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FERNANDINA BEACH, FLORIDA

Amelia and Cumberland Islands and the Okefenokee Swamp

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Road Scholar
Program #11603RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.

Itinerary for Oct 21 — Oct 26, 2012

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Type: Hotel

Description: Near Atlantic Ocean beach - three tenths of a mile - easy 5 minute walk Evening Reception Swimming Pool Pets Allowed-extra charge Kitchenette Interior Corridors Local restaurants within easy walking distance Barb que and/or picnic area

Contact info:
2301 Sadler Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 USA
phone: 904-277-2440
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxar-residence-inn-amelia-island/

Room amenities: Alarm Clock, Coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and board Luxury bedding-crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows Pillows: down/feather Pillows: foam Pull-out sofa bed Roll away bed

Facility amenities: Swimming Pool Non-smoking High-Speed Internet Pets Allowed Kitchenette Fitness Facility All-Suites Property Dry Cleaning/Laundry Meeting Rooms Interior Corridors

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for seasonal rate.
Participants responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, October 21 - Arrival, Registration, and Orientation
Afternoon: HOTEL CHECK IN: You may check in beginning at 4:00 pm. PROGRAM REGISTRATION: Please register with the Road Scholar program staff at our desk in the conference room beginning at 5:00 pm. You'll receive your arrival packet containing the most up-to-date schedule and program information at that time. You'll have an informative overview of the program to come plus an opportunity to meet the program staff and your fellow participants during an introductory get-acquainted session at 5:00 pm. We'll review the updated schedule, answer any questions you may have, and cover responsibilities, safety guidelines, and emergency procedures. Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of any changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding!

Dinner: 6:00 PM Buffet style dinner. Catered meal in hotel meeting room.

Evening: 7:00 PM History of Fernandina - The Eight Flags of Fernandina

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Near Atlantic Ocean beach - three tenths of a mile - easy 5 minute walk Evening Reception Swimming Pool Pets Allowed-extra charge Kitchenette Interior Corridors Local restaurants within easy walking distance Barb que and/or picnic area

Contact info:
2301 Sadler Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 USA
phone: 904-277-2440
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxar-residence-inn-amelia-island/

Room amenities: Alarm Clock, Coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and board Luxury bedding-crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows Pillows: down/feather Pillows: foam Pull-out sofa bed Roll away bed

Facility amenities: Swimming Pool Non-smoking High-Speed Internet Pets Allowed Kitchenette Fitness Facility All-Suites Property Dry Cleaning/Laundry Meeting Rooms Interior Corridors

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for seasonal rate.
Participants responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, October 22 - Field Trip to Cumberland Island/Continue Cumberla...
Field Trip to Cumberland Island/Continue Cumberland Excursion/Free Evening

Breakfast: Hot breakfast buffet served daily with fresh fruit, eggs, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, danish, bacon or sausage.

Morning: A 45 minute ferry ride will take you to Cumberland Island National Seashore and the state's southernmost and largest barrier island. The island has three major ecosystem regions. Along the western edge of the island there are large areas of salt marshes. One will also see gnarled live oak trees covered with Spanish moss and the palmetto plants at the edge of Cumberland's dense maritime forest. Cumberland Island's most famous ecosystem is its beach, which stretches over 17 miles. The island is home to many native interesting animals, as well as non-native species. There are White-tailed deer, squirrels, Raccoons, Nine-banded Armadillos, Wild Boars, American Alligators, as well as many marshland inhabitants. It is also famous for its wild horses roaming free on the island. Your guide will lead you on a slow 4 mile easy walking field trip of the southern most region of Cumberland Island. For those who do not want to go the 4 mile distance, you may opt to take the short hike of 2 miles.

Lunch: You'll enjoy your lunch on the ferry as you travel to Cumberland Island. It is about a 45 minute ferry ride and you may see dolphins and other wildlife on the way.

Afternoon: Continue Cumberland Island field trip. The afternoon ferry leaves at 4:45 pm for St. Marys dock. Your motor coach will be waiting for you for your return trip to Fernandina. Arrival in Fernandina is usually around 5:45 pm.

Dinner: A catered meal will be in the meeting room of the hotel.

