All About the Rules on St Simons Island’s Beaches

Beach Rules


The beaches of St. Simons Island take you back to a time when nature’s beauty was undisturbed and miles of pristine coastline was your own personal treasure to enjoy. Development is still moderate and it is possible to get away from it all and explore the sandy seashore and natural setting much as it was many years ago. Low tide exposes sand bars and tidal pools along the beach that the kids always enjoy playing in. Kitesurfing, bicycling, sandsculpting, and just plain lying in the sun are a few of the most popular St. Simons Island activities!

Shrimp boats dot the Atlantic horizon, while adventure-seekers searching for outdoor St. Simons Island activities populate the catamarans, paddleboards, windsurfers, and kayaks closer in to shore. Dolphins are not uncommon here and many varieties of sea birds and sea turtles can be spotted along the St. Simons Island beaches.

Swimming Safety on St. Simons

  • Lifeguards are present from Memorial Day to Labor Day, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm daily at Coast Guard and Massengale beaches. SWIM AT YOUR OWN RISK
  • Rip currents are common. If caught in a rip current, do not fight it, swim parallel to the shore until you are free of the current.
  • Do not swim to the visible sand bars. The tide changes quickly and will submerge the sandbar, stranding swimmers in deep water.
  • View the NOAA tide charts for St. Simons Island.
  • From Memorial Day to Labor Day, there is a Warning Flag system in place to notify visitors of hazardous conditions. 

St. Simons Island Beach Rules

  • Dogs are prohibited on the beach from the Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day between the hours of 9:00 am and 6:00 pm, except between Beach Access Points 1-6. During allowable times and in non-summer months, dogs are allowed on any portion of the beach but must be within close proximity and under the immediate control of the owner/handler. If handler is unable to control pet via voice-command, a 10′ leash is required. Owners must clean up after their pets.
  • Vehicles are prohibited.
  • Fires are prohibited, without a permit from the Glynn County Fire Dept.
  • Glass and hard plastic containers are prohibited.
  • Fireworks are prohibited on the beach at all times.

St. Simons Dog and Pet Rules

  • Dogs are prohibited on the beach from the Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day between the hours of 9:00 am and 6:00 pm, except between Beach Access Points 1-6. During allowable times and in non-summer months, dogs are allowed on any portion of the beach but must be within close proximity and under the immediate control of the owner/handler. If handler is unable
  • Dogs are permitted on the Pier provided that they are leashed at all times.


Jellyfish– most of the jellyfish you will encounter are Cannonball jellyfish, which are harmless. If you do suffer a jellyfish sting from another species, lifeguards are equipped with the first aid treatment for stings.

Sea Turtles– All species are protected by state and federal laws.

The following are some tips  on what you can do to help protect Georgia’s sea turtles:

  • Do not use lights on the beach at night
  • Never disturb a sea turtle that is crawling to or from the sea.
  • Once a sea turtle has begun nesting, observe her only from a distance.
  • Do not shine lights in a sea turtles eyes or take flash photography.
  • Do not touch or disturb nests or hatchlings.
  • To report a dead or injured turtle, or sea turtle harassment, call 1.800.2.SAVE.ME. (If the sea turtle is tagged, please include the tag color and number in the report if possible.)

Marshes of St Simons Island

The marshlands of St. Simons Island begin to lose their summer green color by late Fall of each year. By mid-winter, the grasses have turned dormant and are almost completely brown. Spring rains and warmer temperatures will bring the marshes alive as Mother Nature begins her cycle anew. The salt marshes of the St. Simons Island and Georgia’s Golden Isles also contribute to the area’s multi-million dollar seafood industry and play a vital role in the local economy. The radiant energy from plentiful sunshine and the nutrients from the area rivers are soaked up by the marsh and area grasslands, which makes for a natural habitat that is a perfect home for shrimp, fish, oysters and crabs. The salt marshes also provide a home to critters like otters, raccoons, marsh wren and rabbits. The marshes also provide a natural buffer from strong storms and winds, protecting the fragile coastline and sand dunes along the beaches.

Massengale Park

Picnicking is easily one of the most favored St. Simons Island activities, and Massengale Park is the perfect area to have an outdoor meal with your family. Situated along East Beach, the park includes a shaded picnic area, a children’s playground, and  plenty of available parking. For information on operating the seasonal concession facility, contact 912.554.7780.

1350 Ocean Blvd.
St. Simons Island, GA 31522

Beach access with ADA accessible mats
Restroom facilities
Picnic tables

Coast Guard Station / East Beach

One of St. Simons Island’s most popular beaches, featuring the widest beach area and plentiful
parking and facilities. For information on operating the seasonal concession facility, contact 912.554.7780.
4100 First St.
St. Simons Island, GA 31522

Beach access
Restroom facilities
ADA Accessible Beach Access
Seasonal concession facility