South’s Greatest Destinations 2021

The guide to the greatest places to stay, play, eat and shop from Charleston to Jacksonville.

South present’s our hotly anticipated, annual guide to the Greatest Destinations of 2021. Each year, South produces the definitive list of the best places to stay, play, eat and shop in Charleston, Hilton Head Island, Bluffton, Savannah and Jacksonville. This year, we’ve added some new locations for an exhaustive guide to the Coastal South.

 

South’s Greatest Destinations serves as an annual guide to the best locations in the coastal South from Charleston through Jacksonville. The list includes the premier places to stay and the hottest spots to play, as well as the best bites and top shops. In the past year, the Southeast saw continuous visitors—despite recent restrictions—proving there is just something inexplicably hospitable about our beautiful region. Without further ado, here is South’s definitive guide to the greatest destinations.

 

1. Savannah, Georgia

Travelers come to the Hostess City to experience the true essence of Southern hospitality. The brick walkways and cobblestone roads bear the evidence of generations of welcomed visitors—even the Spanish moss seems to reach from the tree tops with open arms. Here are the host’s top choices to stay, play, eat and shop.

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Mansion on Forsyth Park

Mansion on Forsyth Park is a quintessential accommodation of the Hostess City, where luxury meets the apex of Southern hospitality. Enjoy seductive, baroque-style decor, lounge by the boutique pool, stroll the art gallery and dine at the reimagined 700 Drayton. kesslercollection.com/mansion


Perry Lane

Perry Lane’s stylish decor and prime Historic District location make it a favorite for visitors and locals alike. Visit the Peregrin rooftop bar, stay for dinner at the Emporium Kitchen and Wine Market and cap off the night with a boilermaker at the Wayward cocktail lounge. perrylanehotel.com


JW Marriott Savannah Plant Riverside District

The JW Marriott is located within Plant Riverside District, making it Savannah’s premier destination for both luxury accommodations and unbridled entertainment. The iconic 36-foot chrome dinosaur hangs in the expansive lobby and guests enjoy numerous walkable attractions and amenities, including dynamic restaurants and lounges, upscale retail and live entertainment. plantriverside.com

Plant Riverside District The grand opening of Plant Riverside District in 2020 ushered in a new era of entertainment and multifaceted fun. Browse 12 shops and galleries, dine at 14 establishments, play at four bars and lounges and an outdoor amphitheater, all while looking out over the Savannah River and skyline. Plant Riverside District is the newest must-do installment in the Savannah social scene. plantriverside.com 


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Plant Riverside District

The grand opening of Plant Riverside District in 2020 ushered in a new era of entertainment and multifaceted fun. Browse 12 shops and galleries, dine at 14 establishments, play at four bars and lounges and an outdoor amphitheater, all while looking out over the Savannah river and skyline. Plant Riverside District is the newest must-do installment in the Savannah social scene. plantriverside.com

Photo: Peter Collin Murray


Starland Yard

Also known as “Savannah’s backyard,” Starland Yard is so much more than a host for a rotating schedule of the city’s hottest food trucks. This hip, millennial meet-up is equal parts family-friendly. Hang out on the 21+ deck or play tag in the yard; come for Tuesday Trivia and stay for the Starland Bar and Vittoria Pizzeria. starlandyard.com


Coastal Heritage Society

Explore the rich history of coastal Georgia and its adjacent regions by visiting one of the Coastal Heritage Society’s six museums. Favorites like the Savannah Children’s Museum and the Georgia State Railroad Museum help keep culture alive for Savannahians and visitors alike. chsgeorgia.org


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Stone and Webster Chophouse

Savannah’s latest steakhouse is the place to enjoy rich flavors and sultry ambiance. Be prepared to indulge in reserve steak cuts and decadent desserts, all with polished presentations and a Lowcountry-inspired flavor profile. plantriverside.com/venues/stone-webster-chophouse

Photo: Peter Collin Murray


Collins Quarter Forsyth

It is impossible to miss the hustle and bustle of central Forsyth Park on a weekend morning. Experience an Aussie-influenced brunch in the bright, modern dining room or outside on the patio with live music—or at least take a lavender spiced latte to-go! thecollinsquarter.com


