Sometimes it rains in the Hammock.  Sometimes you may think it’s a bit too warm to stay outside.  Sometimes you want to do something different.  Saint Augustine just might have what you didn’t know you were looking for.

The Hammock is 20 minutes from Saint Augustine.  Everyone can and possibly already has seen what that oldest city has to offer and readily repeats the visit to favorite haunts, enjoying the pedestrian friendly walks within the Historic Center.  But, like I said, sometimes it rains and sometimes it’s just too hot to want to walk around or maybe you just want to slip in the side door to see Saint Augustine from another perspective.

Here are four, unknown to many, options that are on the perimeter of the Historic Center of Saint Augustine.  All are good for passing the time on the way to your favored destination or they might be your new favored destinations.  The following is how we spent our last rainy day.

Betty Griffin Thrift Shoppe

Here is your chance to browse, pick up some useful household items or donate to a worthy cause.  You will find it just off the A1A heading north with a left turn onto Pope Road.  From their website:

“The mission of the Betty Griffin Center is to offer protection and quality services for the victims of domestic violence and their minor children and/or victims of sexual assault and their families in St. Johns County, Florida through the operation of a shelter offering assistance, counseling and transitional support.

We also educate the community about services provided and raise awareness on the problems of domestic violence and sexual assault to break cycles of violence.”  Click here for more about The Betty Griffin Thrift Shoppe

As you walk in you will see the expected:



But if you keep walking around to the left…





You will come to our favorite haunt:  Books!  The people who donate must be our clones because there is always a selection that we leave with, usually between 4 and 8 at a time.  Of course we donate our own, so if those donors also buy books there, they might think we are pretty awesome, too.


The books are loosely categorized.  The last time I looked, they still had a copy of my favorite diet book (I kept the one that I bought there)  “Flat-Belly Diet”.  Lots of best sellers, biographies, history, cookbooks, children’s books and most are in like new condition.




Stocked up for the next rainy day or beach read we headed to King Street just west of US 1.  This Marine salvage store is like an Aladin’s cave.

Sailors Exchange Marine Store


A hefty selection of lines (ropes to those not in the know) and if you want to be one of the sailing cognoscenti you may want to read about Yachting Terminology.  Not that I am one of them, but I have to admit an aspiration to living on a sailboat in the Caribbean after having read An Embarrassment of Mangoes.  I go here to get my pretend fix.


Even if you are not boating aspirants, you might score like I did with 2 copies of this adorable children’s book written by 2 Flagler Beach authors, Heather Chalmers and Marybeth Jeitner.  Cover your eyes family babies, these are for you.

Thirsty work all of this browsing and shopping.  Time to head to Saint Augustine’s newest brewery located in historic Lincolnville, just a short walk outside of the downtown historic district.  Go to the back of the Lightner Museum and just keep walking until you see this aptly colored building with the name Dog Rose Brewing Co.

Dog Rose Brewing Company

Polished wood bar and taps, plenty of seating, brewing on the premises, good beer and even a wine selection.  Just don’t be surprised if they ask you which of 2 entertainers you prefer.  Just answer the question then ask where their restrooms are.


Now that you have had your brew and are starting to feel peckish (British spouse’s word meaning a little bit hungry) it’s time to circle back toward the Hammock, so jump back in your car and head out to the junction of US Hwy 1 and Hwy 206 for some tasty barbecue at Smokin’ D’s.  Just go and you’ll know why I told you to.

Smokin’ D’s


Hope you enjoy your day, we did.












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