Outdoor Things to do on St. Simons, Jekyll Island and Brunswick, GA
Looking for Outdoor Things to Do on St. Simons and Jekyll Island?
We have made a list of the best places to enjoy while visiting our beautiful Golden Isles.
Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast, beach goer or just need to breathe some fresh air, we have the best places to go in the St. Simons Island, Jekyll Island and the Golden Isles. Because our weather is great 9 months our of the year locals and tourists flock to our beaches, pools, bike paths, campgrounds and golf courses all year long.
No trip to the Golden Isles would be complete without a trip to any one of our beautiful beaches. Families, couples and nature photographers use the natural sand dunes and driftwood for the backdrop for lasting memories to be cherished forever. (Speaking of Sand Dunes, please do not climb on them-it’s against the law). We have some great local photographers listed that can schedule a photo shoot while visiting our lovely area. Early morning and late afternoon are the best time as the warm sunlight makes for great lighting-and no squinting. Many nature photographers love the quiet dark areas of Jekyll for nighttime milky way photographs. So let’s get started. ••• Disclaimer*** Please check before visiting any of these locations for Covid restrictions*****
St. Simons Island, Ga
On St. Simons Island, sun-seekers can access the beach through several beach entrances, including locations at Massengale Park, the Old Coast Guard Station and Gould’s Inlet in addition to the Pier/Village area. Lifeguards will be on duty at the Massengale Beach access and the Coast Guard Beach access. For more information, please call 912-279-2836. Again, check with the county to see what the Covid restrictions might be.
If you are looking for a relaxing, quiet beach trip, then maybe head over to Jekyll Island. Some parts of the St. Simons Island can get really congested, especially during peak tourist season. Traffic at the East Beach Coast Guard station can be packed and a parking place very hard to find. We suggest go early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid traffic jams. There are very nice restrooms and showers at this location and very easy to walk to. Massengale Beach has a wonderful shaded picnic area, playground, good parking and a restroom. So if you want to get out of the sun and heat for a bit, this is a great location. If all you want to do is dip your toes in the water or check out what folks are catching, then head to the St. Simons Pier area. This is probably not the best location for beach going, the waters around here are not safe for swimming. And at high-tide there is no beach. The views and proximity to local restaurants and shopping make it a great location to wander around. If you want to take the kids to the pool, the county has a great swimming pool with an area for little ones. It’s right next to the St. Simons Island Lighthouse. They is a snack stand and putt-putt golf here as well. *Again, call before you go to make sure of Covid restrictions. See the Neptune Fun Zone under the POOLS heading for their details.
Jekyll Island, GA
If you are serious about spending the day at the beach, then Jekyll Island is the best place for you. On Jekyll Island, visitors can enjoy the state park’s breathtaking nature while soaking in the sun on the island’s beaches. Jekyll Island Authority has done a great job of providing ample parking and restrooms all along the beaches. The sand is white and there are miles of beach to walk, ride bikes on or set up for the day. Most of the areas have picnic tables and grills for the ultimate cookout at the beach. Great Dunes Park: this beach is located north of the Jekyll Island Convention Center and Beachview Village on Beach View Drive. It is the biggest beach on the island with tons of parking and space for grilling. Having a family reunion or wedding? The pavilion can be rented out for any occasion. Glory Beach: The beach made its film debut in the Civil War movie, “Glory,” and it can be found at the end of the walk down the Glory Beach Boardwalk. It’s also a great spot for nature enthusiasts looking to see migratory birds. Parking is located at the Jekyll Island Soccer Complex. It’s a bit of a walk, so if you are breaking out beach chairs, tents and such, you are gonna have a hike. There are picnic tables and covered areas for cookouts as well. St. Andrews Beach: The beach is located at the southern end of the island. It’s an ideal spot for a family picnic, and it’s the only westward-facing beach. Because it’s on the marsh side of the island, the waters here can be a bit murky and not many waves. The driftwood and views of the sunset are breathtaking from this location. Restrooms and picnic tables are available. Lots of shaded parking and a great place for little ones who like to climb. Probably the most famous of the beaches on Jekyll is Driftwood Beach: This unique area is famous for its gnarled trees that are scattered across the beach. A popular wedding and photo shoot destination, Driftwood Beach is nonetheless an often quiet, secluded spot away from some of the more crowded beaches in the Golden Isles. If you are a Walking Dead fan, Oceanside community was filled here at Driftwood beach. **It is against the law to remove driftwood** Here you will have a great view of St. Simons Sound and west of here is the fishing pier, restrooms and picnic area. For all information about Jekyll Island, head over to the Jekyll Island Authority website.
