While on a recent trip to St. Augustine, Telephoto Florida discovered a quaint little State Park by name of Washington Oaks State Gardens. This park consists of approximately 400 acres of coastal scenery including a hammock area of towering live oaks, hickory and magnolia trees. The region is bounded on one side by the tidal marshes of the Matanzas River and one of the largest outcroppings of coquina rock on the Atlantic Ocean on the other.
The park was originally owned and named Washington Oaks in 1936, by Louise and Owen Young (an attorney and one time chairman of the board of General Electric Corporation and RCA) who had a winter retirement home on the property. The gardens they created on site consist of native and exotic species, like azaleas, camellias, bird of paradise, a rose garden and citrus groves. Shortly before her death in 1965, Mrs. Young gave most of Washington Oaks to the State of Florida.
On one side of A1A lies the hammock and gardens and on the other lies a picturesque beach full of weather and water worn rocks. Walking the garden reminds one of old Florida and sites like Bok Sanctuary. Some of the buildings on site even replicate the way life was for the Young’s.
This park is definitely one to bring mom to.
Washington Oaks State Gardens 6400 North Oceanshore Blvd. Palm Coast, Florida 32173 (904) 446-6780 View Map
Admission is $5.00 per vehicle (up to eight people) and single-occupant vehicles, motorcycles are $4.00 and pedestrians, bicyclists, extra passengers are $2.00 each. Reserved pavilions are $40.00 per day. For more information or to reserve a pavilion call 386-446-6780.
Hours are 8am- Sundown Daily.
From downtown St. Augustine - take Scenic Byway A1A south across the Bridge of Lions for 19.8 miles. Park entrance will be on the right.