The Coastal Isles and the Okefenokee Feature

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Georgia's Coastal Isles Beaches

Remote and largely untouched, the beaches on Georgia's barrier islands sit at the confluence of rich salt marshes and the Atlantic Ocean. Nature-watching on foot or by canoe or kayak is the biggest draw, with dolphins, manatees, nesting sea turtles, more than 300 bird species, and much more found along these shores.

Of all the islands, only two—Jekyll and St. Simons—have undergone significant development. East Beach on St. Simons has the most facilities and is the place to go for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports, while Jekyll's beaches are both accessible and uncrowded. Driftwood Beach, at Jekyll's northern end, is arguably the most picturesque beach on the coast, and dolphins frolic off St. Andrews Beach, at the island's southern tip. Exploring the farther-flung beaches of Sapelo or Cumberland islands requires advance planning and a ferry ride, as both are protected parklands and access is limited. Beachcombing is especially good here.

Beach Camping

Experience the solitude and rich wildlife of Georgia's beaches by pitching a tent right on the shore. Cumberland Island has wonderful camping, with standard campgrounds as well as backcountry campsites that can be reached only by hiking trails 5½ to 10½ miles from the ferry dock. There are no stores on the island, so bring all necessary food and supplies. Camping costs $2 to $4 per night; reservations are recommended.

Georgia's Coastal Isles Best Beaches

Updated: 2013-09-09

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