21 Best Things to Do in St Augustine with Kids in 2022

During our time in Florida, we made our way north to St Augustine. We were drawn to the city because of the cobblestone streets, Spanish architecture, and of course, the beautiful beach. There was a wonderful balance of things to do in St Augustine with kids as well as things we enjoyed.

St Augustine was founded in 1565 by Spanish explorers and has been under the control of five different countries. Today, it is a great destination for families wanting to explore the unique history of the area as well as enjoy time at the beach.

St Augustine is an accommodating, cute, and enjoyable city, and a visit would be well worth your time.

A long weekend visit would give you time to enjoy the beach and explore downtown St Augustine. You can also visit St. Augustine as part of a day trip from Orlando. You will enjoy your time here, no matter how long you are staying.

Things to Do in St Augustine with Kids

1. St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park

Years ago, we visited Gatorland in Orlando when Rowen and Raven were tiny, so we were excited to head back to another park packed with gators. The Alligator Farm Zoological Park is filled with hundreds of different types of alligators and crocodiles.

They have a great variety of alligators in lots of different sizes, shapes, and colors. They even have baby albino alligators.

When you first arrive, be sure to grab a schedule for the day’s activities. There are feedings throughout the day where they feed the alligators large white rats. It is very cool to see how far the alligators can jump out of the water.

Another highlight was Alligator Swamp. You walk out on a boardwalk over a swamp filled with hundreds of alligators. Be sure to bring some quarters so you can try to feed the alligators. There is a feeding dispenser where you can get a handful of pellet food.

Along with alligators, they have a variety of other animals in the park.

If you haven’t seen enough alligators or want to see them in the wild, consider going on an Everglades airboat tour. This is a great way to see the Everglades, and your kids will love it!

2. St. Augustine Aquarium

The aquarium is a great place to learn more about the Florida reef fish and a perfect stop on your St Augustine family vacation.

There are both indoor and outdoor exhibits and opportunities to snorkel in an 80,000-gallon tank with 100s of Florida reef fish. Wetsuits, masks, snorkels, vests, and shoes are provided by the aquarium.

Along with beautiful habitats to look at, there are opportunities to snorkel, feed sharks and rays as well as meet and greet with the sharks. These experiences do have additional charges.

There is also a beautiful nature trail and educational maze.

3. St. Augustine Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour

The St Augustine Hop-On Hop-Off Tour has 23 different stops. Many of these stops are really fun things to do in St Augustine with kids. Without getting off at any of the stops, it takes a couple of hours to complete.

It is a good idea to coordinate anything you want to see with the stops to save yourself some time and the headache of going back to places you’ve already been by. The ticket also includes admission to the St Augustine History Museum.

BOOK YOUR ST AUGUSTINE TOUR HERE

Another tour option is the Red Train Tours by Ripley’s. Tours depart from Ripley’s Believe It or Not if you’re interested in the museum visit. The tour is one hour long and takes you through the historical and paranormal sites in the town.

4. St. Augustine Wild Reserve

The St Augustine Wild Reserve is a nonprofit that gives visitors a close-up look at some of the exotic animals of the world. It is home to mountain lions, bears, ligers, leopards, arctic wolves, and even an African lion that belonged to Michael Jackson.

The reserve does have pretty limited operating hours. If you are planning a visit, be sure to check their hours ahead of time. You need to book a tour ahead of time online.

Tours are typically scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

Note: Photography, including cellphone photography, is not allowed at the property.

5. Haunted Trolley Tour of St. Augustine

The Haunted Trolley Tour of St. Augustine is a great way to learn about the history and Paranormal activity in America’s Oldest City. The tour is an hour long and departs from the ghost depot.

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You will hear stories of ghosts, murders, and mysteries while riding through the city on the trolley.

Some of the stops include the Potter’s Wax Museum, Old Jail Museum, and the Tolomato Cemetery.

The tour is appropriate for all ages but may be too intense for very young children.

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6. Marineland Dolphin Adventure

Whenever we are near the ocean, we take advantage of as many opportunities to see dolphins as we can. There are lots of opportunities to see them in Florida, including Marineland Dolphin Adventure.

The dolphins are very active – playing with balls and toys as well as swimming and jumping out of the water. If you want a closer interaction with the dolphins, they have behind-the-scenes tours.

There is a variety of other animals on-site as well. There are sea turtles, stingrays, and sharks.

