Looking for the perfect mother-daughter getaway? Guest author Beth and her mom enjoyed a mother-daughter weekend in Amelia Island and found the best spots for shopping, dining, exploring and enjoying a little self-indulgence. Ready for a luxurious visit? Here are seven indulgent things to do on Amelia Island, FL on a mother-daughter getaway.

Alt text: Amelia Island has Florida’s most beautiful beaches. Make sure to explore them on your next mother daughter getaway!

Miles of miles of unspoiled coastline. Photo Credit: Amelia Island Tourism

7 Indulgent Things to Do on Amelia Island, FL

1. Visit a Spa
2. Go Shopping
3. Learn the History of Amelia Island
4. Dine with a Beautiful View of the Ocean
5. Visit a State Park and Hunt for Shark’s Teeth
6. Enjoy cocktails on Amelia Island
7. Dine with a Celebrity Chef

Every year, I whisk my mother away for a few days of R&R and quality mother-daughter time. We don’t go far, just a car’s drive as she’s 80-years old so I like to keep it simple.

Our most recent trip took us just one hour from her home in Jacksonville, Florida to Amelia Island. The island is a bit old school, just a slow-paced, tranquil beach town. It holds some special memories for my family as it was a favorite destination of my children when they were younger. Amelia Island is home to my favorite Florida beach, its pristine white sand beaches, quaint shops, and charming cafes. When my mom and I needed a quick getaway, it was our first choice. Here are some of the best things to do on Amelia Island.

A pool for days on a mother daughter getaway to Ameila Island at Omni Amelia Island.

The luxurious Omni Amelia Island. Photo Credit: Omni Amelia Island.

1. Visit a Spa

My mom and I are spa junkies and the Spa at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is one of my all-time favorites. The tagline, “Miles from Stress, Footsteps from the Sea™,” sums it up perfectly.  The spa is set within a tranquil garden and prides itself in using only organic and fair trade products. My favorite is the Plantation Blossom Ritual which includes a skin-softening exfoliation followed by a massage with warmed lemon, papaya, cherry blossom and rice powder cream.

After a day of walking, I treated my mom to a foot reflexology session where the therapist massaged the pressure points of her feet. Who doesn’t love a good foot rub and one that has the added benefit of relaxing your entire body?


TravelingMom Tip: Get there extra early and enjoy the relaxation area and zen garden with a cup of citrus tea.

Amelia Island has great shopping in downtown Fernandina Beach - especially when on a mother daughter getaway!

Shop the quaint village of Fernandina Beach. Photo Credit: Amelia Island Tourism.

2. Go Shopping

Fernandina Beach, an old fishing port, has a main street lined with charming shops and boutiques. The stores carry everything from casual, beachy sundresses to unusual and eclectic gifts and toys. My mom collects Christmas tree ornaments and found several beach-themed glass balls to add to her collection.

Sign up to take an art class at Fern and Dina’s, one of my favorite places to buy artisan jewelry.

If you’re looking for something totally offbeat and unusual, chances are you’ll find it in the shops of Fernandina Beach.

3. Learn the History of Amelia Island

Ride the Amelia Island Trolley to get a guided historical tour of the island. The tour is just a little over an hour and costs $20 (for adults). You’ll learn all about the history of the area and see many of the historic homes that have been converted into B&Bs, including Florida House Inn, the state’s oldest operating Inn.

On our tour, we spotted the Palace Saloon, the oldest drinking establishment in Florida, and made a mental note to stop in after the ride for a happy hour cocktail. Or two.

Headed to Amelia Island on a mother-daughter getaway? Here are 7 indulgent things to do! #AmeliaIsland #FL #MotherDaughterGetaway #TMOM #FLTravel

4. Dine with a Beautiful View of the Ocean

SALT, the restaurant at the Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island, is one of North Florida’s most acclaimed restaurants and one of the state’s few AAA 5-Diamond restaurants. I’m not sure which is best, the view of the ocean or the food. The food is contemporary American cuisine but true to its name, Chef de Cuisine Richard Laughlin incorporates salts from around the world into all of the dishes.

We both ordered the salmon entree with a light citrus sauce finished with sea salt, but made sure we saved room for my favorite pie, Key lime.

TravelingMom Tip: Plan in advance and take one of Chef Laughlin’s cooking classes held several times a year.

5. Visit a State Park and Hunt for Shark’s Teeth

If your Mom is up for a bit of a walk, I recommend spending an afternoon at Fort Clinch State Park. We meandered along the beach picking up some beautiful sea shells and (unsuccessfully) hunting for shark’s teeth. Mom’s a bird lover so the park’s easy-to-navigate nature trail, which we strolled at our own pace, is filled with local wildlife.

Amelia Island has the best cocktail bars, including a Rum Tequila experience - perfect for a mother-daughter getaway!

Enjoy a rum and tequila tasting. Credit: Omni Amelia Island

6. Enjoy cocktails on Amelia Island

True, my mom and I love nothing more than sipping a glass of wine in the late afternoon, but we decided to try something a bit different this year.

The Omni’s Rum + Tequila Experience is a great twist on an afternoon cocktail. We sat poolside and were treated to flights of rum or tequila (or both) with over 120 kinds of tequila and 100 bottles of rum. Similar to a wine tasting, the master bartender walked us through each flight pointing out the tasting notes, the distillation process and pairing ideas. Happily, the bartender made us a margarita-to-go so that we could enjoy on the beach – we didn’t quite finish our tastings

Amelia Island has a restaurant that serves a Southern feast, Gilbert's Underground. If you're looking for dining options on your next mother-daughter getaway, check it out!

Caption: Enjoy a Southern feast at Gilbert’s Underground. Credit: Gilbert’s Underground

7. Dine with a Celebrity Chef

I love that I was born and raised in Georgia, so I’m always on the lookout for traditional Southern cuisine. Former Top Chef contestant and Celebrity Chef Kenny Gilbert brings it at Gilbert’s Underground Kitchen.

And whether you grew up in the South or not, you’ll appreciate the menu’s comforting classics like fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, mac n’ cheese and fried catfish.

Where to Stay on Amelia Island?

My kids were raised in Jacksonville and when we had a long weekend or needed a beach break, we’d often head to the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort. We loved the self-contained resort with 1,350 acres of fun – everything from golf to fishing to biking – and 3.5 miles of private beachfront property. We lounged in a beach chair on North Florida’s largest pool deck or at the adults-only infinity edge pool.

Noteworthy, kids will love this family-friendly resort for its splash park and water playground. At night, fire pits are the perfect spot for making s’mores.

About the Author

Having young kids didn’t deter Beth Graham from pursuing her culinary adventures. She wanted to inspire her young kids to want to explore the world, so she moved them to Italy.  Today, her kids are young adults with an incredible sense of wanderlust. Now, she tries to take an adventurous trip with the family at least once a year. Most recently, they visited Australia to dive the Great Barrier Reef. Beth embarks from her home in Los Angeles in search of unique food and wine adventures as MomUncorked.