The Ultimate Guide to Tybee Island! Part One

Bo Approved Stamp from Born to Be Boomers

Your ultimate pet-friendly guide to Tybee Island, Georgia is here! I wanted to explore the Georgia Coast before summer but really did not know much about it. In fact, I have visited every beach to the south and north of it, but not Tybee Island. Before you go make sure you check out part two of the guide here!

This is a sponsored post with Visit Tybee Island and all opinions are 100% my own. I also want to thank Tybee Island Visitor’s Center, Mermaid Cottages, The Original Crabshack, CoCo’s Sunset Grille and Captain Mikes Dolphin Tours for hosting us during our stay!

We spent 5 days on Tybee Island and thanks to the southern hospitality of the locals, we got to see everything there is to do there with our German Shepherd, Bo!

If you are looking for beach time during spring break or the summer, Tybee Island, Georgia has everything you are looking for whether you are bringing the family or a couple looking to getaway. We needed a break and Tybee Island fit the bill but we wanted to bring Bo! Some areas are easier than others to find accommodations for pets so I reached out to Visit Tybee Island to get more information.

Tybee Island is the beach for Savannah. I loved this because that meant I could make a day trip into Savannah for a visit which is only about 30 minutes away but I still have the beach right there for most of our trip. Both the Savannah and Tybee Island areas are very welcoming to pets.


The first thing I needed to set up was housing. I received an itinerary with suggestions from the Tybee Island Visitors Center for housing and activities for our stay. I immediately reached out to Mermaid Cottages for accommodation information. One of the things I love about Mermaid Cottages is that they specialize in vintage homes and cottages and most of the cottages are pet-friendly. The owners of Mermaid Cottages actually runs a dog rescue.

I love the vintage feel of Tybee! It reminds me of my time down on the Jersey shore as a kid.

Mermaid Cottages responded immediately with a two-bedroom two-bath pet-friendly home named Sea Largo circa 1962. Each home has a name with the year of construction. I was assigned an agent to assist me, Mermaid Mona, who handled all of the accommodation arrangements and information and sent over the contract and check-in information.

I loved the check-in process! Everything was electronic and was an easy and well thought out process. I clicked a few buttons and we were ready to go! It was a very easy and can all be done from an app called Hospitality that you download on your phone.

Check In

Once we checked in I could see the Sea Largo was perfect for us. I have stayed in many vacation rental homes over the years and I can say that Mermaid Cottages is a very professional rental organization. The Sea Largo was well appointed and very clean. There was a fenced in yard for Bo. Every detail was perfect and we were ready to relax!

The first thing I checked was the kitchen. I love to cook even while I am on vacation and I took notice that there were plenty of real glasses and dishes for us to use. Also, there were plenty of cooking utensils. I can not tell you how many wine keys I have had to purchase on vacation! Needless to say, I have several at home and one in each car for when we travel!

As I walked around the unit, I noticed it was tastefully decorated with better than average linens and towels. The home has been renovated so there was new flooring and most of the fixtures had been updated to tastefully reflect the beachy vintage feel that you get upon entering Tybee Island.

Our friends at Mermaid Cottages left us some treats for Bo and books we could read while relaxing about guide dogs. Tybee Visitors Center greeted us with a beach bag full of necessities for our trip! True southern hospitality!

Beach Bum Biscuits for Bo!
Gift bag from Tybee Island Visitors Center
Outdoor Shower and Deck Sea Largo

Sea Largo is located on 2nd Avenue which is a designated road for bike riders. Our favorite place to hang out was the front porch or the deck. We could watch families riding their bikes by as they returned home from the beach.

Sea Largo, Tybee Island

Pet-Friendly Town

I never thought I could label an entire town as pet-friendly but with Tybee Island that is possible. The only places I found that does not allow pets is on the beach and a couple of indoor attractions. And frankly, coming from Florida, I feel the beach rule is with good reason.

