Jekyll Island State Park Is Celebrating Its 75th Anniversary This Year

Head to the Georgia coast for fun in the sun.

Jekyll Island
Photo: Thierry Hennet/Getty Images

Jekyll Island has long been a destination for travelers seeking quiet shores and relaxation on the Georgia coast. Jekyll, which is located on a barrier island and is the southernmost of Georgia's famed Golden Isles, has a long history. It's celebrating that history—and its 75th anniversary—this year with an invitation for visitors to come and experience the island's sandy shores and natural beauty for themselves.

The state of Georgia bought the island in 1947—75 years ago—and opened it up to the public, making Jekyll a state park and launching its journey toward becoming a beloved beach destination. Before it became a state-owned island, Jekyll was home to mansions and a clubhouse. As early as 1886, it was luring vacationers such as the Vanderbilts, Morgans, Carnegies, and Rockefellers to the Georgia coast for fun in the sun. Today's visitors can still book a luxurious stay at the Jekyll Island Club, where rounds of golf, leisurely bike rides along island paths, and games of croquet on the lawn are always on the itinerary.

Jekyll Island Club
Peter Frank Edwards

In addition to picturesque stays, Jekyll is home to some of the best beaches in the South. One of those is Driftwood Beach, which is located at the northern end of the island. Its sands are scattered with the toppled remnants of salt-blasted coastal trees and make for dramatic scenes when the sun sets.

Visitors love lounging on the seashore, but there are plenty of other outdoor experiences to be had across the island too. Fishing excursions, nature walks, and paddling tours are always favorite activities for travelers seeking adventure. To get to know the island and its inhabitants up close, you can also visit the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, a rehabilitation and education center, or bring your binoculars to the island's bird sanctuaries to glimpse migratory and seafaring species.

Book a stay at the Jekyll Island Club for all of the amenities of home, or roll into the Jekyll State Park Campground to get even closer to nature. No matter where you roam on Jekyll Island, there's an adventure to be had—it's been providing them for 75 years and counting. Visit to learn more, plan your visit, and help Jekyll Island State Park celebrate this year.

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