Marineland Dolphin Adventure is about 20 miles south of St Augustine. If you are driving into St Augustine from the south, you can stop here along the way.

7. St Augustine Beach Splash Pad

My kids love a good splash pad, and the St Augustine splash pad is right next to the beach, making it a convenient place to stop by. It is a decent size splash pad and is a good place to let the kids run around.

This is one of the great free things to do in St Augustine with kids.

8. Sea Dragon Airboat Adventure

Sea Dragon Airboat Adventure is a great way to see the maze of freshwater tributaries in the area. The tour takes you through the St Johns River where you will see alligators, manatees, birds, snakes, and other wildlife.

The tour lasts about an hour and 30 minutes, and it departs from Trout Creek Marina. Make sure you arrive 30 min early for check-in.

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9. St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum

Over the last year, Raven has really become interested in pirates. She went throughout Florida, taking pictures of every pirate-related thing she could find. Needless to say, the Pirate Museum was the place for her.

The museum will make you feel like you are back in the 17th century, looting for gold every chance you get.

You can see real pirate gold and an authentic pirate treasure chest. There are a bunch of interactive exhibits, gun deck, and cannon demonstrations.

10. St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum

We love everything about lighthouses, and this one did not disappoint. From the Portland, Maine lighthouses down to Florida, we visit the lighthouses every chance we get.

The grounds of the lighthouse are beautiful and have lots of different exhibits, picnic tables for lunch, and a playground. There is also a wooden boat-building area you can observe.

You can climb the lighthouse. There are 219 steps to the top of the lighthouses. It isn’t a bad climb at all.

My five-year-olds actually climbed it twice in a matter of 30 minutes. Children under 44” tall are not allowed to climb the lighthouse, so Coltin and I took turns because we had our baby with us. I went up with them, and then they wanted to go back up with Coltin.

Visiting the lighthouse was a memorable stop during our St Augustine family vacation.

11. St. Augustine’s Not Just a Chocolate Tour

The Not Just a Chocolate Tour is a really fun and unique tour. You will learned all about the history of chocolate while sampling some delicious chocolate. The tour lasted about an hour and a half, and will talk you around the historic district during the tour.

The guide is very knowledgeable about the history and has some really fun stories.

BOOK Not Just a Chocolate Tour

Another great option is the Whetstone Chocolate Factory. It is both an educational and delicious stop for kids. You can go behind the scenes to learn about the history and making of chocolate.

There are also samples on the tour, so you can’t go wrong with that! After your tour, be sure to visit the store area to get some chocolate to take with you!

12. St. George Street

This is one of the iconic streets in downtown St Augustine. It is a pedestrian-only street lined with enough restaurants, shops, and attractions to keep you busy. Exploring this street is one of the fun things to do in St Augustine with kids.

The Old City Gate is at the north end of St George Street and is a great place to start your day.

Some other highlights along the street are the oldest wooden schoolhouse, the Pena Peck House, Colonial Quarter, and many other locally-owned shops and boutiques.

There are lots of good restaurants along the street, and be sure to save some room for a popsicle from The Hyppo.

13. Project Swing Playground

After a day of touring the city, the Project SWING Playground is a great place to let the kids play. It is a huge playground (23,000 square feet, to be exact) with all sorts of cool places to explore.

There are swings, slides, towers, a space shuttle, and even a lighthouse. This is one of the best things to do in St Augustine, FL with kids

There is also a great toddler section of the playground with a sandbox, boat, and trolley.

At the playground, there is a very nice picnic and pavilion area as well.

14. Dolphin and Wildlife Adventure of St. Augustine

The Dolphin and Wildlife Adventure of St Augustine is a great cruise for those who love to see nature and animals. It is not uncommon to see dolphins, manatees, pelicans, osprey, and other wildlife.

As you go on your cruise, you will pass by many of the popular monuments like the Castillo de San Marcos and the Bridge of Lions.

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The tour guide is very knowledgeable and provides interesting facts about the area and the animals you will see. The kids will love seeing all of the different animals, and it is a great way to see the city from the water.

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15. Play on the St. Augustine Beaches

St Augustine has a number of beautiful and clean beaches. We stayed in St Augustine beach, so we spent our mornings eating donuts at the beach and playing in the waves. The beaches are wide and long, leaving lots of space at the beach.

