Visitors to Sapelo Island can see virtually every facet of a barrier island's natural community, from the forested uplands, to the vast salt marsh, and the complex beach and dunes systems. The mainland Visitor Center is located in Meridian and brings to life both the natural and cultural history of Sapelo. Guided island tours highlight the African-American community of Hog Hammock, University of Georgia Marine Institute, the beautiful Reynolds Mansion and a working lighthouse. Built in 1820, the lighthouse was in service until 1905 when it was deactivated. Following its 1998 restoration, it once again became a working aid in navigation. Sapelo Island can be reached only by ferry and reservations are required.