In the old days I would have definitely come to Cumberland and camped. But I can no longer do that so if I wanted to stay on Cumberland I'd have to stay at the Greyfield Inn.
Both developed and wilderness camping is available. Reservations can be made up to six months in advance. Permits are required and are picked up at the Sea Camp Ranger Station. All camping is limited to seven days. Spring and late fall are peak seasons. Entrance fees, camping fees and ferry fees are additional.
Sea Camp Campground is $4.00 per person per night. The campground at Sea Camp has restroom facilities with cold water showers, a small amphitheater for ranger programs, and boardwalk access to the beach. This campground consists of 16 individual camp sites and two group sites. Group sites can accommodate 10-20 people. Each campsite has a grill, fire ring, food cage, and picnic table. Sites are assigned upon arrival at the Sea Camp Ranger Station.
Stafford camp sites are $2.00 per person per night and are located 3.5 miles from the Sea Camp Ranger Station. Restrooms, showers, and fire rings are available at the site. Fire rings are on a first come first serve basis. Sites are assigned at the Sea Camp Ranger Station.
Backcountry and Wilderness
NO FIRES, TREAT WATER, PACK OUT TRASH.
Backcountry and Wilderness Camping sites are $2.00 per person per night. There are no facilities at the Wilderness sites and water must be treated. Campfires are not permitted in the Wilderness and portable stoves are suggested for food preparation. The three Wilderness sites range from 5.5 to 10.5 miles from the Sea Camp ferry dock. Sites are assigned upon arrival at Sea Camp Ranger Station.
Observe and practice LEAVE NO TRACE principles.
Hickory Hill: 5.5 miles from Sea Camp, in the heart of the island, offers a fascinating close encounter with an intriguing interior freshwater wetland and its wildlife. Due to being located in a wetland area, bugs are often prevalent.
Yankee Paradise: 7.5 miles from Sea Camp, also in the center of the island and a half days walk to and from the Plum Orchard Mansion.
Brickhill Bluff: 10.5 miles from Sea Camp, located on the Brickhill River. A favorite place for seeing dolphins and manatees.
There is only one hotel on Cumberland Island, and that is the Greyfield Inn. It is very private and exclusive, and somewhat expensive with rooms running up to $600 a night. But I think that includes meals as there is nowhere else on the island to buy food.
I have not stayed there and know of it only by reputation.
They have their own ferry service from Fernandina Beach.
In 1900, Thomas and Lucy Carnegie built Greyfield for their daughter, Margaret Ricketson. It was converted to an inn during 1962 by her daughter, Lucy R. Ferguson, and it retains the original furnishings from the turn of the century.
You get a full breakfast which includes fresh-squeezed orange juice and fruit, as well as eggs, pancakes or one of the Chef's specialties. Mid-day, you get picnic lunch. There is a cocktail hour each evening with hors d'oeuvres and dinner is a casually elegant affair, served in the glow of candlelight
Two night minimum stay required or holidays require a three night minimum and are billed at the weekend rate. No cancellations/refunds on holidays.
Children 6+ years are welcomed
We stayed at the Seashore campground, where most people stay. I really liked it there. There was more privacy than other campgrounds I have been to, except Canyonlands National Park in Utah. It was so beautiful, and close to the beach. Armadillos wandered all over the area, rooting around for insects!
Don't plan on a hot shower, unless you bring a solar shower bag. The showers are private stalls but the water is very cold! Toilets are flush type, and they provide soap & hand dryers at the sinks.
You borrow a large cart, near the ferry dock, to pull your gear to your reserved site. The walk isn't far & it is so, so beautiful!! Your site will have a wooden picnic table & a fire ring.
There are 3 areas that are considered backpacking sites, too. The closest of those is about 3.5 miles from the ferry dock. We walked to it, just for fun. We were surprised to find new flush toilets, which weren't mentioned on any of the maps or other literature we noticed.
The vegetation is so tropical, like Florida. It is very close to Florida, so that's understandable.
The public can't get there by by anything other than a boat. so the only cars and trucks are owned by the park, or the few private land owners on the island.
You can rent a bicycle there, or bring your own.
At the time, the rooms were between $350 and $575. This is what comes with a room here:
FERRY TRANSPORTATION: Round-trip Ferry Boat Transportation.
ROOM: Based on Single or Double Occupancy. Additional Persons at one-half the Tariff.
MEALS: Breakfast, Lunch (Picnic Style), and Gourmet Dinner.
TOURS: Naturalist lead, daily Natural History Jeep Tours of Island. Other Tours and Outings by arrangement.
COCKTAIL HOUR: Hors d'oeuvres during nightly Cocktail Hour. Complimentary Wine on Sunday.
BEVERAGES: Non-alcoholic Beverages throughout your stay.
EQUIPMENT: Unlimited use of Sports, Fishing and Beach Equipment.
BICYCLES: Unlimited use of Bicycles.
SNACKS: Fruit, Snacks and "Leftovers" throughout your stay.
PARKING: Parking at Florida Embarkment.
WOW! I was so lucky to have been able to stay here with a girlfriend through her work. This place is wonderful! This is the type of place that just takes you back in time...."furnished today as it was at the turn of the century". I never wanted to leave! It rained a couple of days we were here, so we sat on the HUGE porch of this southern mansion in the porch swings and read. (Sans mint juleps) Other times we biked around the island exploring...there are no paved roads and only a few private homes.
Sorry, until I can figure out how to retrieve my lost hard drive, you will have to make do with paintings instead of photos for this trip.
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