Jazz’d Tapas Bar

Slink down to the sultry, swanky hotspot known at Jazz’d Tapas Bar. The eclectic-yet-sophisticated atmosphere is the perfect escape for a night out with inspired cocktails and an Americanized tapas menu. Jazzdtapasbar.com

Photo: D. Paul Graham


a.Lure

With beautiful cocktails and fresh, locally sourced cuisine, a.Lure’s serene atmosphere is the perfect way to relax on a sophisticated night out downtown. Specializing in seafood, a.Lure’s menu has a refined take on the home-cooked meals Southerners are all familiar with and continue to love. aluresavannah.com


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E. Shaver Bookseller

Locally and independently owned since 1975, E. Shaver Bookseller is the best spot to find some of Savannah’s treasures. Peruse the charming shop’s nooks and crannies. Insider tip: the shop’s resident felines are known to make excellent recommendations and reading companions. eshaverbooks.com

Photo: D. Paul Graham


Asher + Rye

The newest retail installment on Whitaker Street, Asher + Rye, is bringing Scandanavian interior design to Savannah. From the minds behind the design at Local 11ten restaurant, Erika and Joel founded Asher + Rye (named after their spaniel and son, respectively) to share their passion for modern aesthetics and warm, simple, functional lifestyle. asherandrye.com


Levy Jewelers

Savannah’s only fourth-generation jewelry business with over 116 consecutive years of service, Levy Jewelers are a trusted part of their customer’s lives. As proud members of the American Gem Society, Levy offers the highest quality diamonds, watches, jewelry and giftware at attractive pricing. Visit them at the Oglethorpe Mall or their iconic downtown storefront. levyjewelers.com


Edgewater Drive

Edgewater Drive’s collection reflects a careful balance of all niches, with a signature eclectic flair. Classic denim and wardrobe staples are complemented by unexpected details—all at affordable price points. Edgewater Drive boasts a unique aesthetic that shoppers won’t find in other local boutiques. shopedgewaterdrive.com


2. Jacksonville, Florida

Below the Florida-Georgia line, temperatures rise and the ante ups as the Jacksonville skyline emerges on the horizon. Endless urban fun juxtaposed with sublime coastal proximity creates the ultimate Southern playground.

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Sawgrass Marriott Resort and Spa

Southeast of Jacksonville in the oceanside town of Ponte Vedra Beach, the incredible Sawgrass Resort and Spa awaits with modern rooms and villas, dreamlike amenities and exclusive access to one of the top golf courses in the world: TPC Sawgrass. marriott.com/hotels/travel/jaxsw-sawgrass-marriott-golf-resort-and-spa


Amelia Schoolhouse Inn 

Originally the first schoolhouse on Amelia Island, located in downtown Fernandina Beach, the Amelia Schoolhouse Inn is now a boutique hotel with modern amenities. In typical schoolhouse fashion, guests can get into some trouble at “The Principal’s Office,” or the hotel bar. ameliaschoolhouseinn.com


One Ocean Resort & Spa

Situated on the sweeping white sands of Jacksonville’s Atlantic Beach is One Ocean Resort & Spa, outfitted with luxury accommodations and services. Rooms grant spectacular ocean views and guests enjoy upscale dining, spa and shopping options. oneoceanresort.com


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Beaches Fishing Charter 

Find some of the best fishing on the east coast in the Atlantic depths off the coast of the Jacksonville area. U.S. Coast Guard-licensed Captain Jeff Wansor has over 35 years experience navigating the waters and guarantees a big kahuna catch. beachesfishingcharters.com


Timucuan Nature Preserve

Timucuan Nature Preserve offers rare glimpses of Old Florida, wildlife and diverse habitats. Walk in the footsteps of the Timucua people, French colonists, plantation owners and enslaved people and through 46,000 acres of preserved wetlands. nps.gov/timu/index.htm

Photo: Lindsey Martin Webb


Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens

Jacksonville boasts a vibrant art scene, starting with the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens. The fine arts museum is home to over 5,000 works and a magical historic garden set against the backdrop of the St. Johns River. cummermuseum.org


