Home » Best St Augustine Florida Museums To Visit
· ·

Best St Augustine Florida Museums To Visit

Step into the rich history of the oldest city in the United States, and enjoy a fun journey through the Best St Augustine Florida Museums.

From historic sites and private collections, past to present, this nation’s oldest city in Florida offers many museums that allow visitors to delve deep into its fascinating heritage. 

Depending on what time period you are most interested in, you can discover St. Augustine’s and the city’s history and diverse culture. Whether you’re drawn to the colonial era, intrigued by the stories of Spanish exploration including the history of Juan Ponce De Leon, or fascinated by modern art, St. Augustine’s has the perfect museum for you.

No time to read the whole article? Bookmark it but get your guide to everything St. Augustine here: St. Augustine Guide

Thank you for reading this post. Don't forget to subscribe! This way you never miss an update, travel deals, discounts and more!! Subscribe to the right------>

These are some of my most favorite museums to explore. I never get tired of exploring this ancient city and its museums including the children’s museum. 

You can also opt for a tour guide or take a self-guided tour. Experience firsthand the immersive exhibits that bring history to life, showcasing intriguing relics, vivid narratives, and interactive displays. 

As you immerse yourself in the museum scene, you’ll visit the Castillo de San Marcos, the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum, the Lightner Museum, and many other hidden gems. 

Every museum reveals a different chapter in St. Augustine’s history including Henry Morrison Flagler as he built the Augustine & Halifax River Railroad that later became the East Coast Railway.

Learn from the past while embracing the future as you embark on an unforgettable journey through St. Augustine’s vibrant museums. The museums below have been listed by category and include links for information.

Best St Augustine Florida Museums Historical

From Past To Present: A Journey Through St. Augustine’s Rich Museum Scene

St Augustine History Museum

St Augustine’s history comes to life in its historical museums. The city works hard to preserve its colonial past while offering visitors a glimpse into the lives of early settlers such as Henry Flagler, and Franklin W Smith and the struggles they faced. 

One of the must-visit historical museums is the St. Augustine History Museum. This museum provides a unique opportunity to be transported back in time as you explore the exhibits that chronicle the city’s founding and growth. 

From the first Spanish explorers such as Ponce de Leon to the British occupation, the museum provides a comprehensive overview of St. Augustine’s history. Get information and availability here: St. Augustine History Museum

Oldest House Museum Complex

Another notable historical museum is the Oldest House Museum Complex. This historic house museum has been meticulously restored and takes you on a journey through St. Augustine’s colonial period. 

Get your guide to everything St. Augustine here: St. Augustine Guide

As you explore the various rooms and historical site, you will learn about the daily lives of the people who once called this place home. This museum is operated by the St Augustine Historical Society. 

The complex also features an extensive garden and is located across from the National Guard located on St. Francis Street. Get information and availability here:

Spanish Military Hospital Museum

The Spanish Military Hospital Museum provides a history of Spanish Colonial Medicine practices. It is said the medical practices of the Spanish, were at least 400 years ahead of its time.​

Enjoy daily tours and watch surgical demonstrations as surgeons perform “surgery” on a lucky volunteer. This museum is located on the oldest street in the continental USA and an interesting place to visit.

Get information and availability here: Spanish Military Hospital Museum

Colonial Quarter

A must-visit and one of the best museums in the Colonial Quarter. This is a  living history museum that recreates the lives of those who lived in St. Augustine during the 16th and 17th centuries. 

As you explore the authentic buildings including a historic home over 270 years old. You can climb the watch tower or enjoy the exhibits where you will be guided by costumed interpreters and see demonstrations of traditional crafts like blacksmithing and loading a musket. 

The Colonial Quarter offers a hands-on approach to history, allowing you to step back in time and truly understand what life was like in St. Augustine’s early days.

Located in downtown St Augustine near the Fort.  Get information and availability here: Colonial Quarter

St Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum

The St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum is perfect for family fun. This museum offers hands-on exhibits where kids can participate in the Junior Archeologist program

Enjoy learning about underwater archaeology and sifting through sand for artifacts as you learn about the history of the lighthouse. The museum also offers a scavenger hunt, where children can search for hidden clues and solve puzzles as they explore the exhibits.

