Jacksonville is a huge city full of countless spots for a photo op. Every area or side of town has its own special vibe to share. From Downtown to the Beaches; the North, South, East and West side, there’s plenty to see and capture.
It would be hard to narrow down the top ten spots in the whole of #Duval, but here are (in no particular order), 10 of the Best IG Spots in my neighborhood, Riverside, and the surrounding Urban Core area. Some you may know, others maybe not. But they’re all super chill in their own way and have tons of creativity to offer.
Spliff’s Gastropub – The Patio
15 Ocean St. Downtown Jacksonville, Florida 32202
Spliff’s has been around for roughly three years and if you’ve been hanging out at 1904 Music Hall (the adjoining venue with which Spliff’s shares The Patio) from the inception, you’ll remember the grungy, dirt floor, smoke filled, concrete back area behind the venue. In the early days of 1904, that was the chill spot of all chill spots for the local art community. It was gully and we loved it.
The patio has gotten quite the facelift in the past year or so and now it’s one of the dopest looking chill spots of all chill spots. Graffiti inspired murals cover nearly every bit of wall space available, and the building is urban-chic while slightly rustic without feeling overdone.
If you’re looking for a great spot for a unique shot – and some great food, drinks and entertainment too – The Patio behind Spliff’s is definitely a must visit.
#FrayLife Tip: Several other eateries and bars are within walking distance of Spliff’s. Be sure to check out Azucena Corner Deli, walk next door to 1904 Music Hall, or pop in to the Downtown Cigar Lounge – all along the same strip on Ocean St. Walk a little further and grab a drink at Dos Gatos or head in the other direction to hang out at The Jacksonville landing.
The Northbank Riverwalk – From RAM to The Landing
715 Riverside Ave. Jacksonville, Florida 32204
Every Saturday from 10am to 3pm underneath the Acosta Bridge, The Riverside Arts Market is bustling with activity. Vendors, producers, farmers and creators set up shop to peddle their goods and showcase their skills. A popular area for many community activities, this area is open to the public twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. It’s a beautiful area to walk, jog, bike, or just sit and enjoy an open and unobstructed view of the St. John’s River and the Jacksonville skyline.
#FrayLife Tip: If you start your photographic explorations at RAM, you can head South on Riverside Avenue toward Memorial Park in the heart of Riverside, passing the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens along the way – two great locations for a picture or two.
The Blue Bridge
If you live in Jacksonville and maintain any sort of active lifestyle, you may be familiar with the notion of “walking/running the bridges” and know that the Main Street Bridge is bound to be on your path. Walking this bridge allows for some amazing and unobstructed shots of the Jacksonville Landing nestled against the most famous view of the Jacksonville skyline, as well as a clear view of the expanse of the Southbank including Friendship Park.
#FrayLife Tip: Don’t feel like walking the bridge? Feel like experiencing the North and South banks from a different perspective? Take a river taxi! It runs continuously and loops every 30-35 minutes!
Okay, so maybe this one seems too broad, but there are just too many amazing places in downtown Jax to take great photos and make awesome memories. Check out our #JaxFray Mural Walk Guide for information on the exact location of some of the murals downtown. And if you want to wander and just don’t know where to begin, park on Laura street and head in literally any direction. (Or read on to our #5, #6 and #7 Best IG Spots in Jax for some suggestions.)
215 North Laura Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202
Chamblin’s Uptown is one of the dopest spots in downtown Jax and is by far the coolest and most eclectic bookstore in the city (that I know of, anyway). Chamblin’s is one of those places you can easily get lost in for hours. You can find everything from mainstream literature to the obscure and if they don’t have a particular book your looking for, they’ll order it for you! But most importantly, Chamblin’s LOOKS interesting. Local art is bursting from every corner and the books themselves provide an interesting backdrop for your imagery.
#FrayLife Tip: Chamblin’s boasts a small café offering a variety of basic and not so basic choices to eat and drink (vegan and vegetarian options included); flyers, posters, and handouts paper the front windows heralding cool events to come; there’s a covered patio with seating if you want your espresso and everything bagel with a side of fresh air. (P.S. – they have DVDs and music too!)
135 West Monroe Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202
This 1.54 acre public park is located in the heart of Downtown Jacksonville’s government center and is the oldest park in the city. It’s been steadily upgraded over the past few years and has quickly become a hub of constant activity. With bright vegetation, beautiful trees, large fountains, public art, a kids play area, and it’s own café with live music (operating under limited hours), it has plenty to keep you entertained and engaged.
#FrayLife Tip: Hemming Plaza is often the site of many a pop-up food truck village or art exhibition, and is the centerpiece of Jacksonville’s First Wednesday Downtown Art Walk.
The Main Library
303 North Laura Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202
When thinking of great spots for an IG photoshoot, the Jacksonville Public Library is probably not at the top of your list, but it really should be. This is a gorgeous location with floors upon floors of interesting nooks and open landings in which to snap a shot. The Jax Makerspace Gallery on the first floor regularly hosts art exhibits that are free and open to the public. The true gem of the location lies in its conference center and outdoor courtyard.
Sweet Pete’s Gourmet Candy Store
400 North Hogan Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202
Before you leave the downtown area take a few steps over to Hogan St. and find the white and blue, multi-storied building decorated with oversized flowers and candy on the front patio. This is Sweet Pete’s. If Willy Wonka opened a modern day candy store today it would probably look just like this – and it looks amazing. The very definition of “eye candy”, just visiting the store is a treat in and of itself. You’d be hard pressed to find a more unique photo-op locale in Jax.
CoRK Arts District
2689 Rosselle Street, Jacksonville, FL 32204
The CoRK Arts District (or simply CoRK) is over 80,000 square feet of private warehouse space dedicated to artist studios and galleries. While the interior spaces are not open to the public on a daily basis, access can be granted during publicly advertised events or by appointment. However, the exteriors have plenty of amazing art and visuals to enjoy and photograph.
Phoenix Arts District
2336 Liberty Street, Jacksonville, FL 32206
One of the newest districts and my personal favorite – Phoenix Arts District is a phenomenal addition to the art scene in Jacksonville. The future home of Jacksonville Florida School of the Arts (JFSOTA), the district resides in the Springfield area of the Urban Core, houses 100,000 square feet of warehouse space and will soon encompass 4.5 acres worth of workshops, studios, apartments, event space, galleries and more. Until then, it is still probably the coolest and most diverse outdoor art space in the city. It’s a must see and perfect for beefing up your IG feed.
#FrayLife Tip: While you’re in Springfield, check out the cool shops, eateries, and microbreweries that have cropped up on Main Street. We recommend Uptown Kitchen & Bar or Crispy’s for a bite, Hyperion Brewing Co. for a beer, and Social Grounds Coffee Company for a cup of Joe and a sweet treat (gluten free options available)!
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