With summer just around the corner, there’s never been a better time to start preparing, planning, and maybe packing for your next trip to the beach, the unmistakable, ideal destination of summer. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to travel impeccably far in order to enjoy a beach trip in the continental United States, because thanks to this article from Southern Living detailing the best beaches in the state of Georgia, your next beach excursion is just a drive away! While many Americans think of Florida as one of the premiere beach-supplied states in the country, they often overlook Georgia beaches. While it only has 110 miles of shoreline in comparison to Florida’s 1,350 mi., what that figure doesn’t account for is the many patches of marshlands and barrier islands that are found throughout the Peach State.
Southern Living’s article primarily focuses on the four beautiful barrier islands that are nestled atop the Georgia coastline between Savannah, GA, and Jacksonville, FL: St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Jekyll Island, and Little St. Simons Island—as well as the mainland city of Historic Brunswick. These barrier islands offer visitors pristinely kept stretches of marshland that are accompanied by small islands, colloquially known as hammocks. This interspersing of marshland, islands, and beaches creates the effect of appearing as though there is a single, continuous stretch of land that reaches out to the barrier islands, making for a truly unforgettable, breathtaking scene.
In speaking about the beaches to be found on one of the four barrier islands, Golden Isles CVB, a nationally-recognized resort destination aiming to promote the Golden Isles listed above, the Golden Isles press describes them as being “loved by visitors, all of these barrier islands feature stunning beaches on the seaward side, alongside attractions, restaurants, hotels, and more. Each island has its own unique personality, from the laid-back Jekyll Islandto the luxurious Sea Island.”
One of the stand-out hits of Southern Living’s list is the inclusion of the St. Simons Island Beaches and their ability to transport you backward in time in which a pristine coastline was undisturbed and free for you to explore. What sets this beach apart from the others is that the development around the perimeter of the beach is still moderate, making it possible to still explore a lot of the sandy coastline and natural surroundings just as it was many years ago. Specifically, at the well-reviewed East Beach, the low tide regularly exposes the sand bars and tidal pools along the beach that give a postcard-adjacent aesthetic. The most popular beach among the St. Simons Island beaches is the East Beach, located at the Historic Coast Guard Station.
Outside of the Golden Isles barrier Islands is a beach that is often noted due to its “secretive” or “off-the-beaten-path” status. This is of course Tybee’s Back River Beach, which is hidden away at the end of Highway 80. This beach is often heralded for being a relaxing, quiet, and undisturbed beach that is perfect for families due to its shallow waters and gentle surf. This makes the beach perfect for kayaking, paddle boarding, and swimming. If you’re feeling up to it, use Tybee’s Back River Beach as a launching point to make your way out to Little Tybee Island, a completely undeveloped neighbor that’s located just across the river.
Generally, as long as you find yourself within the Golden Isles and their encompassing barrier islands, you’re sure to be rewarded with an assortment of activities and beach memories. Due to the temperate climate and scenic backdrops of the destination, there are ample opportunities to enjoy activities along the beachfront and adjacent beach towns during your stay. Put on your sandals and feel free to peruse the quaint beachside shopping boutiquesthat are sprinkled along the Georgia coastline, enjoy some unique and first-class dining experiences with some of the freshest seafood you’ve ever eaten, and even learn about the communities and cultures that came together to make these beaches what they are today by going on a historical tour of the area. No matter what you choose to do or which beach to experience in Georgia, you’re sure to have a great, memorable time.
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