The Most Expensive Beaches in Georgia to Buy a Second Home

Tidal Flats on North Beach Tybee Island, Georgia, USA
Billy McDonald/

Written by Courtney Wennerstrom

Published: July 1, 2023

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Ah, Georgia, the land of Southern hospitality, intriguing history, vibrant cities, and breathtaking natural beauty. It’s no wonder that home buyers and investors are falling head over heels for this enchanting state. Spanning the Atlantic ocean, the Georgia coast offers a charming and diverse range of cultural, culinary, and recreational experiences that delight and captivate the senses. Because the barrier islands act as a protective shield against the open ocean, Georgia’s beaches boast stunning landscapes replete with pristine coastline and salt marshes teeming with wildlife. So perhaps it is no surprise that most expensive beaches in Georgia to buy a second home are exorbitant for good reason, alas. We will soon discover why.

If you’re considering acquiring property on the Georgia coast, be prepared for the extent of its popularity. The demand for coastal real estate, especially in coveted areas like Sea Island, comes with a hefty price tag. So, before diving headfirst into Georgia’s prime real estate market, make sure your budget can handle the soaring prices. That’s because – whether you are looking for your first, second, or third home – living on or near the Peach State’s poshest beaches will cost you a pretty penny.

So, before we explore the most expensive beaches in Georgia to buy a second home, it’s worth understanding why the proverbial peach juice is worth the squeeze in the first place.

Natural Splendor and Recreational Activities

It makes sense for nature lovers to dream of buying a second home in Georgia. In particular, The Golden Isles, including St. Simons Island, Jekyll Island, and Sea Island are dazzling. And there is so much to do outside! Swimming, surfing, paddleboarding, kayaking, deep sea fishing, and other aquatic sports are highly accessible here, as are hiking, biking, bird watching, and sightseeing. From the enchanting shores of St. Simons Island to the untamed beauty of Jekyll Island, Georgia is an adventurer’s paradise.

Historical Significance

History buffs will likewise understandably be fascinated by Georgia, whose historical narratives are deeply ingrained in everyday life. Founded in 1732, the fourth of the original 13 states has weathered more than just tropical storms. There have been plenty of political ones as well. Think of Atlanta, the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr., where echoes of the Civil Rights Movement reverberate with a powerful legacy of equality and justice. Similarly, Savannah’s cobblestone streets, grand mansions, and moss-draped oak trees are a living picture of a bygone era. From the Albany Movement to the March on Washington and the Selma to Montgomery marches, Georgia’s history encompasses countless pivotal moments that dramatically shaped the course of our Nation’s history.

Cultural Wonders

For foodies, Georgia’s culinary delights are also well worth mentioning. Southern cuisine takes center stage here, with soulful dishes created with Southern flair. From succulent shrimp and crab to mouthwatering oysters and fish, each bite is a celebration of the coastal bounty. And when it comes to libations, local wineries showcase diverse varietals and the distinct flavors fertile coastal soil imparts to the grapes.

Moreover, for everything Georgia offers to seduce the taste buds, there are equal pleasures for the ears. In fact, Georgia’s music scene is as robust as its culinary landscape. Blues and soul traditions run deep, but music enthusiasts can also experience the twang of country and energetic beats of hip-hop. From iconic venues to grassroots performances, the state’s musical heritage continues to inspire and captivate audiences, making Georgia a true haven for music enthusiasts.

Here are the most expensive beaches in Georgia to buy a second home.

1. Sea Island

Path to the beach in Sea Island, Georgia

Sea Island is a private resort island located near St. Simons Island. Renowned for its exclusivity and luxurious amenities, this is the most expensive beach in Georgia to buy a second home.

Okay: so you are ready to buy a piece of coastal paradise. Let’s start with the most expensive option. Welcome to Sea Island – a private resort island with very limited access to the outside world. The epitome of elegance, this elite vacation spot caters to clientele who crave utmost privacy, intimacy, and an secluded escape. World-class golfing and spas abound here. A haven of luxury, only a chosen few can afford to enter and stay this realm of opulence.