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bb’s restaurant + bar

For a swanky night out, head downtown to Jacksonville’s business district to bb’s restaurant + bar for an award-winning wine list, eclectic bites and groovy vibes. Pro tip: Dessert is a must at bb’s. bbsrestaurant.com


Salt Life Food Shack

On the North Florida coast, it’s all about that “Salt Life.” The popular subculture brand expanded to offer a dining experience that exemplifies the spirit of Salt Life with delicious seafood dishes, cool drinks and a comfortable place to gather with family and friends. saltlifefoodshack.com


III Forks 

III Forks brings an upscale steakhouse experience to Jacksonville with a refined, contemporary experience. The decor literally drips in gold—and so do the steaks, figuratively—making it the perfect place for occasion dining. 3forks.com


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Auntie Peaches 

Auntie Peaches serves the Jacksonville community as a “grassroots” health and wellness resource, offering education and naturopathic solutions to their guests. Visit the apothecary to pick up herbal medicines and natural remedies to build your best self. Auntiepeaches.com


Riverside Arts Market

The Riverside Arts Market is the intersection of artists, artisans, farmers and makers that come together under the Fuller Warren bridge every Saturday, rain or shine. Browse this vibrant hub for the best goods the area has to offer and support local businesses. riversideavondale.org


St. Johns Town Center 

The St. Johns Town Center is an upscale, open-air shopping mecca featuring over 150 of the hottest brands. As the heart of Jacksonville’s shopping and dining, this lifestyle mall is the best place to seek retail therapy. simon.com/mall/st-johns-town-center


3. Bluffton, South Carolina

Lowcountry living comes in many forms, from luxury resorts to dockside dining and everything in between. Whatever the agenda, the spirit remains the same: lay back and enjoy the best the Lowcountry has to offer.

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Old Town Bluffton Inn

As the area’s only luxury boutique hotel, the family-owned and operated Old Town Bluffton Inn embodies gracious Southern charm. The custom-designed, French-inspired furnishings and ambiance combined with exceptional service create a one-of-a-kind, elegant experience. blufftoninnsc.com

Photo: Ian V. Santiago

Photos: Blake Crosby


Montage Palmetto Bluff

Montage Palmetto Bluff is nestled along the May River and encompasses 20,000 acres of private land, with an array of accommodation options such as private cottages, comfortable guest rooms and village homes. The Bluff makes for an exceptional, personalized, resort-style getaway. montagehotels.com/palmettobluff

Photo: Montage Palmetto Bluff

Photo: D. Paul Graham


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Burnt Church Distillery

Celebrating their grand opening in March 2021, Burnt Church Distillery is a hotly anticipated new addition to Bluffton. Crafting new spirits and telling old tales, the distillery serves as a local communal historian for residents and visitors. Come to church and try selections like Sin Eater, Devil’s Elbow and Sippin’ Saint. Burntchurchdistillery.com


May River Excursions

Enjoy fishing, river and water taxi adventures with May River Excursions. With an eight-boat fleet, the team’s goal is to show the beauty of the May River and all it has to offer to visitors and locals alike. mayriverexcursions.com

Photos: Blake Crosby


Bluffton Farmers Market

The Bluffton Farmers Market is a weekly community event where locals and tourists gather not only to buy excellent produce but also to enjoy delicious food, listen to entertainment, and relax with friends. farmersmarketbluffton.org


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FARM Bluffton

FARM is committed to their community and farm-to-table mission, sourcing from local farmers, fisherman and artisan producers. They even recently launched their own non-profit, Rootstock Community Foundation, to make a difference in their industry. Farmbluffton.com


The Craft Kitchen

This cozy establishment boasts a passion for market-fresh ingredients, honest cooking, and an enjoyable atmosphere. The food menu features a selection of dishes, all made in-house and the drink menu is curated to feature independently owned craft breweries and wine. craftkitchen.online

Photos: Ian V. Santiago


The Pearl Kitchen & Bar

This new gem in the heart of Old Town Bluffton offers a bright, fresh and enticing take on seafood and steaks, featuring enticing, contemporary fare with Italian and Asian influences. thepearlbluffton.com

