Golden Isles (St. Simons, Little St. Simons, Jekyll, and Sea Islands)
Distance from Atlanta: 280 miles; four hours
Baller alert: the four barrier islands floating in the Atlantic just off the border of Brunswick -- St. Simons, Little St. Simons, Jekyll, and Sea Islands -- were once basically restricted to Illuminati-level rich folks. Now, aside from The Lodge on Little St. Simons, which is upwards of $950 per night and only allows 30 guests at a time, it’s much easier to reserve a villa or rental house, unless you really want to book one of the five-star resorts. St. Simons is the largest and easiest for the public to access, with a public pool, golfing, sand that’s whiter than Bill Gates, and summer events. Jekyll is another step up, while Sea Island is known for The Cloister resort, which isn’t cheap, but is spectacular. Start saving now... for next summer.
Distance from Atlanta: 84 miles; one hour, 10 minutes
Located in Greensboro, GA, just an hour west of Augusta National is Reynolds Plantation, a dogwood- and azalea-dotted lakeside retreat with six golf courses, nine restaurants (including Linger Longer Steakhouse), four marinas, almost two dozen miles of trails for hiking and biking, a pristine tennis club, and a spa where you can get rubbed with Georgia red clay and sprayed with an overhead shower while hot stones lay on your back. There’s also wakeboarding, water-skiing, horseback riding, and skeet-shooting, and you can even see a bald eagle colony if you want. It’s a model of easy Southern livin’ with a Ritz-Carlton resort serving as its centerpiece, and it offers days of shade... which is what your uninvited pals will be throwing at you after seeing the 'grams.