Eastern Home & Travel May/June 2017 - Page 35

In our wanderings we passed a lone musician on one of the cross streets, plucking away at his guitar. Likewise, when we entered the Lightner Museum’s restaurant Alcazar, a guitarist sat in the corner strumming mellow tunes that gently fit with the dining environment. The museum contains artifacts from a century ago and was converted by a Chicago business man, Otto C. Lightner, from a hotel named Alcazar built by Henry Flagler in the 1888; the museum opened in 1948. We were there for lunch, and discovered many well-priced dishes on the menu, including Spanish flavors of a variety that would satisfy most any taste. Our tour ended at the Plaza de la Constitucion, the center of city life in St. Augustine since 1573. This is the oldest public park in the country, established by Spanish Royal Ordinances in the 16th century. The Government House on one side and the St. Augustine Cathedral on the other represent the very essence of the city. November through January, visitors enjoy the “Night of Lights,” when trees are filled with glowing lights. Nearby is the Fountain of Youth, once the quest of Ponce de León; the Villa Zorayda, a castle inspired by the Moors; the oldest wooden school house; Potter’s Wax Museum; and the Oldest Store Museum. You can also drive 5 miles north to the World Golf Hall of Fame, located in the World Golf Village. The museum contains golfing regalia, movies and information on the history of golf. While you can discern the Spanish influence on St. Augustine very easily, the timeline reveals that the English and the French had a hand in the development of city as well. The expressive nature of St. Augustine is a snapshot of this nation’s history. Even with modern influences, St. Augustine has not forgotten its past, and to experience that is both educational and entertaining. GEORGIA 95 Jacksonville FLORIDA * 95