The Golden Isles of Georgia is a popular destination for summer beach getaways and outdoor activities. However, there are times when you need a break from the beach and may be seeking other activities for entertainment. A variety of indoor museums and historical sites in the Golden Isles provide fun learning opportunities about the history of Georgia's coast.

St. Simons Island Lighthouse Museum & A.W. Jones Heritage Center

Standing over the St. Simons Island Village at 104 feet, the St. Simons Island Lighthouse was built in 1872 and is the oldest brick building in Glynn County. It, along with the adjacent keeper’s dwelling, comprises the St. Simons Island Lighthouse Museum. Exhibits inside the lighthouse keeper’s dwelling highlight local history and tell the stories of the families who operated the light.

Climb the 129 steps to the top of the Lighthouse for a breathtaking view of St. Simons Sound and of neighboring Jekyll Island, the mainland (Brunswick), and the south end of St. Simons Island. Kids will love counting every stair!

The A.W. Jones Heritage Center offers a large selection of collectibles, keepsakes, and gifts for every member of your family. Carefully selected to enhance your museum experience, local artists and writers are featured. There is also a variety of books, replicas, uniquely branded apparel and a wide variety of gift items that will serve to remind you of your visit to the Golden Isles. Admission to the Museum Store is free.

The St. Simons Lighthouse Museum and A.W. Jones Heritage Center are located at 610 Beachview Drive, St. Simons Island.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Monday – Saturday: 10:00am – 5:00pm, Sunday: 1:30pm – 5:00pm. (During brief periods of heavy rain, the St. Simons Lighthouse tower may be closed to climbers.)

FEES | $10 Adults, $5 Ages 6-11, No admission charge for Georgia Historical Society member and children under age 6.

For more information, call (912) 638-4666 or visit

Maritime Museum at the Historic Coast Guard Station

This interesting museum is located in the restored U.S. Coast Guard Station at East Beach, which was built during the Depression as part of a WPA project.

The museum is filled with interactive exhibits and galleries and offers an exciting look at coastal Georgia’s natural assets, maritime and military history. Explore seven galleries featuring a variety of hands-on exhibits and activities.

The Maritime Museum and Historic Guard Station is located at 4201 First Street at East Beach, St. Simons Island.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Monday – Saturday: 10:00am – 5:00pm (Closed from 12:00pm – 1:00pm), Sunday: 1:30pm – 5:00pm. (During brief periods of heavy rain, the Maritime Center Watch Tower may be closed to climbers.)

FEES | $10 Adults, $5 Ages 6-11, No admission charge for Georgia Historical Society member and children under age 6.

For more information, call (912) 638-4666 or visit

* Combination tickets, good for admission to the Lighthouse Museum, A.W. Jones Heritage Center and the Maritime Museum, are available now.

Fort Frederica National Monument

When it was built in 1736, Fort Frederica National Monument was the most expensive military installation in British North America. The town and fort established as an outpost by Maj. General Oglethorpe, played a crucial role in establishing England’s claims to the disputed Georgia territory.

Begin your visit with a stop at the park visitor center, where you can see an orientation film, which shows every 30 minutes, and examine exhibits that help tell the story of this vanished town and its former inhabitants.

Fort Frederica National Monument is located at 6515 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Sunday – Saturday, 9:00am to 5:00pm. (Closed most holidays.)

FEES | $3 per person, children 15 and under are FREE

For more information, call (912) 638-3639 or visit

Arthur J. Moore Methodist Museum & Library

The Arthur J. Moore Methodist Museum & Library has grown since the doors first opened. This modern building holds within it a wide array of treasures that range from the history of St. Simons Island to the Wesley family including the Wesley brothers landing here with General Oglethorpe in 1736. The museum also illustrates the start of the Methodist church and the changes it underwent to get where it is today.

The museum features a new interactive kiosk where people of all ages can learn more about the history of the circuit rider and early Methodism in Georgia and also houses a wonderful collection of nativities.

Ride along with a circuit rider to share the experience of bringing faith to the frontier! Fun for all ages.