Get information and availability for this family-friendly museum here: St Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum

African American History

For those interested in African-American history, the Lincolnville Museum and Cultural Center is a must-visit. Located in the historic Lincolnville neighborhood, this museum showcases the contributions and struggles of African Americans in St. Augustine.

Get your guide to everything St. Augustine here: St. Augustine Guide

Explore the exhibits that chronicle the civil rights movement, learn about local legends, and gain a deeper understanding of the African-American experience in the city. Get information and availability here: Museums of History

Best St Augustine Florida Museums Art Museums

St. Augustine also has a vibrant art scene that you can explore in the art museums. From contemporary works to classic masterpieces, these museums offer a diverse range of artistic expressions. 

St. Augustine Art Association

One of the most renowned art museums in the city is the St. Augustine Art Association. Founded in 1924, this museum not only showcases the works of local and regional artists it also offers classes. 

Explore the ever-changing exhibitions from fine arts to the history of Spanish settlers. Also, discover the talent that thrives in St. Augustine’s artistic community. Get information and availability here: St. Augustine Art Association

Crisp-Ellert Art Museum

If modern and contemporary art is more your cup of tea, head to the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum. This museum is located right on the Flagler College campus and features rotating exhibits that challenge traditional notions of art. 

You will be inspired as you browse the many thought-provoking installations, different exhibits, and art pieces. Get information and availability here: Crisp-Ellert Art Museum

Lightner Museum

I started to place this one with the St Augustine museums in the historical section but changed my mind and placed it with the art museums. This museum is located in the former Alcazar Hotel and offers a blend of art and history.

Browse an extensive collection of decorative arts from the 19th century, and be amazed by the craftsmanship of the pieces on display, including delicate porcelain, dazzling glasswork, and ornate furniture.

The Lightner Museum is a testament to the beauty and artistry of a bygone era. A must-visit. Get information and availability here: Lightner Museum

Best St Augustine Florida Museums Unique And Specialized Museums

And there is so much more! Beyond its historical and art museums, St. Augustine is home to a variety of unique and specialized museums that cater to different interests.

St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum

Ahoy matey. Love everything pirates and Captain Jack Sparrow? The museum for you is the St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum. 

Enter the world of swashbuckling pirates and explore exhibits filled with pirate artifacts, interactive displays, and tales of adventure on the high seas.

This museum is fun for everyone and a great place to take kids. Get information and availability here: St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum

Ripley’s Believe It or Not! 

If you’re a fan of all things odd and peculiar, Ripley’s Believe It or Not provides a unique experience and is a must-visit. This quirky museum showcases a collection of bizarre artifacts and oddities from around the world. 

You will see shrunken heads, a tree that is a tiny house, and unusual artwork. Get ready to have your perception of reality challenged as you wander through the halls of this eccentric museum.

If you have little ones, be careful letting them walk throug the path to the statue of David. Get information and availability here: Ripley’s Believe It or Not! 

St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park

From the first time I took my daughter to this farm through today, she continues to make sure she visits every year. She loves it that much.

Get your guide to everything St. Augustine here: St. Augustine Guide

Enjoy a glimpse into the natural wonders of St. Augustine, head to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park. This unique museum combines conservation efforts with educational exhibits, allowing visitors to learn about and interact with a wide variety of reptiles and birds. 

You will enjoy the giant alligators, and a crocodile and watch exotic birds in flight. There is even a zip line over the gators for an adrenaline-pumping adventure. Get information and availability here: St. Augustine Alligator Farm

Best St Augustine Florida Museums Other Popular Museums

Potter’s Wax Museum

This museum of wax figures is located in the oldest drugstore in historic St. Augustine. There are so many historic structures in this area making it easy to visit several at a time. 

This wax museum is the oldest wax museum in America. See wax historical figures such as Buffalo Bill, Martin Luther King, Ladybird Johnson, and more. Get information and availability here: Potter Wax Museum

Oldest Wooden School House

Also in the historic district, you will find the Oldest Wooden School House. This stop is in a building that was built in the 1700s.  

From their website: The Department of the Interior in Washington, DC certified that the historic building known as “Old School House” was selected by the Advisory Committee of the Historic American Buildings Survey as possessing exceptional historic or architectural interest and as being worthy of most careful preservation for the benefit of future generations.  