Being on the Atlantic side of Florida, the St Augustine beaches have bigger waves. Lots of people were out with their surfboards and boogie boards. St Augustine has some beautiful blue water beaches in Florida.

Here are the best beaches in St Augustine –

  • St Augustine Beach
  • Crescent Beach
  • Vilano Beach
  • Anastasia State Park

The beaches are filled with lots of fun things to find like shells and wildlife. It’s hard to beat a sunny day building sandcastles and collecting shells.

16. Castillo De San Marcos National Monument

The eastern seaboard is lined with really cool forts, and this one is one of our favorites. The fort is the oldest brick-and-mortar structure in the United States.

It was built in 1672 by the Spanish. It is a beautiful fort with amazing views of the ocean and the St Augustine coast.

They have a junior ranger program there, so be sure to pick up your packet. Rowen and Raven loved finding out the color of the soldier’s uniform, what shape the fort was, and more cool facts.

Do you know what the shape of the National Monument is?

Tip: If you have a National Parks Pass, you can get in for free. Make sure to bring your card!

17. Colonial Quarter

We love exploring a good colonial quarter! We were introduced to them while visiting Williamsburg, Virginia. The villages give visitors a look into the past and what life would have been like hundreds of years ago.

Along with exploring the villages, there are live demonstrations and tours. It usually takes about two to three hours to go through Colonial Quarter.

18. Stroll the Historic District

The Historic Downtown area in St Augustine is on the National Register of Historic Places because there are over twenty historical sites. The downtown area is a very walkable area with lots of beautiful buildings, museums, churches, and dining options.

Walking around downtown is one of the great things to do in St Augustine with kids to get them moving and find a few fun stops along the way.

The historic district is close to the fort, so it would be easy to combine the two activities.

19. Scenic Boat Ride

Another fun boating adventure is the Scenic Boat Ride through the intracoastal waterway.

The boat tour is an hour long and gives you a look at the mansions, yachts, and many landmarks like the Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche, St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum, and a few others.

The boat tour is narrated, so you learn a little bit about the area and the homes along the water. The tour departs from the marina, so it is close to a lot of other activities.

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20. Old Jail Museum Tour

The Old Jail Museum is one of the most popular tourist attractions in St Augustine. It was once a jail for some of St Augustine’s worst criminals. You get to tour the maximum security jail cells and the regular cells. The building was used as a jail from 1891-1953.

It is really fun to learn about the different criminals held in the jail, and you will learn about the warden and his family. It is crazy to think they lived just steps from the jail.

The tour of the jail is self-guided and takes about an hour.

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21. Anastasia State Park

Anastasia State Park is one of the most popular things to do in St Augustine with kids. It is a beautiful state park with lots of different activities. The park has four miles of beaches, a fishing pier, 1,600 acres of salt marsh, and an off-leash dog beach.

There are also four different nature trails, a playground, and a campground. The park is huge, so there is plenty of space to explore. This is one of our favorite family beaches in Florida.

The park is open from 8 am until sunset. Admission is $8 per vehicle with two to eight people and $4 for a single-occupancy vehicle.

Things to Do in St Augustine with Toddlers

We found St Augustine to be extremely friendly for both toddlers and kids. Here are some of our most recommended things to do in St Augustine with toddlers –

  • St Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park
  • Project SWING Playground
  • Splash Pad at the County Ocean Pier
  • Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum
  • Play on the St Augustine Beaches

Things to Do in St Augustine with Kids for Free

If you’re looking for things to do in St Augustine with kids and you’re on a budget, there are still lots of great free options and activities. Here are some of the ideas and activities we enjoyed the most.

  • Explore St George Street
  • Play at the Beach
  • Governor’s House Cultural Center and Museum
  • Church Tours
  • Project SWING Playground
  • Splash Pad at the County Ocean Pier
  • Fly a kite and picnic at Castillo de San Marcos Fort (If you have a national parks pass, you can get in for free!)
  • Music by the Sea Weekly Concerts

Map of Things to Do in St Augustine with Kids

St Augustine Hotels for Families

When deciding where to stay in St Augustine, you need to decide if you want to be closer to the beach or the historic downtown area. We stayed a block from the beach and then drove to the downtown area.

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If you think you will spend more time at the beach, consider staying at St Augustine Beach. If your family will spend more time at the historical sites and downtown area, then a hotel in the heart of historic St Augustine would be a better option.

