While my dad and I were on our little surf trip in Jacksonville, we had one day with no waves. When Friday came and we had no waves we decided to jump in the car and road trip down to Juno Beach. When I was a kid we spent many vacations around the Juno and Jupiter beach areas, so we have a handful of favorite places there.
We started our road trip driving down the scenic A1A. We drove through Ponte Vedra, St. Augustine, and Flagler admiring the ocean all along the way. After probably an hour and half driving along the ocean we hopped on the highway to get to Juno a bit quicker. My dad and I spent our drive listening to and singing along to the RENT soundtrack, the original broadway cast of course.
Our first stop in Juno was Loggerhead Marinelife Center. This is one of my absolute favorite places in the world. So what is it you ask? It is a hospital and rehabilitation center for sea turtles. Some of the turtles are found sick or injured locally, and some have been transfered to the center from other parts of the country for care. Each turtle lives in their own tank and you can walk around and visit them all and learn about their ailments and what LMC is doing to help the turtles recover. Depending on when you go there are also classes and activities offered for children and if you are really lucky you may be able to watch the release of one of the turtles back to Mama Ocean.
After visiting with the turtles, Scott and I took a stroll down the beach collecting shells, and a bit of trash along the way. We spent a few hours walking, dipping our toes in the ocean, finding cool shells and parts of sand dollars and just sitting enjoying the view.
Once we had our fill of beach time, we did a little bit of surf shop souvenir shopping at Locals Surf Shop, another one of our go to stops in the area. Once we had our gear, it was time to head to one of my absolute favorite restaurants, Food Shack, for what I would consider my "birthday dinner." From seafood to pasta bowls, the menu is amazing. Also, be sure to check out their daily specials because they all sound mouthwatering. My go to favorite is the sweet potato crusted Mahi Mahi. It may top my list of all time favorite meals. Everything is super fresh and the portions are generous. After a good meal and glass of wine, it was time to hop back on the road back up to Jacksonville. It was such a lovely day well spent, and an awesome bonus to have been able to spend a day in one of my favorite places.