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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 Feb 2 — Feb 7, 2014

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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: residenceinnameliaisland.com

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 hotel for seasonal rates.
Participants are responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, February 02 - Arrival, Registration, and Orientation
Afternoon: HOTEL CHECK IN: You may check in beginning at 4:00pm. PROGRAM REGISTRATION: Please register with the Road Scholar program staff at our desk in the conference room beginning at 5:00pm. You?ll receive your arrival packet containing the most up-to-date schedule and program information that we?ll review during our orientation session at 5:00 pm. ORIENTATION: 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. 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 - Hear from an expert historian about the 8 flags of Fernandina. The area was first inhabited by the Timucuan Indian tribe. Known as the "Isle of 8 Flags", it has had the following flags flown over it since 1562: France, Spain, Great Britain, Spain (again), the Patriots of Amelia Island, the Green Cross of Florida, Mexico, the Confederate States of America, and the United States. It is the only municipality in the United States that has flown eight different national flags.

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: residenceinnameliaisland.com

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 hotel for seasonal rates.
Participants are responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, February 03 - Field Trip to Cumberland Island/Continue Cumberla...
Field Trip to Cumberland Island/Continue Cumberland Excursion/Free Evening

Note: All-terrain Beach wheelchairs are available upon request at either dock. Only three wheelchairs are available for use. These non-motorized wheelchairs are designed with balloon tires for ease of movement in sand. Wheelchair Accessible facilities at Dungeness Dock: museum, restrooms, River Trail(wide enough to accommodate beach wheelchair with fairly level surface), interpretive walks. Wheelchair Accessible facilities at Sea Camp Dock: ranger station, restrooms, interpretive talks.

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

Morning: In preparation for our trip to Cumberland Island, we will sit back and relax and watch a breathtaking video of this beautiful and enchanting Island. We will then be driven by coach to St. Mary's where we will board the ferry for a 45 minute cruise to Cumberland Island, the state's southernmost and largest barrier island. This unique wildlife haven and site of the ruins of the Dungeness Mansion will be part of your field trip. 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. You may see a wide variety of habitats including salt-water marshes, mud flats, tidal creeks, maritime oak forests, large sand dunes, inter-dune meadows, and expansive pristine beaches just to name a few. Take an extra water bottle and any snacks you may want. We provide a sack lunch with a bottle of water.

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 group leader 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: residenceinnameliaisland.com

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 hotel for seasonal rates.
Participants are responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, February 04 - Amelia Island Field Trip/Fort Clinch/Island Ecolo...
Breakfast: Full American breakfast served in the lobby area.

Morning: Today will be a day of fascination and historical adventure. We will explore the downtown historic district. You will be greeted by an historian who will begin by giving a brief history of Amelia Island. 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 Café Karibo located inside a charming historic 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: residenceinnameliaisland.com

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 hotel for seasonal rates.
Participants are responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, February 05 - Amelia Island River Cruise/Free Afternoon and Eve...
Note: A wheelchair can be pushed onto the boat for the river cruise and the occupant may remain in the chair if necessary.

Breakfast: Breakfast in lobby area.

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.

Lunch: After our scenic and informative cruise, lunch will be at The Florida House Inn and Restaurant. The Inn serves as the matriarch of the historic district of Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Constructed in 1857 the Florida House Inn is considered the state's oldest surviving hotel. It was built by David Yulee and served as a boarding house for railroad workers. When lunch is over, enjoy your free afternoon on Amelia Island.

Afternoon: Time on your own, spend the afternoon 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.

Dinner: Dinner is on your own to enjoy local cuisine or a complimentary hamburger/hot dog cookout provided by the Marriott Residence Inn. Group Leader 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. There are two good restaurants within walking distance of the hotel.

Evening: Free evening.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
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: residenceinnameliaisland.com

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 hotel for seasonal rates.
Participants are responsible for making additional nights reservations.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, February 06 - Okefenokee Swamp Field Trip/Musical Entertainment
Note: At The Okefenokee Swamp, a wheelchair may be used to board the boat and then the staff will store it in the office during the boat trip and meet the participant back at the dock when the boat trip concludes.

Breakfast: Breakfast in lobby area.

Morning: Note: Approximately 500 square miles of the Okefenokee Swamp burned in 2011. Our Road Scholar field trips to the Okefenokee 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 hamburger cookout at the swamp with homemade peach cobbler and ice cream for dessert.

Afternoon: Take a drive along Swamp Island Drive and explore 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 multi talented person from Jacksonville, FL. who sings and plays numerous musical instruments.

Lodging: Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, February 07 - Speaker/The Shrimping Industry
Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel lobby area.

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
13 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners
7 Expert-led lectures
6 Field trips
1 Performances

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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