top of page

Discover the Beaches of St. Johns County: St. Augustine Beach, Crescent Beach, and Vilano Beach

St. Augustine Beach looking at the water
Beaches of St. Johns County-St. Augustine, Crescent, and Vilano

St. Johns County, Florida, is home to some of the most beautiful and diverse beaches on the East Coast. From the bustling shores of St. Augustine Beach to the serene expanses of Crescent Beach and the unique charm of Vilano Beach, there is something for everyone. This guide will help you navigate these stunning beaches, understand the available facilities, and be aware of any potential hazards.

St. Augustine Beach

St. Augustine Beach is a vibrant and family-friendly destination, offering a wide range of amenities including picnic areas, volleyball courts, and playgrounds. It is located just a few miles from downtown St. Augustine.

Main Entrances:

  • A Street: Popular for its easy access and proximity to restaurants and shops. Suitable for all vehicle types.

  • Ocean Trace Road: Leads to a quieter section of the beach, perfect for those looking to avoid the crowds.


  • Restrooms

  • Showers

  • Picnic areas

  • Lifeguards (seasonal)

Crescent Beach

Crescent Beach is known for its serene environment and wide, sandy shores. It’s an excellent spot for a relaxing day by the ocean, away from the hustle and bustle.

Main Entrances:

  • Crescent Beach Park: Ample parking, restrooms, and picnic pavilions.

  • Matanzas Inlet: Offers stunning views and a less crowded experience, popular for fishing and shelling.


  • Restrooms

  • Showers

  • Picnic tables

  • Lifeguards (seasonal)

Vilano Beach

Vilano Beach, just north of St. Augustine, offers a unique blend of natural beauty and modern amenities. Its distinctive coquina sand and the nearby Intracoastal Waterway make it a special spot for visitors.

Main Entrances:

  • Vilano Beach Main Access: Near Vilano Beach Town Center, with plenty of parking and close to restaurants and shops.

  • North Beach Park: A more secluded entrance with ample parking and less crowding.


  • Restrooms

  • Showers

  • Picnic areas

  • Lifeguards (seasonal)

Beach Driving in St. Johns County

There are approximately 12 miles of St. Johns County beaches that allow for vehicular access. Driving on the beach is permitted year-round; however, during the months of May through October, access is limited to the hours of 8:00 AM to 7:30 PM. From March through September, vehicles are required to purchase a beach driving pass. Daily and annual beach passes can be purchased from toll attendants at the access ramps.

Vehicle Access Locations:

  • Vilano Beach (temporarily closed)

  • Porpoise Point

  • A Street

  • Ocean Trace Road

  • Dondanville Road

  • Matanzas Avenue

  • Mary Street

  • Crescent Beach (Cubbedge Road)

  • Fort Matanzas (exit only ramp)

Beach Driving Hazards:

  • Weather and Tides: Vehicular access is dependent on beach conditions. Weather, sand, or tides may cause ramps to temporarily close or limit access to 4-wheel drive vehicles.

  • Daily Driving Conditions: Posted on SJC Beaches' Facebook and X accounts, through the SJC Connect App, and on the Beach Driving Updates webpage.

Beachfront Parks with Off-Beach Parking

Mickler’s Landing Beachfront Park

  • Location: South end of Ponte Vedra Beach on Highway A1A.

  • Facilities: Restrooms, showers, dressing rooms, and pavilion.

  • Park Hours: Dawn to dusk.

Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve

  • Location: Between Ponte Vedra Beach and St. Augustine.

  • Facilities: Educational opportunities, dune walkover, hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails.

South Ponte Vedra Beach Recreation Area

  • Location: South of the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve on Highway A1A.

  • Facilities: Limited off-beach parking, picnic tables, stairs to beach.

  • Park Hours: Dawn to dusk.

Hazards to Be Aware Of

  • Rip Currents: Always heed local warnings about rip currents, which can be strong in this area.

  • 4-Wheel Drive: Some beach areas, particularly near Matanzas Inlet and certain sections of Crescent Beach, may require a 4-wheel drive vehicle due to soft sand. Pay attention to signage and local advice.

  • Tides: Be mindful of the tides as they can change rapidly. It’s easy to get stranded if you’re not careful.

  • Local Wildlife: Respect roped-off areas protecting nesting sea turtles and shorebirds.

Exploring the beaches of St. Johns County, including St. Augustine Beach, Crescent Beach, and Vilano Beach, offers a wonderful opportunity to experience the natural beauty and vibrant culture of this historic area. By following these tips and being mindful of potential hazards, you can enjoy a safe and memorable beach day.

For more detailed information and updates about St. Johns County's beaches, visit the official St. Johns County Beach Services website.


Whether you are looking to buy or sell, First Coast Realty would welcome the opportunity to earn your business. Feel free to reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter and we would be happy to assist you in getting the ball rolling. Or, to talk to a qualified, experienced agent call/text today 904-494-8408 or email


bottom of page