Florida Fun on a Budget – Affordable Jacksonville Attractions

With 22 miles of beaches, over 100,000 acres of parks, and dozens of top-ranked golf courses, this amazing city has a lot to offer. But, what if you’re traveling on a budget? No worries. With plenty of affordable Jacksonville hotels and reasonably priced attractions, you can still have the vacation of a lifetime:

o Hit the Beach. Soak up the sun on miles of uncrowded, white sandy beaches. Whether it’s Atlantic, Neptune or Jacksonville Beach, you can play, swim, snorkel or just work on your tan. Just minutes from the city’s beaches, you’ll find some of Florida’s finest seafood, shops, caf├ęs, and more. With free moonlight movies, summer concerts and other seasonal events, you can truly have the time of your life for the price of some sunscreen and snacks.

o Kids Campus. Definitely not your run-of-the-mill kids’ playground, Kids Campus at Metropolitan Park in Downtown Jacksonville, is a magical place where children can romp on the colorful playscapes, test out the climbing, digging and sliding equipment, experiment with solar power, and more. In the summer months, the campus’ waterpark is king – with its exciting slides and water cannons. From “following the yellow brick road” to transforming themselves into a drop of water, this is a fun, safe and, FREE way for kids to spend the day – and it’s just minutes from many affordable Jacksonville hotels.

o Adventure Landing. This is THE place to play, whether you’re an adult, kid or somewhere in between. Billed as the largest family entertainment center in Northeast Florida, you’ll find rides ranging from mild to meltdown, as well as miniature golf courses, a MEGA arcade, batting cages, a Teddy Bear Factory, laser tag, motion simulators and lots of places to enjoy a snack. When the temperatures soar, Shipwreck Island Waterpark inside Adventure Landing is the place to be, featuring four extreme slides, Little St. John’s River and Typhoon Lagoon, a half-million gallon wave pool. The best deal is the all-day waterpark pass at $27.99, but if you’re only interested in a few attractions like miniature golf or laser tag, you can purchase a la carte tickets for less than $7.

o Museum of Science & History. Known by most as just “MOSH,” this exciting destination is a mix of educational, state-of-the-art exhibits (80,000-square-feet worth) and plain old fun. From its electrifying and explosive science shows, to its planetarium where you can see stars dotting the night sky, kids and adults alike can spend all day exploring and enjoying hands-on activities. Adult admission is $9, while admission for children ages 3-12 is $7.

o St. Augustine Old Town Trolley Tour. Take in the historic sights, history and attractions of America’s oldest city, founded in 1565 by Pedro Menendez de Aviles. About 35 miles from most Jacksonville hotels, this area is dotted with Spanish Colonial neighborhoods, charming buildings and a style all its own. Along the way you can see more than 100 points of interest – in just a one-hour tour. From the Fountain of Youth, Lightner Museum, Ripley’s “Believe it or Not,” St Augustine’s Oldest House, the Florida Heritage Museum and much more, you’ll also end your experience near a host of great attractions, shops and restaurants. A $20 Old Town Trolley pass is good for three days of unlimited use and includes admission to several attractions.

o Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens. With more than 5,500 objects in its permanent collection, the largest fine arts museum in Northeast Florida is an amazing place. From the European masters to American impressionists, this museum is home to some amazing collections, not to mention a one-of-a kind collection of 18th-century Meissen porcelain. You could really spend days here, strolling along the more than two-and-a-half acres of historic gardens along the St. Johns River and taking in the sights. The museum is also home to a nationally recognized education center, Art Connections, which offers visitors of all ages a hands-on educational experience. Adult admission is $10. Kids ages 5 and younger are free.

Whether you want to be inspired by the area’s cultural offerings, or you just want to relax on the beach, in Jacksonville you can enjoy an amazing vacation, even if you’re working within a tight budget. If you need more ideas during your stay at Marriott’s Jacksonville hotels, be sure to visit the concierge desk or talk to our helpful staff.