Family Adventures on St. George Island

Ready to have an adventure during your next beach vacation? Check out our great local options for adding some fun to your St. George Island stay!

Journeys of St. George Island offers everything you need for kayaking and SUP, and offers golf cart rentals as well. The Journeys team offers kayak trips, sunset cruises, and chartered fishing trips as well!

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Island Adventures offers bike rentals and surreys for the family so you can make the most of St. George Island’s beautiful bike trails. 

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The State Park offers the perfect setting for hiking and exploring. Beautiful, pristine beaches, trails, and beach waters are great for both adventuring and relaxation! Shelters and grilling areas allow the adventure to last all day.

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Welcome New Homes!

Spring is in the air and here at Collins, we are celebrating some of our great new homes!

Welcome Lollygaggin’

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In search of a vacation home that puts you front and center on SGI’s gorgeous white sand beaches? Check out Lollygaggin’! This beautifully furnished with great views and amenities including two master suites (one with a morning kitchen).

Click here to view Lollygaggin’!

Welcome Camp Champ

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If you are looking for a quiet, private home for your escape, look no further than Camp Champ! This secluded home has tons of amenities including a beautiful pool and, while surrounded by lush trees, is only a short distance from the beach and Plantation clubhouse. Click here to view Camp Champ!

Welcome Sunrise Point

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This gorgeous beachfront getaway features beautiful views, large porches and sundecks, and great conveniences such as covered parking and a hotel-style ice maker. Click here to view Sunrise Point!

Spring on sgi

Spring. It’s that freshness, that joy, that break from winter at last. Here on SGI, spring is all around!

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Spring Break is a great time to for a quick getaway to St. George. Nothing helps you relax and escape the hustle and bustle like a walk on the beach, a quiet ride down the bike path, or a day of fun boating on the bay or gulf.

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Ready to escape? Check out some of our specials to get the ball rolling!

2016 Rental Guide

Our 2016 Rental Guide is now here! This year’s issue is jam packed with important information, beautiful images of St. George Island, and tons of great homes.

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Click here to request your copy, or experience an interactive version online.

Thanksgiving by the Sea

Thanksgiving is a special time on St. George Island.  Far away from the hustle and bustle and Black Friday lines, families come to St. George to tune out from their everyday worries and to focus on friends and family.

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strolling seaside on st. george island

Whether you are planning a big meal with the extended family, or a small, casual get together, you’ll find a wide array of homes to suit your needs.

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lots of counter space and a beach view in the kitchen at lazy gator

seating for the whole family at amelia

seating for the whole family at amelia

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Cook a traditional meal, or pick up a ready made feast from one of our local grocery stores.  Or, if you are interested in making Thanksgiving a little more coastal, enjoy a great local seafood recipe like this low country boil from the book A Taste of St. George Island:

Low Country Shrimp Boil

8 to 10 red potatoes
1/4 cup salt
2 packets Old Bay seasoning
6 lemons, cut into halves
10 to 12 ears of corn, cut into halves
4 onions, cut into quarters
2 pounds andouille or kielbasa
5 pounds shrimp, deveined

Fill a 3-gallon or larger stockpot halfway with water.  Add the potatoes, salt and Old Bay seasoning and bring to a boil.  Squeeze the lemon juice into the water, then add the lemons.  Boil for 10 minutes longer.  Add the corn, onions and sausage and boil for 10 minutes.  Add the shrimp and boil for 1 minute or until the shrimp turn pink, drain.  Spoon into a shallow bowl.  Place newspapers on the table and have plenty of paper towels available–easy cleanup!  Serve with drawn butter and cocktail sauce.  Serves 10.

No matter how you slice it, SGI has something great to offer this holiday season.  See you at the beach!

Local Event: Rock by the Sea

A great event. A Great Cause. Come to Harry A’s September 24th-26th and see why Rock by the Sea is a local favorite.
This music festival raises money for great non-profits such as the Pediatric Brain Tumor Program at the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children. Click here to learn more.
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bands at last year’s rock by the sea

Rock by the Sea is held at a favorite local restaurant: Harry A’s.

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fans travel from near and far for the annual event

This fall’s three-day event features artists including Melodime, Steve Everett, Stephen Kellogg, Tony Lucca, Paul McDonald, Amy Gerhartz, Brian Fechino, Tim Brantley, Hey Monea!, The Georgia Flood, and The Blues Factor.

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the laid-back, family atmosphere at the event makes it popular with vacationers on st. george island

Welcome “Hooked Up”

The Collins family has a new home–and it’s loaded with amenities!

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Hooked Up’s play on words name is a nod to its great location for those who love to fish.  The canal setting makes it easy to “hook up” a catch of the day either right from the canal, or by boating out to the bay or gulf.

This home has beautiful furnishings, great interior amenities such as a personal computer and multiple smart TVs, but what really sets it apart are its unique outdoor spaces:

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outdoor firepit

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hammock by the water

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furnished screened porch

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canal setting

Click here to see all this home has to offer!

The Taste of the Gulf

The Gulf of Mexico, and the Apalachicola Bay in particular, are known for their incredible variety and excellent quality of seafood.

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Shrimp

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shrimp boats off the beaches of st. george island

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a shrimp boat docked at sunset

Shrimping is big in the gulf waters that surround St. George Island.  In the summer months, it’s not uncommon to spot shrimping boats working just offshore.  At local restaurants, you can find almost any style of shrimp: from simply steamed or fried to the rich scampi served at Up the Stairs.

Oysters

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oystering in the apalachicola bay

The Apalachicola River forms an estuary where it meets the bay, oysters flourish in the mineral rich water.  The Apalachicola Bay is one of the last places in America where you can see oysters harvested by hand.  To learn more about this tradition, take a look at this great piece in Garden & Gun Magazine.

Mullet

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casting in the apalachicola bay

For locals, there’s no fish and chips basket quite like a mullet fish and chips basket.  This firm, white fish is mild and delicious fried.  Drive down the Apalachicola bridge in the evenings, and you may spot a fisherman or two throwing a cast net to catch one of these delicious local favorites.

Various & Sundry

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seafood on a grill in the st. george island state park

While shrimp and oysters are probably first on the minds of frequent visitors to our area, the Apalachicola Bay and Gulf of Mexico are great areas for red snapper, mahi mahi, scallops, blue crab, flounder, mackerel, and much more.

Interested in trying a bite?  Check out some of our great local restaurants or stock up at a local fish market. On St. George Island, you’ll find Doug’s or Dale’s seafood trucks conveniently located near the Collins Vacation Rental offices.

Florida’s Wildest Counties

Franklin County, home of our beloved St. George Island, has been named #2 Wildest County in Florida!  Franklin County earned this distinction based on its percentage of conserved land:

#2 – Franklin County: This small county has a gigantic wild side, a whopping 80% of their land in conservation! Franklin County is home to the Apalachicola National Forest/Wildlife Management Area (Florida’s largest), Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park, St. Vincent National Wildlife Refuge, and Tate’s Hell State Forest/Wildlife Management Area.

Click here to see the full list and read more about the selection process.

More information (and some photos!) of our great parks and refuges

Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park:

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a sunset along the bay side of the state park. both people and dolphins love this area for fishing.

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scrub and trees along the hiking trails in the state park. along with the #3 beach in the nation to the south, many small, secluded bayside beaches can be found on the bay side of the state park

St. George Island, State Park, Dunes, Florida

natural dunes run along the middle of the state park, separating woods from the beach

Located at the east end of St. George Island, the state park has miles of trails and bike paths to explore, gorgeous beaches, picnic shelters and more.

Click here to learn more.

Tate’s Hell:

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dwarf cypress as seen from the boardwalk in tate’s hell

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a sunset over the cypress swamp

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views from the hiking trails

Tate’s Hell is a rugged state park home to a rare species of dwarf cypress, hiking trails, and plenty of wildlife.  Interested in taking a break from the beach to hike the trails of Tate’s Hell?  Take the bridge from St. George Island and head east (to the right) on HWY 98.  The trailhead will be on the left before you get to Carrabelle.  Be sure to pack appropriate shoes as some areas of the trail can become boggy at times.

Not interested in roughing it, but would like to check out the eerily beautiful dwarf cypress swamp?  Not to worry–this location is accessible by car.  Follow signs for the boardwalk and enjoy a unique view of the swamp from the observation deck.

For more information on Tate’s Hell, and the legend behind its unusual name, click here or here.

St. Vincent Wildlife Refuge:

Accessible by boat, this primitive stretch of land is a nature lover’s dream.  A favorite of migrating birds, this refuge is a one-stop shop for observing wildlife.  A nice day trip from St. George Island, St. Vincent is a treasure for those who are wild at heart.

Click here for more information on the refuge.

Apalachicola National Forest:

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a sunset over the bay as seen from the apalachicola national forest

The Apalachicola Forest is the largest forest in Florida!  This forest has tons of interesting terrain for exploration.  Cloudy day keeping you from the beach?  Why not take a hike?

The Leon Sinks geological area, the Apalachicola River, and Fort Gadsen are just some of the features of the forest.  The forest is easily accessible.  If you are visiting St. George Island, it’s likely you’ve already driven through it at one point!

Click here for more information on the Apalachicola National Forest.

Whether you enjoy the outdoors for the solitude, the educational experience, or the opportunity to stay fit while taking in natural beauty, there’s plenty to explore in Franklin County, Florida.  St. George Island makes the perfect home base for tons of wild exploration.  Come check it out!