The Group Travel Leader

JUL-AUG 2017

The online home of The Group Travel Leader, America's leading publication for the group travel industry. Articles on hot destinations, attractions, news and travel trends from across the country and around the world.

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2 0 T 2 0 1 7 GROUP TRAVEL LE ADER T H E 4 Day NATIONAL MUSEUM OF THE MIGHTY EIGHTH Many Savannah visitors don't know about the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, which is located outside of the city's historic area. But a visit to this museum is well worth the time, as guests learn about the Eighth Air Force, which was based in Savannah and ran heroic bombing missions over Europe during World War II. The museum features a number of multimedia presentations that help visitors get a feel for the experience of serving in the Mighty Eighth. ST. SIMONS LIGHTHOUSE It's a beautiful 80-mile drive from Savannah to the Golden Isles of Georgia's coast. After lunch, the group got a great introduction to the area at the St. Simons Lighthouse, an island landmark. The lighthouse is 143 years old and is still controlled by the U.S. Coast Guard. Group members explored the on-site museum, and some climbed the steep spiral staircase to the top of the tower for sweeping views of the island below. TROLLEY TOUR St. Simons Island is a popular beach vacation destination and features a number of resorts. FAM participants got to see several of the most scenic resorts and other sites on the island during a trolley tour, which also included historic tales and other bits of trivia. The tour ended by dropping off passengers for their overnight stays at the various resorts around the island. • DRIFTWOOD BEACH • DEPART FOR JEKYLL ISLAND • GEORGIA SEA TURTLE CENTER • JEKYLL ISLAND CLUB HOTEL • DEPART FOR SAVANNAH AND RETURN HOME The group hit the road for Jekyll Island at an early hour to make the most of their final day in Georgia. They started the day at Driftwood Beach, one of the most photographed spots in the state, and then spent time at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, where injured sea turtles are rehabilitated. From there, it was a short trip to the Jekyll Island Club, a historic resort area that was a playground for some of the wealthiest Americans during the 19th century, and a tour and lunch at the beautiful Jekyll Island Club Hotel. After saying goodbye to the islands, tour participants boarded the bus for the drive back to Savannah, where they left for home after four fun-filled and sun-soaked days on the Georgia coast. DRIFTWOOD BEACH At the northern end of Jekyll Island, Driftwood Beach is often referred to as a tree graveyard. Natural erosion has left the beach littered with thousands of large pieces of driftwood, each smoothed by the crashing of waves at high tide. The beach makes a wonderful stop for group photos, especially as the sun rises over the Atlantic Ocean. GEORGIA SEA TURTLE CENTER Each year, thousands of sea turtles hatch in the sands of Jekyll Island and attempt the perilous trek to the sea under cover of night. The Georgia Sea Turtle Center exists to help rehabilitate turtles injured during that journey, as well as adult turtles that have been brought in with injuries. Guests can see the turtles swimming in rehabilitation tanks in the on-site hospital or tour the museum, where they learn about the life of sea turtles and can watch special feeding demonstrations. JEKYLL ISLAND CLUB HOTEL The who's who of America's moneyed elite f locked to the Jekyll Island Club in the late 1800s and early 1900s, built beautiful summer "cottages" and engaged in leisure activi- ties at the resort. Today, the Jekyll Island Club is a historic site, with numerous buildings that visitors can tour, and the Jekyll Island Club Hotel offers overnight accommodations and beautiful settings for group meals. The FAM partici- pants got to see some of the hotel's distinctive spaces and enjoyed a farewell lunch of shrimp and grits before making their way back to Savannah for the trip home. A GROUP PHOTO AT ST. SIMONS LIGHTHOUSE

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