John and I went to Jekyll Island this past weekend to get away and to also celebrate his birthday. It was a spur of the moment decision. The weekend’s forecast for Jensen Beach for this past weekend was high 80’s, possibly hitting 90. We were vegging out and decided on a whim to go exploring so we made reservations and departed North to Georgia. We just weren’t ready for summer yet.
Packing for this trip was a little tricky because although it would be shorts weather when we arrived, it would be cool the rest of the weekend. We threw a little of everything in the suitcase and away we went.
We took Mack with us because it was a last minute getaway. He still misses Chloe, as we all do, but the three of us are coping with her loss. We commented on the trip up what she would have been doing in the car. It was our first road trip without her.
Jekyll Island is about 30 minutes above the Florida State Line which was awesome. It is a very small quiet island that you have to pay a toll (they call it a parking fee) to enter. It is surrounded by salt marshes and the island itself is not very developed so there are a lot of trees. Our hotel was in the Beach Village which is right after you enter the island. We checked in to our room and we immediately went out onto the balcony. We had a nice view of the ocean but what really struck me was all of the bird calls. This was very exciting because some of these calls I haven’t heard in a long time. We could sit outside on the balcony and also hear lots of birds! So AWESOME!
We grabbed dinner and took Mack for a walk. It was getting dark so this walk was a bit of a challenge. The island is very dark at night, especially since they use sea turtle friendly bulbs. We could see a lot of stars and we walked along a path that runs along the beach, which is very nice. They really have the Beach Village planned out nicely.
On Saturday the three of us took the nature trail to check out the historic part of Jekyll Island. The nature trail had sooooo many birds chirping and singing. My app was going berserk identifying all the calls. We came upon a clearing that was roped off and there was a huge gator lolling on the banks of a large pond. Whoa! We expect these guys in Florida but we forgot that they can be found as far north as North Carolina. Good thing we didn’t meet that critter the previous evening!
We checked out the little shops and strolled by the historic homes. We saw people playing croquet which was fun. We got attacked by no see ‘ums until we stopped and bought a spray. We even sprayed Mack. They were brutal.
What we really liked about Jekyll Island is the layback atmosphere and that you really didn’t need a car. Once you park the car, you can walk or bike to everything. We didn’t bring our bikes but we will the next time we visit.
I liked the salt marshes which reminded me of New Jersey. We came upon a park that was along the back bay/salt marsh side of the island and I wish I had brought my plein air gear because it was the sort of landscape I would have painted. It’s in the sketch above.
One last thought, we saw mistletoe “balls” in the trees everywhere. I sketched the Mistletoe cottage because of all the mistletoe we saw. They also have water towers that looked like giant golf tees! And it was March and their azaleas were blooming. That was pretty cool! We definitely want to go back.
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