Evening: Due to a long day on Cumberland Island, participants may rest or get suggestions from coordinator for local activities.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Near Atlantic Ocean beach - three tenths of a mile - easy 5 minute walk Evening Reception Swimming Pool Pets Allowed-extra charge Kitchenette Interior Corridors Local restaurants within easy walking distance Barb que and/or picnic area

Contact info:
2301 Sadler Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 USA
phone: 904-277-2440
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxar-residence-inn-amelia-island/

Room amenities: Alarm Clock, Coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and board Luxury bedding-crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows Pillows: down/feather Pillows: foam Pull-out sofa bed Roll away bed

Facility amenities: Swimming Pool Non-smoking High-Speed Internet Pets Allowed Kitchenette Fitness Facility All-Suites Property Dry Cleaning/Laundry Meeting Rooms Interior Corridors

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for seasonal rate.
Participants responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, October 23 - Amelia Island Field Trip/Fort Clinch/Island Ecolo...
Breakfast: Hot breakfast buffet served daily with fresh fruit, eggs, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, danish, bacon or sausage.

Morning: Today will be a day of fascination and historical adventure as you explore the downtown historic district with your historian as your guide. Hear the story of the visionary whose exhilarating dream so stirred his neighbors that they agreed to move their entire town to the site of a plantation he owned, creating "New" Fernandina in the 1850?s. From the "giant" Timucua Native Americans, to Spanish and French explorers, to the lawless spirit of pirates, to the dignified air of Victorian-era residents, Amelia Island has been home to diverse cultures that have left a truly exciting heritage. Expect the rare privilege of observing the uniquely gracious and historic homes of another century. Allow yourself to get in touch with efforts to preserve the nearly extinct, pristine architectural styles within a small, gifted American town struggling to retain its fragile sense of family and community as well as its birthright and historical integrity.

Lunch: Relax and enjoy lunch at a popular local restaurant located inside a charming historical building in historic downtown Fernandina Beach. An eclectic palette of colors and furnishings and a large garden patio shaded by huge oak trees invites you to a fun and unique culinary experience.

Afternoon: Fort Clinch State Park is a 1,086 acre outpost of pristine beaches and dunes, nature trails, ponds and salt marshes and the island's only campgrounds. Fort Clinch, named for General Duncan Lamont Clinch, an important figure in Florida's Seminole War of the 1830's who also fought in the War of l812, is one in a system of permanent coastal fortifications. Construction began in 1847 and was occupied briefly by the Confederate forces until being overrun by the Union troops. It has been meticulously preserved and will give you the feeling of life as it was over 150 years ago. A period, uniformed re-enactor will take you back in time as he leads your field trip. Reliving your ancestors life in this old fort is an incredible, historic adventure! Close your eyes for a moment and you can almost hear the roar of the cannons!

Dinner: Held in hotel meeting room.

Evening: Presentation on island ecology in hotel meeting room.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Near Atlantic Ocean beach - three tenths of a mile - easy 5 minute walk Evening Reception Swimming Pool Pets Allowed-extra charge Kitchenette Interior Corridors Local restaurants within easy walking distance Barb que and/or picnic area

Contact info:
2301 Sadler Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 USA
phone: 904-277-2440
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxar-residence-inn-amelia-island/

Room amenities: Alarm Clock, Coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and board Luxury bedding-crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows Pillows: down/feather Pillows: foam Pull-out sofa bed Roll away bed

Facility amenities: Swimming Pool Non-smoking High-Speed Internet Pets Allowed Kitchenette Fitness Facility All-Suites Property Dry Cleaning/Laundry Meeting Rooms Interior Corridors

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for seasonal rate.
Participants responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, October 24 - Amelia Island River Cruise/Free Afternoon and Eve...
Breakfast: Hot breakfast buffet served daily with fresh fruit, eggs, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, danish, bacon or sausage.

Morning: Explore as you cruise the backwaters of Amelia Island and Cumberland Island and enjoy the spectacular views. Watch for rare birds, dolphins, manatees and other wildlife as you glide back in time along the rivers, creeks and marshes that surround Amelia Island. The boat is covered and may be closed to protect guests against inclement weather. Come aboard for an inspiring cruise experience that takes you along salt marshes, wilderness beaches, and historic river banks.

