Jazz in the Park–A Free Concert Series

Don’t miss out on the two remaining chances to enjoy Jazz in the Park, a free outdoor concert series.  A great way to enjoy a beautiful, summer evening filled with live music, don’t forget to bring your own chairs or blanket!

Each concert begins at 7:30 pm, giving you the option of having a nice dinner beforehand or picking up a meal to-go from any of the restaurants within walking distance of Lowcountry Celebration Park.

Want to learn more about this concert series or future concerts? Visit the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra’s website here.

To stay up to date on the island’s events and for more information on activities and island-wide discounts, fill out the form below.

Out to Brunch–Hilton Head Island Brunch Recommendations

It’s beginning to be brunch season again. What is brunch season, you ask? Well, to be honest, we just completely made that up. But we are heading into the time of year when there are more reasons to plan on spending your mid-morning sipping on mimosas and enjoying a delicious plate of French toast.  With Easter Sunday and Mother’s Day fast approaching, it’s a good idea to start making plans now—especially if you’re able to make reservations ahead of time! Here are our recommendations for some of the best brunches on Hilton Head Island:

Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café

Located in Palmetto Bay Marina, this café is a great option for breakfast or lunch—or in this case, brunch!  Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café is a local favorite that quickly turns new customers into regulars.  With a full bar that can whip up delicious Bloody Marys, and a regularly updated specials menu that continues to wow, this island favorite offers a dog-friendly patio where you can enjoy a beautiful morning waterside.

We recommend the Crab Cake Eggs Benedict or their signature Breakfast Burrito with homemade salsa. Although breakfast items are served all day, their “Late Risers,” or lunch menu, is equally delicious. Try the Shrimp Scampi, Leslie Burger, or the Egg Salad Melt. Add an order of Crab Wontons from their “Snax” menu, or try their delicious She-Crab Soup.

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Plantation Café & Deli

A Hilton Head staple that has been in operation for almost half a century, Plantation Café & Deli has three convenient locations that cover both the island and Bluffton. For early risers that want to get a head start on their day, visit this café before eight a.m. to order from their delicious Early Bird Specials menu. If sleeping in is on the day’s to-do list, both breakfast, lunch, and Sunday Brunch menus are packed with mouthwatering plates. A must-stop while visiting Hilton Head, visitors and locals alike rave about the delightful, family-friendly atmosphere and scrumptious southern-style cooking.

The breakfast menu boasts country skillets, an array of benedicts and omelets, as well as plates from the griddle that are all beautifully topped with powdered sugar. Our favorite breakfast plate is Ellie’s Southern Breakfast, a more traditional order with a southern spin that includes fried green tomatoes. You can’t go wrong with a Creole skillet or golden Belgian Waffle. Our Sunday Brunch favorites include the Salad Platter and Pimento Grilled Cheese.

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Skillets Café & Grill

Located in Coligny Plaza, Skillets Café & Grill is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! Although they don’t have a specific brunch menu, they do serve breakfast until three p.m. due to popular demand. In operation for twenty-five plus years, Skillets has always been the go-to place before or after a trip to the beach. Among plenty of great reviews from happy customers, praises for how seriously the restaurant staff takes gluten-free allergies are just as plentiful as the amount of options of menu items that are gluten-free friendly and even vegan.

When at Skillets Café & Grill, why not order one of their five, delicious breakfast skillets? In true island fashion, two of our favorites are called The Beach and The Coligny. We would also recommend the Country Crepe, The Kitchen Sink, as well as the Seafood Omelette off the breakfast menu. If you’re ordering off the lunch menu, try the Monte Cristo or Shrimp and Grits. Lunchtime also unlocks a long list of dessert options, so make sure to save room for a slice of Key Lime Pie, Lemon Berry Mascarpone Cake, or the House Made Cobbler.

These are just three of the long list of fantastic brunch options you can find on Hilton Head Island. For more places to find great food and hospitality on the island, visit our Restaurant page.


Fill out the short form below to receive our Mini Island Discount Packet that offers coupons for dining, shopping, activities, and more in and around the Coligny Beach area!

#PlaidNation: Hilton Head Island prepares for the 54th playing of the RBC Heritage Classic

Each year, for one week in April, Hilton Head Island becomes #PlaidNation as golf fans from across the globe flock to the Lowcountry to watch some of golf’s greats battle it out at Harbour Town Golf Links.  Welcome to The RBC Heritage Classic. 

