Top 5 St Simons Family Activities

Things to do in St Simons Island with Kids

Not only does the island have spectacular beaches, but also a deep history, authentic southern food and lots for a family to do. Top 5 St Simons family activities.

St Simons Island is a beach town, one of the Golden Isles, located on the Atlantic Coast of Georgia just north of Florida. Not only does the island have spectacular beaches, but also a deep history, authentic southern food and lots of things for a family to do. This southern beach town is sure to charm the entire family. Though you may be going for relaxation in the sun there are lots of fun things to do for a family. We hope that this will help you narrow down your choices of St Simons family activities to be sure to do while visiting this charming southern beach town.

Our Top 5 St Simons Family Activities

  1. Play and Relax at the Beach or Pool
  2. Visit the St Simons Island Pier
  3. Climb the St Simons Lighthouse
  4. Visit the St Simons Island Pier
  5. Visit Jekyll Island

1. Play & Relax at the Beach & Pool

The beach Club at St Simons is an idea home base for families with a beautiful pool and access to the beach just over the boardwalk.
The Beach Club at St Simons is an idea home base for families with a beautiful pool and access to the beach just over the boardwalk.

We stayed at the St Simons Beach Club located about a mile from town right on the beach with a beautiful pool. Both the pool and the beach were footsteps from the condo. It took us a couple of days for the kids to want to leave the beach and pool to explore other areas of the Golden Isles. They loved just running in the waves, hunting for seashells, building in the sand and splashing in the pools or hot tubs. I really enjoyed my morning beach runs and sunset seashell hunts. St Simons Island is an excellent place to just relax. By far, relaxing was our favorite of all the wonderful things to do.

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Make sure to also visit the beach in the evening. Take a walk. The sunsets are spectacular. It is also a good time to see the Sand Pipers. And, if you go out after dark maybe, just maybe, you will be lucky enough to spot a ghost crab. We were!

2. Visit the St Simons Island Pier

A fisherman carefully reels in a baby Stingray so that he can release him back in to the ocean at the St Simons Island pier
A fisherman carefully reels in a baby stingray so that he can release him back in to the ocean at the St Simons Island Pier.

The quaint downtown area and pier of St Simons really has something for everyone. From delicious seafood restaurants, parks, a pier for fishing or sunset viewing, a historical lighthouse, park, miniature golf course and water park, you could spend hours there. Our first day on the island we made our way to the pier where our preschooler was captivated by the people fishing. The kid who never sits still stood as still as a statue for several minutes watching a fisherman carefully reel in a baby stingray on the rocks where he could proceed to release it back into the ocean. After dinner, we often made a regular stop at one of the parks and strolled down the pier.

3. Climb the St Simons Island Lighthouse

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As we began to bike back to the condo after a morning hunting island spirits, the kids requested that we stop and visit the St Simons lighthouse. We watched a short film on the history of the lighthouse and then excitedly climbed the steps up to the top of the lighthouse to take in an amazing view of the island. A brief visit to the museum in the keepers house on the way out was fun. The second level is set up with the Victorian furniture illustrating how the keeper and his family lived. Well worth the visit — be sure to include the lighthouse on your list of  St Simons must-do activities!

4. Explore St Simons Island on Bike

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We took tandem bikes out exploring a couple of times. While there are limited bike paths, the slow pace of the island is conducive to bike riding. Our first outing was for an ice cream treat down the road. Then the following day we spent the morning searching for the island tree spirits.

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We took along a picnic lunch and stopped at Mallory Park for lunch. The kids were so excited to unexpectedly discover the three-story slides at Mallory Park. Also, keep your eye out for hand painted rocks hidden around the island! We were lucky enough to find one by one of the island tree spirits.

5. Visit Jekyll Island

Jekyll Island is about a half hour drive from St Simons. We had been told to explore the island via bike. But we went on a morning when we were all tired and got a late start so decided to explore via car and it was perfect. We started at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. It is a fairly small attraction and we didn’t get to see as many turtles as we were expecting but we learned a lot about the challenges facing sea turtles and brought home a few souvenirs including a book that we have read every night since.