Photos: Blake Crosby


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Gigi’s Bluffton

Gigi’s sets the standard for Southern style with personalized, attentive service and excellent fashion sense. Achieve that effortless Lowcountry look at this contemporary boutique. gigisbluffton.com 

Photos: Ian V. Santiago


Ben Ham Gallery

Originally hailing from Georgia and South Carolina, Ben Ham is a fine art, landscape photographer that works exclusively with traditional, black and white film. Ham’s works are housed in a Lowcountry-style building, which offers the perfect backdrop for informed viewing. Benhamimages.com


Bluffton General Store

Nestled in the heart of Old Town Bluffton, Bluffton General Store offers gifts, candles, local art, coastal inspired home decor, a bead studio and snacks. Stop in for a refined, small-town general store experience! blufftongeneralstore.com


4. Charleston, South Carolina

The Holy City couldn’t make for a better weekend trip with world-class dining, dignified accommodations, sophisticated shopping and plenty of room for adventure.

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Emeline 

Conveniently located on Church Street, Emeline is an elegant boutique hotel with exceptional access to all best best stops downtown. Enjoy the charming courtyard, complimentary excursive bicycles and pet-friendly accommodations. hotelemeline.com


Restoration Hotel

The Restoration translates its hometown’s vibrant history into a casually chic, luxurious hospitality experience. Dine at the rooftop restaurant and bar, enjoy signature spa services from the comfort of your room and step out on the iconic King Street, right off the hotel’s doorstep. therestorationhotel.com

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Belmond Charleston Place 

The Charleston Place exudes seventeenth century luxury as guests are greeted by a striking bronze fountain, Italian marble floors and a glistening chandelier. Indulge in elegant accommodations, a medley of dining options and spectacular amenities. belmond.com/hotels/north-america/usa/sc/charleston/belmond-charleston-place


 

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Firefly Distillery 

Charleston’s oldest working distillery, Firefly Distillery, has figured out how to capture lighting in a jar. Nestled among the live oaks and Spanish moss, guests can tour and taste, enjoy live music and events, or just sit back and relax. fireflydistillery.com


Middleton Place 

Middleton Place, formerly a rice plantation, is home to the oldest landscaped gardens in America. Guests can tour the grounds and hear the life-changing stories of the plantation’s history while experiencing the beauty of its legacy. middletonplace.org

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Old South Carriage Company 

Take an expertly guided tour and hear about Charleston’s rich history from the comfort of a leisurely carriage with Old South Carriage Co., family owned since 1983. Guests can even tour their horse facility to hang with the horses off-duty. oldsouthcarriage.com

Old South Carriage Co

Photo courtesy of: Old South Carriage Co


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Leon’s Oyster Shop

This comfortable Southern joint, housed in a stylishly remodeled body shop, serves up fried chicken, oysters, lots of salads, cheap beer, soft serve, rosé on tap, tons of grower Champagne, and good cocktails—basically, all the good stuff. leonsoystershop.com


FIG 

FIG’s seasonal, locally sourced menu is a labor of love, featuring fresh, vibrant offerings. FIG excels at the basics: comfortable, modern atmosphere with exquisite flavors and playful libations. eatatfig.com

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Photo: FIG

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Photo: FIG


167 Raw

This cozy, contemporary, New England style oyster bar is located in the heart of historic downtown Charleston. They offer the best oysters on the east coast from New Brunswick, Canada down to the local shores of South Carolina. 167raw.com


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Monkee’s of Mount Pleasant

Monkee’s is an independently owned and operated women’s clothing and accessories boutique, offering beautiful pieces that range from classic to trendy. The array of colors exude optimism throughout the modern space, and the styles evoke the quintessential Charleston aesthetic. monkeesmp.com


Grey Ghost Bakery 

The legendary recipes at Grey Ghost Bakery have been passed down for generations, much like ghost stories that whisper around Charleston. The family-owned baking company prides themselves on using the highest quality ingredients in their made-from-scratch kitchen. greyghostbakery.com

Grey Ghost Bakery Chs

Photo courtesy of Grey Ghost Bakery


City Market 

Find Charleston’s famous sweetgrass baskets at this open-air market in the heart of downtown. Constructed between 1804 and 1830, it was once a bustling meat, seafood and produce market. Now open again, the market is the best place to find unique Charlestonian keepsakes. thecharlestoncitymarket.com

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5. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

Known for its world-class golf, charming community and iconic Harbour Town Lighthouse, Hilton Head Island has solidified its place as one of the top destinations in the U.S.