Dating back to 1969, the RBC Heritage is the only PGA Tour event played in South Carolina, and its host, the Heritage Classic Foundation, supports charitable organizations across the Lowcountry. Since 1987, the Foundations has donated $47.5M to nonprofits in South Carolina and Georgia.

Golf legends like Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Payne Stewart, Nick Faldo, and Davis Love III have donned the tartan jacket, victorious. In recent years, the trophy has been lifted by the likes of Wesley Bryan, Satoshi Kodaira, C.T. Pan, Webb Simpson, and Stewart Cink. Cink will be back in 2022 to defend his title, and the RBC Heritage leaderboard is sure to feature some of the biggest names in golf. 

The RBC Heritage kick-off is unlike any other PGA Tour tournament opening. This year, defending champion Stewart Cink will gather with Heritage Classic Foundation Board members, volunteers, and state dignitaries as they parade around the Harbour Town Yacht Basin to the sound of the Citadel’s Pipe and Drum band. At the opening ceremony, the past champion is presented with his Captain of Gentlemen Golfers plaque and will continue the tradition of hitting a featherie-style golf ball into the Calibogue Sound with an authentic hickory golf club in unison with a cannon shot. This opening ceremony, a reenactment of a Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews tradition dating back to the mid-18th century, signals the official start of Tournament week on Hilton Head. 

If you’re planning to be a spectator at the 54th playing of the RBC Heritage Classic, here are a few things you may want to know.

Monday, April 11, 2022

  • The course is closed to spectators.

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

  • Opening Ceremonies begin on the 18th green at Noon.
  • Practice rounds commence at players’ discretions. No advance tee times will be available. 
  • Coca-Cola Youth Day Putting Contest | 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm | practice green | Children 15 and under are invited to putt alongside the pros. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

  • RBC Heritage Pro-Am begins at 7:00 am with players starting on the 1st and 10th tees. 

Thursday, April 14, 2022

  • First Round starting on the 1st and 10th tees.
    • Morning tee times 7:20 am – 9:00 am
    • Afternoon start times 11:50 am – 1:30 pm. 

Friday, April 15, 2022

  • Second Round starting on the 1st and 10th tees.
    • Morning tee times 7:20 am – 9:00 am
    • Afternoon tee times 11:50 am – 1:30 pm 

Saturday, April 16, 2022

  • Third round starting times 8:30 am – 1:30 pm. 
  • #PlaidNation Games on the Heritage Lawn 12:00pm – 2:00pm 

Sunday, April 17, 2022

  • 7:30 am Sunrise Easter Service featuring local ministers, music, and nondenominational prayer will take place at 7:30 am at Liberty Oak. 
  • Final round start times: 8:30 am – 1:30pm
  • Trophy presentation, 18th green, immediately following close of play. 

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit rbcheritage.com.

Still looking for accommodations on Hilton Head for Heritage Week? Don’t wait too long. The island will be completely sold out. Request information today about our resort and hotel options by completing the short form below.

Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival 2022

February 21-27, 2022

Get ready to experience one of the best seafood festivals on the map during this week-long extravaganza held in and around Hilton Head Island. Where artfully prepared food meets the South’s coastal heritage, the Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival will certainly exceed all expectations during this year’s 15th Anniversary lineup.

Events over the course of the festival range from celebrity guest chef dinners and culinary demonstrations, to excursions off-island that highlight both local history and the fishermen that make it all possible. Pair that with wine tastings, fresh catch specials, fishing instruction, and more!

Here are the scheduled events for this year’s festival.

Tickets are available for the festival’s main event scheduled for Saturday, February 26th from 1:00-4:30pm. Held at Shelter Cove Harbour and Marina, this family-friendly event will offer live entertainment, cooking demonstrations, samplings from more than 100 food and beverage vendors, and more! Make sure to stick around because the day’s festivities will conclude with the 15th Anniversary Fireworks Celebration that is sure to dazzle!

The Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival is the primary fundraiser for the David M. Carmines Memorial Foundation. For more information, visit the festival’s website.

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14 Things to Do on Hilton Head Island for Valentine’s Day

There are plenty of ways to spend your Valentine’s Day this year on Hilton Head Island. Here are some ideas of how you can celebrate the day, rain or shine! 

Photo by Felipe Callado on Unsplash

Have brunch at Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café.

