DescriptionEstablished as a stronghold to protect England's rich Southern holdings from Spanish, French and Native American attacks in the 1720s, Darien was settled by Gen. James E. Oglethorpe's Scottish Highlanders. The town became a prosperous center of timber shipping and trade by the mid-1800s. The Darien River, which determined the town's location, is dotted with shrimp boats that now underpin the local economy. A 7-mile bicycle path connects the historic district with Fort King George; the path begins at the foot of the bridge at the intersection of US 17 and Fort King George Drive.
Recreational opportunities, including bird-watching, kayaking, fishing and deep-sea charter excursions, are available at downtown locations and north on US 17 at Shellman Bluff and Harris Neck National Wildlife Refuge . Harris Neck's 2,824 acres, a mix of wooded areas, grassy plains and marshes and live oaks draped with Spanish moss, offer a pleasant drive.
In summer the refuge is home to nesting egrets, herons and wood storks; in winter ducks take up residence. Open dawn-dusk; pets are not permitted. To reach the refuge take exit 67 off I-95, go south on US 17 about 1 mile and then continue east on Harris Neck Road about 7 miles. The visitor contact station is open Mon.-Fri. 8-4:30; closed federal holidays. Phone (843) 784-2468 to confirm staff availability.
Visitor InfoDarien-McIntosh County Chamber and Visitor Center 1111 Magnolia Bluff Way S.W. Suite 410 DARIEN, GA 31305. Phone:(912)437-4837
Self-guiding toursA walking-tour map of the downtown historic district is available at the visitor center.
Things to SeeFort King George State Historic Site
Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation State Historic Site see Brunswick.