It’s unanimous….we all enjoyed St. Augustine. The first day there, Howie and I took a quick trip to the coast. We first toured through Anastasia State Park. This is a really nice state park with camping and beach access. It’s so popular that it’s really difficult to get in – that’s why we’re staying at Faver-Dykes SP! It does not appear that the sites have sewer and we’re not clear if they offer 50 amp. But nicely paved roads, big sites and very private.
So we ended up at the St. Augustine Light House as well as the Anastasia Beach. It was fun to poke around. So much history here.
The next day was spent touring the city itself. We took a private tour with Gold Tour Electric Carts. Our guide/driver was Tom who was super knowledgable and interesting! Our scheduled 1 hour 15 minute tour was about twice as long – we were the 10:45 am tour which was his last for the day so he really took his time and gave us our money’s worth! We all agreed it was the perfect way to see St. Augustine.
This is Fort Castillo de San Marcos. Construction began in 1673 and was finished 24 years later in 1697. It is the first non-wood fort and was constructed of Coquina, a nearly indestructible material made from clam shells This stone, a form of porous limestone and formed over centuries, is filled with tiny air bubbles so when a cannonball hit the walls, they would bounce off without hurting the fort walls. The fort withstood days of attack and to this day, it is the only fort that has never been breached by the enemy!
There was a lot to see in this beautiful historic city. We enjoyed the architecture and learned the reason that many homes and buildings were brick or stone on the bottom with the second story constructed of wood. The Spanish who first founded the city, built using coquina stone. When the English conquered the Spanish, they modified many buildings by adding a second story, using wood, their building material of choice. To this day, if a new building is constructed, owners have a choice of making it all brick/stone OR the bottom brick and the top wood, to maintain the historic aesthetic of the city.
Reynolds block (bricks) made in 1888 – used to construct most of the roads in St. Augustine.
This is the oldest wooden building in the oldest city. It is a private residence, made of cedar, cypress and southern heart pine. In is completely insect resistant and was build in 1799. There is NO insulation, so the guide had to whisper as the people inside can hear every word said on the street!
Now a Hilton, this used to be the Monson Motor Lodge where Martin Luther King, Jr was arrested on June 11, 1964. LBJ was prompted to then sign the first civil rights bill
This small white house is where King wrote many of his civil right speeches.
Below are a variety of pictures taken throughout the city while we enjoyed our tour.
Originally a hotel for the rich and famous at $150,000 per room for a three month season, it was eventually converted into Flagler College for Women. Presently it is coed and offers a beautiful campus.
As you can see, St. Augustine is an amazing city. If you ever have the chance, I think you would enjoy it as much as we did!
In the morning, we awoke to rain – not our first choice for tearing down camp to move north to Savannah, GA. But that’s just what we did and started our 3 hour trek, an easy driving day. The guys have been dying to get to a Buc ees travel stop and by luck, there was one on route about 30 minutes down the road. This may have been a highlight for Howie’s day. I have to admit, it’s quite an impressive place and obviously very popular evidenced by the throngs of people there. But they were very organized and lines moved very quickly. We got sandwiches and Beaver Nuggets, a kind of carmel corn. If you ever see a Buc ees, stop. It’s an experience!
That’s it for now, folks! My next post will be on Savannah, Georgia and the Creekfire RV Resort!
Until then…..Happy Trails!!