Known for their Stuffed French Toast and Crab Cake Eggs Benedict, Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café might just become your go-to brunch on the island! On a beautiful day, their dog-friendly patio is the perfect spot to sip on some coffee—or a mimosa!

Explore Hilton Head Island’s miles of bike trails.

A Gold Level Bicycle Friendly Community, Hilton Head Island boasts more than 60 miles of beautiful pathways, making the island easy to navigate. If you’ve left your bicycles at home, stop by Wheelz of Hilton Head and they’ll get you ready to roll. Their location is also a quick ride from Coligny Beach if you’d like to take a spin along the waterline at low tide. 

Discover the Harbour Town Lighthouse Museum.

Climb to the top of what has become the symbol of Hilton Head Island to see amazing views. During your ascent, you’ll learn about the history of the island and of the Sea Pines property. The museum’s gift shop is a great place to find artwork, authentic models, books and more. 

Pick up something sweet at The Island Fudge Shoppe.

What is Valentine’s Day without chocolate? The Island Fudge Shoppe has a delicious collection of hand-dipped chocolates, homemade fudge, and more! Located in the Coligny Plaza Shopping Center, this island favorite will definitely satisfy any sweet tooth. 

Fly with Hilton Head Helicopter Tours.

A great way to make your 2022 Valentine’s Day incredibly memorable, Hilton Head Helicopter Tours offers an array of different tours ranging from a quick 8-mile loop, to longer trips focused on admiring the beautiful Lowcountry coastline and wildlife—monkeys included! You read that right; take the Monkey Safari Tour to fly over a secluded island where over 3,000 rhesus monkeys roam freely. 

Visit the Carolina Tasting Room.

Since 2015, the Carolina Tasting Room has been the go-to place to find locally sourced wines, beers, and other products. With over 50 Local and Regional Wines to try, you can quite literally taste the Lowcountry! This Hilton Head tasting room also is known for their wine smoothies in many different delicious flavors. 

Take a walk along the beach–any beach!

Hilton Head Island is home to more than 12 miles of pristine beaches. You won’t have to worry about a crazy amount of heat or humidity in February, so grab a sweater and enjoy all that the crowd-free coastline has to offer. You might even spot some dolphins! For more room to roam, check what time low tide is on our monthly tide chart

Relax at Fountain Spa.

Make sure to schedule in some time to relax and pamper yourselves this Valentine’s Day. Enjoy a massage or design your own spa package. 

Take a private dolphin cruise.

Book a private dolphin cruise for just the two of you, or invite two more couples along to join in on the search for dolphins. A great way to see Hilton Head in all of its glory, your knowledgeable captain will navigate the water finding as many opportunities for you to see dolphins as possible.  

Play some mini golf.

Putt Putt is as fun a date idea as well as a staple to Hilton Head Island. Play a round at Legendary Golf for country-club style miniature golf, or at Adventure Cove if you’d rather continue the competition to the skee-ball lanes or air hockey table. 

Give virtual golf a try.

Whether you’re already a fan of virtual sports games or you’re looking to try something new this Valentine’s Day, Chronic Golf is the place to go! With a wide variety of multi-sports games and over 125 virtual golf courses to pick from, the two of you are guaranteed to have some fun—especially with a full menu and bar to order from!

Listen to a live jazz concert at The Jazz Corner.

Reserve a table to enjoy one of two live jazz concerts per night over dinner or drinks. This award-winning jazz club and restaurant has the perfect, intimate atmosphere you’re looking for to spend your Valentine’s Day evening. 

Celebrate on the Valentine’s Day Dinner Cruise.

Vagabond Cruise is offering a Valentine’s Day Dinner Cruise to make your February 14th one for the books! Upon boarding the Spirit of Harbour Town, you’ll receive a complimentary glass of champagne. Enjoy a delicious meal prepared by the award-winning chefs of the Sea Pines Resort all while taking in the gorgeous views and sunset


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Hilton Head Restaurants Open for Christmas

A question we get asked over and over by visitors to the island is, “Which restaurants are open on the holidays?” To that end, we’re compiling a list of local restaurants open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 2021.

