Family Fun

When our kids were given the opportunity to stay in the area or go to Disneyworld for the day, our kids chose to stay and go fishing!  Of course the beach is constant free entertainment for kids, but there are many other inexpensive options in the area.

The Beach
There are many great beaches near our home.  If you want privacy and quiet time, drive straight up the road to Flagler Beach.  In fact, we stick by the pier for the lifeguards and to actually have more people around if someone gets into trouble.  Be sure to ask about the riptides and swimming conditions.  Low tide is our favorite because the little kids can play in the tide pools while the big kids surf.  We have both boogie boards and surf boards.  We ask that you be sure to WASH THEM OFF in the beach shower and that you are careful getting them to the beach and back home.  Also, remember that they need to be stored INSIDE the house.  They like the air conditioning as much as the rest of us!  They will quickly ruin in the garage or outside.
If it is surfing that you are interested in, we highly recommend surf lessons for the kids.  Z-Wave across the street from the pier offers great lessons.  They were so much fun, and we felt it was well worth our money.  They provide the instructors and the boards.
Boogie boarding!

Z-Wave instructor with our son.
Go Mitchell!
Andrew catching a wave!
Brock taking it all in.
Millie learning to boogie board.
Hayley hanging out at Flagler Beach

The Pier
Our kids love to fish off of the pier.  We purchased a family pass for the pier, which if you are staying a while, may be a better option.  However, fishing for one day is very affordable.  We have poles in the garage, or they may be rented at the pier.  It is only $6.00 per person to fish for the day from the pier.  A saltwater fishing license is not required from the pier.  The bait shop is right at the pier also.  This fishing trip is a blast!  With the ocean at their feet, they never know just what they may catch when they cast their lines!  We have seen whales, dolphins, sharks, sting-rays, and manta-rays.  The variety is great!  Our younger son prefers not to fish, but loves to play with the MANY birds on the pier.

Flagler Beach Pier
Pelican Parade at the Pier!

The Gator Farm
Although the price has increased, we cannot make a trip to Florida and not go to the Gator Farm!  It is now tradition.  This is the greatest place for kids.  You cannot experience Florida without seeing the gators!  The Gator Farm is about a 30 minute drive up the A1A coast into St. Augustine.  The farm has every type of crocodilian in the world.  The farm feeds the huge gators a couple of times a day, and the kids can feed the gators from machines for only 25 cents. There are always coupons on their website, but a family pass pays for itself in a couple of visits. 
Nesting birds at the Gator Farm in the spring.

Gators sunning at the farm.
The Gator Farm--A St. Augustine must.

Crabbing is a great adventure, and kids crab for free.  We crab off of the docks under the big bridge heading to the beach.  Park at Steflik Park, and walk out over the canals.  It's simple.  Tie chicken legs or necks with a string and throw them into the water.  You can feel the crabs tugging on the chicken.  SLOWLY reel in the string and scoop the crabs up with a net.  (We have a crab net in the garage.)  Throw the small ones back and boil the big ones!  These are Blue crabs.  Just boil them and dip them in butter.

Crabbing success!
Crabbing at Steflik Park