Tybee Island is a small city and barrier island famous for its sandy beaches, historic concrete gun batteries, historic sites and museums, and unique local culture. Here, you can climb the steps of a still-functioning lighthouse that dates to the 18th century, visit national monuments of military importance, relax on endlessly wide stretches of soft sands, or even take in some entertainment at the theatre.

    Whatever your reasons for travelling to Tybee Island, you're sure to find something to thrill families, couples, or larger groups for your holiday. Learn about the 10 best things to do in Tybee Island.

    1

    Tybee Island Lighthouse Museum

    Visit a working 18th-century lighthouse

    • History

    The Tybee Island Lighthouse Museum is situated right along the Savannah River and includes a working lighthouse dating to the 18th century. The Tybee lighthouse is one of only a few remaining lighthouses from the colonial era, and the museum inside offers a wealth of exhibits and artefacts that stretch back over 5 centuries of history.

    The museum galleries were once used as powder stores for the island during its military days, and guided tours are available almost every day.

    Location: 30 Meddin Dr, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Monday from 9 am to 4.30 pm (closed Tuesdays)

    Phone: +1 912-786-5801

    Map
    2

    Little Tybee Island

    Engage in wildlife viewing in an unspoiled wetland

    • Adventure

    Little Tybee Island is a pristine nature preserve reachable by boat that offers wildlife viewing, wetlands, bird-watching, fossil hunting, and camping opportunities. It's located on the southern end of Tybee Island and encompasses 6,780 acres of land and marsh space, which actually makes Little Tybee larger than Tybee proper.

    It's especially popular for bird-watching because it hosts several endangered species. The island was also the host of the 1996 yachting events of the Summer Olympics, which were held in Wassaw Sound, right off the island's coast.

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    3

    Fort Pulaski National Monument

    See the site of a landmark Civil War battle

    • History

    Fort Pulaski National Monument commemorates the first successful testing of a rifled cannon during the Civil War, which was a landmark event in military history. History buffs flock here by the thousands every year to see the site where the event took place, which rendered brick forts completely obsolete and resulted in the surrender of the Confederate garrison at the site.

    The monument isn't on Tybee Island specifically, but entirely covers several islands nearby, including Cockspur and McQueen's islands. The monument offers programmes, talks, demonstrations, exhibits, and reenactments related to the Civil War all year long.

    Location: US-80, Savannah, GA 31410, USA

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +1 912-786-8182

    Map
    4

    Tybee Island Marine Science Centre

    See native fish, reptiles, and underwater mammals

    • Families

    The Tybee Island Marine Science Centre offers a wide range of exhibits, including many local and exotic species of fish, reptiles, invertebrates, and marine mammals in their natural habitats. The centre is community-based, located in the heart of city centre, and has a mission to inform, educate, and preserve the natural resources of Georgia while educating the public and conserving local marine life.

    Here, you can see exotic species of marine life, including plants and animals, and take guided walks during which you'll learn all about the ecology of the island and the entire state of Georgia.

    Location: 1509 Strand Ave, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Saturday from 10 am to 4.30 pm, Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm, (closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)

    Phone: +1 912-786-5917

    Map
    5

    North Beach

    Catch some sun and sand along the beach

    • Couples
    • Families
    • Adventure

    North Beach is a great place to just relax on a blanket with a good book, go seashell hunting, or enjoy some bird-watching and wildlife viewing at the nearby marshes. It's located right across the street from the lighthouse where the Savannah River empties into the ocean, and it offers spectacular views of many nearby monuments.

    The North Beach Grill is right on the beach and offers light meals. Bathrooms and foot washing stations are available, as is a paid car park. It's a popular spot for beachcombers, families, and couples looking for a romantic shoreline walk.

    Location: Railwood Ave, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

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    6

    Tybee Pier

    Walk a scenic fishing pier with a lively event pavilion

    • Families
    • Adventure

    Tybee Pier is the choice for those who are looking to find a place to kick back, take in some live entertainment, or cast a fishing line into the ocean. This long fishing pier offers a vast covered pavilion along a relaxed stretch of soft sand, surf, and sun. The pavilion is often used for dances, live music performances, and special events.

    The original pier on this site was built in 1891 and was rebuilt after a fire devastated it in 1967. The rebuild took decades of effort, and it was finally rededicated in 1996. Here, you can find public picnic tables, bathrooms, and a snack bar to satisfy your hunger. It's located along the Atlantic shores in central city centre.

    Location: Tybrisa St, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Open: Daily from 6 am to 11 pm

    Phone: +1 912-652-6780

    Map
    7

    Cockspur Island Lighthouse

    Climb a 19th-century tower for photographic views of the island

    • Adventure

    Cockspur Island Lighthouse is the smallest of its kind in Georgia and makes a popular photo opportunity off the southeastern tip of the island. Its location marks the South Channel of the Savannah River, and it's 12 miles east of the port of Savannah. The islet upon which it sits is covered with marsh grass and oyster shells.

    Now lit for historical purposes, the tower has stood since the early 19th century, and you can climb the stairs to get a panoramic view of the surrounding waters and island. It's accessible by an overlook trail and is a popular destination for those seeking a prime photo opportunity.

    Location: Cockspur Island Lighthouse, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Phone: +1 912-659-7777

    Map
    8

    Tybee Island Museum - Battery Garland

    Learn about 400 years of history on Tybee Island

    • History

    Tybee Island Museum — Battery Garland served as the gun battery and magazine for a long gun during World War II, and today it exhibits over 400 years of history. The museum is dedicated to the entire history of Tybee Island, from the earliest Gaulle Indian indigenous culture that occupied the land through the earliest European inhabitants and all the way up to today.

    The exhibits include artefacts, documents, photographs, and information and have served the residents of the island for over 70 years. It's located on the north end of the island in the heart of the Fort Screven Historic District.

    Location: Fort Screven, Meddin Dr, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Monday from 10 am to 3 pm (closed on Tuesdays)

    Phone: +1 912-786-5801

    Map

    photo by J. Miers (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    9

    Tybee Post Theatre

    See a film in one of the first "talkie" theatres in Georgia

    • Families
    • History

    The Tybee Post Theatre was originally a film house for US Army soldiers during World War II and was restored and reopened to show films to locals and visitors. The theatre was amongst the first in Georgia to show talkies, or sound films. The theatre eventually shut down and was slated for demolition until the Tybee Historical Society saved it and restored it.

    Since 2015, it's been a destination for families, showing the latest Hollywood blockbusters and classic films in this deeply historic location. It's in the heart of the Fort Screven Historic District, just a few minutes from city centre.

    Location: 10 Van Horne Ave, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5.30 pm

    Phone: +1 912-472-4790

    Map

    photo by Historical-Buff (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    10

    McQueen's Island Trail

    Hike along a historic railway spur

    • History
    • Adventure

    McQueen's Island Trail is a 6-mile hiking and biking trail built along a stretch of the Savannah & Atlantic Railway Line and offers a serene salt-air excursion for outdoor adventurers. The original railway dates to 1887 and carried passengers from Savannah to the island, but it met its demise with the building of a highway in 1923.

    Today, it serves history buffs, hikers, and bikers looking to explore the shores of the Savannah River South Channel across saltwater marshes, through cordgrass, and beneath cabbage palms, coastal cedars, and yaupon holly trees. You'll see historic sites dating to the Civil War and walk across lands once occupied by the Gaulle Indians. The trailhead is just a few miles west of city centre.

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