A day trip over to Jekyll Island is a must-do family activity while visiting the Golden Isles.
A day trip over to Jekyll Island is a must-do family activity while visiting the Golden Isles.

We proceeded next to Driftwood Beach. It was fun to take a walk there on a very different beach. It was very serene. And, you could see the St Simons Island lighthouse across the water. We then drove through the historic district. The kids wouldn’t have made it through a tour but we would have loved to have seen the old mansions up close. The Victorian Jekyll Island Resort looked like a really fun place to have experienced the island up close. Next time!

Other Things to Do In St Simons Island

Neptune Park is a fun water park that the entire family is sure to enjoy. It typically opens Memorial Day weekend, so you will want to make sure it is open.

You are on the ocean so should certainly make the most of it. Take a boat tour aboard the Lady Jane, or go kayaking!

Play golf! There’s no shortage of gold courses. Make a tee time at Sea Island, the Plantation Course, Seaside One, the King & Prince Golf Club, Sea Palms or the Islands Club. There’s also Frederica Gold Club. But it is private, so you’ll have to find a connection to get on there.

What Else to Know About St Simons Island

What is there to do in St Simons when it rains?

Probably the very best thing to do in St Simons on a rainy day is to visit the lighthouse. But there’s also trolly tours, Fort Frederica National Monument, a movie theater and shopping. Artists may want to make pottery or paint at the Tinted Tide or Get Your Muse On! Or, hop on over to Jekyll Island to visit the Sea Turtle Center or Mosaic Museum. Make your own St Simons Island Rocks! We hunted for rocks while we were there. But if it is raining, why not make your own rocks to hide?

What is the weather in St Simons?

We LOVE St Simons. But is is hot and humid in the summer. We like to visit in April or May just before things really heat up. Rain is more likely in August and September.

How to get to St Simons?

St Simons Island is near two large airports: Jacksonville, Florida and Savannah, Georgia. It is a fairly easy drive from either airport. Though we prefer Jacksonville as Southwest flies there. There is also a small airport even closer in Brunswick.

What to do on St Simons Island From Others

In the research phase of planning our St Simons family vacation we found several articles that helped us plan activities. While we didn’t do all of these St Simons family activities, they might be things that your family would find fun to do. That is a part of the beauty of a vacation to St Simons Island. Choose the activities that most appeal to your family!

St Simons Island: An Insider’s Guide to Stay, Eat and Play by Sue Rodman

This article was by far the most comprehensive article I’ve read yet on activities, restaurants and places to stay on St Simons Island. The author has clearly spent a lot of time there and knows her way around St Simons. I don’t know that I am convinced that we want to play Foot Golf, but it was fun to learn of a new unique regional sport. And, she certainly convinced me of a couple of restaurants that we must now try. She had more good feedback on and reinforcement of the St Simons Island family activities that we should do. Our whole family likes to bike and it just seems like the perfect way to explore the island whether picnicking, searching for tree spirits or visiting the lighthouse or Neptune Park.

Sunset on St Simons Island
Sunset on St Simons Island. Photo by Deb Luginbuhl.

 

10 Free Activities To Do with Kids in the Golden Isles from the Golden Isles CVB

This one is from the Golden Isles Visitors Center, so not truly a blogger. But I found the information on the different beaches and parks very helpful. I was also excited to again read about the tree spirits. This was really something memorable for the kiddos.

15 Amazing Things To Do With Kids On The Georgia Coast by 365 Atlanta Family

This article by 365 Atlanta Family was where I first heard of the tree spirits. The tip of going to Driftwood Beach at low tide is a good one. I don’t know that I would have considered timing. I also think it would be fun for the kids to see dolphins. We’ll have to look a little closer at Cap Fendig Dolphin tour. The article has some great info on parks and spots to stop for an ice cream treat.

Your recommendations for kids activities in St. Simons Island

Have you taken a St Simons Island family vacation? Of course, I knew that of all the fun things to do on St Simons Island, the one I was most looking forward to was sinking my toes into the sandy beach and watching the kids build sand castles while listening to the sounds of the waves crash onto the beach. But there is so much more to do in St Simons than I had expected. What are your favorite activities on St Simons Island with kids?

Other East Coast Beach Destinations

Are you not yet convinced that St Simons Island is the beach destination for you? Be sure to check out the 15 best East Coast beaches from our friends over at The Open Suitcase!

sunset on st simons island

This article is an update of a post originally published in April 2017.

The charming southern town of St Simons Island, Georgia is the ideal place to take a family vacation. From relaxing on the beach, taking in sunsets to exploring the island on bike to discover island tree spirits there are many things to do for families. One of Georgia's Golden Isles, your family is sure to be delighted by this beach town. #GoldenIsles #StSimonsIsland
Top 5 St Simons Family Activities

16 thoughts on “Top 5 St Simons Family Activities

  • April 30, 2017 at 11:19 pm
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    This looks like a beautiful area to visit! Beach, pool, biking my faves! And my kids would love that playground never been to a three story playground!

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    • May 2, 2017 at 2:05 pm
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      It is a fabulous family destination. Highly recommend!

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  • May 1, 2017 at 6:54 pm
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    I am from the western part of North America. I have been to Florida, but never to Georgia. It never crossed my mind. But, what a beautiful place. My kids are older, but they would have loved visiting a place like that when they were younger. It looks very family friendly and untouched, two important qualities for me.

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    • May 2, 2017 at 2:07 pm
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      I know. So many people we’ve talked to about it have never heard of it. And, you are right–family friendly and some what untouched. They do a great job of protecting the area, I think. Though I bet the beaches during the summer are busy.

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  • May 5, 2017 at 6:07 pm
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    I’m not far from there, this would make a great weekend trip. Great post, thanks for sharing! #FlyAwayFriday

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  • May 5, 2017 at 9:47 pm
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    Jekyll and St. Simons Islands!!! Some of my favorites! My family has been to both on a couple occasions both on pass throughs to Florida as well as for a week vacation. Such beautiful scenery and the history is some of my favorite! Lighthouses and forts have become somewhat of a hobby for us when we visit these coastal treasures.

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  • May 10, 2017 at 11:09 pm
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    I would LOVE to explore the island via bike! That sounds like so much fun! Thanks for joining Fly Away Friday! See you next week! xo

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  • May 14, 2017 at 3:03 pm
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    Looks like the perfect place for a family escape! Thanks for joining #FarawayFiles

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    • May 15, 2017 at 2:56 am
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      Thank you! And, glad to be a part of #FarawayFiles

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  • May 15, 2017 at 8:00 pm
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    Georgia is a state I have not explored much with the exception of Savannah, and I’ve always been curious as to the beach life there. I would imagine it’s very similar to South Carolina. It probably doesn’t get nearly as crowded as Florida which is a major bonus! #farawayfiles

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  • May 17, 2017 at 2:58 pm
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    Georgia has so much! I have only been to Savannah and Atlanta, but based on this post, I need to go back and explore more. Looks absolutely beautiful! Thanks for coming to Fly Away Friday! Hope to see you this week!

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    • May 18, 2017 at 2:03 pm
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      The Golden Isles are my favorites! I’ve heard great things about Savannah too. Looking forward to Fly Away Friday.

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      • May 23, 2017 at 3:08 am
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        My husband brought up the idea of visiting Savannah while we were on St Simons but we could barely tear the kids from the beach so I am sure couldn’t have dragged them to another city. Maybe next time!

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  • May 18, 2017 at 10:00 am
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    I love the idea of exploring the island by bike! We’ve become full on bike commuters living in Copenhagen and I love the sustainable option when traveling! That lighthouse is so southern – reminds me of the ones in South Carolina from my childhood! Thanks for sharing with #FarawayFiles, welcome to the community!

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    • May 18, 2017 at 2:02 pm
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      That is so great that you can commute via bike. Our neighborhood is great for bikes. Unfortunately I live a little too far away from work. But always prefer to get on a bike over a car when possible. And, so glad to have found #FarawayFlies!

      Reply

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