Georgia has many barrier islands and some that might come to mind at first are Tybee, Jekyll, and Saint Simons. These more popular spots can sometimes be a bit overwhelming when you're trying to keep things low-key. What some residents might not know is that Ossabaw Island near South Georgia not only has stunning beachy shorelines but some other surprises as well. 

You'll find Ossabaw Island just 30-minutes south of Savannah off the coast. Only accessible by boat or applying for a day trip, this little sliver of natural paradise is the state's third-largest barrier island coming in at 26,000-acres.

This protected island is about 10 miles long and seven miles wide, filled with untouched beaches that you can get your tan on at. 

You can explore the entire island for a day, or you can choose to set up camp at one of the many camping sites if you just can't get enough of this little spot.

One unique part about Ossabaw is that it has free-roaming donkeys and they've been there for nearly 50 years. You can see them roaming and minding their business as you meander about the island.

Porter Crosley, a man who used to own the island, had a love for animals and imported a plethora of exotic animals. There was once a zebra, mouflon, water buffalo, as well as Sicilian donkeys.

All of the animals went to select people when he died and Elanor "Sandy" Torrey West took over the donkeys and the island until 1978, where she then sold it to the state of Georgia.

By the late 1990s, the donkey population had expanded to nearly 100. With the task to keep them all taken care of becoming too much, organizations around the state came in to help.

After most of the herd was adopted, about eight little guys remained.

You can take a boat day trip from Savannah to see everything these shores have to offer. Admire wildlife, hike the trails, and even check-out old houses and ruins on your day away on the shores of Ossabaw.

Ossabaw Island 

Price: Varies depending on which day trip you take and how you get to the island. Multiple charters are available.

Address: Ossabaw Island, GA

Why You Need To Go: This secluded island has untouched beaches as well as free-roaming donkeys for you to explore and admire.



We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.

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