Golden Anniversary, Golden Isles, and the Golden Ray

Henry and I didn’t want to travel too far from home to celebrate our 50th Anniversary so we chose to spend the weekend at a historic hotel in the beautiful Golden Isles of Georgia. Located about 100 miles down the coast from our home, the Golden Isles include the town of Brunswick and four barrier islands – St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Jekyll Island, and Little St. Simons Island.

We started our trip with a stop on St. Simon’s Island to take a walk on the pier. The St. Simons Lighthouse was on land in one direction and the capsized cargo ship Golden Ray was in the sound between St. Simons and Jekyll in the other direction. I’ll have more about the ship in a later post.

St. Simons Island Lighthouse
Cargo ship Golden Ray as seen from the St. Simons Island Pier

On our drive from St. Simons to Jekyll we were surrounded by the green Marshes of Glynn. Two causeways over the marsh and several bridges later we arrived at our destination, the beautiful and historic Jekyll Island Club Resort.

Jekyll Island Club Resort

We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing by the pool. As we were getting ready to go out to dinner there was a knock on the door from Room Service. The resort was not providing room service during our stay so I couldn’t imagine what was going on. Complimentary champagne and truffles to celebrate our golden anniversary! What a surprise and special treat!

Champagne and truffles complements of the Jekyll Island Club

The champagne and truffles would have to wait until after dinner at the Wharf Restaurant on the Jekyll River, just a short walk away from our room.

The Wharf Restaurant on the Jekyll River

After dinner we watched the sun begin to set before going back to the room to pop the champagne.

Sunset after dinner at the Wharf

The rest of the evening we enjoyed our champagne and truffles watching the sky change colors and listening to the band playing outside at the Wharf as we rocked in the rocking chairs on our porch.

After an amazing first day on Jekyll, the next day our 50th anniversary was filled with more surprises and celebrating. The first thing on our agenda was to find Driftwood Beach and to take a drive around the island.

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island
Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island

Our anniversary dinner at the 80 Ocean couldn’t have been any more special. Our server Gabriella treated us like royalty the entire time we were there. As we were finishing up our complimentary deserts, she surprised us by placing an envelope on our table. It was from our daughter and her family, with a picture of the family holding a Happy Anniversary sign. To top it all off, our daughter paid for our dinner! The best surprise present either of us had ever received!

Celebrating our 50th anniversary!

We still weren’t done celebrating. Back at the hotel, we walked to the river to see the sunset. A perfect ending to a beautiful day!

Anniversary Sunset over the Jekyll River

Stay tuned for more about our Jekyll Island adventure and the cargo ship Golden Ray.

34 thoughts on “Golden Anniversary, Golden Isles, and the Golden Ray

  1. I tried to leave a comment, but was blocked by the app. My parents and I would spend a week twice a year on St. Simons, since, at the time (1971-73) Jekyll was still private. There were only the stunning summer “cottages” owned by the Rockefeller’s and Vanderbilts, et al. I’m so glad it’s available to the public. What a lovely and meaningful way to celebrate your 50th anniversary. Congratulations! Did you know that the 19th century American poet, Sidney Lanier, wrote a lengthy poem called “The Marshes of Glen?” He also penned “The Song of the Chattahoochee” about the river between Georgia and Alabama. We had to memorize it in 9th grade in Montgomery. My high school alma mater is named after Lanier. Thank you for the lovely memories.

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    1. Jean, we lived on St. Simons from 1974 until 1980 when we moved to Savannah. The Jekyll Island Club wasn’t renovated and opened until after we moved. It’s beautiful now and some of the millionaire’s ‘cottages’ have been renovated. Love Lanier’s poem but have never read the one about the Chattahiochee.

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      1. I bet it was! We had a transatlantic cruise canceled. We were suppose to leave for Ireland in September. No cruising and USA is not welcomed to many many countries because of all our Covid cases.

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  2. Hi Beth, as you know, we have visited and written about Jekyl many times and consider it one of our favorite ‘road trip’ destinations. I am glad you got to experience it for your Anniversary. We have covered almost every mile of the island from Andrews beach to Driftwood and all the cross trails in between on our bike rides there. It is a peaceful, magical place that I will never get enough of. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary. I love your sunset photo.

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    1. Suzanne, thank you! It was too hot for us old folks to be riding bikes but the heat didn’t stop young families from riding! The only beach we went to was Driftwood beach. Neither of us can spend too much time in the sun. I really liked being at the resort. The only place on the island I saw crowds was at the Jekyll Market! Parking was scarce there. I can’t believe how that area has grown.

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  3. Congratulations on 50 years together and on having such a thoughtful daughter! I’m so glad you were able to have such a wonderful celebration despite the crazy covid-ness of the year. Just thinking of the drive from St. Simons to Jekyll through the magical Marshes of Glynn makes me smile. Jekyll Island is amazing (although my heart is inclined toward St. Simons) and I imagine you felt just a wee bit like the Rockefellers while you rocked on the porch and sipped champagne.

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    1. Brenda, it had been years since we made that drive from St. Simons to Jekyll. I had forgotten how beautiful it was. The marsh seems to go on forever. We really enjoyed that porch! I loved the building with its original floors and leaded glass. It wasn’t our original plan to go there but we couldn’t have picked a better place to go.

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