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Hilton Head Experts

Area Tips

Stefanie Dasher

With my hometown of Savannah, GA just a stone's throw away from Hilton Head Island, SC, I frequent this tranquil area filled with many hidden gems. Here are my insider tips on where to shop, dine, along with other activities in the Hilton Head area:
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Food

Shelly Amor

"There are several specialty dishes in the area, Shrimp and Grits is a southern favorite but nothing compares to a Low Country Boil. At the time of this writing one of my favorite places serving the Low Country Boil also offers a “to go” version. There is a 10 person minimum and it includes fresh local shrimp, kielbasa sausage, new potatoes and fresh corn. Be sure to visit the Bluffton Family Seafood House - anything you order will be divine."
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Nightlife

Shelly Amor

"Hilton Head is not really known for its nightlife; however, The Salty Dog Cafe offers live entertainment and a happy hour cruise. Good music, good food and good drinks, what more could you ask for?"

Family

Shelly Amor

"The lighthouse in Sea Pines is an iconic symbol of Hilton Head. There is a fee of $6 to enter the Sea Pines plantation but you can find plenty to do for a day. Besides the lighthouse there is a stable in Sea Pines offering trail rides or pony rides, a small animal farm, playgrounds and restaurants."

Area Tips

Keith Goss

"For the best food, try fresh shrimp served many variety of ways at many fine restaurants, but especially Shrimp and Grits. Shelter Cove Harbour is a nice place for local shopping, restaurants and entertainment. Local music can be found almost any night of the week. The Jazz Corner is one of the best places to listen. With miles and miles of bike lanes, bring your bikes or rent them local for a fun family activity. Take a kayak tour to get close to nature including local birds...

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Food

Bob Calhoun

View Bob's property on FlipKey here.
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Neighborhoods

Bob Calhoun

"Not everyone has a central hub just a few steps away from the beach, where they can find an assortment of restaurants and shops to fit their every need, but here on Hilton Head you can. At Coligny, you’ll find one of the island’s best beaches along with a plaza full of food and souvenirs, just across the street from the beautiful Atlantic waters. It’s the perfect place to go for an entire day – sunup until sundown. There’s even a movie theater in the plaza, if you n...

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Nightlife

Bob Calhoun

"A picturesque sunset may mark the end of another day on the Island, but the sounds of Hilton Head Island nightlife have just begun to awaken. "Dinner served 5:00 p.m.-until..." is a common sight on the area menus as many of our restaurants keep their kitchens open late into the evening. Catch your favorite team on the big screen while you cue up for a round of 9-ball in a sports-themed bar. Or enjoy an elegant evening of dining and dancing in an intimate jazz club. Sit back a...

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Adventure

Bob Calhoun

"At Hilton Head Island the only possible limit to your vacation fun is your imagination! Our villa and location are as spectacular as the scenery, while our 20+ championship golf courses make for a golfer's paradise. We also boast more than 250 restaurants representing a myriad of cultures and tastes sure to tempt every palate. And with over 12 miles of sparkling sand beaches, to walk, ride or swim and soak up sun, there's always an outdoor adventure waiting right at your foot...

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Arts & Music

Bob Calhoun

"Hilton Head Island is typically considered a golf and tennis haven, rather than a culturally rich and diverse vacation experience. However, the splendid beauty and rich Hilton Head Island history have inspired a vibrant Hilton Head arts and cultural community.
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Area Tips

Ryne McCall

“When most people think about Hilton Head Island, they think of the top notch golf, the beautiful beaches, or the lighthouse. But, when I think about Hilton Head, I remember it as the place where my wife learned that a relaxing beach vacation could be just as much fun as a jam packed vacation itinerary.

What really convinced my wife was relaxing in a hammock underneath a couple of Palmetto trees on a perfect day and then getting to take our pup for a long walk...

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Food

Elaine Roach

"Pomidori, small owner operated Italian restaurant in a small plaza at Hwy 278 and New Orleans Rd. The Chef owner, came from Robert Irvine's restaurant "Eat" across the street. She, the bartender and the server had fantastic training under Robert and know how to please with fresh food. Charming décor and friendly, professional service, home-made Italian sausage and stuffed peppers with fresh, robust sauce make this place a delight. Lovely veal dishes change nightly. Excellent...

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Neighborhood

Elaine Roach

"Old Town Bluffton is a charming village with lovely architecture, galleries and shops and a fabulous outdoor market.

Harbor Town is where the tourists visit to see the lighthouse, the shops and Caliboque Sound. We often walk the back nine at the Harbor Town Golf Course, site of PGA tournament every year in April. We start walking early on the 18th before golfers and caddies arrive."

Nightlife

Elaine Roach

"Definitely "The Jazz Corner". Not only the best music and entertainment you will hear anywhere (Jazz Greats) but also one of the best restaurants in Hilton Head. Owner is a musician and jazz aficionado who obviously has a passion for great music and great food."