To begin, there is a hefty price of admission. Just consider the cost of vacationing at The Cloister, for instance, the crown jewel of Sea Island. This Mediterranean-style hotel is the centerpiece of the resort. Rooms here start at a modest $788 per night, which, let’s be honest, could fund a small getaway to many other destinations. From there, prices can climb up to a mind-boggling $3,263 per night. Yes, you read that right. Those costs are likely to make even the most seasoned traveler gasp for breath.

However, these prices are a reflection of Sea Island’s extravagant atmosphere. Keeping the vast splendor of Sea Island in mind, you might understand why the median price of a home here is $4.3 million. However, you can actually spend a lot more, if you’d like. Current real estate listings advertise mansions in Sea Island for close to $18 M.

2. Tybee Island:

Tybee Island, Lighthouse, American Flag, Photography, USA

The historic Tybee Island Lighthouse has been guiding ships since 1736, making it one of the oldest and most iconic lighthouses in the United States.

Coming in at number 2 on our list of the most expensive beaches in Georgia to buy a second home… we find Tybee Island, an artist’s sanctuary. This town’s vibrant art scene supports creativity and a thriving artistic community. With colorful galleries and open-air exhibitions, this beach town embodies relaxation and rejuvenation.

In these ways, the island’s unique blend of culture, art, and natural beauty adds to its appeal. From the iconic Tybee Island Light Station, standing tall as a beacon of the past, to the fascinating stories that echo through its streets, the island is a living testament to its rich heritage. The historic district showcases quaint cottages and charming architecture that exude a timeless elegance.

Additionally, Tybee Island offers a range of amenities and conveniences that make day-to-day living a breeze. From locally-owned shops and restaurants serving fresh seafood and Southern cuisine to recreational activities like biking, kayaking, and paddleboarding, the island provides a fulfilling lifestyle.

If you want a piece of this coastal paradise, the median home price is $649.5 K with options to buy a single family home for over $2 M.

3. St. Simons Island

East Beach Georgia

St. Simons Island is known for its stunning beaches. East Beach is a popular spot for swimming and sunbathing. Gould’s Inlet, on the island’s northern tip, is a great spot for bird watching and fishing.

On top of its own endearing boutiques, art galleries, and specialty shops, St. Simons Island is close to nearby cities such as Brunswick and Savannah, a proximity that provides easy access to additional amenities, shopping centers, and cultural attractions. Residents here enjoy the best of both worlds, with the tranquility of island living and the convenience of nearby urban centers.

Moreover, it has a variety of residential areas, ranging from quaint cottages to luxurious waterfront estates. Many homes on St. Simons Island are designed to take advantage of the scenic views and coastal breezes, and are nestled in a serene and inviting living environment. Whether you prefer a beachfront property or a quiet neighborhood tucked away from the hustle and bustle, there are housing options to suit various preferences and budgets. The median home values in St. Simons are currently about $596,266 but can go up to $8 M.

4. Jekyll Island

The Jekyll Island Sign for this Barrier Island in Glynn County, Georgia

Jekyll Island is dedicated to environmental preservation and sustainable development. About 65% of the island is protected land, including marshes, dunes, and maritime forests. Historically, it has been one of the most expensive beaches to buy a second home in Georgia.

Compared to the other islands above, Jekyll Island – just south of St. Simons Island – is incredibly reasonably priced. The average home here is valued at $331,120 – dramatically less expensive than Sea Island, for example. The discrepancy in home prices is a bit surprising considering the fact that Jekyll Island was once a private retreat for some of America’s wealthiest families. Often called the “Gilded Age Millionaires” – an epithet that included John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, J.P. Morgan, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jay Gould, and Andrew Mellon. Together, they formed a luxurious residential community by building extravagant winter cottages on the island. Don’t worry, though: if you can afford it, you can still find mansions for close to $2 M in this beautiful location.

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About the Author

Courtney Wennerstrom is a writer at A-Z Animals where her primary focus is on pet wellness and the human-animal bond. As an animal welfare professional, Courtney has been writing and researching about animals for over a decade and holds an PhD (ABD) in English from Indiana University, Bloomington, where she taught for 15 years. A resident of Colorado, Courtney loves to hike, travel, and read. She finds inspiration from her rescued huskies, Sasha and Saint, and her beloved rescued cat, Mojo.

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