From the captivating landscape of Driftwood Beach to the oak trees dripping with Spanish moss, Jekyll Island exemplifies Southern hospitality. Amid the beauty of nature, dozens of shops and restaurants, ten miles of coastline and the amazing historic district, the island offers a variety of vacation rentals suited to the culture and history of the area. Island guests can fish from either of two docks as well as chartered fishing boats. To help you relax and start working on your vacation itinerary, here is a list of the top 10 Jekyll Island vacation rental locations.
1. Jekyll Island
Jekyll Island is a small vacation oasis with big fun that invites you to escape your humdrum routine. The broad range of activities includes golf, biking, horseback riding, and an 11-acre water park. At the north end of the island, Driftwood Beach offers a tranquil setting for walking, jogging, or and taking photographs. Beautiful driftwood and trees create a stunning landscape. Golden Isles Carriage and Trail at Three Oaks Farm offers horse-drawn carriage tours of the island’s historic district and trail rides on the beach. You can even take the kids to the farm’s petting zoo to pet and feed the animals.
Brunswick gives you access to all of the regular watersport activities, including fishing and swimming. A neat way to surprise the kids is to take them on a dolphin-watching tour. Lady Jane’s Shrimp & Dolphin Cruise takes guests on a 90-minute narrated tour for sightseeing through the Marshes of Glynn, visiting the shrimp boats at the docks and looking for dolphins. If you want to try something different, visit the Lover’s Oak Tree, located near the intersection of Albany and Prince Streets. Local legend holds that Native American braves and maidens met under the sprawling branches of this 900-year-old tree, believed to date back to the 12th century. Lovers meeting to kiss under the tree is how it got its name.
3. Saint Simons Island
Saint Simons Island is the largest of the barrier islands in Georgia’s “Golden Isles.” Picture yourself kicking back on pristine beaches, exploring salt marshes, and visiting historic landmarks. You can ride bikes on the hard-packed sand of the beach, go kiteboarding, look for seashells, and any adventures that you choose. At the southern tip of the island stands the Saint Simons Lighthouse Museum. The lighthouse and keeper’s residence, built in 1872, is 104 feet tall. An eight-foot wide column encases the spiral cast iron staircase. If you want to know more about the history of the Saint Simons and surrounding areas, Saint Simons colonial Island Trolley Tours operates a narrated tour of the island.
4. Wymberly-On-The-Marsh, Saint Simons Island
When you stay in Wymberly-On-The-Marsh on Saint Simons Island, you walk where the early English colonists walked in the mid-17th century. Since the settlers established Christ Church Parish at Frederica in 1736, worship has remained uninterrupted. The church stands among tall oak trees and the grounds include a cemetery. You can visit the Fort Frederica National Monument and explore the site. The museum displays artifacts that archeologists found at the site of the fort. When your family looks for beach fun, you can take them kitesurfing, swimming, or boogie boarding.
5. Sea Island
Your stay on Sea Island offers vacation adventures for the entire family. Tykes tennis offers your kids the opportunity to learn the basics of the game while teaching them how to focus on their movements. While the kids swing their tennis rackets, you can work on your golf swing at Sea Island Golf, which includes three 18-hole courses. The Seaside course features breathtaking views of the ocean, dunes, tidal creeks, and salt marshes. On another day, you can take the salt marsh nature tour to look at oyster beds, birds, and live shrimp.
Feel your stress melt away in Broadfield where southern cuisine, great seafood, salt marshes, and tranquil historic plantations make lovely vacation memories. Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation recalls the history of rice cultivation in Georgia from the early 1800s until 1913. The museum includes a model of the plantation during its productive years and some of the family’s silver. The guided tour introduces visitors to family heirlooms in the home, including furniture from the 18th and 19th centuries. There’s also a ghost tour of the plantation and the house by lantern in which your guide regales you with accounts of recent ghostly experiences.
7. Dock Junction
You can stay in Dock Junction near the Marshes of Glynn, celebrated by Sidney Lanier in his 1878 poem of the same name. The salt marshes produce abundant harvests of blue crabs, oysters, and shrimp. When visiting the marshes, you can look for deer, egrets, and other wildlife as you follow walking trails or participate in guided kayak tours. When your family is ready for more active adventures, Blythe Island Regional Park features a lake with a swimming beach, playground, volleyball courts, and walking trails. The park also features a dock and boat ramp with access to the South Brunswick River as well as boat and kayak rentals.
8. Hickory Bluff
Staying in Hickory Bluff on the banks of the Little Satilla River puts you in an ideal spot for excellent opportunities to indulge in kayaking, paddleboarding, and freshwater fishing. If you want to do saltwater fishing, Georgia Sport Fishing Charters offer inshore and offshore charters year round with the added bonus of gorgeous barrier island vistas in the process. Hickory Bluff Club and Marina offers a launch and marina for boat owners. They sell fishing tackle and bait, and offer to help your charter a boat for fishing if you need a guide.
9. St. Marys
If you want to find a quiet little place to hideout, St. Marys gives you the privacy to do just that. Imagine taking the ferry to a tranquil, uninhabited beach for leisurely strolls, private swimming, and searching for seashells. Since the ferry to Cumberland Island National Seashore carries passengers only, visitors must walk or ride bicycles to get around the island. You can rent bikes from the ferry deckhands at the park concession. The ferry transports personal bikes for $10 each when space permits. For family activities closer to your vacation rental, the St. Marys Aquatic Center water park offers slides, a pool, and other attractions.
Situated at the mouth of the Altamaha River and nestled against the Altamaha Wildlife Management Area, Darien gives you access to freshwater fishing and kayaking as well as historical landmarks and museums. You can visit the Fort King George Museum and the historic fort site at the southeastern edge of the city. Fort King George, which Colonel John Barnwell built in 1721 as England’s southernmost outpost in North America. Another popular landmark is the Old Jail Art Center & Museum. The McIntosh Art Association Gallery occupies the first floor, and the museum is located on the second floor.