Family

Elaine Roach

"Beach, Beach, Beach. One of the best in North America. Superb for biking. Bike riding through all the paved trails in the plantations. Also, there are tons of Dolphin watching trips"

Arts & Music

Elaine Roach

"Coastal Discovery Museum. Centre for the Performing Arts. Great Motown, Rock and Blues band appearing all over the island and Bluffton."

Food

Michael & Lisa Harrison

Hilton Head Island serves great seafood. Our favourite is Skull Creek Boathouse, right on the water with views of the Atlantic Ocean. From its "reel big fish" sandwich on, it provides a wonderful list of regular and special meals in a warm and friendly setting. Other favourites are Bella Italia Cucina and Mi Tierra.There are almost 200 restaurants on Hilton Head Island and environs with great food for all tastes!"...

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Neighborhoods

Michael & Lisa Harrison

"We like Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort, right at the centre of Hilton Head Island (which is why we bought there) for its wonderful location: only a half mile from the 12-mile broad Atlantic Ocean beaches, 3 great golf courses, beautiful trees and gardens, 11 miles of a calm navigable waterway for canoe and kayak and historical sites. It's quiet and peaceful, yet has easy access to a great variety of places of local interest from museums to conservation lands."

Nightlife

Michael & Lisa Harrison

"For a fun night with great music and food try One Hot Mama's. It will give you a feeling of and for The South and its people."

Family

Michael & Lisa Harrison

"The beautiful broad beaches and warm Atlantic Ocean provide a wonderful playground for all ages, from sandcastles, to beach walks and biking, to water sports and fishing. Across the William Hilton Parkway at Shelter Cove, by the statue of Neptune, there's a great early evening show of music for all the family. A mini putt golf course provides an "adventure in the jungle"."

Adventure

Michael & Lisa Harrison

"Cruise with the dolphins, as they swim alongside your boat or kayak in the Intracoastal Waterway and Broad Creek. They're wild but they seem to enjoy human contact as much as we love being so close to them. It's an unforgettable experience with nature."

Arts & Music

Michael & Lisa Harrison

"Just across the William Hilton Parkway is the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, featuring big shows from Broadway and London. The Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra plays classical and occasional popular music in its home concert venue, The First Presbyterian Church! There are also concerts in the park by Shelter Cove. The Jazz Corner provides great music from Dixieland to contemporary jazz."

About Hilton Head

SAND & SUNSHINE: Hilton Head lies on the Intracoastal Waterway and encompasses 42 square miles of semi- tropical, Lowcountry geography, including unspoiled sea marshes, creeks and lagoons, heavily wooded forests of tall pines, palmettos, magnolias and live oaks, and 12 miles of broad Atlantic beach. The Island's weather is ideal for those wanting to soak up the sunshine with subtropical climate year round.

LOCAL EATS: Dining is a serious pastime on the Island. With access to both salt marsh and coastal woodland abundance, it's no wonder Island chefs make these fresh, local ingredients the stars of their menu. While our distinctive Lowcountry cuisine rightfully receives much attention, Island restaurants and eateries offer variety in both cuisine and atmosphere. From the casual-style barbecue joint to fine dining al fresco under starry skies, eating out at one of over 250 local restaurants satisfies.

GET OUTSIDE: Launch from heights of up to 75 feet as you zip through an ecotour with ZipLine Hilton Head. Eight interconnected ziplines fly over live oaks as you spot boats and Broad Creek below. Feeling brave? A 900-foot dual cable lets adrenaline junkies race to the finish line. For those happy keeping both feet near ground, the Island is a bicyclist's heaven with over 100 miles of paved pathways. Practice casting a shrimp net and pulling a crab pot aboard a hands-on water excursion or try the four-hour night shark fishing trip - local outfitters take families out to catch an up-close glimpse of nature's wonders and creatures. Dolphin fans will delight!

TAKE A WALK ON THE WATER SIDE: At the Island's six public marina villages, find shops, restaurants and plenty of ways to play. Broad Creek Marina in one of the Island's quietest neighborhoods, this laid-back marina offers water sports and nature tours.

A marina-in-the-round, Harbour Town Yacht Basin is surrounded by cafés, shops and galleries. This popular Sea Pines Resort destination features the Island's iconic candy-striped Harbour Town Lighthouse, water activities and family entertainer Gregg Russell performing under the Liberty Oak tree.

The relaxed setting on Broad Creek makes Palmetto Bay Marina a great destination for dinner and drinks. The North End's Skull Creek boasts three fabulous waterfront restaurants - Hudson's Seafood House on the Docks, an Island institution with a fishing fleet (they'll even prepare your own catch); Skull Creek Boathouse, featuring an outdoor buoy bar; and the stylish Chart House, where fresh seafood pairs brilliantly with Lowcountry ingredients.

Visit the home of Jake The Salty Dog at South Beach Marina with a fishing village vibe drawing visitors looking to relax by the water with a cold drink and southern food favorites.

Information provided by: Hilton Head Island Visitor and Convention Bureau