One of the defining and most unique things about our downtown is that it is waterfront. Many people are drawn to live and open businesses in #DTJax because of its proximity to water. As residents, sometimes we forget all of the awesome waterfront and water activities that Downtown Jacksonville has to offer! This summer, we challenge you to experience #DTJax like a tourist and get out on the water to enjoy one of the most unique features Downtown has to offer.

 

St. John’s River Taxi & Tours

Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 1.49.16 PMHop on the St. Johns River Taxi at Friendship Park on the Southbank for a fun-filled cruise to the Jacksonville Landing on the Northbank, take the river taxi at night and see the twinkling lights of downtown by boat, miss the traffic during Jags games by cruising across the river to Met Park, take it to the zoo or go on a science and history tour of Jacksonville. The list keeps going! Check out everything St. John’s River Taxi does, everywhere they go and their schedules here. 

 

Photo Credit: @kalanirosemusic

 

Southbank Riverwalk

Southbank1 (1)The recently re-imagined and updated Southbank Riverwalk has become a destination for outdoor festivals, races and public art. Bordering the St. Johns River, directly opposite Jacksonville Landing , this 1 1/4-mile art-filled “boardwalk” is usually full of  joggers, tourists, folks sitting on benches, and lovers walking hand-in-hand, all of them watching the riverboats, the shorebirds, and Downtown’s skyline reflected in the water. For more info, see the listing in our directory.

 

The Jacksonville Landing

Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 2.20.25 PMA staple in Downtown waterfront entertainment, The Jacksonville Landing is home to an array of different venues and venues. You can find live music venues, great food, clothing stores, art shops and galleries and so much more, making it a one-stop shop for Downtown residents and visitors. For more than 25 years, The Jacksonville Landing has been the spot to stop in Downtown Jacksonville. Go all out and arrive by boat! Check out their directory of shops, restaurants and venues here.
Photo credit: @dave.m_g

Friendship Fountain

Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 2.43.42 PMIs summer really summer without a photo in front of Friendship Fountain? Situated at the west end of the Southbank Riverwalk adjacent to the Museum of Science and History is Friendship Fountain. Dedicated in 1965, it is one of the largest self-contained fountains built, pumping 3,500 to 6,500 gallons of water per minute to a height of 100 feet, with 265 lights molding the water into a sparkling mist. Whether you are looking for a peaceful place for a picnic, or just want to watch the river flow by, Friendship Fountain provides the ideal setting for a sunny afternoon or a romantic evening Downtown.

In 2010, the City of Jacksonville broke ground on park improvements. The $3.1 million project included restoring full functionality to the fountain, updating the fountain’s lighting and adding green space, landscaping and pedestrian accents to the park. Find more info in the listing in our directory here.
Photo credit: @dapperhouseblog 

 

Riverside Arts Market

Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 2.58.40 PMGrab your friends, family and pups! Riverside Arts Market is one of our favorite family and dog-friendly weekly events. Every Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., rain or shine, enjoy more than 100 artists, artisans, makers and farmers. Grub on food truck fare and cold beer in the shade under the bridge. Experience the arts and culture of Jacksonville along the St. Johns River. Want to know what vendors will be there? Check out their Interactive Weekly Market Map. Learn more about the event on their website.

Photo credit: @jaxfreedomrun

It’s summertime and the living’s easy, especially when your days consist of feeling the cool breeze and enjoying a drink on the St. Johns River. It’s easy to take for granted just how much to see along our Riverwalk, but spanning along both the Northbank and the Southbank, there are plenty of things to keep you busy, outside and active this Summer on the river!

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Work It Out11

Getting in shape has never been so enjoyable, with so many sights and places to explore along the way in #DTJax. Walk, jog or run along the Riverwalk and get in your miles for Mayor Curry’s Journey to One – Mayorthon. If you’re looking for a little more guidance on where to run along the river, check out our #RunDTJax blog for specific routes. You can also grab some friends and head to Friendship Fountain for a serene group yoga session on the river. Additionally, we have a “Getting Fit Downtown” itinerary which provides cycling routes along the river so that even while you’re exercising, you have a great view!

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The Iconic Skyline 

Some say that Jacksonville has one of the most picturesque skylines and we agree. Whether you’re a amateur or a professional, you won’t have a hard time finding #DTJax’s best angle – they’re all great! Check out some of our favorite spots like the Mirrored River mosaic underneath the Main St. Bridge on the Southbank or the perfect headshot (*or Instagram selfie*) on the bridge with the skyline behind you.

Paddleboards, boat rentals and kayaks – oh my!

For those that are a little more adventurous, take your river experience off dry land. There are plenty of activities to choose from, ranging from stand-up paddle board rentals to kayak tours. Don’t forget to watch for dolphins and manatees who regularly make an appearance along the riverfront.

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St. Johns River Taxi

The fun on the river doesn’t stop with boat rentals, enjoy the sights of #DTJax with a cruise along the riverfront on the St. Johns River Taxi! With new programming, a night out on the river has never been so fun. Every Thursday through Sunday from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m., enjoy the Sunset River Jam Cruise where you can enjoy live, local entertainment and bring your own food and beverages! Plus, every Saturday this Summer, take the River Taxi from Friendship Fountain Park to the Jacksonville Zoo for a day of family fun. Not sold yet? Read our DVI staff experience blog and then buy your tickets here today.

Dinner with a View

#DTJax is home to some of the best restaurants in Jacksonville (see our blog on Jacksonville Magazine’s 50 best restaurants). What is better than finishing up a delectable meal than watching the sun set over the St. Johns? Check out restaurants with riverfront dining such as River City Brewing Company, especially on Sunday-Funday with live music on the Brew House Lounge and Deck! Other riverfront dining options include Benny’s Steak & SeafoodRuth’s Chris SteakhouseFionn MacCool’s Irish Restaurant and Pub and the River Club to name a few!

 

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Music by the River

Almost as iconic as the skyline itself, The Jacksonville Landing is a staple in #DTJax. Multiple times a week, The Landing hosts free music by the river in their courtyard at the Coca Cola Riverfront Stage every Friday and Saturday. The Landing also has ongoing events like the annual X102.9′s Rock on the River, Bud Lights Up The Landing and Caribbean Sundaze. Learn more about The Landing’s events on their website.

Just Around the River Bend

As if walking along the panoramic riverfront wasn’t enticing enough, there are many events, activities and things to see just a short walking distance from the Riverwalk. Every Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. visit the Riverside Arts Market, located under the Fuller Warren Bridge, which showcases the best local artists, food vendors, entertainers and non-profits in our area. Walk to 220 Riverside Avenue and find Unity Plaza, which is home to great restaurants like Hobnob and Brixx Pizza plus an array of events ranging from live music from the Chris Thomas Band, free yoga in the amphitheater, weekly Winston YMCA Y-Fit bootcamps and a monthly speaker series.

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 In #DTJax, we’re lucky to have some of the best elements of our city right here. Enjoy one of the most beautiful attributes of Jacksonville with any of the activities above or let us know your favorite thing to do on the riverfront!

For more information, look to our website and download our free DTJax app today! Available on the Apple Store or Google Play store.