People have a difficult time cleaning up after themselves much less their pets while on vacation, so no pets are allowed on the beach in Tybee Island. Practically every restaurant had an area for pets to come and hang with their owners while they munched great food and sipped on cocktails.

Day One

Sunset view from The Deck Beach Bar and Kitchen

Our first night there we went to The Deck Beach Bar and Kitchen. This is an oceanfront restaurant located in The Beachside Colony Resort. I called to confirm we could bring Bo. The host sat us on the patio overlooking Tybee Island’s wide and beautiful beach.

We ordered some drinks and some water for Bo. Jack and I like to share so decided to try the Avocado Toast and the Fresh Catch of the Day which was Barramundi. The Deck has a laid back atmosphere and a nice variety on the menu. I added this to the Ultimate Guide to Tybee Island because the menu had plenty to choose from and it was nice to spend our first evening right on the ocean.

Barramundi served with leeks and twice-baked potatoes
Ultimate Gide to Tybee Island Part 1
Avocado Toast

I know I will need some supplies for snacks and light meals so we take Bo back the cottage and head to the store. There is one small IGA grocery store on the island which is sufficient and reasonably priced. If you want more organic options though I would bring those with you.

Day Two

Our first full day is here! So why do you need an Ultimate Guide to Tybee Island? Because there is so much to do! The first thing I want to do is check out the beaches. Tybee Island is known for its wide beaches with plenty of room for everyone. We headed out to the closest beach to see how far it was from the cottage which is only three blocks. Since the island is only about 3.2 square miles the beach is convenient from just about any home.

There are three sections of beach. North Beach, Mid Beach and South Beach. North Beach would be the quietest due to the heavy residential areas and limited parking. Mid Beach has mild waves and soft sand which makes it perfect for families. South Beach has the most parking and is lined with restaurants. This is also where the Tybee Island Pier is located.

Mid Beach

The Dunes Mid Beach, Tybee Island

Our cottage was located Mid Beach so it is a quick walk or bike ride up there. There are a few parking spots on each street on Mid Beach but they fill up quickly! All parking in Tybee has a fee from 8 AM to 8 PM
unless it is on private property.

13th Street Beach, Tybee Island

From what I understand they are serious about the rules here and they are enforced for everyone’s comfort.

13th Street Beach, Tybee Island, GA
Mid Beach, Tybee Island
Oceanfront Homes Tybee Island

North Beach

Next we headed over to North Beach to check out the Tybee Lighthouse! The Tybee Light Station was built in 1732 and stands 145 feet tall. The lighthouse attraction is not pet-friendly so we just took some pictures outside the area. I highly recommend you leave your pup at home to take advantage of this tour.

Also located on North Beach is the Tybee Island Dog Park and Fort Screven which houses the Tybee Island Museum which has over 400 years of the island’s history.

Tybee Island Dog Park
Fort Screven and Tybee Island Museum Entrance
Fort Screven

Seaside Sisters is Bo Approved!

We continue on and decide to do some shopping on the northern side of the island. As suggested by Tybee Island Visitor Center we head over to Seaside Sisters, a fun little pet-friendly gift shop located on Hwy 80 as you enter Tybee Island. You will be greeted with a treat and there is always a water bowl out for your best friend! The shop offers lots of cool seasonal items as well as home decor for your beach house. This is a great place to stop by and purchase gifts for friends and family back home and it is Bo Approved!

Seaside Sisters Gift Shop

While we were there we were lucky enough to see one of the new items that just came in as the manager was posting it on Facebook for their many fans! When I went to like their page later in the day this shirt had already sold out!

We decided to continue our walk on Highway 80 to see what the town had to offer. This area caters more to folks looking for the more eclectic shopping experience and is only a brief walk to get to the other shops in the area.

Sweetie Pie Ice Cream
Glazed and Confused
Tybean Coffee Shop
Shopping in Tybee Island

South Beach

After shopping, we decided to head over to South Beach to look for a place to get a bite and check out that area of the island. This is where the most parking is and the pier is also located here. The two main streets, Strand Avenue and Tybrisa Street, are loaded with restaurants, hotels and shops. This area is very popular so get their early to find a parking spot. Remember! You must pay to park. Fortunately, we were lucky enough to find a spot and got right in.

