Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park

The Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park is a 15-acre, waterfront historical attraction, where visitors can learn about the first Spanish settlers who came here in the 1500s and the native Timucuans who were here to greet them. With a working archaeological dig on site, as well as several re-created Spanish and Timucuan buildings and dwellings, the park is bursting with history.

Located in the area first explored by Juan Ponce de Leon in 1513 and settled by Pedro Menendez de Aviles in 1565, historic St. Augustine is the oldest successful European settlement in the United States. Colonial America started right HERE, 55 years before the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock, and 42 years before Jamestown!


11 Magnolia Ave,
St. Augustine, FL 32084











9am – 6pm Daily
Last Ticket Sold at 5pm

Starting at approximately 2,400B.C., Native Americans, known today as the Timucua, began to occupy the region that spreads from present-day Central Florida to Southwest Georgia. The Timucua were a loosely-knit confederation of tribes that shared a common language, but were not bound politically as a common people with a common governing body or headman. They would trade with one another, but also go to war against each other.

In Timucuan villages, there were usually two kinds of houses. One type of home, referred to as a long house, was built using poles for the frame, bark for the walls, and branches from palmetto palm trees for the roof. The other type of home was round and covered with leaves of palm trees.

The Timucua were known to have more permanent villages than the other tribes. Each family had their own home but the cooking took place in the village and meals were held daily in a central location. They wore clothing made from deerskin and woven cloth. The men wore their hair long with a topknot. Both men and women were said to have decorated their skin with elaborate geometric designs. Like other indigenous people encountered by the Spanish, they were considerably taller than the Europeans.

Like other Native Americans, the people called Timucua were skilled hunters and fishermen. The men made tools for hunting and fishing; they used spears, clubs, bows and arrows, and blowguns, to kill their game. Game included bear, deer, wild turkey, and alligators. They smoked the meat over open fires, and women would clean and prepare the animal hides and use them for clothing. Timucua also caught fish, clams, and oysters. Farming was another important means of obtaining food for the Timucua. The main crops harvested were maize (corn), beans, squash, pumpkins, and melons. Women cooked the meals and gathered roots, nuts and wild berries to eat.

The Fountain of Youth offers a variety of shows and living history reenactments designed to entertain and educate visitors -- the Planetarium, the two-story Discovery Globe mapping the routes of the early explorers, the Timucuan Village, and the reconstructed First Mission of Nombre de Dios.

page information credit: Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, Visit St. Augustine, Florida Memory Project, Wikipedia, City of St. Augustine,  Florida Center for Instructional Technology
photos from the sources listed above, as well as publicly posted online sites with thanks to the contributors