Great Dunes Park is named for the historic Great Dunes Golf Course, designed by Walter Travis. Travis was considered the most successful amateur golfer in the United States during the 1900s and 1910s. The golf course was an 18-hole course placed among the dunes in this area for the Jekyll Island Club. The course opened for play in 1928. Great Dunes was the center of golf activities on the island from its opening until the close of the Jekyll Island Club in 1942.
Once the Club closed, there were no workers to keep the course maintained and nature quickly took over. By 1955, severe erosion and development on the island marked the demise of the back 9 holes of the Great Dunes Golf Course. The excavated dirt was used to build the island's causeway entrance road and other nearby road networks. This excavation cleared the area, making way for what is now Beachview Drive behind you.
To learn more about the history of Jekyll Island, visit the Jekyll Island Museum in the Historic District at 100 Stable Road.
Peppermint Land Amusement Park
After the dunes were cleared and Beachview Drive was completed, a contract was signed to bring an amusement park to the island. Peppermint Land Amusement Park was opened in the late 1950s and operated for nearly 10 years along the
beach in this location. The park showcased several rides, including a Ferris wheel, small roller coaster, and go-carts. Hurricane Dora came through the area in 1964 and destroyed most of the park rides including, the Ferris wheel. The park was closed by 1965.
Did you Know?
To discover a more detailed history of golf on the island, visit and play the historic 9 holes that are still intact from the Great Dunes Golf Course of 1928.