Well, this week it finally came. I am 30! Where did the time go? I feel like I was just a care free child playing outside until the street lights came on. I had a great birthday week. We started out on Tuesday with a trip to one of my favorite cities, St. Augustine, FL. We took advantage of their locals special they are offering for the month of September, where all residents in my area are welcome to ride their trolley for free and experience some of the local attractions.
We first started out getting our tickets from Old Town Trolley Tours St. Augustine, and we got tickets for the trolley tour, the Old Jail, St. Augustine History Museum, Potter’s wax museum, and the Old Drug Store. Although we did not make it to the History Museum, or the Old Drug Store, we plan to go back soon and visit those attractions.
The Old Jail
Our first stop was to the Old Jail. I was a bit worried as we brought along Chief who is 3, and the inside of the jail on the first floor is kind of dark in the beginning of the tour. He did ok, but wanted to be held during this portion. It was very interesting to see the jail, as this was an actual jail in St. Augustine that was used from 1891-1953. During the tour you are guided by “inmates” in period dress, and are guided first through the court yard where they use to hang prisoners(very eerie), women’s cells, maximum security, the kitchen, the Sheriff’s living quarters, and then upstairs to general populations and the Sheriff’s private bedrooms. You are then left to wander on your own, exploring the cells, and information posted on the walls. You can see that the cells are very tiny compared to today’s prison cells and seem very inhumane as we are told that many times there are more then 4 prisoners to a cell.
After our visit to the Old Jail we took the trolley tour around the city with our driver Robert. He was a fantastic driver and narrator as we passed historic areas of downtown. As a frequent visitor it was nice to finally take a complete tour of the city and become familiar with some areas we have never seen before. Our tour lasted about an hour and fifteen minutes and we enjoyed every single bit of it. Chief did get a little antsy towards the ended but he stuck it out.
There are 24 stops on the trolley ride where you can hop off and explore, and then pick up the next trolley as it comes by. Mt favorite stop on the trolley is St. George Street. I HIGHLY recommend that you hop off here and explore this pedestrian walking street. There are lots of unique little shops, restaurants, and more.
Our favorite areas to stop on St. George are Colonial Quarter, it is absolutely beautiful, so much that we actually got married here under their great big oak tree filled with beautiful lanterns. Our next favorite place to stop is right across the way at Fudge Buckets, this is a must stop location. Head in to sample homemade fudge, and amazing ice cream or if your feeling extra hungry stop at their sister store Burger Buckets located not far from this location. If you head into Burger Buckets make sure to ask Gary, what he recommends to eat. He has never steered us wrong and our food is always amazing. After our trolley tour we had dinner at our favorite restaurant as mentioned above, Burger Buckets and then headed home for the evening.
We returned back on Thursday, my actual birthday to visit Potter’s Wax Museum. Now this is an attraction that I would not recommend for young children as it can be a bit frightening and unnerving. While it is a very interesting attraction, it was nowhere near my favorite place to stop. The museum is filled with many historical figures, famous actors/actresses and professional athletes. I am 30 (yikes) and it was terrifying to me, which is odd because I love all things creepy and scary. I love a good horror movie, but this just seemed way to real. I even briefly braved their horror section and quickly ran back out. Each wax figure is expertly made, and they were even crafting their next figure that will be joining their museum next week, Mr. Ray Charles. It was very interesting to watch their process. I can’t say that I won’t ever go back for another visit, maybe next time I won’t feel so anxious, but I can say it won’t be high on our list. Of course if we do visit again, it will be without Chief.
If you are interested in seeing this attraction at night, they do offer a ghost tour that stops at this location as it is reported to be a very haunted building in St. Augustine. Eeek!
We of course made another visit to Burger Buckets for dinner after our visit to the wax museum. We had an amazing dinner, we shared their Bite of Fire Burger, and Extra Meaty Chicken Wings. Mmmm, everything was so amazing. I finished off my dinner with an amazing banana split sundae, where I went with the traditional toppings. You can choose your 3 ice creams and toppings. Chief got his famous scoop of Superman ice-cream on a cake cone, which is vanilla ice-cream tie dyed red, yellow and blue. They have tuns of different options for dessert such as milk shakes, ice-cream cones, key lime pie on a stick, frozen bananas, and of course lots of fudge to choose from! All their fudge is home made right there at the Burger Buckets location. Go check them out, you won’t regret it!
I do have to say that turning 30 was a lot better then I expected. We had a fantastic time visiting St. Augustine on both days, and we will be returning again in the future, as this is one of our favorite date locations. If you haven’t visited yet, we recommend that you do! Make sure to wear comfortable shoes, as some of the roads are cobblestone and can be a tad uneven. Check our the Visitor Information Center, for information about local attractions, restaurants, shops and more!