There’s something altogether peaceful about dining on the water. With a soundtrack of crashing waves or the gentle flow of the river, waterfront dining has its own special allure. And since St. Augustine is home to several bodies of water, we’ve got plenty of options for culinary experiences on the water. These waterfront restaurants in St. Augustine will treat you to incredible food, delicious drinks, and unbeatable views of the local landscape. They’re dining destinations all on their own. From casual cuisine just steps from the water to upscale dining on the river, there’s no shortage of waterfront dining in St. Augustine.
173 Shipyard Way
Right on the banks of the San Sebastian River, this new culinary experience is already making a name for itself. The new waterfront restaurant encompasses 6,000 square feet of interior space and 8,000 square feet of outdoor dining space on a patio surrounded by fire pits and docking space for up to 85 boats. Their menu is focused on locally-sourced, seasonally-fresh ingredients for creative dishes like Miso-Painted Striped Bass, Seafood Truffle Pasta, or Pork Ossobuco.
69 Lewis Boulevard
Located on Oyster Creek, Hurricane Patty’s invites seafarers navigating from the waterways and local landlubbers alike. You can relax on the deck with a craft cocktail, partake of the Bloody Mary bar on the weekends, or grab a shrimp or low country boil to share. If you’re not a sharer (we get it), order a burger or wings, sip a bowl of chowder, or sample the fresh seafood.
Cap’s on the Water
4325 Myrtle Street
With a sprawling deck and a open dining room, this waterfront restaurant is a local favorite. Situated mere feet from the Tolomato River, you can step out onto the comfortable dock or stick your toes in the water while you wait for a table or in between courses. They specialize in coastal cuisine infused with a few Southern and Mediterranean flavors – in dishes like Southern Gumbo and Gator Tail or Vanilla Grouper and a Crab Cake Dinner.
160 Nix Boatyard Road
Nestled in between magnolias and oaks, Creekside Dinery sits on the banks of Gonzales Creek. Situated beside one of St. Augustine’s oldest boatyards, the marsh-adjacent restaurant specializes in plank cooking – baking fish, chicken and steak on an oak plank, sealing in the juices and imparting a subtle wood flavor to the meat. They also serve up all manner of shrimp and fish, scallops and oysters and crab, chicken and steak and ribs.
612 Euclid Avenue
A fixture on the Tolomato River, Aunt Kate’s is a waterfront restaurant that’s continuing a 100-year tradition of serving fine seafood. You can tie your boat up at their floating dock (or come by car, if that’s more your style) and dine on the outside decks under the fire-scarred trees. It’s the perfect place to take in a St. Augustine sunset while your address your appetite – with meals like Shrimp & Grits, Low Country Boil, Baby Back Ribs, or Shellfish Fra Diavlo.
57 Comares Avenue
A huge outdoor deck with elevated Jamaican-style huts that overlook the water? A dining room with huge windows that offer unobstructed views of Salt Run? We’re on our way. This Caribbean-style St. Augustine staple offers all the fresh seafood essentials – including (but certainly not limited to) fried shrimp, conch fritters, peel-and-eat shrimp, crab cakes, shrimp & grits, scallops, snow crab legs, and lots of preparations of locally-caught fresh catch. Whew.
2 A Street
This is one spot where you’ll want to load up the kids and pack your swimming trunks. Directly next to where A Street dissolves into shimmering sand, Beachcomber welcomes you into a laid back atmosphere that’s always hopping. Kids can relax in the sand play pit (directly beneath Beachcomber’s very own sand dune) while you sit back with a tropical cocktail or a beer. Their casual cuisine features plenty of perfectly-prepared seafood favorites as well as creative burgers and mouthwatering sandwiches.
Beaches at Vilano
254 Vilano Road
This laid-back American grill is a veritable oasis. On the river side of Vilano Beach, Beaches at Vilano has a spectacular view of the water and the Vilano Bridge. It’s also a great place to enjoy a St. Augustine sunset. You can try seafood in the raw – like steamed Snow Crab legs, peel-and-eat shrimp, and steamed clams – opt for a delicious sandwich or wrap, or chow down on jambalaya, shrimp & grits, or fresh catch.
299 Dondanville Road
You don’t need the ocean or a river to be captivated by a waterfront view; Saltwater Cowboys proves that with a culinary experience nestled into the marsh. A bit of a local legend, Saltwater Cowboys is the oldest restaurant in St. Augustine and a must-visit for those searching for good food, good company, and a peaceful atmosphere. Sit outside on the deck to take in shrimp, crab cakes, catfish, alligator tail, frog legs, and fresh catch.
118 Avenida Menendez
Located in a building that dates back to 1790, OC White’s fits perfectly into the history of St. Augustine. You can take a seat on the patio, surrounded by lush greenery and just across the street from the calm waters of the bayfront. It’s got the perfect vantage point to observe the boats in the marina and the hustle and bustle of downtown’s side streets. And on top of all that, you can enjoy a menu of classic seafoods and steaks (or a little surf n’ turf, if that’s what you’re looking for).
252 Yacht Club Drive
Located right at the docks of Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor, Kingfish Grill can give you waterfront views outside on the deck or inside the dining room. You’ll be able to watch the boats in the harbor while you listen to live music, sip on a cocktail, and check out a selection of all the seafood favorites (like crab cakes and shrimp, mussels and fresh fish). But the one thing you can’t miss out on is Chef Austin’s incredible sushi. Fresh, delicious, and expertly-prepared, the sushi selection is extensive but you can’t go wrong.
4100 Coastal Highway
While dining on the patio at The Reef, you’re just steps from the Atlantic Ocean. And large windows all around give even inside guests a spectacular view of the sand and sea. To complement their oceanfront vista, The Reef’s menu features mostly seafood staples like Snow Crab legs, Herb-Rubbed Tuna, Jumbo Scallops, and King Salmon. There are also steaks, lamb, and duck as well as pasta and jambalaya to please the less nautical palate.
Featured image by Kate Gardiner