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Sailing and Exploring Jekyll Island Georgia

Last November, we visited Jekyll Island while spending 6 months in the GA area around St. Simons Island. Serenity, Roseate Spoonbills, Spanish Moss covered trees, historic homes, bike paths, beaches, and marshes were ours for a few days. Watch our video or keep reading to experience it with us!

Jekyll Island, Georgia - Sailing, Cruising, Exploring with PILAR | EP53

To visit Jekyll Island while sailing, enter St. Simons Inlet and turn to the west along the intercoastal waterway. We anchored in St. Simon’s Bay (designated anchorage) – not too close to the marsh as it gets very shallow.

We had a great view of the Brunswick Bridge, were greeted by stingrays on our arrival, and enjoyed beautiful sunsets and sunrises while at anchor.

Jekyll Island is famous for it’s seemingly endless bike paths that wind around the island. Plan an entire day for this sightseeing adventure.

Our favorite spots were the Historic District, Driftwood Beach, and the Clam Creek fishing pier.

The Jekyll Island Bike Trail totaled about 15 miles and was plenty wide for bidirectional riders.

There are also a few shortcuts that weave through the maritime forest in the center of the island if you need a shorter route, but most of the inner island is unsettled.

Plan time for lunch break, beach breaks, and plenty of scenic views.

See the trail map on All Trails.

We set off one morning for a dinghy ride down East River – long but very beautiful.

Of course Stephen scoped out his fishing spots for future trout catches, and we enjoyed watching the area’s pink and white Roseate Spoonbill. This looked like a juvenile with it’s lighter color.

Roseate Spoonbills forage in the shallows of fresh, brackish, and marine waters including bays, mangroves, forested swamps, and wetlands. They nest and roost in trees and shrubs along the water’s edge.

We stopped at Jekyll Island Marina where we docked and rented bikes for $20. They also have a restaurant and pool – and some boats that have seen their better days.

You can alternatively dock at the Wharf restaurant, but be sure to check as time and rates vary depending on the season.

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Jekyll Island National Historic Landmark District

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Our first stop was the National Historic Landmark District, which features the Jekyll Island Club Resort. A little history… In 1733, General James Oglethorpe founded the colony of Georgia and named Jekyll Island in honor of Sir Joseph Jekyll, his friend and financier from England. In 1736, English, Spanish and Creek Indians met there for negotiations. In 1747, the states first brewery opened. In 1792, Christophe DuBignon purchased part of the island. In 1879, Christophe’s descendant and his brother-in-law started a private hunting club for the nation’s wealthiest individuals. View the rest of the story and images.

Worth a stop for the history, grandeur and manicured grounds as well as dining and golf. Don’t miss the pathways viewing the numerous “cottages” of the wealthy 1% of the late 1800s, who wintered there with their families. Victorian structures are surrounded by landscaped lawns and gardens accented by fountains and reflecting pools.

Driftwood Beach is a popular natural area right on the point of the inlet, where natural forces create breathtaking photo opps with coastal trees, sand, water and sun.

Don’t miss the Jekyll Island fishing pier down Clam Creek Road, a long winding path of live oaks dripping with Spanish moss, with a base of palmettos.

Many Foggy mornings awaited us, mostly burning off by mid morning.

More info: Jekyll Island

Stephen caught trout by our anchorage and I cooked Trout Almandine. It is a great boat recipe as it only requires fresh fish and pantry staples to prepare. Get the recipe here.

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Photo credit: Goldenisles.com
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Photo credit: Goldenisles.com
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Photo Credit: Goldenisles.com