If beach-combing is not your thing, there are also a number of public pools in the area. An “Ultimate Pass” available for individual and families can be purchased for season-long access to all three Glynn County pools. All active-duty U.S. Military personnel, as well as their spouses and children, can receive a 50 percent discount on all entry fees. Military ID will be required.
• Neptune Fun Zone: located at 550 Beachview Drive on St. Simons Island, Neptune Fun Zone offers a pool with water park-like features, as well a putt-putt golf course and a playground. For more information on group and season passes, please call 912-279-2836.
• Summer Waves Water Park: located on Jekyll Island, Summer Waves Water Park offers a number of fun-filled amenities, including a lazy river, water slides a wave pool and a kids’ zone. Season passes are available for individuals and families. For more information about Summer Waves visit the Jekyll Island Authority Website.
St. Simons Island
St. Simons Island offers more than 30 miles of bike trails. Bike rentals can be purchased from several local businesses, including Island Carts, Barry’s Beach Service, Monkeywrench Bikes, Pedego Electric Bikes and Two Brothers Bike Shop. Check out them out under the tourism section of theislanddirectory.com
Jekyll Island has 20 miles of trails that wind through scenic maritime forests and along the edges of the island. Bikes can be rented at a number of locations, including Jekyll Island Mini Golf, located at the corner of Beachview Drive and Shell Road, Beachside Bike Rentals in front of Days Inn and at the Jekyll Island Campground. The great thing about our hard packed sandy beaches is that it’s easy to ride bikes on them. Make sure your check with your bike rental location before you do, as some do not allow their equipment on the sand.
Those wishing to spend the night with nature can set up camp at several sites around the Golden Isles. Camping is a favorite with Snow Birds that come down for the winter. Milder climates make it easy to enjoy all the nature that surrounds the Golden Isles. Life just seems better and food tastes better when cooked over an open flame. With over 1,200 aces of camping in the Golden Isles, there is plenty of peace and quiet to go around.
Jekyll Island Campground: the campsite takes up 18 wooded acres within walking distance to Clam Creek and Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island. It offers 179 total campsites, with 167 full hook-up sites and 12 primitive tent sites, RV spots, tent camping sites, a camp store,laundry facilities and a bird sanctuary. They are pet friendly. There is also a Climate-controlled special event pavilion with seating for up to 164 guests making this a great location for reunions or group camping. Because of our warmer winters, this is a favorite spot for Snow Birds. Located on the very North End of Jekyll Island, the campground is quiet and relaxing. Find out more information about camping on Jekyll Island Here. To Book a camping spot. Click Here
Blythe Island Regional Park is a 1,100 acre public park developed and managed by Glynn County with the help of Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources. Located just 5 minutes from Exit 29 on I-95 between Savannah and Jacksonville, the park is surrounded by attractions such as St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Jekyll Island, wonderful restaurants, great shopping, and award winning golf courses.
In addition to camping Blythe Island Regional Park offers picnic pavilions, a playground, Lake Cindee (a fresh water lake) for swimming and fishing, and a marina and dock to access the South Brunswick River.
