Family Vacation Must-See: Ripley’s

If there is one thing famlies can agree on, it’s that Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museums are fun for all ages. The whole family will be amazed and entertained at the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in St. Augustine. We’ve visited several Ripley’s throughout the country and we love the one in St. Augustine the best, maybe because it’s the original!

Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum Review St Augustine
Photo credit: Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum Review St Augustine

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Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in St. Augustine is located in historic downtown St. Augustine.  It is housed in a historic castle that began as a home for William G. Warden in 1887 and that was purchased by Robert Ripley to become a hotel in 1941 and then Ripley’s first museum 1 year after his death.

You’ll find Ripley’s discoveries from around the world that were too good not to share!  The collection has grown throughout the years with things that will make you question whether or not you should believe what you are actually seeing! This is a must-see family attraction in Florida.  One of my favorite oddities is the statue and story of Crocodile Man, Bobby Blackburn.  Why he decided to wear dentures made out of actual crocodile teeth, I have no idea! Why?! How? Yes, they are sharp! It’s hard to believe some of the things you see at Ripley’s!  What I like is that there is plenty to make you wonder and plenty you can learn at the same time. In addition to the lively exhibits, there are actual photos of real-life people on the walls, video, and short descriptions of the odd things you are witnessing.

It’s educational for sure, but not a museum that can take too seriously – laughter and much chatter is happening throughout. It’s a seriously fun place for families to explore.

There are some seriously odd and scary things at Ripley’s in St. Augustine as well that honestly, I could go without knowing.  For instance, you’ll see real shrunken heads and learn how and why they did this…

Thankfully our customs in America aren’t like those in other parts of the world!  I just couldn’t handle it!

I don’t understand some of the customs or the desire to showcase things like your wealth by wearing a buffalo teeth necklace, but I love learning and seeing it!  Yes, if you have a real buffalo teeth necklace in some parts of Asia, it shows your wealth – the more tiers the better!

Many items symbolize their wealth and marriage status while others deliver those symbols like the finger chopper for when your spouse dies!  As if grief isn’t enough!There are so many interactive exhibits at Ripley’s! There is a fun digital exhibit that puts a New Guinea Yam Mask on you on the screen when you enter the room.  What a cool family picture! ha! My daughter tried her hand at being a contortionist and did pretty good on box #1!Some items are larger than life and other exhibits look like they are going to spring to life at any moment! Other exhibits will get your mind working. Can you read this? I can!Other exhibits are just plain fun!That’s why I believe that Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum in St. Augustine is a must-see attraction for families and visitors of all ages. It is a touristy destination but one that is full of wonder! Get tickets now!

Ripley’s Red Train Express

The best way to get an overview of St. Augustine, FL, and see the sights is Ripley’s Red Train Express! You’ll board right outside of Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum with boarding times throughout the day and early evening.

Photo courtesy of Red Train Express

The train takes you throughout the city, highlighting the most popular attractions, and historic sites. If this is your first or 20th time visiting St. Augustine, I highly recommend a scenic guided train tour of the city – no 2 trips are the same!  You’ll hear about the history, stories, and little-known facts that you can’t get anywhere else – all with a fun spin that only a Ripley’s tour could give you!

This is our 2nd tour on the Red Train Express and we’ve learned so much on both tours.  St. Augustine has to much to offer in form of entertainment for every type of person – for the historian, shopper, nature-lover, museum-lover, families, couples, etc. I highly recommend taking the train tour toward the beginning of your St. Augustine vacation to get the lay of the land so that you don’t miss anything!

Get tickets for your Ripley’s Red Train Express Tour here.

Check out all of our . We shared our vacation LIVE across social media using #AOMExploresHistoricFL

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Founder and Lead Blogger at Akron Ohio Moms
Cindy is the top Akron Blogger with her own take on awesome brands for families, where to vacation for families, a beat on local activities and family fun, a knack for getting moms to share , and a house that is always 2 weeks away from a complete remodel!
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