Get information and availability here: Historic District Museums

Castillo de San Marcos

St. Augustine’s popularity as a tourist destination is shown by the number of museums. One of the most visited museums in the city is the Castillo de San Marcos. 

This fort, which was built in the late 17th century, stands as a testament to the city’s Spanish heritage. Explore the massive stone walls, walk along the gun deck, and learn about the fort’s role in defending St. Augustine throughout history. 

The Castillo de San Marcos is definitely a must-see attraction for anyone interested in the city’s military past. Get information and availability here: Castillo de San Marcos Fort

Villa Zorayda Museum

For a taste of Gilded Age opulence, visit the Villa Zorayda Museum. This stunning architectural gem was inspired by the Alhambra Palace in Spain and houses a collection of art and antiques from around the world. 

Take a guided tour and marvel at the intricate details of the building, including the “Sacred Cat Rug,” which is said to be over 2,400 years old. Get information and availability here: Historic District Museums

Best St Augustine Florida Museums Interactive And Family-friendly Museums

The St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum, mentioned earlier, is a favorite among families. The interactive exhibits allow kids to dress up as pirates, navigate a ship, and search for hidden treasure.

Get your guide to everything St. Augustine here: St. Augustine Guide

It’s an immersive adventure that sparks the imagination and ensures a fun-filled day for the whole family but there is even more.  Get information and availability here: St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum

St. Augustine Wild Reserve

For a unique and educational experience, visit the St. Augustine Wild Reserve. This nonprofit rescue facility is home to a variety of exotic animals, including lions, tigers, and bears. 

Take a guided tour with one of the park rangers and learn about the rescue efforts and conservation work done at the reserve.

It’s an opportunity for children to connect with wildlife and gain a deeper understanding of the importance of protecting these magnificent creatures. Get information and availability here: St. Augustine Wild Reserve

Ximenez Fatio House Museum

While St. Augustine is known for its history, popular attractions, and beautiful beaches, the city also hides a few lesser-known museums that offer a more intimate and off-the-beaten-path experience.

One such hidden gem is the Ximenez-Fatio House Museum.  This museum is tucked away on Aviles Stree and is a restored boarding house that provides a glimpse into the lives of 19th-century travelers.

Explore the guest rooms furnished with period pieces, learn about the lives of the women who ran the boarding house, and appreciate the tranquility of the lush courtyard. Get information and availability here: Get information and availability here: Historic District Museums

Tips for visiting museums in St. Augustine

When visiting St. Augustine’s museums, it’s essential to plan ahead to make the most of your experience. Here are a few tips to ensure a smooth visit:

1. Check the museum’s website for updated hours and ticketing information.

2. Consider purchasing tickets online in advance to avoid long queues. Get additional information here: 

3. Wear comfortable shoes, as some museums require a fair amount of walking.

4. Bring a water bottle and stay hydrated, especially during the hot summer months.

5. Take your time to fully explore each exhibit and read the informational plaques.

6. Engage with the museum staff, who can provide valuable insights and answer any questions you may have.

7. Capture memories by taking photos, but be mindful of any photography restrictions.

8. Support the museums by purchasing souvenirs or making a donation.

From historical museums that chronicle the city’s colonial era to art museums that celebrate its vibrant artistic community, St. Augustine offers a diverse range of experiences.

Whether you’re exploring popular attractions or uncovering hidden gems, each museum provides a unique perspective on the city’s history and culture. 

Immerse yourself in the stories that shaped St. Augustine, and let this remarkable city leave you with memories you’ll have forever. The links below will help you plan a fun St. Augustine Vacation:

best hotels st. augustine

Best St Augustine Hotels

Disclosure: I earn a commission if you make a purchase through my links at no additional cost to you! I would never recommend anything I don’t personally use, and the income goes to keeping this site updated and free for everyone!

Upcoming Trip?

I like to use Booking for booking not only my hotels, but my tickets and rental cars as well. Makes life so much easier with only having to log into one location for my information.

Be sure to grab my travel tips to save you time and money. You’ll also be entered into the weekly drawings.

Register here: Get 100 Travel Tips EVERY traveler should know PLUS entered into the weekly drawing.

About Denise

Denise Sanger lives a life split between her love for fitness and her passion for travel particularly to the BEACH.  Denise also has a love of marketing and lives in beautiful Suwannee County, Florida. You can find out more about Denise here: About Denise

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *