Tybee Time

A stunnning ocean viewIt’s hard to say exactly what makes a getaway memorable and magical. A recent stay on Tybee Island on the coast of Georgia was both for many reasons. The weather was perfect sunny, warm, and breezy.

We stayed in a lovely house over looking the sea. Sandra Bullock is rumored to own several houses, just down the beach. No Tybee native would think to bother her or confirm of she is on or off the island. I can see why she chose the location as a hideaway. It is stunning and peaceful.
The beach is open to the public, but the long walk ensures the area where we stayed was private and serene. Our deck overlooked the sea and a riot of fragrant beach roses. At breakfast we watched dolphins frolic in pairs, as if auditioning for a remake of Flipper. No Disney film could have competed with their antics.
We watched the dolphin "show" from our deck each morning The weekend was a treat; from laid back Tybee with its fabulous beach houses to hitting the fun and funky shops and local eateries. It was a delight to be able to feast on fresh crab, shrimp, and oysters. As a native New Englander and dedicated foodie, I never get enough of delicious fresh seafood – so I was in heaven. Tybee is nowhere near the Gulf of Mexico, so fresh local seafood is plentiful on the island despite the oil spill. Island dining is casual but tasty. We ate the most amazing fried green tomato BLT’s at Sundae Café. It’s a deceptively simple looking restaurant on Tybee’s main drag. Toasted whole grain The pelicansbread, crispy fried green tomatoes, and thick cut apple-smoked bacon made these sandwiches to die for. I had a rich, delicious, creamy crab soup at MacElwee’s, a local seafood place. And we also tried the Santiago’s Mexicali Cantina and Grill. The food was a surprisingly tasty Tex-Mex. The atmosphere was fun and beachy. A special request for Chicken Molé was produced without a murmur. It was declared it a success, especially the fresh vegetable mélange that came on the side. I really enjoyed the cheesy Chile Releno.
Horse carriage in SavannahSavannah is a food and culture mecca. It’s just 20 minutes over the bridge and down the Island Expressway. The small city is an architectural jewel well worth seeing for its charm and beauty. It is the location was made famous by the popular novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil – called “the book” in Savannah. One of the easiest and most enjoyable ways for a newcomer to see the city is on a Trolley Tour. One of their well-informed drivers will impart a painless and amusing history lesson. 
I recommend skipping well-known tourist spots when it is time to eat. Savannah has a host of tasty ethnic and regional restaurants. But Savannah also has world class gourmet restaurants. Two of my favourites are Elizabeth on 37th which features fresh regional American cooking, and Il Pasticcio with delicious Northern Italian cuisine. Both have elegant decor, fresh food, and attentive service. An evening at either restaurant will be a but pricy, but foodies will relish every bite. Quaffers won’t want to miss the popular Moon River Brewing Company.
TybeeIsland and Savannah are a unique vacation destination with fabulous history and dining. There are also all the usual family attractions of go-carts, boat trips, jet skis, and such. Golf in the area is easily arranged.
The real draw of Tybee is the stunning natural beauty of the island and the privacy – for those who want it. The proximity to Savannah, with its variety of restaurants, galleries, and other attractions makes it irresistible.
If I’ve tempted you, contact Stacye Jarrell. She is an invaluable island resource. I can’t wait to go back, and hope to this fall, my favourite time at the beach.
Stacye Jarrell info@oceanfrontcottage.com 
Sundae Café At Tybee www.sundaecafeattybee.com   
MacElwees www.macelweesontybees.com   
Elizabeth on 37th     http://www.elizabethon37th.net/
Blue Moon River Brewing Company www.bluemoonriverbrewing.com

The lighthouse