Thursday, April 12, 2012

Saint Augustine, FL



We departed our wonderful dry camp spot behind the Cracker Barrel, and next to Daytona around 8:30am for the 1 hour drive up to St. Augustine, but not before enjoying a great breakfast at one of our favorite restaurants, of course! The temperature and humidity were totally in my comfort zone for a change....low 70's, and 27% humidity....lol. As we move north the temperatures are going down!

Elaine found us a great parking spot for the day right near the visitor's center where the buses park, and it was free! She is becoming quite adept at finding overnight spots, and day parking spots. No over night camping at this location, but you can be there until 10pm at night. We quickly got dressed, and unloaded our two hybrid bikes to begin our tour of the oldest city in North America. This year they are celebrating their 450th anniversary! Our first stop was the US Post Office to mail some tax stuff off, and then down to Aviles Street which is a narrow, red brick road dating back a century, or two.

When Elaine checked in at the visitor's center she purchased two tickets to tour the oldest house in the city, which was built 1700's, then we rode over to the Castillo de San Marcos fort. No doubt many of you have seen pictures of this fort. We spent over an hour touring the fort, and got to use our Senior Park Pass again....we've only used it twice now and have more than recovered the $10 cost per pass......just today we saved $14 in entrance fees.


Castillo de San Marcos Fort





After the fort tour we rode over to San Sebastian Winery to take the tour and, of course, do some wine tasting. The only grapes that can be grown in Florida are of the muscadine (sp?) variety. This grape variety was discovered by the first explorers to America growing wild. Most of the wines produced by San Sebastian use the muscadine grape. The tour and wine tasting are FREE.....one of our favorite words! There is an interesting 10 minute video at the beginning, a tour of the wine making facility, and then on to the wine tasting room.

We arrived back at the coach around 4pm after logging around 8 miles of riding around town, and I decided to take a nap before we headed north to Jacksonville, and what we thought would be our overnight spot, however, there was a forest fire burning just to the northwest of Jacksonville, which resulted in a cloud of smoke over the city, and the accompanying smoke smell. We decided to just do our shopping here and push on north to get out of the smoke, we also wanted to wait for the rush hour traffic to subside.....I didn't drive 4,000+ miles to sit in rush hour traffic! Finally around 7pm we rolled the wheels again and headed north to Kingsland, GA.....yes....we have left Florida in our rear view mirror, but we will return. We overnighted behind another Cracker Barrel just off the Interestate. Another great dry camp spot!

Tomorrow Savannah!

Thanks for stopping by!

3 comments:

  1. Well, I've been following your blog now and then and I do have a question. It appears you overnight at Cracker Barrel's often. I was not aware they allowed overnight parking. Do all of them or do you go in an ask permission? We well be checking those out next trip! Thanks!

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  2. They do....we have overnighted at Cracker Barrels 4 time son this trip, and have never been turned away. Never hurts to ask.

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  3. Cracker Barrel is where I dry camp when I'm on the road. Walmarts aren't always welcoming to overnight RVers and they tend to be noisy. In every CB at which I've inquired, the managers have not only said I could park there overnight, but did so with enthusiasm. One manager even went so far as to tell me I would be welcome at any Cracker Barrel in the country. I recently found out that while they are not open 24 hours, there is always someone there, such as the cleaning crew. Good to know.

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