Off the beaten path and plenty of room to plop down a beach chair, these sandy getaways will keep you coming back year after year.
Vacations are meant to be relaxing, but how can you relax when the rest of the world has followed you to the beach? Overcrowded coastlines are a no-go when it comes to choosing your vacation, but with these top Georgia beaches, locals and visitors can enjoy the lively atmosphere of the sand and surf without the worry of finding a place to park your beach chair.
1. Tybee Island Beaches
Located outside of Savannah, Tybee Island is home to five miles of beaches you won’t want to miss. Beyond swimming and visiting the local Sugar Shack for snacks, Tybee Island offers guests a chance to interact with marine life at the local marine center. The other option for this is dolphin tours. Tybee Island beaches also offer something you won’t spot at just any beach: nesting sea turtles, which visit annually during the summer.
2. Driftwood Beach
Driftwood Beach is aptly named for its trees and the driftwood scattered across its shore. A beautiful beach site located on the north shores of Jekyll Island, Driftwood offers its guests a quiet environment to relax while exploring the breathtaking scenery within walking distance of the island’s resorts and campgrounds.
3. Cumberland Island
As Georgia’s largest barrier island, Cumberland Island is the perfect balance of a public beach with a private feel. Large portions of the island are uninhabited, creating a natural environment that can be toured with National Park Service rangers. Since the island is only accessible by boat, Cumberland is the perfect place to feel at home in nature and escape the rest of the world.
4. Little St. Simons
Want to stay on a beach that allows only 32 overnight guests? Little St. Simons is your ideal choice, for its seven miles of beaches are accessible only by boat. Known for its conservation of the nearby natural habitats and its sustainable gardens, you’ll find paradise at Little St. Simons’ beach.
5. East Beach
East Beach stretches across the oceanside of St. Simons Island, with multiple access points. Looking for nearby village shops? Head to Pier Village, especially when the tide is low. Rather find a more secluded section for you to soak up some sun? Use the access point at Massengale Park, and enjoy all the serenity this beach has to offer.
6. Glory Beach
Glory Beach is an ideal vacation spot accessible near the Jekyll Island Soccer Complex. This beach may look familiar to you, as it is where portions of the 1989 movie Glory were filmed. Walk the boardwalk built by the producers and follow in the footsteps of Mathew Broderick, Morgan Freeman, Denzel Washington…and enjoy the secret shoreline, of course.
7. St. Andrews Beach
St. Andrews beach and picnic area can be found on the south side of Jekyll Island and is in walking distance to Jekyll Point, the southern tip of the island. As the lesser known beach, St. Andrews offers visitors stretches of uncrowded shore for relaxing by the ocean, birding, and frequent dolphin sightings.
8. Sapelo Island
Home to the Nanny Goat Beach, the most extensive natural beach dunes on the Georgia coast, Sapelo Island beaches are ideal for any vacation. Both uncrowded and undeveloped, Sapelo Island can only be reached by ferry, which you can ride while viewing the lighthouse and shorelines in the distance. Escape reality and explore the island with its rich history, crumbling ruins, and overall homey vibe as a beach refuge from overcrowded beaches.