The museum is located on Arthur Moore Drive in Epworth By the Sea Methodist Center.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, Closed on Sundays, Mondays and holidays.

FEES | $5 per person, Children 5 years and under FREE

For information call (912) 638-4050 or visit

Mildred Huie Museum at Mediterranean House

Beloved St. Simons Island artist Mildred Huie lived and kept her studio in Mediterranean House, which was built in 1929. This intimate museum and gallery is dedicated to the art and history of St. Simons Island plantations and landmarks, which were so vividly captured in the artist’s works.

The museum houses a unique collection of paintings and replicas of the homes from each of St. Simons Island’s major 19th-century plantations. The artist’s collection of rare books, papers, letters and other documents is available for viewing and study by historians and researchers.

The Mildred Huie Museum at Mediterranean House is located at 1819 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, or by appointment anytime.

FEES | Admission is free, but donations are welcome.

For more information, call (912) 638-3017 or visit

Georgia Sea Turtle Center

Stranded sea turtles are often found along Atlantic coast beaches. While most are dead, a small but increasing number are still alive. The Georgia Sea Turtle Center—Georgia's first sea turtle rehabilitation, research, and education facility—provides state-of-the-art emergency care to sick and injured sea turtles.

Explore the lives of sea turtles and other native animals through daily education programs and gallery exhibits. Glimpse into the hospital where sea turtles are treated, see our turtle patients in the rehabilitation pavilion, and learn how our research is helping sea turtles in Georgia and throughout the world!

The Georgia Sea Turtle Center is located at 214 Stable Road (corner of Hopkins and Stable Road) on Jekyll Island.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Tuesday – Sunday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday: 10:00 am – 2:00 pm (Except December –February, Closed Mondays), Thanksgiving: 10:00 am – 2:00 pm, Closed on Christmas Eve day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day.

FEES | $7 Adults (13+ Years), $6 Seniors (65+ Years), $5 Children (4-12 Years), and children 2 and under are FREE. Active duty military personnel, college students and teachers (ID required) are $6 admission. All prices include tax. Admission ticket sales end 30 minutes prior to closing and visitors under 16 years old must be accompanied by someone 18 years or older.

Jekyll Island Museum

The Jekyll Island Museum is your Gateway to the Gilded Era. Jekyll Island’s exquisite natural beauty has long drawn guests to its barrier shores. From Native American and French settlers to the Jekyll Island Club millionaires and the thousands of guests who arrive today, the island is a haven of history and wonder.

The Jekyll Island Museum features objects and photographs from extensive collections and introduces you to the rich heritage of Jekyll Island, whose social and architectural legacy is reflected in the Jekyll Island Club National Historic Landmark District—a 240-acre, riverfront compound and one of the largest, ongoing restoration projects in the southeastern United States.

The Jekyll Island Museum is located at 100 Stable Road on Jekyll Island.

Effective Summer 2013:
The museum is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and admission is FREE.

Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation

This beautiful plantation represents the history and culture of Georgia’s rice coast. The enterprising siblings of the fifth generation at Hofwyl-Broadfield resolved to start a dairy rather than sell their family home. The efforts of Gratz, Miriam, and Ophelia Dent led to the preservation of their family legacy. Ophelia was the last heir to the rich traditions of her ancestors, and she left the plantation to the State of Georgia in 1973.

A museum features silver from the family collection and a model of Hofwyl-Broadfield during its heyday. A brief film on the plantation’s history is shown before visitors walk a short trail to the antebellum home. A guided tour allows visitors to see the home as Ophelia kept it—with family heirlooms, 18th and 19th-century furniture and Cantonese china.

The Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation is located at 5556 U.S. Highway 17 North in Brunswick.

Effective Summer 2013:

HOURS | Thursday – Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day.

FEES | $3.50 - $6.00 (plus tax), Group rates are available with advanced notice.

These are but a few of the attractions and activities to be enjoyed in the Golden Isles: St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Little St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island. Here, you’ll discover miles of sun-drenched beaches, 198 holes of golf, tennis, fishing and water sports, shrimp boat cruises, dolphin tours, casino/cruise ship and more. Plus, there are accommodations to suit every taste and budget.