It’s Paradise but Without the Boredom!

Paradise… A lot of people dream of a little island in the middle of nowhere. White sands, blue sea, palm trees… Get the picture?

Variety is the Spice that Excites

Variety is the Spice that Excites

Paradise… A lot of people dream of a little island in the middle of nowhere. White sands, blue sea, palm trees… You get the picture? Ultimate boredom in most cases as well.
I was born and raised in the center of Europe in a city that offers everything from an opera house to one of the biggest shopping centers in the world, from world class restaurants to one of the oldest theme parks on the planet. The thought of being cut off from modern amenities like supermarkets, internet access or simply a modern bathroom for more than a couple of days causes pure horror in me. You could say I’m the quintessential offspring of the Boomer Generation, who likes his creature comforts. But if you feel the same way, don’t worry because Amelia island is your perfect getaway! I learned about it first hand a couple of weeks ago.

Yes it is an island, yes there are miles of beautiful beaches, white sand, and, of course palm trees, but there is so much more to be discovered and enjoyed, without ever having to endure the loss of modern comforts.

Begin with the beautiful historic town center with its bars, restaurants and small deep water harbor. Seeing the sun set over the sailboats and yachts is a sight for sore eyes. Don’t miss out on grabbing a burger at the famous T-Rays or Tasty Burgers and make sure you treat yourself to the one of a kind Mac’n’Cheese at Arte’s Pizza. Take my word for it: you will be so hooked, that like me you can sit back in Vienna, Austria devising possible ways to have it shipped. I know!!!

With all the reviving energy from the great food you had you should head over to Fort Clinch state park. This is probably what Florida looked like in its original form, before air-conditioning made its a entry. One part of the park is mother nature at her glorious best, as if no human being had ever set a foot on its soil. The other part is the historic fort that never saw war action and is perfectly preserved to give an idea how islanders lived two hundred years ago. Take your time to breathe in American history and enjoy the beautiful beachside that the fort is located on. If you are lucky you might even see a modern submarine pass by in front of you, or catch a glimpse of the wild horses on neighboring Cumberland Island across the sound.

So far you have only seen the utmost north part of the island, but leaving fort clinch going south on Fletcher Avenue, which runs like Jimmy Buffet’s A1A along the beach all the way south passed Amelia City to the Omni Plantation. As you drive along enjoy the scenery, you will pass by John Grisham’s brand-new twin-house compound, as well as Stephen King’s recently finished new beach house and you will eventually arrive at the Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island, the premier resort on the Island. The Ritz Carlton Group offers, without a doubt a wide of some of the world’s leading hotels, but on Amelia island it does have a little extra: right in between the hotel and the beach itself, there is a protected dune area, which is a habitat for turtles. It´s wonderful to see these creatures in their natural environment.

If you are, like me, someone that enjoys good food but also tries to stay on the healthy side (at least most of the time) you will also love the supermarkets on the island. Harris Teeter is completely geared towards the island’s south side prosperity, but personally I especially like Publix, with it´s huge selection of fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh sea food and meat perfectly presented to the customer. For health nuts like me Nassau Health Foods with a wide variety of organic products, also impressed me.  You can´t beat a fresh smoothie made with Florida oranges and a variety of tropical fruits prepared in a juicer, in the morning. Gave me all the energy and vitamins I needed to enjoy another great day on the island!

Well folks, so much for now! Looking forward to tell you more next week, about my guys’ night out and the perfect run on the beach!

Grüße aus Wien

Nikolaus Menches


  1. Judie

    You left out healthy shopping “experience” at the downtown, Fernandina Beach Market Place farmers’ market – open every Saturday on N. 7th Street, from 9am to 1pm. 🙂

  2. Nathan

    And you left out the wonderful fresh vegetable stand on 14th street for the last 20 years – Gerald is the owner and carries your bagged groceries to the car –

    And you left out the fresh seafood for sale down by the boat dock – Atlantic Bait Shop – much better even than Publix

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