 

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The Inn & Club at Harbour Town

The Inn & Club at Harbour Town is an award-winning luxury hotel at the Sea Pines Resort, where no detail has been overlooked. Enjoy amenities such as beach concierge service, a boutique pool, access to the famous Harbour Town Clubhouse overlooking the championship golf course and more. seapines.com/accommodations/inn-at-harbour

Inn Harbour Town

Photo: Inn and Club at Harbour Town


Palmetto Dunes

Palmetto Dunes’ three miles of sun-kissed Atlantic Ocean beachfront provide the perfect venue for three world-class golf courses, vacation rentals, a full-service marina, and an 11-mile lagoon system. Guests can also enjoy nearby beaches, spas, tennis, shopping and much more. palmettodunes.com

Photos: Miranda Osborn


Hilton Head Health

A stay at Hilton Head Head is more than your typical vacation—guests enjoy a heated spa, saunas, full-service spa, fitness facilities, inn and villa-style accommodations and plenty of health dining options. This wellness retreat is the perfect way to rejuvenate and refresh. hhhealth.com

Hilton Head Health

Photo courtesy of Hilton Head Health


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Harbour Town Golf Links at Sea Pines

Sitting at the top of every golf enthusiast’s bucket list is the Harbour Town Golf Links championship course at Sea Pines Resort. Home of the RBC Heritage presented by Boeing, the public course is even more beautiful in person when compared to the stunning annual nationally televised views. seapines.com/golf/harbour-town-golf-links

Sea Pines

Photo courtesy of Harbour Town Golf Links


Harbour Town Lighthouse

It’s not a trip to Hilton Head without a stop at the iconic, red-and-white-striped Harbour Town Lighthouse. Having served as a beacon for many ships through the years, the lighthouse now attracts visitors from around the world to tour the museum and climb the stairs inside! harbourtownlighthouse.com

Photo: Sean Pavone


Coastal Discovery Museum

With 2,000 square feet of indoor exhibits, 68 acres of outdoor exploration, and endless opportunity for adventure, the Coastal Discovery Museum is a “can’t miss” activity on Hilton Head Island. Check out the Lowcountry ecosystem including cool wildlife and foliage. coastaldiscovery.org

Coastal Discovery Museum

Photo courtesy of Coastal Discovery Museum


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Salty Dog Cafe

The Salty Dog Cafe is not just a restaurant, but rather, an experience in itself. Pull up dockside to this iconic venue and enjoy award-winning crab legs, amazing sandwiches and burgers, and legendary hush puppies. If you’re not drinking, wash your meal down with one of their equally legendary drinks. saltydog.com


The Jazz Corner

For fine dining on Hilton Head Island, head to The Jazz Room. Proclaimed as one of the top 100 great jazz rooms in the world, The Jazz Room has been featuring sensational live music and gourmet cuisine for 21 years and counting. Thejazzcorner.com

Jazz Corner

Photo Courtesy of Jazz Corner


A Lowcountry Backyard Restaurant

Impressively voted the number-one shrimp and grits in South Carolina, A Lowcountry Backyard Restaurant is locals-approved and absolutely everything the name implies: authentic Lowcountry cuisine backyard-style dining. hhbackyard.com

Lowcountry Backyard

Photo Courtesy of A Lowcountry Backyard


 

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Main Street Village

Featuring locally owned and operated shops, Main Street Village offers an old-fashioned shopping experience and relaxed atmosphere featuring shops like J.McLaughlin, Lettrs and Luna & Lillie’s. Mainstreetvillagehhi.com

