Hunting Tree Spirits

by Tully
Embark on a St. Simons Tree Spirits Scavenger Hunt  

St. Simons Island is known for its beautiful beaches, rich history, moss-draped oaks, and fascinating museums. Among our live oak trees hides a secret not known by many visitors: The St. Simons Tree Spirits. These tree spirits are hand-carved faces found on oak trees throughout the island. Set out on a magical scavenger hunt during your Golden Isles vacation and find the unique faces peering out from the island oak trees:

St. Simons Tree Spirits History

In the 1980s, skilled craftsman Keith Jennings decided to make his mark on the island. During this time, he carved about 20 faces from oak trees, all taking between two and four days to complete. In the present day, Jennings enlists his son Devon's help to bring more tree spirits to life. 

Legend has it that the carvings immortalize the sailors who boarded sailing ships made from St. Simons Island oak. But there are more than just sailor's faces carved in the trees, including the Cora mermaid carving at the Welcome Center. Learn more about the fascinating Legend of Cora on the Golden Isles travel website.

Where to Find the Tree Spirits

Although there are 20 Tree Spirits on the island, only 11 are on public land. For a map of the Tree Spirits, stop at the Welcome Center or use this digital map. Reserve a bike rental and set out on a scavenger hunt to find the magical tree spirits:Golden Isles Welcome Center: Find the carving of Cora here on the west side of the main parking area. 


  1. Queens Court Inn: Located at 437 Kings Way near the west side of the pool
  2. Village Inn & Pub: Located in front of the Inn on Mallery Street
  3. Mallery Park: Found along Park Avenue near the baseball field parking lot entrance on the east side
  4. King’s Park: Also found along Park Avenue, find the Tree Spirit behind the basketball hoop.
  5. King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort: Located on 201 Arondold Road near The Cottage coffee shop.
  6. Redfern Village: Located at 306 Redfern Village on the left before the road splits
  7. Redfern Village: Find another Tree Spirit at Redfern across from Gnat’s Landing. 
  8. St. Simons Land Trust: Located at 1819 Frederica Road on the Main driveway north of the front door of the building. 
  9. Magnolia Manor: Found on 101 Heritage Drive, take the first right and head to the third tree on the right.
  10. Gascoigne Bluff Park: Found at the south end of Arthur J. Moore Drive by the river picnic area.

Stay at St. Simons Island Vacation Rentals

Plan your Golden Isles getaway with Real Escapes Properties and get off the beaten path to discover the St. Simons Tree Spirits. Browse our collection of over 160 vacation rentals on St. Simons Island and find the perfect accommodations for your group. Whether you are looking to stay steps from the beach or the heart of the Village, we have the perfect property waiting for you!