29 Feb 2020
Kayaking is one of the best ways to get outdoors and explore the Georgia coast. Whether you go it alone or take a tour, it’s an awesome way to get a closer look at the marsh and wildlife of the region. And there’s a lot you’ll see from the water that you don’t get to experience on land.
A Tale of Two Lighthouses
The Tybee Marina launch gives you access to Lazaretto Creek, where you can paddle out to Cockspur Island home to the Cockspur Beacon (built in 1857), part of the Fort Pulaski National Monument. While you used to be able to explore the island, it is now closed to visitors, who are asked to view it from a distance. From there you can head to the tip of Tybee Island to see the Tybee Island Light Station.
Any paddle along the coast offers an opportunity to see dolphins playing in the water. Of course, you’ll want to respect all wildlife. Don’t chase them, let them come to you and enjoy watching these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.
Back Bays and Rivers
The tidal marshes that stretch from Savannah to the Atlantic Ocean include a network of waterways that can be navigated by canoe and kayak. Hidden in this sheltered environment, you’ll discover Skidaway Island, the Skidaway, Bull, Vernon and Wilmington rivers; small riverfront communities of Isle of Hope and Thunderbolt; and a network of smaller islands. It makes a beautiful, sheltered place to kayak or paddleboard, and see Georgia’s low country scenery and wildlife including dolphins, birds and maybe even a manatee. Launch from Hogan’s Marina.
Wassaw Island is a National Wildlife Refuge just south of Tybee Island that is accessible by boat only. It has over 10,000 acres of salt marsh, coastal forest and dunes, parts of which are open to the public for hiking and nature-watching, and as a destination for kayaking excursions. This is an excursion for experienced paddlers.
Little Tybee Island
An undeveloped barrier island, Little Tybee Island is also only reachable by boat. The island, with nearly 7,000 acres of unspoiled salt marsh and hammocks, tidal creeks and miles of dune-bordered beach, is an ideal place to explore as well as a great spot for birdwatching, beachcombing and creek paddling. But it can be difficult to land on the island due to currents. Several tour operators offer excursions to the island. For inexperienced paddlers, that’s the best way to go.
Go with a Pro
Charter companies that offer tours include North Island Kayak and Sea Kayak Georgia. They provide half-day and full-day tours, as well as kayak, paddleboard and canoe rentals. Tybee Jet Ski, also provides tours but focuses more on rentals.
Stay in one of our Tybee Island properties for convenient water access, awesome amenities and comfortable digs.