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Photo: Main Street Village


Coligny Plaza

Visitors to Coligny Plaza—Hilton Head’s bustling beachside “downtown”—will find live music, fresh seafood, and endless boutique shopping. colignyplaza.com

Coligny Plaza

Photo courtesy of Coligny Plaza


Harbour Town Shops

Harbour Town visitors can hit the Harbour Town Shops at the Sea Pines Resort, featuring waterfront views around every turn. The outdoor shopping plaza features more than 20 independently owned and operated boutiques, clothing shops, gift and craft galleries, jewelry stores, independent art galleries, and T-shirt and specialty gift shops. seapines.com/recreation/harbour-town/shopping.aspx

Photo courtesy of Sea Pines Resort


6. The Golden Isles

That golden hour feeling is perpetual throughout Georgia’s Golden Isles: Jekyll Island, Saint Simons Island and (private) Sea Island. A history of prestige and luxury run deep along the enviable coastline, but visitors nowadays discover the islands’ raw beauty at every turn.

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Jekyll Island Club Resort 

The Jekyll Island Club was named “the richest, the most exclusive, the most inaccessible club in the world” all the way back in 1886. Choose your luxury accommodation from the historic Jekyll Island Club, mansion-sized cottages or the upscale Ocean Club with waterfront views. jekyllclub.com

Photo: D. Paul Graham


Jekyll Island Campground 

The most candid way to experience the natural beauty of Jekyll Island is to pitch a tent. Encounter the wilderness to varying degrees with the option for full hook-up or bare-bones living, with plenty of available amenities like washers, bathhouses, central pavilion, free WiFi, and pet-friendliness. jekyllisland.com/lodging/jekyll-island-campground

Jekyll Island Campground

Photo: Jekyll Island Campground


The Cloister at Sea Island 

The properties at The Cloister offer a Forbes Five-Star, private-island getaway, complete with exceptional dining, a serene spa and fitness center and unlimited potential for coastal adventures. A stay at The Cloister is also the only way to access the property’s prestigious golf courses. seaisland.com


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Georgia Sea Turtle Center 

As Georgia’s only sea turtle education and rehabilitation facility, the Georgia Sea Turtle Center offers the public a chance to learn about sea turtles in action with a host of interactive exhibits and experiences. jekyllisland.com/activities-category/sea-turtle

Photo: Miranda Osborn


Golf at Sea Island Resort

These world-class, sublime golf courses are a main attraction on Sea Island and can only be accessed by staying at The Cloister or a PGA tour player at the RSM Classic. So, book a stay or start practicing your swing! seaisland.com/golf

Sea Island Golf

Photo: Sea Island Golf


Hit the Trail 

Jekyll and St. Simons foot and bike trails offer over 20 miles of paved trails each that wind through maritime forests, past historic landmarks, and along pristine beaches. 

Photo: Miranda Osborn


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Porch

Nashville hot chicken has landed in St. Simons. After years of rasslin’ recipes and tussling with temperatures, the guys at Porch have brought the perfect basket of fried goodness to the Golden Isles. porchssi.com

Porch Ssi

Photo: Porch


The Wharf 

Once the gateway to Jekyll Island’s historic district, The Wharf continues to usher in an incredible waterfront dining experience. Enjoy live music, indoor/outdoor dining, and some of the South’s favorite down-home dishes. jekyllwharf.com

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Photo: The Wharf


Echo

Formerly a Naval air station, Echo pays homage to it’s past with nautical themes and cuisine. As the island’s only oceanfront dining venue, Echo hosts stunning views and a relaxed atmosphere. echostsimons.com

Echo Ssi

Photo: Echo


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Golden Isles Bracelet Company 

Golden Isles Bracelet Co. hand crafts, casts and creates beautiful pieces from genuine silver and gold. These stunning custom works—from bracelets to pendants and more—are the perfect keepsake and make meaningful, original gifts. gibcobracelets.com

Island Dog 

Dogs shop, too! The pet care specialists at Island Dog treat your fur-baby like royalty and offer personalized recommendations with the highest quality products on the market. They are part of what makes the Golden Isles an ideal pet-friendly destination. islanddogssi.com

Two Brothers Bike Shop 

Because you might need a bike to cover over 40 miles of island trails, Two Brothers Bike Shop has you covered. At the number-one source for all bicycle needs on the islands, rent, service or purchase a bike and you’re ready to roll! twobrothersbikeshop.com

Two Brothers

Photo: Two Brothers Bike Shop


7. Effingham, Georgia

Located about an hour northwest of Savannah, Effingham County embodies the essence of laid-back living and is steeped in tradition and heritage. Enjoy wholesome, unpretentious cuisine, plenty of outdoor fun and a sweet treat or two along the Ogeechee River.