Lunch: After our scenic and informative cruise, lunch will be at a local water front restaurant overlooking the intracoastal waterway.

Afternoon: This is your free afternoon to spend at the beach, the Amelia Island Museum, historic village, read a book at the beach, or just take a nap. Your hotel is located three tenths of a mile from the beach - a 3-5 minute walk. See website for more suggestions: www.ameliaisland.com/area-services/entertainment/exploring-amelia-island/outdoor/

Dinner: Dinner on your own to enjoy local cuisine or a complimentary hamburger/hot dog cookout provided by the Marriott Residence Inn. Coordinator will be happy to make suggestions for dinner for local restaurants. The Marriott van is available for shuttle to local points of interests including restaurants, etc.

Evening: Free evening.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Near Atlantic Ocean beach - three tenths of a mile - easy 5 minute walk Evening Reception Swimming Pool Pets Allowed-extra charge Kitchenette Interior Corridors Local restaurants within easy walking distance Barb que and/or picnic area

Contact info:
2301 Sadler Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 USA
phone: 904-277-2440
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxar-residence-inn-amelia-island/

Room amenities: Alarm Clock, Coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and board Luxury bedding-crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows Pillows: down/feather Pillows: foam Pull-out sofa bed Roll away bed

Facility amenities: Swimming Pool Non-smoking High-Speed Internet Pets Allowed Kitchenette Fitness Facility All-Suites Property Dry Cleaning/Laundry Meeting Rooms Interior Corridors

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for seasonal rate.
Participants responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, October 25 - Okefenokee Swamp Field Trip/Musical Entertainment
Breakfast: Hot breakfast buffet served daily with fresh fruit, eggs, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, danish, bacon or sausage. Y

Morning: Note: Approximately 500 square miles of the Okefenokee Swamp has burned in 2011. Our Road Scholar field trips will continue to the Okefenokee as we learn about the benefits of fire to the swamp. Lack of fire threatens the healthy diversity of forests and wildlife habitat, and leads to a buildup of vegetative fuels in the forest's understory. Swamp fire is beneficial for forest health and wildlife habitat, as well as for public safety through the reduction in frequency and severity of wildfires. A naturalist will lead a field trip to one of America's most famous national wildlife refuges. The Okefenokee Swamp has been officially designated as a "Wetland of International Importance" but that doesn't begin to describe its incomparable beauty or the complex web of life that exists. Rich in history, "swamp culture", flora, and fauna, this one-of-a-kind giant peat bog contains uplands and islands covered in pine & oak forests; black-water lakes of varying sizes; and interior freshwater marshes (locally called "prairies) dotted with floating mats of "botanical gardens" interspersed among stands of pond cypress, black gum, mixed-bay trees, and shrubs. The Okefenokee also provides significant wilderness habitat for large populations of Florida black bear and American alligator. Boat ride is approx. 1.5 hours into the swamp.

Lunch: Enjoy a cookout at the swamp with homemade peach cobbler and ice cream for dessert.

Afternoon: Take a drive along Swamp Island Drive and view the19th to early 20th century farmhouse located deep in the swamp that was home to a family that lived in the swamp for several generations. Its ability to survive the wet swamp conditions serves as a reminder of the swampers who once lived there. They were able to save the Chesser Homestead from the fire of 2011.

Dinner: Located in hotel meeting room.

Evening: Enjoy the music of a a delightful singer / storyteller, folk music performer and teacher from Jacksonville, Florida. She is mostly self-taught on many unusual instruments - Autoharp©, Mountain Dulcimer, Hammered Dulcimer, Psaltery, Concertina, and the weird and wonderful SAW.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, October 26 - Speaker/The Shrimping Industry
Breakfast: Hot breakfast buffet served daily with fresh fruit, eggs, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, danish, bacon or sausage.

Morning: A local expert on the shrimping industry will speak about what is going on in the world of shrimping. He comes from a family of shrimpers and you'll be surprised to learn what is happening as shrimpers try to make a living.

Lunch: The program ends after the morning lecture around 10:30 am.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
14 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
6 Expert-led lectures
6 Field trips
1 Performances

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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