Hilton Head Island Tips For Visitors

By: Jeff Palmer

Hilton Head Island Tips For Visitors

Hiltonhead Island was the first ecologically-planned destination in The United States. Light pollution ordinances are in effect across the island to protect the habits of the loggerhead turtles.

Protections are in place to protect the beautiful live oaks and palmetto trees which cover the island. Salt marshes, beaches and lagoons in Hiltonhead Island remain in pristine condition across the island. While modern conveniences such as shopping malls and five star hotels are widely available; care has been taken to blend these structures into the native ecology as much as possible.

Hiltonhead Island - Hilton Head Attractions

1) 2.5 million travelers visit Hiltonhead Island annually
There are over 2.5milion travelers who arrive annually to Hiltonhead Island to find an infinite variety of activities and reasons for visiting. Whether they are searching for a world class golf vacation, relaxing on the miles of sandy beaches or enjoying the gentle sway of palm trees in unspoiled nature, a stay on Hilton Head Island is sure to pleasethe most discerning of vacationers.

2) Hiltonhead Island is home to the Heritage Classic golf championship and the Celebrity golf tournament. With an average yearly temperature of 70 degrees, visitors to the island are sure to enjoy year round golf on any of the 24 golf courses located on Hilton Head. There are also another 40 golf courses to be found in thesurrounding area, just a short distance from the island.

3) 12 Miles of Sandy Beaches
With over twelve miles of sandy beaches overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, water lovers will find that Hiltonhead Island is a coastal paradise. Whether you just want to relax in the sun or try your hand at scuba diving, waterskiing or dolphin watching there's is something for everyone on the island. Fishing charters, kayak tours, wind-surfing, island cruises and all manner of water activities are available.

  • If you really want to see the island consider renting a bicycle from one of the numerous bike rental outfits. With miles of bike paths available, many of which take you through nature preserves, this is truly an enjoyable way to experience the natural splendor of the island. At low tide, the beaches of Hilton Head make an excellent bike riding surface.
  • Over 250 restaurants of every price range and cuisine dot the island. Fresh seafood abounds. From five star formal restaurants to fast food and everything in between, every taste and budget is catered to here.

4) Wide Range of Accomodations Available
There are a variety of accommodations available in several price ranges. From hotels to villas, condos to timeshares, you are sure to find lodging which fits your taste and budget.

Hiltonhead Island - A few things to watch out for
from traffic, pollen, bugs & alligators.

1) Traffic on the island can be very heavy at times, especially durring tourist season which runs from April to August. If you are planning on exploring the island your best bet is to rent a bicycle from any of the many bike rental shops and enjoy the scenery at a leisurly pace instead of trying to fight the traffic. If you are interested in exploring nearby Bluffton expect about an hours drive time durring peak hours.

2) Finding Locations on this Hiltonhead Island can be tricky
Route 278 or William Hilton Parkway is the main road across Hilton Head Island. You will discover that finding locations on the island can be tricky.

  • The buildings share similar architecture, green roofs, sand colored siding. The island's attempts to blend buildings in with natural surroundings, though worthy of praise, has led to some problems.
  • Many buildings are hidden from view from the roads. Local laws regarding the reduction of signage street lights and billboards makes it difficult at times to find the place that you are looking for, this especially true if traveling at night. Small mile marker signs dot the highway in an attempt to provide a point of reference to visitors

2) Pollen in the area is extremely dense.
A fine greenish-yellow powder covers everything here durring the spring and summer months. If you have allergies be prepared with a good supply of anti-histamines and other allergy medicine.

3) Bugs can be a nuisiance during summer months
During summer months, you get these bugs;

  • Mosquitos are very numerous due to the surrounding marsh lands and island lagoons.
  • Chiggers are like little ticks that leave a nasty bite, don't make the mistake of playing with the spanish moss that sometimes falls from the oak trees, as this moss is often home to nests of chiggers.
  • No-see-ums are tiny flying insects which are very annoying, they look like small grey fleas and leave an itchy bite.
  • Sand fleas are prevelant on the beaches. If you have never seen a palmetto bug then you are in for a treat!
  • Palmetto bug is a cute sounding name for what in reality is a giant flying cockroach! The first time I saw one, I freaked out a bit, not sure if they bite, but the gross out factor alone makes them worth mentioning. Bring a good supply of insect spray when visiting in the summer months.

4) Alligators live on Hiltonhead Island
The good news is they pretty much keep to themselves. It isn't uncommon for an alligator to take a stroll on the golf course or warm themselves on a hot sidewalk though. They might even have a swim at the local pool from time to time.

If you a considering a vacation which includes gorgeous weather, miles of beaches, world class golf, entertainment and dining then explore the many offerings available on Hiltonhead Island.

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