Tybee Island has a vast and unique history, which over the years has contributed to the special welcoming feel it offers to guests of all types. Although a relatively small destination along the eastern coastline of Georgia, Tybee offers an intriguingly large variety of experiences and an overwhelming feeling of peace and tranquility for everyone that visits. Whether you seek the roots of America’s history (of which the island played many parts), or you prefer the modern eclectic nature of our downtown shops and free-spirited events, Tybee Island is anything but your average vacation. A popular feature of Tybee is how close it is to mainland Georgia and the popular city of Savannah. But don’t let it’s close proximity to the city fool you, Tybee Island is Miles Away from Ordinary, despite being Close to Everything Else!
The name “Tybee” is believed to be derived from the Euchee Native American word for “salt”.Throughout Tybee Island’s history, it has been known as a recreational and healing haven, its soothing saltwater air has brought many visitors seeking a remedy to respiratory ailments (a practice once known as “taking the slats”) and its peaceful beaches offer mental and emotional rejuvenation.
Tybee Island is a favorite nesting ground for the endangered Loggerhead Sea Turtles (and sometimes other closely related sea turtles such as Leatherbacks, Kemp Ridley, and Green Sea Turtles ). The fascinating events of nesting season run May 1- Oct 31 and there are a number of public education, monitoring, and fundraising events to support these amazing creatures.
Tybee Island is only 18 miles away from Savannah GA and was once renamed as “Savannah Beach” because of its close proximity and popularity with the locals in Savannah. Officially Georgia’s easternmost point, Tybee is a one-of-a-kind destination full of interesting history and beautiful landscapes.
When it was first built in 1736, the Tybee Island Lighthouse was 90 feet tall, making it the largest structure in America at the time. It has since been rebuilt several times but remains one of only a few 18th-century lighthouses still operational in North American. Love history? The lighthouse and it’s 5-acre site and structures are all historically preserved and accessible to the public.
Tybee Island has existed under 6 different flags, adding to its rich history documented as far back as the 16th-century when the Spanish initially claimed it. Throughout the centuries it has enjoyed and endured discovery, revolution, development, and strategic positioning that make it abundant in the history books. If you love American history the Tybee Museum in the Battery Garland of Fort Screven, or the Tybee Island Lighthouse are must-see attractions.
Pirate history runs deep on Tybee Island, once a favorite hideout and freshwater source for deep-sea pillagers, Tybee continues to build a tradition of pirate history with its unique costume-rich, swashbuckling festival held every Fall for more than the last 15 years. Visit Tybee Island’s popular, family-friendly event that simply can’t be replicated anywhere else!
Tybee Island lays claim to a wide variety of unique and one-of-a-kind annual parades and festivals throughout the year as well as a few traditional holiday celebrations with creative Tybee flare? Check out the primary annual events list: