It stands to reason that when one leaves and returns to one's boat in Green Cove Springs, Florida, one departs and arrives via commercial aircraft at the nearest international airport in Jacksonville. If one chooses to stay in a mo-tel or ho-tel instead of aboard the boat, one's best accommodations are likewise in the Jacksonville/Orange Park metro area. From those considerations it follows that if one is in Jacksonville, one should take advantage of the usual tourist activities. Assuming one survives the traffic.
Let me start by pointing out that GB and I have driven all kinds of vehicles in all kinds of urban situations: (1) unending gridlock in Seattle, Washington, pop. 634,000; (2) rush hour in downtown Frankfurt, Germany, pop. 691,000; (3) lunchtime in Guadalajara, Mexico, pop. 4.5 million. We have been places, is what I'm saying. None of which prepared us for Jacksonville drivers. These people are the most aggressive, hostile, and reckless drivers anywhere on the planet. They start, by driving 10-15 mph above the posted speed limit, whether it is on a freeway or in a school zone; raining, snowing, dark, or all of the above. They tailgate with extreme prejudice. Gradual merging is unheard of - you floor it and cram your car into your desired lane of travel. Quelle surprise, Jacksonville drivers crash their cars. A lot. I have never been so nervous in traffic, anywhere else in my life.
Well, nobody crashed into us during our brief forays into Jacksonville, and when they're not on the road your average Jacksonvillain (heh- see what I did there?) is very nice. They offer a good selection of restaurants if you know where to look. They have theater, of which we partook an evening of Irish music. We drove north of downtown to see the ruins of the Kingsley Plantation by land; if you ever decide to visit an old plantation, I'd recommend the Kingsley - it is maintained by the National Park Service and is very well preserved and interpreted. (We later anchored in the river there on The Fox - separate post on Kingsley soon coming.)
We visited the Cummer Museum of Art, a former downtown Jacksonville riverfront home donated to the public in the 1960s by Ninah Cummer, who was quite the art collector and gardener. Here's a shot of part of her garden as it appears now; outdoors was the only place I was allowed to take photos. With the extensive art collections inside, and the serenity of the gardens and the sculptures outside and down to the river's edge, I think Mrs. Cummer would be happy to see how well cared for her former home is.