Tybrisa Street, Tybee Island

We head down Tybrisa Street to get to Strand. We did not want to break any rules so I decided we should split up to see the pier. It was not technically the beach but I did not want to take any chances with Bo being on the pier if it was not permitted.

Tybee Island Pier
Pier at South Beach, Tybee Island
South Beach, Tybee Island
South Beach Parking Tybee Island
Fannie’s Restaurant

Fannies Restaurant

I spotted the pink building in the picture above and figured that had to be Fannie’s Restaurant. We decide to head over and get some lunch and see if they are another pet-friendly restaurant. Once we arrived the server told us the sidewalk seating was first come, first serve and pet-friendly. So we grab a table and order some drinks and nachos to share!

We are pretty stuffed from the nachos so we decide to head back to the cottage to chill out on our front porch for the rest of the afternoon.

Bayside and the Sandbar

We want to spend the evening looking for a great place to see the sunset and headed over to check out the bayside of the island. We stopped at a couple of parking areas on the bayside that also offered beach access and found people sailing and kiteboarding. As we drove down the most western road, Chatham Avenue, we eventually hit a beach entrance that seemed to be the most southern point of the island.

In the background of this photo, you can see a sailboat that was most likely washed ashore during a hurricane.

Tybee Creek
Tybee Creek

People were out enjoying the creek and calmer waters. As we made it over to the beachside where the creek meets the Atlantic we found kiteboarders tearing it up on the waves.

Kiteboarders where the Atlantic meets Tybee Creek
Chatham Avenue Beach

I ventured out onto the beach and had to leave Jack and Bo behind to watch from the boardwalk. It was overcast and windy but people were heading out to the sandbar to look for collectibles.

Birds getting their dinner from the cement pilings

Dangerous Areas

I realized that the Chatham entrance was the sandbar that tourists are warned to stay off of during low tide. The tide levels here will drop 10 feet. You can barely see the ocean waves when standing on the beach at low tide.

The Atlantic waves were right where I am standing just a few minutes ago.
Mouth of Tybee Creek on South Beach

In addition to the tidal changes, there are also pockets of very soft sand and like quicksand, you will sink. At one point I took a step and my leg was quickly surrounded by this liquid sand and I almost lost my flip flop and my balance! I had to reach into the sand with my hand and get my shoe!

Mouth of Tybee Creek as the tide comes in

Within a short time, the tide turns back around and water starts to come in catching people out on the sandbar with no way to return. The only way to get in is to navigate the deep channels of water and swift currents. You can see in my photos what the currents do to the seafloor eroding sand and creating deep gullies and channels.

People venturing out on to the sandbar looking for sea life.
Sand dollars are a common find at low tide.

The Tide Turns

While I was out there waiting for the sunset I realized the tide was coming in. When I looked up from taking photos and all of a sudden I was surrounded by water. I did not venture too far out so I only had to get through about six inches of water but I saw how quickly things can change and I needed to move inland.

One family was almost not so lucky. A woman standing near me starting screaming for a family to come in. They were really far out. Across the channel is Little Tybee Island and I had read warnings that you can not make it there and back to the beach before the tide comes in.

I looked through my telephoto lens to see that they were walking away from us. Many of us were nervous they would not make it back in time. Fortunately, they saw the woman’s waving arms and heard her screaming with pleas to come in.

You can see in my photos the progression of water as they were coming in.

A family walking too far out before the tide comes in
Family heading back from Little Tybee Island after onlookers yell and wave for them to come back
Just a few minutes prior to the area being covered in water. You can see how much water has already come in.

The tide swallows up the sea floor as the sun sets behind Little Tybee Island.

Another beautiful sunset in Tybee Island, Georgia!

Ultimate Guide to Tybee Island Part 1

Be sure to check out Part Two of my Ultimate Tybee Island Guide and pet-friendly adventure!

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