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A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com

There are many reasons why you'd want to visit Jekyll Island, Georgia.

There's the Guilded Age-era hunting lodge that was once the winter lodging for the Carnegies, Vanderbilts, Pulitzers, and other super wealthy people. The Jekyll Island Club Hotel now a completely restored luxury hotel, and one that I highly recommend. (Even if you can't stay on property, stop by for the afternoon tea!) [Take a virtual tour with this post here.]
Then, on the other side of the island, there's a wide sandy beach that leads out into the Atlantic. It's a great place to relax in the warm summer sunshine. 

Plus, there's a historic tram ride, shopping on the Jekyll Island Club Hotel grounds, a waterpark, and miles of bike trails. 

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com


However, one of my favorite places to go on Jekyll--and what I think is an absolutely must-see-- doesn't even have a sign. Located at the northernmost tip of the island is a place called Driftwood Beach. Between time, erosion, and a rising tide, dozens of trees have fallen over onto the beach.

  

Walking down this stretch of the island's shore involves walking around and under the trees and even climbing over a few depending on the tide level. 

While the area is especially gorgeous at sunrise and sunset, the scattered dead trees are haunting no matter the time of day. 

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com

The first time that I visited Jekyll Island was for my first wedding anniversary. The desk clerk at our hotel mentioned that Driftwood Beach was just a short walk away, and, in usual travel blogger fashion, I immediately knew I had to go see what it was. Landon and I watched the sun go down on our first night on the island. 

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com


When my sister and I took Britton to Jekyll Island for a few days last September, I knew that I had to take her to Driftwood Beach. She loved exploring in and around the trees, and we had a great time looking for blue crabs in the small pools that have collected around some of the roots. 

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com


While Driftwood Beach isn't the best place on the island for sunbathing, it absolutely should be on anyone's itinerary to the Golden Isles.

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A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com


Know Before You Go

Access to Driftwood Beach is free once you're on the island. There's a $6 entrance fee to get onto Jekyll Island since it's a protected state park, but, once you go through the toll, you're set to explore all over the island. 

You have to know where you're going to find Driftwood Beach. As I mentioned earlier, there aren't any signs directing you to the beach. To get to it, head north past the Jekyll Island Club Hotel on Riverview Drive. Just past the turn off to the Jekyll Fishing Center (Clam Creek Road), the road name changes to Beach View Drive. Start looking on your left for an area of shoulder that's been worn free of grass. Park there and follow the rough trails onto the beach. If you see the Villas by the Sea, you've gone too far. 

A Hauntingly Beautiful Spot at the Edge of the World: Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia | CosmosMariners.com


Don't attempt to swim here. The same currents that have caused the trees to die (and some erosion issues in years past) are also incredibly dangerous for swimmers. In order to save the beach from further erosion, a large rock barrier has been placed at the water's edge. Don't attempt to cross this barrier for a few reasons: one, it will really, really hurt if you fall on the slippery rock, and two, the currents can easily catch even experienced swimmers off guard. Stick to wading in the many small pools along the shoreline.

If you want to learn more about Jekyll Island and the nearby area, check out my First Timer's Guide to Georgia's Golden Isles!
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Have you visited Jekyll Island? Would you be interested in seeing Driftwood Beach?

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