While visiting St. Augustine, Florida, a stop at the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park is necessary. It’s based on the site where Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon claimed to have found a spring with waters that made the drinker younger. Whether this proved to be true remains to be seen, but it is still one of Florida’s more popular attractions.
Upon entering the park, visitors get the chance to drink from the original spring that Ponce de Leon claims provided drinkers with the ability to stay young forever. I didn’t feel any younger upon drinking, but the water tasted like what you would find out of the tap at the beach. You can buy it pre-bottled at the gift shop to bring to the skeptics back home.
In addition to the fountain itself, the site predates the Spanish settlement in the 1500s. Native American tribes, specifically the Timucuas, made their home here and are even buried here. The park has built a replica of what the village would have been like at that time. You may spot the local scientists, who still run archaeological digs on this site regularly.
The park is also home to 30 peafowls who roam the property. Actors in period costumes demonstrate shipbuilding and other handiworks while painting classes of the scenic coastline. You can even get married at the Fountain of Youth!
If You Go
The Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park is located at 11 Magnolia Avenue, St. Augustine, Florida 32084. Tickets are $18 for adults, $17 for seniors, $10 for children ages 6-12 and free for those under 5. You can buy either directly through the ticket office when you arrive or online. The park is open daily from 9 am to 6 pm.
My trip to the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park was arranged by the St. Augustine and Ponte Vedra Beach Convention and Visitor’s Bureau but all opinions are my own.