Gray's Reef celebrates 40th anniversary in 2021

GA Coastline

President Jimmy Carter designated Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary on January 16th, 1981 - creating the only protected waters in the waters between Cape Hatteras, North Carolina and Cape Canaveral, Florida. 2021 marks the 40th anniversary of designation and continued protection for the hidden gem off Georgia's Coast.

How can you celebrate?

Coral and a diver

Read about the sanctuary's history and the key names who made ocean conservation in the area possible.


Dive! Dive! Dive! Take a virtual dive at Gray's Reef and see some of the 200 species of fish and 900 species of invertebrates.

  • Watch videos about Gray's Reef national marine sanctuary including ongoing research.

  • Volunteer with your national marine sanctuary.

  • #GraysReef40th - follow our year-long celebration on social media - Facebook and Twitter

In the news:

  • Savannah Mayor Van Johnson proclaims 'Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary Day' on January 16th, 2021.

  • Connect Savannah highlights four decades of national marine sanctuary off Georgia's coast.