15 Best Beaches in Georgia
Planning your next trip to the beach? Luckily for you, the Peach State offers some of the best beaches in the U.S. Here's the 15 best beaches in Georgia for you to choose your next destination.
Georgia is home to several beaches that strike the perfect balance between exotic and classy, all of them ideal for the ideal family or romantic vacation.
Let’s take a look at the best Georgia islands, which host various coastal adventures, and then we’ll narrow our focus on the best Georgia beaches!
The Best Beaches in Georgia
1. Tybee Island Beach
Twenty miles south of downtown Savannah, Tybee Island juts out into the Atlantic Ocean as the easternmost tip of Georgia, and makes the #1 spot on our list of top beaches in Georgia.
Along Highway 80, you’ll find North Beach, Mid Beach, South Beach, and Back River Beach.
On Tybee Island, you’ll explore lighthouses, visit historic locations such as Fort Pulaski, and engage in water sports.
Make sure to include a visit to the Sugar Shack for hand-dipped ice cream, go dolphin sighting with Captain Mike or Captain Derek, and explore Little Tybee Island, a nature reserve with no direct access.
Be sure to ask tour guides how to access this hidden paradise.
And, of course, no trip to Tybee Island is complete without a visit to the Tybee Island Lighthouse - Georgia's oldest and tallest.
If you’ve never visited the Peach State before, this Savannah, Georgia Beach might be worth placing at the top of your list!
2. St. Simons Island
St. Simons Island kicks off our peek at the Golden Isles in Georgia, and hits #2 on our list of top beaches in Georgia.
St. Simons hosts four beaches: East Beach, Coast Guard Station Beach, Gould’s Inlet, and Massengale Park.
Across your four choices on St. Simons Island, you’ll never run out of options.
Go biking, bird watching, boating, fishing, camping, play golf, ride horses, walk trails, visit the spa, play tennis, or go kayaking.
3. Little St. Simons Island
Little St. Simons Island is a privately owned resort, accessible only from the Hampton River Marina by boat.
Little St. Simons Island is perfect for family reunions and group vacations.
Go fishing, shell collecting, exploring for wildlife, and canoeing.
Little St. Simons Island also offers tours across its seven miles.
The Lodge on Little St. Simons features six cottages to choose from, and should you decide to go bird watching, you’ll have the opportunity to see up to 330 different species!
4. Sea Island
The third member of Georgia’s Golden Isles on our list, Sea Island features the Cloister and a AAA Five-Diamond lodge, both with a spot on the Forbes Five-Star list.
The Cloister is the main attraction at Sea Island and hosts various activities, such as yachting, relaxing at the spa, tennis, and exquisite dining.
The Lodge at Sea Island has consistently received the Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond awards for nearly twenty years.
Here you can enjoy golf, bicycling, beautiful views, and classic southern hospitality.
5. Jekyll Island
The last of Georgia’s Golden Isles, Jekyll Island hides nothing and offers endless events every season, including its signature Turtle Crawl.
If you’re a food enthusiast, you may want to plan your trip around the Jekyll Island Shrimp and Grits Festival.
Two beaches of prominence on Jekyll Island are Driftwood Beach and Gould’s Inlet.
Known for its namesake, Driftwood Beach offers a unique opportunity for photographers to snap spectacular shots and is also a popular location for weddings.
If you like to swim, Driftwood Beach is a better option as well.
While not ideal for swimming, Gould’s Inlet is perfect for bird watchers, fishing, and ocean observers.
Where ever you go on Jekyll Island, make sure you have your camera ready.
6. Cumberland Island
Georgia’s largest barrier island, Cumberland Island provides an opportunity for campers who want to immerse themselves in nature. Cumberland Island makes #4 on our top list of Georgia beaches.
You’ll reach the island via ferry, and once there, you can rent a cart or bike to explore.
You can even make camping reservations here.
Cumberland Island also hosts tours, including the Lands and Legacies Tour.
Ranger-led activities include the Footsteps Tour, the Plum Orchard Tour, and the Dockside Program, which features various cultural and historical topics.
For those desiring tent camping, Sea Camp Beach Campground is a must visit.
Cumberland Island National Seashore
If hiking and wildlife is your thing, a visit to Cumberland Island National Seashore is a must.
Cumberland Island National Seashore is a U.S. National Park, and also encompasses 9,800 acres of the Cumberland Island Wilderness.
This beautiful area of the Cumberland Island coast is home to white sand beaches, sand dunes, plus inland marshes and freshwater lakes.
Accessible via ferry, this makes an excellent day trip.
7. Sapelo Island
Like the other Georgia islands on this list, Sapelo Island is accessible only by ferry and hosts a multitude of exciting adventures.
Witness the beauty of the ocean floor at Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary or take the Sapelo Island Sights Tour and Native American shell mounds, French estate ruins, Reynolds Mansion, and Nanny Goat Beach.
