A Weekend of Golden Isles History
If you only have a long weekend for a quick vacation, and you want to explore some Golden Isles history, this is the perfect trip idea for you! Learn more about history on the coast of Georgia at these unique stops!
Begin in the north near I-95 (exit 42), at Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation, an authentic Georgia coast rice plantation. Tour the home of Ophelia Dent, decorated with many of her family heirlooms and furniture from the 18th and 19th centuries.
Stop for lunch in Pier Village on St. Simons Island, and then tour the famous St. Simons Island Lighthouse and keeper's dwellings. Climb the 129 steps to the top for amazing, 360 degree views of the surrounding areas. If you have time, visit some more St. Simons Island historic sights like the Bloody Marsh Battle Site or Avenue of the Oaks.
Finish day one with a tour of the Maritime Center (included in the lighthouse entrance fee) and a stroll along East Beach at sunset. Find the perfect place to grab a bite to eat before turning in for the day.
Begin day two with breakfast on St. Simons Island before visiting Fort Frederica National Monument, the site where Fort Frederica's troops defeated the Spanish, ensuring Georgia's future as a British colony. Take a tour of the grounds and watch a historical video to get the most out of this stop.
Afterward, travel a short distance down Frederica Road for a walk beneath the very oaks John and Charles Wesley preached, before they returned to England to help found the Methodist Church. While you're at Christ Church, spend some time walking around the gorgeous grounds of the Historic Christ Church Cemetery. Don't forget your camera for this stop!
Grab some lunch nearby before your next historic stop!
Complete your second day of history by touring the Arthur J. Moore Methodist Museum, and explore the grounds of Epworth By The Sea along the bend in the Frederica River. If you have time, visit the Cassina Garden Club Slave Cabins to learn a bit more about plantation history. Located in the same area, Gascoigne Bluff is another great location to view a sunset.
On your final day of history, head over to Jekyll Island ($5 toll) to discover why the Jekyll Island National Historic Landmark District is a one of the largest ongoing restoration projects in the southeastern United States. Explore the historic district for the morning before grabbing lunch at one of Jekyll Island's restaurants with a view.
We recommend spending the rest of the afternoon exploring the island's other historic sites including the Horton House and the Jekyll Island Museum. If you're interested in more, take a Historic District tram tour through for a guided version of your morning self-guided tour in the same area.
In the evening, head to Historic Downtown Brunswick. If you get to Brunswick early, stop by each of the Signature Squares of Brunswick, and learn more about each of these unique spaces and how they fit into Brunswick's history.
Complete your weekend history tour of the Golden Isles with a visit to the Historic Ritz Theatre. You might even be able to catch a show if you time it right! Afterward, shop and dine along Newcastle Street and catch yet another beautiful sunset along Mary Ross Waterfront Park, beside hard-working shrimp boats that have been tucked in for the night.