Places to Eat, Shop and Visit while in Hilton Head, South Carolina
We call Hilton Head, South Carolina, our beach home– second to the Route 30A, Florida. So many wonderful summer time beach memories, and a place my children love to visit. Less than a four-hour drive from Atlanta, Georgia, Hilton Head was an easy family vacation spot. So, I am quite surprised that I haven’t done a travel guide yet, but better late than never! Although we have moved away from Atlanta, we are eager to continue our yearly visits to Hilton Head. Here is my Travel Guide to Hilton Head, South Carolina of places to eat, shop and visit.
One of the main attractions to Hilton Head is that the beaches are all open to the public. Hilton Head Island is about 12 miles long and are easily accessible and enjoyable to all. We love how wide the beaches are especially at low tide. The hard-packed sand on Hilton Head shoreline makes for an easy bike ride, and you have full access to 12 miles of beach front. We make sure to bring bikes and love to ride where we can find shells, marine life and washed up shark teeth.
Hilton Head Island is all about the beach. All.day.long! That is where you will usually find us. One thing we love about Hilton Head is that the shoreline is not lined with high-rise hotels. There are building codes and much of the natural elements are preserved, so you still feel like you are on an island. Spanish-moss trees, palm trees, sea marshes are all along the HH Island along with world-renowned golf courses.
To break up the beach, one place we love to visit and explore more of the HH island is Pickney Island National Wildlife Refuge . This is the perfect place to go on a morning or evening hike and see island wildlife. So many amazing birds that you won’t see anywhere else. If you are on a hunt for an alligator, this is the place to see them.
If you have little children, Lawton Stables is also a fun break from the beach. They have a small animal farm and pony rides. They also have horse-back riding travel guides around the island. My children love visiting Lawton Stables.
Harbor Town Lighthouse is a fun place to explore. We like to visit in the evening after a day at the beach and grab dinner around there. Although if you go in the morning, you may see dolphins near the piers. There is shopping and restaurants near the candy cane striped lighthouse, which is the center of Harbor Town. Climb to the top of the iconic Lighthouse to get a beautiful visit of the harbor.
There are a few shops we love to visit while in Hilton Head. We definitely make it a point to stop by these shops. Right across from Coligny Beach is a shopping center called Coligny Plaza this is located in the town’s center and a great place to walk from beach to shopping. We always stop by Quiet Storm to pick up any kind of items for our skimboards, surfboards and boogie boards. They have the best selection. I also like to pick up a new beach hat here and a cute tank top or see what sales they have on clothes. I love all of their selections. I also love to stop by Black Mineral Market to pick up stones and sliced agates for my jewelry shop. My kids always like to out a rock or two. They always have a great selection of rocks, minerals and shells at affordable prices. And the last shopping spot we always like to hit up while in Hilton Head is The Spice and Tea Exchange. They have exotic spices and recipes to use the spices. You can also find a wide range of olive oil and teas from around the world.
Feeding a family of six can get quite expensive, so we like to find friendly family restaurants that are really good and well priced. If you like seafood, the beach is the best place to find restaurants that have fresh fish and seafood. We tend to go where the locals like to go. Kenny B’s Cajun Seafood Hut is so good with the taste of New Orleans with a Southern style. The gumbo is amazing and barbecue shrimp. Get there early because there is usually a long line around 5 p.m! Another similar casual dining restaurant where diners arrive around before dinner is Sea Shack. This restaurant is HH best seafood secret. They have picnic tables outside the restaurant, and best seafood options you can get for a reasonable price. If you are looking for entertainment and a place for your kids to hang, the Salty Dog Cafe is a great place to go and HH’s famous restaurant. We love how it is right on the water and they have live music. Looking for pizza? Giuseppi’s Pizza and Pasta has the best pizza made with homemade dough. I use to recommend the French Kiss Bakery, which has the most amazing almond croissant. But we had the worst, horrible customer service experience the last few times we went that I vowed never to return. However, I hear they have new owners so I’m hoping they have change the negative attitude around.
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