Georgia Sea Turtle Center

With the help of some proper fuel…

…we made it to Jekyll Island, Georgia a little after 2 p.m.

Ryan and I have been looking forward to this trip for months! We were actually supposed to visit Jekyll Island in the beginning of May but had to reschedule, so it’s been a long-awaited vacation! We set up this trip after I emailed back and forth with Alexa, a fantastic account executive who sent me a press release about Jekyll Island. When I responded to her saying that Ryan and I thought the island seemed like a neat place for a couple’s getaway, she graciously offered to host us for the weekend. We were absolutely thrilled!

The first activity we had planned during our trip was a visit to the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.

Hi Ryan!

We had a behind the scenes tour planned for 3 p.m. and as big-time animal lovers, Ryan and I were pumped to learn more about sea turtles.

The tour was led by Aislinn who took us behind the gates and into the turtle rehabilitation treatment area typically reserved for staff members.

It was so neat to see the little and BIG guys up close.

That’s a diamondback terrapin! (Any University of Maryland fans out there?)

The most interesting thing I learned during the tour was that when a female sea turtle lays her eggs, the sex of the baby inside the egg is not yet determined. The temperature at which the egg incubates determines the sex of the turtle. At the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, when a female lays eggs, they incubate them at a warmer temperature that guarantees that the hatchling will be a female to help continue to increase the population of these endangered reptiles. I’m going to incubate myself at 105 degrees when I get pregnant so I can guarantee a girl. Just kidding, obviously. I gotta give Ryan a fair shot at a boy.

We also saw a veterinary technician treat Randy, a green sea turtle in need of care due to a boat strike.

jekyll island 035

I was surprised at how docile Randy was during treatment. His big eyes dug right into my heart.

Once the tour was over, Ryan and I took our time exploring the rest of the center before walking around the island a bit.

We just arrived back at our hotel room and are planning to unpack before heading back out. On the agenda for tonight is dinner (seafood!!!) and a nighttime walk on the beach with the Georgia Sea Turtle Center to see if we can stumble upon a female laying eggs. Our fingers are crossed!


  1. Elizabeth says

    My bffs name is Aislinn, that’s the only other time I’ve seen it!! It looks like you guys are having such a great vacation!


  2. says

    My dad is a UofMaryland grad and he has a terrapine ornament that has to go on the Christmas tree first every year. It’s quite a production.
    And I’ve been to Jekyll Island a handful of times and loved it. The beach is so relaxing there.


  3. says

    So, I’m way behind here – but I’m just now discovering your blog and I’m pretty sure I’ve spent a good 30 mins reading back post (I’m stalkerish like that, ha)! Found it by way of searching for cauliflower crust, ha – which, I plan to make a modified version this weekend. Any who, look forward to reading more 🙂


  4. Macrae says

    One time you should join a crew for a night that gather the female’s eggs right after they lay them. We used to do this on Cumberland Island. It is to ensure that the eggs won’t be eaten or drown in the tides. Then, when it is time for the eggs to hatch, they are let back into the water so little turtles don’t even know what they missed 🙂 Also, Look out for the nests that are roped off still on the beach…same idea being used to guard the eggs!
    Enjoy your time- I miss the beach!!!


  5. says

    Not sure if you knew this, but alligators are the same…the temperature of the eggs determines what gender the baby alligators will be. I remember learning that last time I was in Florida, because we were boating in a swamp and the tour guide was so knowledgeable. Fascinating, huh?? 🙂

    Have a great getaway with your hubby!!


  6. Jennifer says

    We live just an hour above Jekyll and love to go there because it is very laid back. We used to live on St. Simon”s Island…we love the restaurants there. Georgia Sea Grill is a favorite. Food on Jekyll is not as good…well as of about a year ago…so if any new restaurants have opened…I can’t speak for them. I love jogging over there. Hope you have a nice trip.


  7. says

    Looks like an amazing trip, Julie! I love love sea turtles! On our honeymoon in 08, my hubby and I swam with a few giant sea turtles in Hawaii while we were snorkeling!! They’re magical little creatures, aren’t they! Yay, animal lovers unite! 🙂


  8. Laura Peek says

    I’m a Kentucky girl who was on Jekyll Island two weeks ago. It was wonderful! We loved the sea turtles and the drift wood beach. The out door dinning at Fins was pretty great too! You can’t go wrong with any activity on Jekyll. I can’t wait to visit again.


  9. says

    That is awesome! It is a life-long dream of mine to work or volunteer in wildlife conservation somehow and I’ve always wanted to visit a turtle rehabilitation center. Love the cute stuffed animals – the one on your head looks like Squirt from Finding Nemo! 🙂


  10. says

    I hope you get lucky and see a turtle on your walk tonight! My college roommate is a marine biologist and worked at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center for a year after college. She said that they had names for all of the turtles and that you could even see different personalities in the turtles after spending time with them.


  11. says

    What an awesome experience! I got a chance to watch a sea turtle come on a beach to lay her eggs in the wild once and I still rank it as one of the coolest things I’ve ever done 🙂 They also (at least these kinds) dig 2 holes, one for the eggs and the other as a decoy. Then they have to make it back to the water before the sun rises. I’ve never rooted for anything or anyone as much as I was rooting for that poor exhausted mama turtle to make it into the water before the sun came all the way up 🙂


  12. Danielle Spellman says

    This is only 6 hours from where my boyfriend is in Florida! I can’t wait to see more of your posts on your trip! Perhaps a future roadtrip to Jekyll Island for us. 😀


  13. says

    Wow, I can’t believe those turtles are as colorful as they are, the real ones look just like the toys!!

    I can’t help but think of the turtle from Finding Nemo, were any of them saying “far out, little dude!!”?


  14. Michelle says


    I went to Jekyll Island last summer just to visit the Georgia Sea Turtle Center and loved it. Enjoy your weekend!


  15. says

    I’m normally just a lurker, but you mentioned that Terps so of course I have to comment!

    “Go Terps!”

    Looks like you’re having a blast on your trip!


  16. says

    We were on Jekyll Island just over a year ago but go there late and only got to the Sea Turtle Center right before they were closing so we didn’t get a chance to look around. Thanks for the inside peak!


  17. Amelia says

    Just catching up (as always!) on your weekend posts. I’m a proud Terrapin. Thanks for the UMD shoutout! Turtles are my absolute favorite next to penguins. How fun!


  18. says

    I’ve learn a few excellent stuff here. Certainly worth bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how a lot attempt you set to create this type of fantastic informative site.



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