Along the Georgia coast, less than five hours from Charlotte, lies a stretch of land like that is like no other. Here you will find centuries-old oak trees draped with Spanish moss that line the streets and meet miles of sun-drenched beaches. Vast marshlands, winding rivers, and plentiful natural and outdoor diversions beckon visitors who return for generations. The destination is reminiscent of a bygone era as historic landmarks can be found around every bend.
Southern hospitality and unforgettable charm make the Golden Isles of Georgia the idyllic destination for the beachcomber, the golfer, the history buff, families, and couples alike.
Pristine stretches of marshes, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape and create the appearance of a continuous stretch of land reaching out to the barrier islands. Each of the five unique locations offers a memorable setting, a variety of activities, and an inherent tranquility.
This is perhaps the best-kept secret on the East Coast; This is the Golden Isles of Georgia.
Comprised of four natural barrier islands, St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Little St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island, each of the Golden Isles has its own charisma and personality for you to discover, and all are complemented by the mainland port city of Brunswick.
Recently recognized as the #1 “World’s Best Islands in the Continental U.S.” by Travel + Leisure, Georgia’s Golden Isles has a glowing list of accolades. On top of winning other coveted awards such as Lonely Planet’s “Top Ten Regions to Visit” and Family Travel’s “Best U.S. Islands for Families,” the Golden Isles has also won some unique accolades including Travel Channel’s “10 Best Dolphin Sighting Destinations” and MSN’s “Spring Break Destinations to Escape the Crowds.”
As the largest barrier island in the Golden Isles, St. Simons Island is surrounded by vast marshlands and rivers teeming with birds, fish, and marine life. These expansive marsh grasses and ancient oak trees create the perfect backdrop for challenging golf courses, friendly inns and luxurious resorts, and a variety of charming shops and restaurants. St. Simons Island welcomes all to its breathtaking vistas and relaxing vacation experience like no other.
As the only resort in the world to receive four Forbes Five-Star awards for twelve consecutive years, Sea Island is where luxury meets timeless tradition. Since 1928, Sea Island has been known as an exceptional destination for those who appreciate gracious service and heartfelt hospitality. The resort boasts Georgia’s only Forbes Five-Star restaurant, the Georgian Room, championship golf and Golf Performance Center, five miles of private beach, and much more. For decades, families have flocked to the private island for its abundance of activities, discovery, and wonder for all ages.
Accessible only by boat, Little St. Simons Island is a privately-owned island that can accommodate up to 32 guests at a time. So close by, yet worlds away, Little St. Simons Island transports its visitors to another world with its 11,000 undeveloped acres and seven miles of private beaches. Explore untouched wilderness with knowledgeable naturalists; enjoy garden-to-table cuisine; and end each relaxing day with a spectacular view from the Lodge.
To the south lies Jekyll Island, once the site of a millionaires’ winter playground. Jekyll’s rich history is still alive and well and is the quintessential juxtaposition of old and new. Today, this unique state park is home to ten miles of beaches, more than twenty miles of bike paths, a National Historic Landmark District, the Georgia Sea Turtle Center and coastal dining options to suit any palate. Jekyll Island is perfect for welcoming families with a variety of shops, coastal activities, and places to stay.
Venture into the historic port city of Brunswick to discover history as rich as the seafood. The centuries-old town features iconic Victorian style homes and architecture. Many locally owned boutiques, distinguished galleries and up-and-coming restaurants line the main street ensconced with pocket parks and squares. With shrimp boats heading out from the docks daily, there is always plenty of fresh, local seafood – and don’t miss the area’s namesake dish, Brunswick stew!
The distinct heritage of gracious living is nowhere more abundant than in the Golden Isles. Comfortable luxury has long been the hallmark. Choose from some of the world’s most renowned resort hotels or take things a bit simpler at a beachside condo, private vacation rental, or even a rustic campsite. Every lifestyle and budget range can be accommodated. And no matter where you stay, you will become, at least for a while, a true local.
Throughout Georgia’s Golden Isles, every season shines with activities and new experiences: food festivals and wine events, historic celebrations, a PGA TOUR golf tournament, art and antique shows, beloved holiday traditions, music and live performances, and so much more. Regardless of which month you choose to visit the Golden Isles, there is guaranteed to be an exciting event or festival to add to your enjoyment.
The Golden Isles is also heralded as a destination where the game of golf meets genuine Southern hospitality in a seaside setting with a rich and storied history. The area’s beauty and world-class golf courses, facilities, and instructors have earned the Golden Isles its reputation as a golfer’s paradise. The area’s 189 holes of golf provide challenges for both the novice amateur and accomplished professional. Not only do the Golden Isles lend a rich golf experience, but they also come alive as nature’s playground, with acres of undeveloped land, marshes and rivers – along with the vast expanse of ocean – begging to be explored and enjoyed.
Few areas are graced with the abundance and variety of dining options found in the Golden Isles. From charming coastal cafes to world-class restaurants, fresh, local seafood to authentic Italian, the Golden Isles has something for everyone – and it all comes with generous helpings of courtesy and genuine southern hospitality. No matter how long your visit, you can sample the fare at a different restaurant every meal and never exhaust the culinary possibilities that await you.
It’s no secret that Georgia’s Golden Isles is something special. Discover the untouched marshes and maritime forests, bask in the opulence of five-star amenities and dining, and savor the experiences and memories you create all along the way. Your visit is sure to be an extraordinary one – and it’s guaranteed that you’ll want to return again and again.