I had visited St. Augustine twice before. The first time, budget restrictions kept me in cheap lodgings and sightseeing from the outskirts, because I didn’t want to spend money on entrance fees. The only thing I splurged on was a walking ghost tour. The second time, I walked through the beautiful sand dunes of Anastasia State Park, and then got more steps on a historical walking tour through downtown.
I added this trip to my Memory List for two reasons: I wanted to go somewhere in Florida after I was vaccinated; and I knew there were more things that I wanted to experience in St. Augustine. The fact that a couple of my closest friends live there made this memory so much more heart-filling.
The week before my trip was a chaotic, stressful one at work. I was frantically trying to launch a revamped website for an online conference my company is hosting. My brain had absolutely zero space to think about what I wanted to do while visiting the city that claims to be the oldest in the U.S. The only idea I was able to put forward was taking tours of the old fort (which I later learned is called the Castillo de San Marcos) and the lighthouse.
To combat my lackluster planning abilities, my friend, Sarah, was an incredible hostess and tour guide. She printed off a custom map for me, highlighting some points of interest she thought I’d like. And she was right!
Each morning, I woke up early with Toby and we went for a long walk on the beach. The boardwalk through the dunes was only about a 20-minute walk from their house, and then we could have walked forever along the hard-packed, sandy coastline. But, it gets hot quickly in the Florida summer, so we stopped and turned back after about a mile.
We strolled through a fantastic farmer’s market, played some retro arcade games, imbibed some delicious martinis, watched our dogs play together, and yes, spent money on entrance fees to see the inside of the fort and the lighthouse.
This was such a wonderful trip. The weather was fantastic; not a single drop of rain fell. We ate delicious food and enjoyed super tasty beverages (OMG, that “Kiss on the Lips” martini). The only activity we didn’t do that we wanted to do, was karaoke. So, it’s already been added to my mental itinerary for the next time I visit St. Augustine.
This was a great memory to make!