A few months ago I threw out the question- “What is your favorite family beach?” (Read the full post here.) Mine has always been, and probably will always be, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
Since Hilton Head made the Family Vacation Critic’s list of the 10 Best Spring Break Destinations For Families I posted yesterday, I thought I would do a breakdown on why it’s such a fabulous place.
- Great Beach: Although Hilton Head isn’t a large Island, standing on the beach you will feel like the perfection goes on forever! The waves, on average, are small to medium size. They are big enough for kids to have fun, but not overly intimidating. The sand is ideal for building sandcastles and shells are plentiful. Even at high tide, there is still plenty of beach to enjoy and the Sea Oats lining the dunes are picturesque.
- Mostly Families: A quick glace around any area of the Island, and the majority of people you see will be families. Or people old enough to have families. In other words, it’s not a really hip college spring break style scene. You’d be hard pressed to find any loud party-like atmospheres, unless of course you’re there to attend a wedding reception. Hilton Head comes alive as the sun comes up, and pretty much dies down shortly after dark.
- Awesome Food: Hilton Head has an amazingly diverse food scene. You will pretty much be able to find any of your major chain places (don’t worry, there are several Starbucks!), but there is also a wide variety of new and established local restaurants. Some restaurants on the Island offer beautiful settings, but not all of them. Don’t count out the ones tucked into a strip center or off the beaten path- almost all of the food we’ve ever eaten in Hilton Head has been delicious. Of course, you’ll also find your very touristy eating establishments too. And about a million places to grab ice cream (I’ve made it my goal to try all of them…ha!)
- Live Entertainment: Several spots around the Island offer nightly (seasonal) entertainment. Our personal favorite is Gregg Russell who has been singing in Harbour Town every night under a tree for the last 30 years. He draws hundreds of people each night with his part comedy, part musical show. It’s hilarious and enjoyable for kids of all ages (and adults too!) And did I mention, it’s free.
- Shopping: There is no shortage of shopping in Hilton Head. From the cute boutiques, and local treasure stores, to the massive Outlet Mall just off the Island- you definitely won’t need to go home empty handed.
- Bike Trails: Hilton Head is literally covered with bike trails and during your stay, you will probably see just as many bikes as cars. The rental companies make it so easy and affordable for you to show up and have a bike during your stay. Beyond biking on the trails, you can also ride on the beach.
- Play Grounds: Like bike trails, the Island is also covered with play grounds. You will find tons of nice, well maintained playgrounds for kids of all ages. Several of the shopping/dining areas have play grounds which makes it very nice if you have some down time while waiting on a meal.
- Activities: One thing that’s always impressed me about Hilton Head is that you could spend a week there, never go to the beach, and never run out of things to do (not that I’m recommending that you skip the beach…I’m just saying, it’s possible!) A few of our favorite non-beach activities include: The Bubble Gum Dolphin Cruise, miniature golf (and “real” golf for my husband), The Sandbox Children’s museum, horseback riding, and the Harbour Town Lighthouse.
- Versatile Accommodations: Hilton Head has everything from Hotels, to condos, to houses available. Whether you are a party of 1 or a family of 20, there will be a fabulous place for you to stay.
- Safe/Clean/Appropriate: As a mom, I value a sense of security when I travel. Not that I let my guard down, but it’s nice knowing you’re providing your family with a safe environment to have fun. In Hilton Head you will not find any cars driving on the beach, and there are lots of lifeguards. The beach, and the Island are clean and I’ve always felt very safe. Also, I’ve never seen any inappropriate advertising or atmospheres that I would not want my kids to experience.
What’s not to love about Hilton Head?
What is your favorite thing to do in Hilton Head?