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Claudette’s Country Kitchen and Inn

Exuding authentic Southern hospitality and charming Victorian features, Claudette’s Country Kitchen and Inn is the perfect, off-the-beaten-path way to experience Effingham. From Claudette’s farm-fresh, home-cooked meals to the cozy features, the Inn is as charming as Southern accommodations can be. facebook.com/Claudettes-Bed-and-Breakfast-296896950413514/

Claudettes

Photo: Claudette’s Country Inn and Kitchen


Griffin Lakes Campground

The campground—located in Guyton—is a peaceful Southern oasis positioned on Griffin Lake. Visitors can stay overnight in a tent or camper and enjoy plenty of outdoor fun from fishing and swimming to hanging by the campfire and enjoying nature. facebook.com/griffinlakes.2012/

Griffin Lakes

Photo: Griffin Lakes Campground


New Ebenezer Retreat

The New Ebenezer Retreat is both a restorative getaway and an adventure. Guests can enjoy simple, yet cozy accommodations and plenty of amenities including a swimming pool, tennis and basketball courts, fire pits and more on the banks of the Savannah River. newebenezer.org

New Ebenezer Retreat

Photo: New Ebenezer Retreat


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Mars Theatre

The restored, historic Mars Theatre is rumored to have the best popcorn in the county. For only $10, visitors can see a movie with a small popcorn and drink. First-run movies are shown regularly as soon as they come out nationwide, and live performances and concerts tend to steal the show. marstheatre.com


Backwater Expeditions

Forget a backroad, take a backwater creek! Backwater Expeditions offers guided tours of the historic Ebenezer Creek, lined by cypress, tupelo, river oak and pine trees. Let your imagination run free and perhaps you’ll spot a cypress swamp gnome. facebook.com/backwaterexpeditions

Backwater Expeditions

Photo: Backwater Expeditions


Hodges Strawberry Farm

Hodges Strawberry Farm is a local, family-owned pick-your-own farm that also sells fresh berries, jams, jellies and local Honey. Strawberry season begins in March and gives way to blackberry season in April. hodgesstrawberryfarm.com

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Photo: Hodges Strawberry Farm


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The 108 Ale House

The 108 Ale House does everything just right. They offer mouth-watering, Southern-style starters, 13 different (and delicious) burgers, a large selection of sandwich creations, scrumptious salads and feast-worthy platters—not to mention, the ever-enticing beer list. facebook.com/The-108-Ale-House-169524330062842

108 Ale House

Photo: 108 Ale House


The Rusty Pig BBQ

Taste the intrigue of vibrant flavors and the mystery of a closely guarded, secret family recipe in The Rusty Pig’s barbeque sauce. The Andersons run the joint fueled by the passion to serve the best BBQ to their family, friends and neighbors. rustypigbbq.com


The Tin Fin

If there ever was a place to go for down-home seafood in Southern Georgia, that’s The Tin Fin. The extensive menu covers just about every preparation imaginable with delicious, fresh ingredients. This family-owned restaurant is the best place to find a friendly face, even for out-of-towners. thetinfin.com

Tin Fin

Photo: The Tin Fin


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Moo McGinn’s Magic Creamery

This local creamery is serving sheer magic on a spoon! Specializing exclusively in liquid nitrogen ice cream, this barn-themed parlor serves gourmet frozen dairy treats. The liquid nitrogen method makes for silkier, smoother ice cream that seals flavor. Springfieldicecream.com