Phone: (912) 279.2812
6616 Blythe Island Hwy.
Brunswick, GA 31523:
For a slower nature experience, consider taking a kayak out into one of the area’s many lakes, rivers, marshes and tidal creeks. Kayaks and paddle boards can be rented from Southeast Adventure Outfitters, Barry’s Beach Service and Ocean Motion Surf Co. on St. Simons Island and from Turtle Tides Paddle Boards and Kayaks on Jekyll Island.
Paddle your way to adventure! One of the most exciting excursions in the Golden Isles is getting out on the water. Whether you’re looking to chart your own course or enjoy a guided tour, a variety of idyllic kayaking locations dot the shores of the Golden Isles.
Before starting your adventure—even if you’re bringing your own kayak and plan on venturing out unguided—it is recommended that you first stop by one of our local outfitters for maps, tide charts, and advice to get the most out of your time on the water. Our tides rise pretty high and fast and you wouldn’t want to get stuck out in the marsh or on open water.
Best Places to Kayak in the Golden Isles
St. Simons Island
The Frederica River connects the Atlantic Ocean and the Intercoastal Waterway. A popular area for kayakers, Frederica River offers much to see. From the south, access via the Mackay River Boat Launch and head north to wind through the wetlands. Pass through the remnants of Fort Frederica, which stands as a mark about halfway to the base of the Buttermilk Sound and Altamaha River—for those who want to continue paddling north.
Marshes of Glynn
Drop-in at Sidney Lanier Park and travel north. Weave through the waterways or head to Marshes of Glynn Overlook Park to surround yourself with the beautiful scenery. On your journey, you may spot dolphins, sea turtles, and a variety of exotic birds that call these marshes home. After a day of paddling, grab a bite to eat at Marshside Grill before turning back. For a longer route, launch from the Mary Ross Waterfront Park on the opposite side of town and head south between Brunswick and Andrews Island—through the Oglethorpe Bay and to the East River—before crossing under the Sidney Lanier Bridge.
South Brunswick River
Head to Blythe Island Regional Park, where you’ll find a marina and dock offering direct access to the South Brunswick River. Spend some time fishing the waters as you paddle around. Worried about staying out too late? Paddle back to the Blythe Island Campground and spend the night—there you’ll find RV sites and group camping areas.
Jekyll River and Tidal Marsh
Head to 4-H Tidelands Nature Center, for a guided, educational tour around tidal creeks, which are home to herons, egrets, fiddler crabs, and more. For those who wish to go it alone, launch from the Nature Center and head south for a short paddle to Jekyll Point or north along the Jekyll Island Club coastline.
Variety of ways to explore golf in the Isles With more than 220 holes of golf available, there are a wide variety of courses to cater to every golf need from the casual player to the most hardcore players. The Isles has become a haven for PGA Tour players with about a dozen players on the PGA Tour making their homes here. Perhaps the biggest impact golf has on the community is the annual PGA Tour event that has quickly become an Isles tradition. See Our Local Events Page for More Details.To book a tee time.
Best Places to Play Golf in the Golden Isles
St. Simons Island/Sea Island
• King and Prince Golf Course
100 Tabbystone, St. Simons Island Semi-private 912-634-0255
Hours:7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Sea Palms Golf Course
515 N Windward Dr, St. Simons
Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Sea Island Golf Club
Retreat, Plantation & Seaside Courses
100 Kings Way, St. Simons Island
Private (888) 732-4752
Hours: 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Frederica Golf Club
100 Pikes Blu Dr, St. Simons Isl
• Heritage Oaks Golf Club
126 Clipper Bay Road, Brunswick
Hours: 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
• Brunswick Country Club
4041 Darien Highway, Brunswick
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
• Sanctuary Golf Club
2050 Sanctuary Wynd, Waverly
Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Jekyll Island Golf Club -Public
Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Pine Lakes Course
Great Dunes Course
322 Captain Wylly Road,
Jekyll Island 912-635-2368
Please call Jekyll Island Golf Club at 912.635.2368 to reserve tee time.