Ponte Vedra Beach
Hot and historic
According to legend, Spaniard adventurer Ponce de Leon set foot on this pristine stretch of beach during his quest for the Fountain of Youth. Blinded by his mission, he failed to realize the true value of the beaches he landed on. With billowing sea oats, Atlantic-blue waters and palmetto-fringed shores, nature is the real treasure here.
Today, Ponte Vedra is a renowned golfer's paradise, home to the PGA Tour and the World Golf Hall of Fame. Having moved firmly into the 21st century, it is also a gay-friendly Florida desitnation.
Ponte Vedra Beach is ideal for almost any outdoor activity, from a sunrise jog to sailing into the dusk. Highlights include:
- Beach combing: While you gather shells along the shore, stop and soak up the sun or take a dip in the waves.
- Guana River State Park: This area preserves the largest sand dunes in Florida.
Try The Ponte Vedra Beach Chamber of Commerce for other up-to-date information on local activities.
- Golf, golf, golf: This area offers the best in the south, including the Tournament Players Club at Sawgrass, a semi-private resort course.
- The St. Augustine Lighthouse: Located at Anastasia State Park, it is both fun and educational. Climb to the top, take a tour and learn about the nation's oldest port.
- Guided Ghost Tours: Take only the very brave on a candle lit walk through historic St. Augustine.
- Ponte Vedra WineFest (November): Held at Sawgrass Marriot Resort, this weekend-long festival features more than 100 wines from around the globe, special dinners and gourmet food sampling.
- First Coast Birding and Nature Festival (May): This annual event will delight birders and photographers alike. Features include tours of bird-havens such as The Alligator Farm Rockery, Moses Creek Conservation Area and the Prince's Palace Preserve.
Affluent areas around Jacksonville offer concerts, Broadway and dance. Check out the Alltel Stadium and the revitalized Ritz Theater. Downtown Jacksonville has waterfront restaurants and offers free concerts.
For a hefty price you can rent a historic cottage or luxury condo on Ponte Vedra. If you don't mind the commute, Jacksonville Beach's 1st Street houses a dozen modest motels. If cooler weather appeals to you, beach accommodations are more budget-friendly from December to March.
Need to Know
- 20 miles southeast of Jacksonville (a little over an hour from Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach).
- Average temperatures in spring / summer are 78 to 87 F.
- Average fall / winter temperatures range from 58 to 75F.
- Change / shower facilities
- No pets allowed on the beach
- Lifeguards on duty from Memorial Day to Labor Day
Night or day, Ponte Vedra Beach will delight vacationers. Whether you like wine or wildlife, these Ponte Vedra Beach packages are sure to intrigue.
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