Arrive in Charleston and transfer to the pier to embark the Yorktown. Settle in to your cabin and familiarize yourself with the ship and her crew. Overnight in port.
Spend the day in Charleston, one of the East Coast’s loveliest cities. A prosperous, cosmopolitan seaport from colonial times, it was in here in Charleston’s harbor that Confederate troops first fired upon Fort Sumter, thus starting the Civil War. Tour Charleston’s extensive historic district, which includes the 18th-century Heyward-Washington House; the Calhoun Mansion, with its ornate plaster and wood moldings and sweeping stairwell; and the Nathaniel Russell House, a neoclassical townhouse set amidst beautiful gardens. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure, or drive to historic Middleton Place Plantation, a carefully preserved 18th-century plantation that is a National Historic Landmark. Situated on the Ashley River, the property includes the House Museum, built in 1755 as the gentleman’s guest quarters, and 65 acres of magnificent gardens.
Today call in Beaufort, South Carolina’s second oldest city. Set amid an estuary in the interior Sea Islands, Beaufort is steeped in beauty and in history. Spend time exploring the downtown area, which is a designated National Historic Landmark whose unique, antebellum architecture has been remarkably preserved. Nature enthusiasts can explore nearby Hunting Island, a pristine state park filled with wildlife including egrets, osprey, herons, and loggerhead turtles.
Call at Savannah, Georgia’s oldest city, founded by James Oglethorpe in 1733. Today the fine avenues and open spaces that Oglethorpe planned form the cornerstone of the three-square-mile historic district, which features over 1,000 Federal and Regency buildings and 21 verdant squares. A tour includes the Davenport House, an elegant Federal-style home that presides over the northwest corner of Columbia Square; the opulent Owens-Thomas House, designed by noted English architect William Jay; and the Romanesque Cotton Exchange, once one of the busiest in the world.
Spend the day enjoying the wildlife and scenery as you sail along the Intracoastal Waterway. Enjoy the sea breeze on deck, attend an educational lecture, take advantage on on-board amenities, or settle in with a good book as you prepare for the next leg of your journey.
From Brunswick, explore Jekyll and St. Simons Islands, two of Georgia’s Golden Isles. In 1886 a group of millionaires bought the island as a winter retreat and built the Jekyll Island Club, whose members included Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, and Astors. These illustrious members erected stately mansions — which were called "cottages"—around the imposing club and are remarkably preserved today. In 1947 Georgia purchased the island and the estates and subsequently turned the area into a state park. On scenic St. Simons Island, visit the archaeological site of Fort Frederica, where Spanish and British troops battled in 1742, establishing Georgia as a British colony. Also visit the island’s lighthouse, rebuilt in 1872 and still operational today. More than 280 species of birds have been recorded on this small island, not to mention its abundance of alligators and dolphins as well as rare flora.
From St. Marys, a historic small port town on Georgia’s south coast, take a local ferry to nearby Cumberland Island, the largest wilderness island in the country. Inhabited by Timucuan Indians for more than 3,000 years, the island was also host to British colonists, Spanish missionaries, and the Carnegies, who owned most of the island from the late 19th century and built several mansions that are still standing. In 1972, the island was purchased by the federal government and they established the Cumberland Island National Seashore in order to protect the unique wildlife. During your visit, explore Cumberland’s historic sites, as well as the rich bird and animal life, in the company of park rangers.
Following breakfast, disembark in Jacksonville and transfer to the airport to continue your travels.