Tybee Island, just 20 minutes from Downtown Savannah, boasts five miles of beaches. — Photo courtesy of Ron Cogswell
Tybee Island is only 20 minutes from Downtown Savannah, but once you arrive, you’ll feel like you’re a world away. Locals live on what’s affectionately known as “Tybee Time,” a general state of mind that involves plenty of rest and relaxation and a few libations.
Helen's Solidarity, a popular dish at the Breakfast Club. — Photo courtesy of Tadson Bussey
Head to Tybee early and plan to grab a bite to eat at the Breakfast Club, a Tybee institution that serves up a variety of morning favorites, including the notorious Helen’s Solidarity (aka the Grill Cleaner’s Special), an enormous dish featuring diced potatoes, Polish sausage, green peppers, onions, scrambled eggs and cheese.
The Tybee Pier and Pavilion always draws a crowd. — Photo courtesy of L Church
After breakfast, you’ll be ready to hit the beach, so head to the area near the Tybee Pier and Pavilion. Parking is plentiful around the area, though all spaces are metered. Once you’ve parked, stake out a good spot on the beach and enjoy a few hours of fun in the sun and surf.
Tybee Island Social Club's unique tacos and cocktails always hit the mark. — Photo courtesy of Tybee Island Social Club
If you’ve worked up an appetite from jumping waves and walking up and down the beach collecting shells, then head to lunch at the Tybee Island Social Club. Since you’re living on Tybee Time now, you may as well enjoy one of the restaurant’s famous cocktails with your tacos. If you’re feeling adventurous, go for the Del Fuego, which features muddled jalapeno, agave nectar, fresh lime juice, Mezcal and ginger beer, and the orange pork taco, a tasty combination of Boston Butt, caramelized onions, raisins, banana peppers and garlic aioli.
The Tybee lighthouse has been guiding mariners to the island since the 1700s. — Photo courtesy of Doug Kerr
Try to limit yourself to just one cocktail at the Tybee Island Social Club, as difficult as that may be, so you can handle the 178 stairs that lead to the top of the Tybee Island Light Station, one of the nation’s most intact lighthouses. Originally built in the 18th century and remodeled several times over the years, the light station features a nine-foot-tall First Order Fresnel lens and displays its 1916 daymark. A museum, which is located on the five-acre property, boasts artifacts and exhibits from the past five centuries.
A clearnose skate at the Tybee Island Marine Science Center. — Photo courtesy of Tybee Island Marine Science Center
Once you’ve soaked up some history, change gears and get ready to check out some nature at the Tybee Island Marine Science Center. The center’s 750-square-foot gallery features alligators, polka-dot batfish, spider crabs, a loggerhead sea turtle hatchling, diamondback terrapins, a corn snake, box turtle, horseshoe crab and other marine creatures.
The North Beach Bar & Grill is the perfect place to cap off a day at Tybee. — Photo courtesy of North Beach Bar & Grill
Finish your day at Tybee with dinner at the North Beach Bar & Grill, an open-air eatery just steps from the ocean that serves tasty Caribbean-influenced dishes. Once you’ve enjoyed some crab cakes, jerk chicken and an island-inspired cocktail, you can walk off your meal by taking a moonlit stroll down Tybee’s lovely North Beach. After such a relaxing and indulgent day, you may want to stay on Tybee Time forever.