St. Johns County may be well-known for its history, but it’s the flora and fauna that people gravitate towards. Nestled between the pristine Atlantic Ocean and the beautiful St. Johns River, St. Johns County is the perfect spot to relax and grab some delicious food, with a gorgeous view to compliment your meal. We’ve compiled a quick list of all the best restaurants around town to catch a sunrise over breakfast or sunset over dinner.
Cap’s on the Water
This waterfront spot has been a St. Augustine staple since the 1980s. Enjoy waterfront views of the Tolomato River from the open patio to the covered pavilion. Live oaks surround guests outside, giving the ambiance of that Old Florida flair. Because Cap’s is a popular local favorite, we recommend heading there for an early dinner. While they don’t make reservations, Cap’s invites guests to sip on a refreshing cocktail while taking in the beautiful views from the dock. More info: www.capsonthewater.com
Touted as one of the few remaining oceanfront restaurants in Northeast Florida, The Reef is another can’t-miss waterfront dining experience that locals and visitors flock to. While their menu primarily features seafood and fish, they’ve done an excellent job incorporating beef, poultry, and pasta dishes, taking care to source locally wherever possible. Take a drive up to North Beach to catch exquisite views of the Atlantic while enjoying Sunday brunch on the patio or a perfect date night inside by large-scale windows offering an intimate setting with an unbeatable backdrop. More info: www.thereefstaugustine.com
Not far from Cap’s and The Reef is another waterfront eatery located right on the Tolomato River. Aunt Kate’s opened in 2009, although the location boasts a history spanning back more than 100 years. Their eclectic and expansive menu features local favorites like smoked fish dip and fried alligator tail. If you’re out on the water, tie up at their floating dock and grab a quick bite on the outdoor deck. As you’re enjoying your meal, be sure to keep an eye on the water for the occasional wildlife appearance. You may get lucky and spot a manatee or dolphin!
More info: www.aunt-kates.com
Beaches at Vilano
True to its name, Beaches at Vilano is truly where the locals go for food, fun and fantastic views of the Tolomato near the St. Augustine Inlet. Touted as “your personal Caribbean oasis,” Beaches invites you to drop your worries at the door, let loose and enjoy the live entertainment, views, and the occasional cocktail (or two). Dine with your toes in the sand as you catch the sunset and unwind at St. Augustine’s own slice of beachside paradise. More info: www.beachesatvilano.com
Palm Valley Fish Camp
Nestled within the Palm Valley community is the Palm Valley Fish Camp, a unique and inviting hub offering uninterrupted waterfront views from its back patio. They offer some of the freshest seafood in the area and excel in putting new twists on old dining favorites. The intimate atmosphere will make you feel right at home as you enjoy a glass of wine or the “freshest oysters” in town! We recommend making a reservation as this exceptional joint is pretty popular, especially over the weekends. More info: www.palmvalleyfishcamp.com
River & Fort
Located directly across from the Castillo de San Marcos is St. Augustine’s newest dining establishment, River & Fort. Take in the sights and sounds of the Bayfront and the historical sights from the second and third-floor rooftops while sipping on a handcrafted cocktail from the lounge, or enjoy a more relaxed setting inside over dinner. Their menus feature a blend of seafood and beef options sure to please all palates. Keep in mind that this restaurant is downtown when considering parking. River & Fort offers a great FAQ on their website to learn where to park and more! More info: www.riverandfort.com
Beachcomber St. Augustine
Located directly on the beach on Anastasia Island, Beachcomber is the perfect spot for families and visitors looking to experience that local feel. Let the kids play in the sand while you relax with the sea breeze blowing your cares away. This no-fuss spot is the perfect compliment to your beach day, whether you’re local or visiting. From conch fritters to the “best wings on the beach,” there’s something for everyone on their breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus. More info: www.beachcomberstaugustine.com