Back River Beach

Sandy beach
1839 18th Pl, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA (15 miles from Savannah, GA)
Cleanliness
Water quality
Crowded
Impressions
Overall

Beach amenities

  • Pet friendlyBring your little friends!
  • ParkingCar parking nearby
  • Gear rentalsEquipment for rent
  • AccessibilityEasy beach access
  • WCPublic restrooms nearby

About this beach

Warnings and hazards

Strong currents, the beach is not ideal for swimming.

Tucked away on the southern tip of Tybee Island is Back River Beach. While most visitors choose to spend their day on the popular triad of Tybee beaches (North Beach, Mid, and South), it would be a shame to miss this hidden spot, as it offers spectacular views from a different-facing part of the island (Tybee Island faces east but Back River Beach faces west, overlooking Tybee Creek and Little Tybee Island). The beach is at the end of Highway 80 and it is best accessed via the end of Chatham Avenue.

Parking

Parking at Back River can be challenging. Even though there is a parking lot ($2/hour) right by the beach, just like on the rest of the island, this particular parking lot is a lot smaller than the other ones and it can fill up fast. Quite annoyingly, most of the space was taken up by boat trailers on the day our family visited.

Description

Back River Beach is a clean and well-maintained off the beaten track spot on Tybee Island.  It is tranquil and perfect for a walk, as it has white, soft sand, peppered with lots of tiny seashells. It has quite a few fishing piers and seems to be a great fishing spot (though my children found the smell of fish on the beach overpowering).

Activities

Back River Beach is not ideal for swimming. The water is shallow but the currents can be quite strong. Sharks and stingrays have also been reported in the area. As there are no lifeguards, it felt safer to partake in other types of beach activities instead. We rented a kayak, which we took to Little Tybee Island, an unspoiled tiny island across the river. Paddleboards were also available for rental from Tybee Jet Ski & Watersports. While we didn’t have enough time to do one on the day we visited, Dolphin Tours are also offered by a couple of companies on the beach.

Highlights

The best thing about Back River Beach is the sunset view!  I have never seen a sunset with so many colors. Definitely a must-see. I also found the locals to be exceptionally friendly and helpful. What made me quite sad is that they said Back River Beach is rapidly changing because of tourism, with all the jet skis in the sea and condos springing up everywhere obstructing the beach views and taking away from this scenic location’s natural and effortless charm. A final highlight was all the wildlife – from turtles to pelicans and dolphins. It was so amazing to just relax on the beach watching the animals.

Facilities

There is not much in terms of amenities on this beach. The toilets are near the Back River Fishing Pier but there are no facilities such as changing rooms and bathhouses.

Overall

For me, Back River Beach is a place to finish off your day on Tybee Island. Because Back River is much smaller than the other beaches on the island, I would say an ideal day would involve swimming at South Beach, followed by a chilled late afternoon and early evening in Back River. Take off your shoes and head to The Crab Shack for some crab (as the name suggests!) and a cocktail, while taking in the gorgeous views.

Driving time

  • 30 minutes from Savannah, GA
  • 4 hours 30 minutes from Atlanta, GA
  • 2 hours 30 minutes from Jacksonville, FL
Download FREE PDF map and directions

Back River Beach videos

Back River Beach 360 Panorama
Video by Visit Tybee
Top 12 Tourist Attractions in Tybee Island
Video by Travel Georgia

Weather conditions

Current weather at the beach and 3 day forecast
Beach map and directions
The beach is located in Tybee Island, Georgia 1839 18th Pl, Tybee Island, GA 31328, USA (Open on Google Maps)
Drag and zoom the map to view lodging options near the beach.
Other beaches nearby
Explore other beaches near Tybee Island, Georgia
Driftwood Beach
Jekyll Island, Georgia
69 mi away
North Beach
Tybee Island, Georgia
2 mi away
Back River Beach reviews and photos
Photos and descriptions belong to their authors
Back River Beach photo by dullus
March 22, 2018
dullus
Pier
Back River Beach photo by Caitlin Fenlon
August 13, 2018
Caitlin Fenlon
#tybeeisland #tybeeislandbeach #tybeebackriver #ilovemyisland #islandlife
Back River Beach photo by Kathy Cobb
March 1, 2019
Kathy Cobb
Tybee Island Sunset #favoritephoto of the day #photography #nature #beach #sunsets #driftwood #tybeeisland #ocean
Back River Beach photo by East Coast Paddleboarding
April 29, 2018
East Coast Paddleboarding
Paddling at Tybee Island
Back River Beach photo by Katie Myers
January 11, 2019
Katie Myers
Sunsets with the best, and Sam the cat. #sunsets
Back River Beach photo by Shelby King
July 5, 2018
Shelby King
Fourth of July fun! β€οΈπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡ΈπŸŽ†
Back River Beach photo by Sean Reynolds
August 2, 2018
Sean Reynolds
Stop #13. Crabing caught 12 of them!! Then cooked them for dinner.
Back River Beach photo by Visit Tybee
March 6, 2019
Visit Tybee
A pier for every sunrise and sunset. #VisitTybee [πŸ“Έ @the_simple_design_co]⁣
Back River Beach photo by Summer Morris
January 27, 2019
Summer Morris
All this rainy and cold weather is making me 10x more excited for beach weather ❊
Back River Beach photo by Visit Tybee
January 20, 2019
Visit Tybee
TFW the only sandy footprints you see are yours.πŸ‘£ #VisitTybee [πŸ“Έ @danieljohnharris]
Back River Beach photo by Morgan Bacot
January 26, 2019
Morgan Bacot
This was a few weeks ago, but never too late to show off being at the beach during January 😎🌀🏝
Back River Beach photo by Jenny Poole
September 27, 2018
Jenny Poole
Early morning ball throw with my baby boy. #bestchild #schnauzer #backrivertybee #sunrise
Back River Beach photo by Christina
November 18, 2018
Christina
Thankful for 🐢 and β˜€οΈ
Back River Beach photo by Nicole
January 17, 2019
Nicole
Running in sand is not easy... so walk it is. Pretty view before going to work. #beachrun #beachwalk
Back River Beach photo by Dave
December 28, 2018
Dave
Tybee Island