It is only a 15-minute drive or so between the two places, so this isn’t saying you can only do one or the other. A few options to look at are:

Courtyard by Marriott St. Augustine Beach

Courtyard by Marriott St. Augustine Beach is a newly renovated hotel is located right on St Augustine Beach. The rooms are spacious, and there is a pool and fitness center on-site.

There are lots of 5 star reviews, and it is exactly what you would expect from a Marriot Hotel with modern and clean rooms in a great beach location.

Check Rates & Book: Courtyard by Marriott

Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection

The Casa Monica Resort and Spa is located right in the heart of downtown St Augustine. It is a luxury hotel with spacious rooms and a rooftop pool. You will love the Spanish architecture, and the boutique feel of this hotel.

The hotel is beautiful, and it is so nice to stay close to all the downtown activities and sights. When you stay here, you are within walking distance to St. George Street, Castillo de San Marcos, and other popular sites.

You will have a fantastic stay at one of St. Augustine’s highest-rated hotels.

Check Rates & Book: Casa Monica Resort and Spa

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Augustine Historic District

The DoubleTree Hotel is located in the historic downtown area of St Augustine. It is a smaller hotel with only 70 rooms, but it has a great location.

The rooms are newly renovated and are very clean and comfortable. You will be close to all the best restaurants and shops in St Augustine when you stay here.

They have all the amenities you would want like free wifi, pool, fitness center, and business center.

Check Rates & Book: DoubleTree by Hilton

Castillo Real, Ascend Hotel Collection

Castillo Real is right on the water and has great views of the bay. It is a bit further from the historic downtown area, but it is only a 5-10 minute drive.

The rooms are spacious and have all the amenities you need, like a microwave, mini-fridge, and coffee maker. This hotel also has an outdoor pool, fitness center, and business center.

The hotel is great for families and is only a few steps from the beach. If you are interested in a suit, they have 6 ocean view suits that the whole family will enjoy. Your kids will love the fun pool area, and you will love the sauna and steam room.

Check Rates & Book: Castillo Real

Kid Friendly Restaurants in St Augustine

LE MACARON FRENCH PASTRIES

We stumbled across Le Macaron as we were walking around the historic district. They have a huge variety of different pastries, chocolates, and gelato.

We could all pick what we wanted, and we got to enjoy our delicious treats as we explored the streets downtown.

ISLAND DONUTS

We stayed just across the street from Island Donuts, so it is safe to say we ate our fair share of their delicious donuts. We would pick up breakfast and head to a beautiful morning at the beach.

They have a great variety of donuts available as well as breakfast sandwiches.

HYPPO POPSICLES

It is hard for us to pass up a popsicle on a warm day! Hyppo Popsicles makes all their popsicles from natural and local ingredients. They have a bunch of unique flavors, making it hard to decide which ones you are going to order.

If you cannot decide on a flavor, order the Phoenix. It has three flavors in one bar. Some of the other unique and fun flavors are mango habanero, blueberry lavender lemonade, mango mojito, horchata and toasted coconut.

One of the best things to do in St. Augustine with kids is exploring all the fun dessert shops in town!

ANTONIO’S NEW YORK STYLE PIZZA & RITA’S

Antonio’s New York Style Pizza is just a few steps away from St Augustine beach. If you’re looking to feed your family on a budget, the pizza is delicious. They also sell pasta dishes and calzones. This is a great kid-friendly restaurant in St. Augustine.

You can top off your delicious lunch with dessert from Rita’s. The two restaurants share a building, so it is a convenient stop.

Here are some of the other family-friendly restaurants in St Augustine –

  • 2 Creeks Bar & Grill
  • Woodpeckers Backyard BBQ
  • Anastasia Diner
  • Athena Greek Restaurant
  • Crave
  • The Blue Hen Café
  • Burrito Works Taco Shop

Conclusion: Things to Do in St Augustine with Kids 

St Augustine is a great place for a family vacation. There are plenty of things to do in St Augustine with kids, from exploring the historic district to splashing around at the beach.

If you’re driving up from Orlando, be sure to stop by the springs near Orlando on your way up. Blue Springs is a lot of fun, especially during the winter because you can see the manatees.

You will not be disappointed with a trip on your St. Augustine family vacation! We absolutely love the area everytime we visit.

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Source: https://csginger.com/things-to-do-in-st-augustine-with-kids/

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