Mandarin is home to some of the most picturesque views in Jacksonville. Views are particularly striking off Mandarin Point, a peninsula that juts out into St. Johns River. The charming riverfront area near San Jose Boulevard called Old Mandarin is replete with moss-covered oak trees and stately homes with boat access to the St. Johns River.
Harriet Beecher Stowe spent her winters in Mandarin, adding much to the history of the area. She started a Freedman's Bureau for former slaves on property on Mandarin Road, across from her cottage. In the 1870s the facility burned down, but Stowe was able to raise enough money to have it rebuilt. Her book Palmetto Leaves is a series of cameos describing Mandarin and the time she spent there. In 1998, a limited edition of Palmetto Leaves was reprinted by the Mandarin Community Club and the Mandarin law firm Ford, Jeter and Bowlus.