If you prefer beach camping, check out the public Sapelo Island Beach Campground at Cabretta.
8. Wassaw Island
Wassaw Island is home to the Wassaw National Wildlife Refuge, and makes #8 on our list of the best beaches in Georgia.
Here you can fish, surf, view wildlife, and learn about the environment.
Wassaw Island is also a popular destination for photographers and, during the specific season, hunters.
Notable sites include, of course, the coastal beach where you might find loggerhead sea turtles and piping plovers - just watch out for alligators.
You might also be interested in the maritime forests and salt marshes, both providing ample opportunity for photographers.
9. Nanny Goat Beach
As mentioned above, Nanny Goat Beach sits on Sapelo Island.
Marvel at stunning sunsets on white sands less than an hour away from Savannah.
Nanny Goat Beach is the perfect spot for a family day at the beach.
Here, you won’t be likely to find crowds. You might stumble upon an outside classroom of scientists.
The two-mile-long Nanny Goat Beach is great for strolling, building sandcastles, and shell hunting.
Bring your binoculars and keep an eye out for bald eagles, blue herons, and egrets.
Sixteen miles to the east sits Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary.
10. Glory Beach
Located on Jekyll Island, Glory Beach is accessible via a boardwalk built by the producers of Glory, a civil war drama filmed in 1989.
Here you’ll explore sand dunes along a vast beach.
Unfortunately, no pets are allowed, but this is simply a precaution taken to protect wildlife.
Be prepared for some beautiful sunsets, as Glory Beach has some of the best ones in Georgia.
11. St. Andrews Beach
St. Andrews Beach also sits on Jekyll Island.
Here you can watch birds, observe dolphins, and walk the Wanderer Memory Trail.
Swimming at St. Andrews Beach discouraged, but it’s still a fantastic opportunity for the family to explore an almost otherworldly atmosphere and learn about wildlife and the environment.
St. Andrews Beach also hosts a dedicated picnic area.
12. East Beach
Returning to St. Simons Island, East Beach sits beyond Massengale Park.
Tides have packed the sands here so incredibly hard that it’s ideal for biking.
Visitors can also enjoy fishing, shell hunting, and kiteboarding.
Pets are welcome at East Beach, so bring the whole family for a day of relaxation.
13. Coast Guard Station Beach
The most popular beach on St. Simons Island, Coast Guard Station Beach is home to the historical World War II Home Front Museum.
Alternatively, locals refer to this stretch as First Street Beach Access.
If you’re looking for a traditional beach day, this might be your top choice. Picnic areas, public restrooms, water hoses, and showers are all provided.
Concession stands are accessible only in summer.
14. Back River Beach
Completing our round trip back on Tybee Island, Back River Beach is considered the island’s secret beach where you can spot dolphins and avoid crowds.
If you pull up by boat, dock yourself at A.J.’s Dockside Restaurant, or visit other staples such as the Crab Shack, Coco’s Sunset Grille, and Bubba Gumbo’s.
For outdoor exploration, check out the Lazaretto Creek Marina and Marshland Inshore Fishing Adventures.
If you’d like to explore the waters, grab a kayak from Tybee Jet Ski and Watersports and hop in!
End the day with a magnificent sunset overlooking Tybee Creek.
15. North Beach
The last beach on our list, North Beach, can also be found on Tybee Island and is truly the all-in-one experience for the family.
Historical locations to explore include Fort Screven and Fort Pulaski, the Tybee Island Museum, and Cockspur Lighthouse.
Alternatively, go on on a shopping spree at Tybee Oaks and The Shoppes at 1207.
North Beach also sits on the Colonial Coastal Birding Trail, where you can view over 200 bird species.
Take a walk on McQueen’s Island Trail for Savannah River sites, or rent a bike from Tim’s Bike and Beach Gear for speedy travel.
Q: Are there Sharks Around Georgia Beaches?
A: Yes, small to medium-sized sharks are common, especially in summer.
Follow the proper safety precautions and ask locals and tour guides for more advanced advice about protecting yourself and your family.
Fortunately, shark attacks in Georgia are rare.
Q: How Big is the Coast of Georgia?
A; Georgia’s coast is about 110 miles long and includes 15 barrier islands.
Only four barrier islands are accessible via car: Tybee Island, Sea Island, St. Simons Island, and Jekyll Island.
For the rest, boat transportation awaits.
If you’re looking for the best beaches in Georgia, there is an ample selection from which places to choose.
Whether you’re looking for a lazy beach bum day or an educational experience, Georgia beaches offer something for everyone.
Even if you decide to throw a dart at the map and head where it lands, you can’t go wrong here.
Plus, thanks to all of the Georgia State Parks, there's something for everyone.
So get out there and explore the Georgia coast!