Cumberland Island, GA, USA

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Cumberland Island, GA, USA

Find the best place to stay — Cumberland Island

Escape to Cumberland Island

You can watch the world of modern America disappear as you bounce over the serpentine meanders of Fancy Bluff Creek to Cumberland Island. Fragmenting from the side of the eastern seaboard, this is a place to really get away from it all. It's a land where the rollers of the Atlantic provide the backing track, and the sway of the sawgrass swamps is there to keep you grounded. Cumberland Island vacation rentals will offer access to old mansions bearing the moniker of Carnegie, too, but it's mainly all about the wild waters and misty bayous in this designated national seashore.

Find yourself on the frontier in Cumberland Island

Cumberland Island hearkens back to the days of wild America. Almost entirely undeveloped, it's got sweeping swathes of vine-draped swampland and marsh. The rare roads are all encased in canopies of gnarled cypress trees and palms. The beaches are salt-washed and untrodden – you're not likely to see another footprint there as you beachcomb between the dunes and crashing swells. Birding is popular, with flitting falcons and ospreys all occupying the skies, while campers and board-touting surfers also make their way to the shores.

Tracing the Carnegies in Cumberland Island

Although the landscapes here have remained wild and feral thanks to the protected national status of the whole Cumberland seashore, there are a couple of relics from centuries gone by that are worth seeing. They start with the eerie ruins of Dungeness. Built first in the 1730s, the mansion was once home to Nathanael Greene, the Revolutionary War general, and then entered the Carnegie family of industrial magnates. The latter also built the beautiful Plum Orchard estate, where guided tours of the rooms and grounds are a great way to experience the rich heritage of the island.

Feel the heat on Cumberland Island

With the heat of the American South descending on the Georgian shores from June to August, most travelers prefer to ferry across to the barrier islands in the cooler months of the year. That could mean booking your Cumberland Island vacation rental for October or November, when you can still expect to find the mercury cranking up to temperatures above 60 degrees. Or, it could mean coming in March and April, when you'll have the beautiful acacia and azalea blooms to enjoy.

Cumberland Island is a jewel of the Georgian coast

A Cumberland Island vacation rental is a ticket to one of Georgia's most handsome barrier isles. It's got all the natural habitats you could expect of a stretched-out spit of land that's buffeted by the Atlantic Ocean on one side, and given over to swamps and wetlands and sweeping marshes on the other. Bird life is abundant – just look up to see falcons, plovers, egrets and ospreys. Wild horses are known to gallop over the dunes and beaches, too, imbuing the place with a romance worthy of Lord Byron at sunrise.