With a coastline stretching approximately 110 miles, 15 barrier islands, four of which are becoming popular resort destinations accessible by car, and the others being unspoiled natural getaways accessible only by boat, Georgia can quickly earn the title of ” best beach” to explore history, enjoy the fantastic nightlife, contemplate the beauty of nature and relax alone. The barrier islands off the Georgian coast are considered one of the state’s most beautiful vacation destinations. During the Ice Age, they formed from rising sea levels and melting glaciers.
With stunning sea side beaches, unique restaurants, fantastic hotels and attractions, these islands are loved and frequented by many and make for the perfect summer and winter vacation. Here’s a guide to visiting the most unique islands off the Georgian coast.
This Georgia island was a winter retreat for America’s wealthiest families
The Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, and Pulitzers used to visit Jekyll Island in Georgia during the winter to enjoy long vacations. Today, the island serves as a playground for sea lovers and offers visitors various activities, including beach recreation and environmental education.
- Where to stay: The Jekyll Island Club Resort is the perfect place to learn about the island’s history and play a game of croquet. Lovers of Oceanside accommodations can stay at the Hampton Inn & Suites.
Jekyll Island in Georgia is home to a hospital for sick and injured turtles, the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. The latter is also a place to observe endangered creatures up close. Affordable kayak and canoe rentals and fantastic children’s programs are available at the Tidelands Nature Center. Another unique destination on Jekyll Island is Driftwood Beach, home to weathered trees kept gray by the salty air. Summer Waves Water Park is a good destination for theme park fun on the island.
- Where to eat: There are plenty of places to eat tasty food on Jekyll Island in Georgia. At the Marina, people can enjoy a delicious meal at The Wharf while listening to live music and taking in the beauty of the mesmerizing views of the marshes. For more affordable options with family-friendly services, visitors to Jekyll Island are encouraged to try Driftwood Bistro.
This Georgia island has more permanent residents than any other in the state
St Simon’s Islands in Georgia attracts many visitors who come to enjoy its various restaurants, shops and unique activities available. The island is home to more permanent residents than any other barrier island in Georgia.
- Where to stay: When visiting St Simons Island in Georgia, people have the opportunity to stay in several attractive places. For example, those looking to stay in a hotel room or condo on the beach can head to the historic The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort. The latter also offers access to golf and tennis. For a more authentic experience and a place frequented by locals, people can head to the pub at the boutique Village Inn and Pub. The latter is located downtown near the Pier Village area.
History buffs visit St Simons Island to witness one of Georgia’s best junior ranger programs at the iconic Fort Frederica National Monument. The island is also home to the World War II Home Front Museum. This is where people can learn the story of coastal Georgia’s extraordinary contribution to victory in World War II. Besides being a destination for history buffs, Saint-Simon Island also has something for nature lovers: swamp kayaking tours with Southeast Adventure Outfitters.
- Where to eat: Anyone visiting St Simons Island Georgia is recommended to try Southern Soul BBQ. For tasty fried shrimp, people should visit Crabdaddy’s on the island. Those wanting more upscale dining should consider St Simons Island’s unique seafood restaurant, Halyards.
Families, couples or groups: everyone can enjoy what this island has to offer in Georgia
For decades a multi-generational destination, everyone thought Sea Island Georgia was for them, including families, couples, groups, and more.
- Where to stay: The AAA Five-Diamond Resort and Forbes Five-Star, Cloister at Sea Island, is a wonderful place to stay on this unique Georgian island. The resort offers large rooms, suites, and private cottages, with rooms starting at 700 square feet. On the other hand, a typical five-star hotel offers rooms ranging from 400 to 450 square feet.
There are plenty of activities to do at Sea Island. However, staying at The Cloister is among the best while taking advantage of the resort’s massive Beach Club, complete with a soda fountain, three pools, a private beach, and a playground. All these elements are located a few hundred meters away.
People who want to enjoy the best island hopping in Georgia should also visit Tybee Island, Cumberland Island, Little Raccoon Key, St Catherine’s Island, etc.
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