Top budget travel picks: Harrisburg to Jacksonville

Top budget travel picks: Harrisburg to Jacksonville
Photo: iStock
By Hoodline - Published on January 29, 2019.

Full of sun and palm trees, Florida is always a popular travel destination. If you’re looking for an alternative to the steamy hustle of Miami or the theme park energy of Orlando, Jacksonville remains much more of a hidden gem.

The largest city by area in the U.S., Jacksonville enjoys wide-open spaces and operates the largest urban park system in the country. Centered on the St. Johns River, the city’s extensive waterways draw residents and visitors alike for a variety of watersports and leisure activities. With modest prices and room to grow, the Jacksonville area is attracting a burgeoning arts scene and hosts major music festivals and cultural events throughout the year.

Using travel site Skyscanner, we’ve sifted through the cheapest flights between Harrisburg and Jacksonville in the next few months, including some standout hotel options and highly reviewed local attractions.

(Hoodline offers data-driven analysis of local happenings and trends across cities. Links included in the articles may earn Hoodline a commission on clicks and transactions. Prices and availability are subject to change.)

Flight deals to Jacksonville

The cheapest flights between Harrisburg and Jacksonville are if you leave on Feb. 13 and return from Florida on Feb. 16. American Airlines currently has roundtrip, nonstop tickets for $238.

There are also deals to be had in April. If you fly out of Harrisburg on April 4 and return from Jacksonville on April 8, American Airlines can get you there and back for $258 roundtrip.

Top Jacksonville hotels

Regarding where to stay, here are two of Jacksonville’s top-rated hotels, according to Skyscanner, that we selected based on price, proximity to things to do and customer satisfaction.

The One Ocean Resort & Spa (1 Ocean Blvd.)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

If you're looking to splurge on top quality, there's The One Ocean Resort & Spa, which has rooms for $179/night.

"Location is great — right on the beach and within walking distance to numerous bars and restaurants," wrote reviewer Andrew. 

Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront (225 E. Coast Line Drive)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

A second option is the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront. The 4.6-star hotel has rooms for $139/night.

"We had an amazing river view from our comfortable room," wrote visitor Mary. "The staff was helpful and provided us with maps and easy-to-follow directions for both walking the downtown area and driving to the nearby beaches."

Local restaurant picks

Jacksonville has plenty of top-notch dining options. Here are a few of the most popular, according to Skyscanner.

Fantastic Fudge (218 Centre St.)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

Let's start with the essentials: dessert. For a popular option, check out Fantastic Fudge, which has an average of 4.8 stars out of 28 reviews on Skyscanner.

"This is a very popular downtown favorite," wrote visitor Tony. "It is very busy, so be patient."

Ruth's Chris Steak House (814 A1A North, Suite 103)

One of Jacksonville's most popular restaurants is Ruth's Chris Steak House, with five stars from 11 reviews.

"What’s not to love about Ruth’s Chris," wrote reviewer Peggy. "The steak is to die for and the lobster is the ultimate luxury."

Salt (4750 Amelia Island Parkway, Amelia Island)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

Also worth considering is Salt.

"Salt is Ritz-Carlton's five-diamond restaurant," wrote Anne. "It is a true culinary adventure. This is the place to celebrate life, love and the raw beauty of Amelia's coastline."

TacoLu (1712 Beach Blvd.)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

Finally, there's TacoLu.

"If I had only one restaurant to go to for the rest of my life, it would this place," wrote Alyssa. "I wish I was able to give more than five stars because that's how amazing this place is."

What to see and do in Jacksonville

The Jacksonville area is also full of sites to visit and explore. Here are some popular attractions to round out your trip, again from Skyscanner's listings.

Historic Fernandina (Fernandina Beach)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

First up is Historic Fernandina, home to antique shops, restaurants, art galleries and more. The Victorian seaport village is located on Amelia Island. 

"Learn about the history of the Victorian era of Fernandina from the comfort of a horse-drawn carriage ride or join a guided walking tour through the Amelia Island Museum," wrote visitor Peggy. "Then find the perfect gift at one of the many shops on Centre Street."

The Amelia Island Trail (Fernandina Beach)

Photo: Trip by Skyscanner

Finally, consider checking out The Amelia Island Trail.

"The Amelia Island Trail, on Florida's northeastern coast, runs from Peters Point Beachfront Park to Amelia Island State Park in the city of Fernandina Beach," wrote visitor Kay. "Much of the paved, tree-lined route parallels Highway A1A, a scenic byway, and the trail is part of the East Coast Greenway, a growing trail network stretching from Florida to Maine."