48 Hours in Sea Island, Georgia
The private, coastal enclave is a golfing mecca.
In 1926, automobile magnate Howard Coffin handpicked part of the Golden Isles in Georgia for the sole purpose of building a travel destination. Since then, Sea Island has become an oasis of recreation and relaxation. Summer ushers in the busiest season for beach time, boating, kayaking, and fishing. But the island's three championship golf courses, plus its tennis and squash centers, horseback riding, hunting and shooting programs make it a year-round destination. Here, how to plan the perfect trip.
Where to Stay
If you are looking for upscale comfort with a beautiful sea view and to hit the links right away, The Lodge sits in the middle of Sea Island’s Plantation Course. A smoky wood scent fills the grand entrance hall and seeps into the cozy private quarters that feature 24/7 access to butler service.
For a luxe, Downtown Abbey-esque experience, book The Cloister. In the main house you’ll feel like you stepped into a scene from the popular show. In fact, cast members visited and hosted a watch party there when the series was running.
Fuel up for a morning of golf with classic breakfast fare including omelets and eggs Benedict at nearby Cafe Frederica on St. Simon’s Island. Spearheaded by famous golfer Davis Love III, Sea Island’s golf program is world class. The Seaside course is home to the PGA Tour’s RSM Classic and the Plantation and Retreat courses twist through marshes and lakes with dramatic views of the sea. The Golf Performance Center includes three of the top instructors in the country. Get in a full 18 holes or book a lesson with pros like former NCAA golfer and coach Lindy LaBauve.
Eat lunch at oceanfront tavern, The Oak Room, where you can enjoy ahi tuna poke or indulge in Southern comfort foods such as fried chicken with collard greens. While on the premises, take a stroll and explore the Avenue of Oaks, once the entrance to the historical Retreat Plantation, known for its cotton and rice.
At the end of the day, enjoy the sunset over the golf course or water and head to Tavola for a tasty Italian dinner.
Grab a breakfast sandwich and coffee to-go from The Market. Then saddle up for a guided horseback ride to take in the sea views from a different vantage point or enjoy wooded trails. Or you're looking for water-based sports, check out the local tributaries with a guided kayak fishing tour or rent a paddle board
and work on your balance and strength while keeping an eye out for dolphins or the occasional manatee.
For a light lunch, try the Chicken Salad with diced chicken breast, tarragon, mustard, and cranberry at River Bar. Then, don’t miss the Spa at Sea Island. The deep tissue “Heavy Hitter” or hot stone “Rock Your Body” massages are the perfect way to unwind and recover sore muscles.
Cap off your trip by watching the sun go down to the sounds of a bagpiper at the Plantation Course. This nightly event marks the close of the golf courses.