Sure, a beach vacation to the Georgia coast might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of planning a getaway this winter. But with this list of reasons to travel to the Golden Isles this season, you’ll soon wonder why you haven’t done this all along.

Christmas lights on Jekyll Island are a favorite annual holiday tradition

1.  There’s no shortage of holiday cheer.

From small town parades to live performances and everything in between, the Golden Isles is the perfect place to spend a coastal Christmas or to ring in the New Year. View a complete calendar of holiday events to make sure your trip includes a festive event or two!

2.  You don’t need to pack your winter coat.

So how cold does Georgia get in the Winter? On the Georgia Coast, temperatures average in the mid-60s during our winter months, meaning you can leave those bulky coats, hats and gloves behind. It’s always beach time in the Golden Isles!

Each year, guests of Jekyll Island can hunt for Island Treasures hidden across the island

3.  There’s a two-month-long treasure hunt.

Each year, highly-coveted Island Treasures are hidden throughout Jekyll Island. From January through February, these beautiful handmade glass orbs are meticulously concealed in the nooks and crannies on the island and are waiting for you to find them. Finders, keepers!

4. You can go ice skating... at the beach.

In addition to Jekyll Island's impressive holiday activities, guests can also enjoy the beachfront Skating Village. Open seasonally, this popular attraction is accessible each November to January. Enjoy hot chocolate and beautiful beach views as you skate on synthetic “ice” to experience a true Georgia coast winter vacation. *In an effort to protect the health and safety of guests and staff, the Jekyll Island Skating Village will not take place this year. More holiday events during Holly Jolly Jekyll can be found here.

5. Keep more money in your wallet.

Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to save more money? Since our peak season is the summertime, there are plenty of lodging deals to be had in the winter months. Find rates from $59 at beachfront hotels and other seasonal specials and packages.

Jekyll Island's famous Driftwood Beach is also a dog-friendly beach in Georgia.

6. Bring Fido along.

It’s the dog days of winter in the Golden Isles! Although dogs are restricted on the beaches during certain hours of the summer, all are welcome to play, dig and swim to their hearts’ desire this winter. Just be mindful of other beachgoers and don’t let your dog leave behind anything other than their paw prints!

7. Run the Sea Island Half Marathon.

Burn off those extra holiday calories and treat yourself to one of the most scenic courses when you take on the challenge of the Sea Island Half Marathon presented by Vineyard Vines. Choose between the half marathon and 5K courses, and take in the beautiful sights around Sea Island. All participants receive a post-race party and champagne brunch, participant performance tee, limited edition finisher medal and more. 

*Please check with Sea Island directly regarding any 2020 events, which may be impacted by COVID-19. 


8. Discover rare wildlife.

More than just birds fly south for the winter. North Atlantic right whales, bald eagles and merganser ducks are a few of the migratory animals that journey through the Golden Isles on their search for warmer weather. 

A special thank you to Raleigh Kitchen for providing the bald eagle photo for this post.