right Whale.

Rides go out at 10am, 12pm, 2pm, and 4pm daily. For reservations and prices, call (904) 491-5166.
- Amelia Island State Park Main Trail: This is a 3.5-mile loop trail that offers scenic views of the marsh and river, suitable for all skill levels.

- George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park Trail: A one-mile out-and-back trail located near Fernandina Beach with beautiful wildflowers along its path; it's primarily used for walking and bird watching.

- Nassau Sound Bird Rookery Loop: An easy half mile walk offering panoramic views over the sound where you can spot various species of birds nesting on islands in the distance.

- Big Talbot Island to Little Talbot Island Hiking Pathway: Approximately five miles long, this pathway connects two state parks through sandy beaches and maritime forests providing an opportunity to see diverse wildlife habitats up close.

- Blackrock Beach Walkway at Big Talbot island park (adjacent): Not technically within Amelia but worth mentioning as it's nearby - about three-quarters of a mile round trip hike leading down onto unique black rock formations beachfront area ideal for photography or picnicking.

-A.I.A./Amelia Riverwalk Nature Trails System : These are multiple short trails totaling around four miles which wind through coastal hammocks revealing stunning vistas across saltwater estuaries teeming with marine life such as dolphins & manatees plus numerous wading birds like herons & egrets often seen feeding here especially during low tide periods .

-Sawpit Creek Boat Ramp Access Point Walking Route : Although not strictly defined hiking route , many visitors enjoy strolling from parking lot alongside Sawpit creek towards open Atlantic ocean shoreline taking approximately twenty minutes each way depending upon individual pace .
Cycling enthusiasts can explore miles of scenic trails, offering a mix of terrains. Helmets are strongly recommended for safety.

Bike rentals may not be available on-site; consider bringing your own or renting from nearby facilities.

The park's sandy terrain might pose challenges to inexperienced cyclists - caution is advised when biking off-road paths.

Remember that cycling hours align with the park's operating times - plan accordingly to avoid being locked in after-hours.

Be aware: some areas within this location prohibit bikes due to environmental concerns and wildlife protection efforts.

Always respect trail signs and closures while exploring by bike, as these measures ensure both personal safety and conservation efforts.

Stay hydrated during rides especially under Florida's heat; carry water bottles along with you at all times.
Bird watchers can enjoy spotting a variety of species, including herons, egrets and ospreys. The park's diverse habitats attract migratory birds during spring and fall seasons. Visitors may also see shorebirds along the beach areas or in marshes at low tide. Guided birding tours are available for those interested in learning more about local avian life.

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- Pets must be kept on a handheld leash that is six feet or shorter at all times.
- Owners are required to clean up after their pets immediately and dispose of waste properly.
- Pet owners should ensure they have control over their pet's behavior, preventing any disturbances to wildlife or other visitors.
- Dogs are not allowed in park buildings, including restrooms and picnic pavilions.
- Pets cannot be left unattended for more than 30 minutes within the state park boundaries.
- All dogs visiting Amelia Island State Park must display current tags showing proof of rabies vaccination.

Amelia Island State Park is located 7 miles north of Little Talbot Island State Park (or 8 miles south of Fernandina Beach)on S.R. A1A.

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Florida State Parks