Moo Moo Mcguinns

Photo: Moo McGinn’s


Largesse Boutique

Consistently voted as a local favorite, Largess Boutique sells women and children’s clothing and home decor. They feature beautiful and affordable designs for all ages and sizes, suitable to a variety of tastes and styles. Stop by the “yellow church” and say hello! Livinglargesse.com

Largesse

Photo: Largesse Boutique


Your CBD Store

Maximize relaxation with a visit to Your CBD store, located in Rincon. Using high quality Hemp-derived, broad-spectrum ingredients, Your CBD Store offers the most wholesome products on the market.  cbdrx4u.com

Your Cbd


8. Richmond Hill, Georgia

Just minutes from metropolitan Savannah, find that small-town Southern feeling in Richmond Hill. Wave “hello” to your neighbors and take a back road, knowing that anywhere you pull over, you’ll see a friendly face.

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KOA Campground

The Richmond Hill KOA Holiday campground is equipped with upgraded RV sites with KOA patios, deluxe cabins with full baths and good old-fashioned campsites, offering plenty of options for every comfort level. Enjoy a sparkling swimming pool, dog park and unrestricted fishing. koa.com/campgrounds/savannah

Photo: Miranda Osborn


Fort McAllister Cabins 

Camp on the banks of the Ogeechee River and former battleground of the American Civil War. In addition to historical exploration, guests enjoy pleasant cabins amidst the palmettos, fishing, trails, canoeing and more outdoor fun. gastateparks.org/FortMcAllister 

Photo: Fort McAllister


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Fort McAllister 

The grounds at Ft. McAllister is the best-preserved earthwork fortification of the Confederacy. The park museum specializes in Civil War Artifacts, and guests can enjoy educational programs, a Civil War film and plenty of outdoor activities. gastateparks.org/FortMcAllister 


Richmond Hill Museum

The Richmond Hill Museum occupies a building that auto legend Henry Ford originally built to serve as a public kindergarten. The museum showcases items from the era with pictures and information about the many contributions Henry Ford made to the area, as well as antebellum artifacts. richmondhillhistoricalsociety.com 

Richmond Hill Museum

Photo: Richmond Hill Museum


J.F. Gregory Park 

J.F. Gregory Park is a 335-acre multi-use recreational area that once encompassed a thriving rice plantation and was subsequently bought up by Henry Ford. The park includes over 3 miles of walking and biking trails, a children’s playground, a covered pavilion, and large open areas for picnicking. traillink.com/trail/jf-gregory-park-trail

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Fish Tales

Fish Tails at Fort McAllister Marina is known for its delicious fried shrimp baskets and our world-famous hushpuppies, a family-recipe passed down through the generations. They serve the freshest local seafood, or guests can bring their own catch to be cooked by the professionals. fishtalesrh.com

Fish Tails

Photo: Fish Tails


Marker 107

Specializing in delicious Southern seafood, Marker 107’s secret is serving the freshest catch prepared with family recipes, combined with a modern flair and refreshing cocktails. marker107.com


Molly MacPherson’s Scottish Pub & Grill 

MacPherson’s is a tribute to the owner’s great-grandmother and grandmother, both Scottish immigrants who passed down their traditional recipes. Guests can enjoy authentic, wholesome Scottish dishes and a lively, warm atmosphere. macphersonspub.com

Molly Macphersons

Photo: Molly MacPherson’s


Shop2

Ellas

This combined home goods and garden store offers beautiful, rustic and coastal-inspired decor along with local goods, including local honey. The garden store offers a serene array of plants to compliment your home and outdoor space. facebook.com/ellasofrichmondhill


Photo Point Gallery 

Photo Point gallery is where the garden meets art. This primarily local artist gallery features original art, photography, books, prints, gifts and more. The works offer a stunning reflection of Southern themes, often of the natural world. deepsouthphotopoint.com

Photopoint Gallery

Photo: Photo Point Gallery

Game Changers Running Company

Game Changers Running Co. is doing just that—run and owned by physical therapists, this is not your average shoe store. Get top-of-the-line products with expert advice and consultation. Game Changers is the only Richmond Hill-Savannah shoe store to suit all your running and walking needs. gamechangersrunningcompany.com

Game Changers Running

Photo: Game Changers Running Company


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