It was one of the few weekend getaways when I yearned for a lover. Yet even without one I still managed to be seduced—by Eagle Island, a private slice of unspoiled nature and an idyllic honeymoon destination 60 miles south of Savannah, accessible only by boat from sleepy Darien on Georgia’s coast.
Here, on a 10-acre sandpit within a salt marsh ecosystem, gracious Captain Andy Hill has created a secluded haven where newlyweds can daydream in a swinging bed on a 1,500-square-foot screened porch, spy on resident bald eagles—birds that mate for life—and watch shooting stars from an outdoor hot tub warmed by a fireplace.
In comfy Eagle Lodge, crafted from reclaimed cypress and other repurposed materials, honeymooners have 3,343 square feet of mostly climate-controlled space in which to romp. With two teak-furnished bedrooms, two baths (plus an enclosed outdoor shower that tells no tales), a loft accessed via spiral staircase, a great room with vaulted ceiling, stone fireplace and leather furnishings, plus a pine-paneled playroom with ping-pong table and laundry facilities, the plush habitat sleeps ten, offering ample space for a pre-wedding getaway, family reunion or anniversary celebration. For connection to the outside world, there’s satellite TV and wireless Internet.
Custom cabinetry, Turkish limestone countertops and stainless steel appliances make the lodge kitchen a chef’s dream; groceries can be delivered via boat. During my getaway weekend, we cooked sweet Georgia shrimp and blue crabs plucked from dockside traps. At the outdoor oyster grill and barbecue, Captain Andy’s crew prepared a low country boil—a savory blend of shrimp, sausage, corn, carrots and potatoes served on newspaper for easy cleanup. Under a full moon, we dined al fresco and sang at a bonfire beneath tall pines.
By day, we kayaked past shy alligators and marsh birds, fished from a chartered boat and lounged in island hammocks. Captain Andy ferried us to nearby Sapelo Island, where we collected seashells on Nannygoat Beach, toured turn-of-the-century Reynolds Mansion (now a Georgia State Park and intimate destination wedding site), and chatted with Cornelia, informal “mayor” of tiny Hog Hammock, home to generations of Guale Native American Indians.
Whether pairing up like turtledoves for your honeymoon or kicking back for a few days with your BFFs, this real-life Fantasy Island offers the timeless allure of back-to-nature comfort and guaranteed relaxation.