Amelia National Residents: Explore Fort Clinch State Park

One of Florida’s historical treasures, Fort Clinch, lies very near Amelia National Golf & Country Club.

The events, conflicts, discoveries and settlement of this northeastern part of Florida date back centuries — thousands of years, actually, to ancient native peoples — Fort Clinch at Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island during sunset.and the tales and tangible artifacts that endure, provide a rich and meaningful backdrop for modern life.

One such site is Fort Clinch State Park, on the northern tip of Amelia Island. Both the island and Fernandina Beach are historic too. If you’ve spent time in Fernandina Beach’s lively, restored downtown, you know this simply by its 19th-century, Victorian-era and early 20th-century structures.

We at ICI Homes invite you check out another restored structure on Amelia Island, and this one comes not only with a prodigious history, but with magnificent surroundings to explore.

Here’s our guide to Florida’s Fort Clinch State Park.

How do you get there?

Easily, because you know how convenient Amelia National is to everywhere in your neck of the woods. Head east toward Fernandina Beach. Once you complete that 10-15-minute drive, take South 8th Street north to the intersection with State Road 200, or A1A. Then, turn right as if you’re heading to the beach.

The entrance to Fort Clinch State Park is on the left before you reach the beach. Admission is $6 per vehicle.

Once you’re on property, follow the three-mile park road north to the visitors center. Here you’ll buy tickets to see the Fort ($2.50 per person and free for children age 6 and under) and receive a brochure and map.

Don’t miss the museum next door — it contains many Fort Clinch artifacts, as well as an informational video.

History that lives

The circa-1847 For Clinch was built as part of the U.S. Army’s southern coastal defense system.

The five-sided brick and stone structure guarded the entrance to the St. Mary’s River, which forms the northern border between Georgia and Florida. Georgia’s Cumberland Island National Seashore is directly across the river. The open Atlantic is due east, with the river due west.

No battles were fought at Fort Clinch. It was manned in succession by the U. S. Army, Confederate troops and Union troops. Following the Civil War, the U.S. Army reactivated it during the Spanish-American War in 1898.

During the Great Depression, Civilian Conservation Corps workers restored the Fort and its interior buildings, after a long abandonment. It become one of Florida’s first state parks in 1935.

Today, park rangers and volunteers in period costumes keep Fort Clinch’s history alive for daily visitors.

Don’t miss the recreational opportunities

Fort Clinch itself is awesome, but it’s the centerpiece of a 1,400-acre park. Camping, hiking, fishing, beaching, swimming, shelling, mountain biking, guided tours and reenactment events are only a few activities you can enjoy in this pristine, historic setting.

Ready for your Amelia National lifestyle? Talk to ICI Homes here.