Great Escapes: Our guide to Hilton Head Island, SC

Planning a getaway? Check out Hilton Head Island, SC a family-friendly beach destination.

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Bike trails on the island lead to Harbour Town. | Photo by @visithiltonhead

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Planning a getaway? Check out Hilton Head Island, SC, a summer beach trip destination.

City Editor Hanna, here. I grew up going to Hilton Head Island every summer with my family. It’s a great escape to beautiful palm trees, easy beach access, fresh seafood, and shopping. I’ve gone back a few times in my adult life as well, and it’s just as enjoyable and peaceful.

Why go?

  • Hilton Head Island is one of top 10 family beach destinations in the country. The environment is known for being laid back, calming, and welcoming.
  • If you’re looking to take a dip in the ocean, the water is typically warm enough for a swim June-August. Seasonal water activities open during these months as well, making summer the most popular time to visit the island.
  • Before planning your trip, be sure to check out HHI’s website with attractions, events, and special offers.
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Try the seafood charcuterie board at The Old Oyster Factory. | Photo by @theoldoysterfactory

Act like a local:

  • Food: The Old Oyster Factory is a waterfront seafood spot voted one of the “Top 100 Scenic View Restaurants” by Opentable.
  • Drink: Salty Dog Cafe is a great outdoor spot to grab drinks on the water and listen to live music. The drink menu spotlights the blender bar with options like a kiwi colada and a coconut freeze.
  • Outdoors: Kayaking tours are a great way to get out in nature and get up-close with wild animals, especially dolphins.
  • Relax: Find public beach access across the island to sit in the sand and listen to the waves.
  • Explore: Harbour Town has shops, restaurants, boat tours and cruises, playgrounds, and the historic Harbour Town Lighthouse.
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Take in the views from Omni Hilton Head. | Photo by @omnihiltonhead

Where to stay:

  • Vrbo: This oceanfront condo sleeps six + has a pool and grilling area. (~$199/night)
  • Airbnb: Five guests can stay at this condo with private beach access, pools, and tennis courts. (~$110/night)
  • Splurge hotel: Omni Hilton Head Oceanfront Resort has access to three championship golf courses, bike trails, and dining. (~$400/night)
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