Those four letters won't do justice for all the options and activities on Hilton Head Island. I always joke that I if I did not work, I could stay busy 24/7 with all that is offered on Hilton Head Island. Visitors can look at all the local magazines for To Do things. I will concentrate on things to keep the second home or condo owner or primary home or condo owner happy and busy on this little treasure island we get to call home.
I will break it down into some categories:
- the main attraction that the mainland cannot compete. With 12 miles of long sandy beaches and tidal changes of up to 8 feet, our beaches are second to none. Please note that although the beaches are public, access to many may be private. Here some public beach access:
Coligny Beach is the most widely known beach off at the end of Pope Avenue.
Alder Lane Beach is next to the Marriott Grande Ocean Resort with parking across South Forest Beach Drive
Chaplin Community Park is between Burkes Beach and Singleton Beach Road and is adjacent to a dog park where Cashew used to go to as a young pup.
Driessen Beach is mid-island and at the end of Bradley Beach Drive.
Mitchellville Beach Park is off Beach City Road and tends to be a bit more rocky terrain as it is near the Sound
Folly Field Beach is mid-island and down Folly Field Road
Islanders Beach is near Folly Field but to the left of it closer to The Westin Resort and is popular amongst the locals living on the north end or mid island.
Port Royal Plantation Homes - on the 'heel' of the island
Palmetto Dunes Resort including condos and homes
Leamington - homes and townhouses
Shipyard Plantation - all funnels into Beach Community Area right next to the Sonesta - for condos and homes
North Forest Beach - Homes and Condos like The Sea Crest
South Forest Beach - Condos and Homes
Sea Pines Resort - all the way to the 'toe' part of the island for about 4 miles. Homes, Condos and Townhomes.
No glass containers and no alcohol
No motorized vehicles except wheelchairs
Leave wildlife alone - this includes the precious Dunes, sand dollars and creatures
Beach markers every quarter mile help emergency personnel to find you. Memorize the one where you are
I walk my dog Cashew on the beach every morning with a bunch of other local and returning visitors. NO ANIMALS allowed on the beach between 10am and 5pm between Memorial Day and Labor Day. From April 1st to Memorial Day and Labor Day to September 30 they have to be on the leash during these times. No limits or leashes during October 1 and March 31 BUT the animal is required to be under positive voice control. We are dog friendly. Please be considerate and pick up poop and don't bother folks that might not be as welcoming to pets. Kindness and consideration goes a long way.
Golf is the main reason my parents moved here in 1971. Sea Pines had three courses for them to play and were planing a private golf club to make a total of 4 courses to play. Heaven for them. We have private and public courses and since some of you may be interested in buying property on the island, I included them also. We continue to be on of the world's TOP 10 Golf Destinations. Oh and tennis players, we have over 134 tennis courts on the island. :)
Our lovely island is surrounded by water so we have our share of world-class marinas and casual ones also. Fishing trips, dolphin watch tours, sunset cruises, paddle boarding, parasailing and even a pirate ship of the young ones. We have TWO of only three lock systems on the East Coast. One is in Wexford and other in Windmill Harbour. Bringing your boat? Try these marinas:
This island is filled with folks that came to retire and have been blessed with talent, success and a drive to help others and give back. NO place has as many grass roots non-profits that are truly dedicated to help the less fortunate. Volunteers in Medicine as an example, started by the phenomenal Dr. McConnell to offer health and wellness needs of the medically underserved. Deep Well, Bargain Box and Children's Center are non-profits that started over 45 years ago to serve the needs of this community. Some folks need a second career but those that are blessed, give back. Here just some of the opportunities to help in this giving, charitable island community:
These are just some of the many ways to get involved in the local community and make new friends and feel good about giving back. I can't wait to retire and join on a more hands on level.
One of the most vibrant aspects of Hilton Head Island life is the strength of our arts community. This area has become a haven for performing and visual arts. This is home for many photographers, best-selling novelists, world-renowned painters and stage performers. One girl I used to babysit for now performs on broadway for Disney Productions. You will also find all sorts of music here, especially in the Summer when Greg Russell plays under the Liberty Oak and Shannon Tanner plays at Shelter Cove for our local and visiting children. Many local restaurants offer talented live music at night.
Since Charles Fraser recruited the best up and coming chefs from New York to come to this piece of paradise over 45 years ago (many are still here and have opened their own popular restaurants throughout the years), this island has become a dining Mecca. Gone are the days that local restaurants closed up from November through March. You can literally go out every night of the year and experience casual up to culinary masterpieces. Below some of my favorites that I frequent or come highly recommended to me. No specific order. Bon Appetit!
This is not an exhaustive list of all the happenings. Numerous smaller venues throughout the year.
Here is a great link for First Time HOME/CONDO BUYERS: Just click here: Steps to Home Buying Process