The following restaurants are offering both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dining:

  • Hilton Head Diner 843-686-2400  Hilton Head Diner is typically open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, serving all day breakfast, their full menu, as well as a special Holiday menu featuring specials like duck L’orange, thyme roasted pork loin, and more. We’ll update this listing with this year’s Christmas menu as soon as it becomes available. Download their takeout menu here.
  • Nick’s Steak & Seafood | 843-686-2920 | Reservations only | NicksSteakAndSeafood.com – Nick’s Steak & Seafood will be open on Christmas Day, but you must have a reservation.  Please call 843-686-2920 to make a reservation; same-day reservations are very difficult to accommodate. They typically serve their full menu as well as traditional holiday favorites.
  • Grand Ocean Terrace at the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa | 843-681-4000 ext. 7066 | Reservation only
  • The Porch | 843-785-2900 | Reservation Only -Located at The Beach House Resort, The Porch Restaurant offers Christmas Day dining. Reservations required.

The following restaurants will be open on Christmas Eve and closed on Christmas Day

  • Wild Wings | 843-785-9464 | Christmas Eve – open until 6:30p by volume, closed Christmas Day
  • Fish Camp on Broad Creek | 843-842-2267 – Christmas Eve 12:00 pm – 6:30 pm;   Closed Christmas Day 
  • Plantation Café and Deli | 843-785-9020 – Christmas Eve regular hours;    Closed Christmas
  • Local Pie | 843-842-7437 – Christmas Eve (open by volume); Closed Christmas Day
  • Crazy Crab Harbour Town | 843-683-2722 – Open Christmas Eve (last reservation 6:30pm); Closed Christmas Day
  • Crazy Crab Jarvis Creek | 843-681-5021 – Open Christmas Eve (last reservation 6:30pm); Closed Christmas Day

The following restaurants will be closed for Christmas:

  • Sea Shack | 843-785-2464 – Closed Christmas Day
  • Up the Creek Pub & Grill | 843-681-3625 – Closed Christmas Day
  • North End Pour House | 843-681-4153 – Closed Christmas Day
  • Skillets | 843-785-3131 – Closed Christmas Day

For a unique Christmas Eve Dinner Experience…

We’ll be updating this list as new information becomes available. Fill out the short form below to receive our Mini Island Discount Packet that offers coupons for Hilton Head dining, shopping, activities, and more.

Oysters–A Lowcountry Legacy

A guide meant to intrigue both self-proclaimed oyster experts as well as novices who know next to nothing about the delicious bivalves. 

4,000-Year-Old Lowcountry Favorite 

If you’ve ever visited Hilton Head Island or surrounding Lowcountry towns, you know that the strong prevalence of oysters in the area’s history not only influence local menus, but quite literally are seen within the walls of historic buildings and on the grounds of ancient hunter gatherer societies. 

Oysters are found within shell-rings and mounds dotting the southeastern coastline dating back to at least 4,000 years ago. The reason why Native Americans on the Sea Islands created shell-rings, such as the Sea Pines Shell Ring and Green’s Shell Ring, is still unknown, whereas shell mounds are assumed to be middens, or waste sites that include discarded shells and bones. Historians believe these societies not only harvested oysters for food, but used their shells for tools and trade items. 

The trend of finding other uses for discarded oyster shells continued with early settlers who received grants from England to harvest oysters along the territory’s coastline. Agricultural uses included grinding the shells to supplement chicken feed as well as used as fertilizer, a technique George Washington was said to have used for his crops.  

Oyster shells also proved helpful in construction. Tabby became a popular building material in the Lowcountry because of the abundance of oyster shells in the area. Burning the shells to make lime, they then added whole shells into the lime, sand, and water mixture to create what’s known as coastal concrete. Beaufort County has the most tabby ruins in the United States. What’s left of the Stoney Baynard plantation house located within the Sea Pines property is a great example of tabby ruins on Hilton Head Island. 

An example of using tabby as a construction method at historic Stoney-Baynard Ruins.

Oysters were enjoyed by all classes and residents of the Lowcountry. The diet staple was recommended to be enjoyed at home—that is of course until refrigeration became widely used. Oyster roasts quickly became a Lowcountry tradition that still serve as significant social and fundraising events every season. 

Commercialization of the oyster industry took off with shucking houses and canning. New technology and ice helped ramp up sales and gain more customers, allowing more and more people to enjoy the delicious local oysters. 

The Old Oyster Factory, a restaurant with extraordinary views and delicious dishes, is located on what used to be an oyster cannery on Hilton Head Island. During your next trip to the island, do yourself a favor and stop by for lunch or dinner!

Crassostrea Virginica—the Eastern Oyster 

There are five types of oysters that may be found in the United States, and out of those five, our local oyster is called Crassostrea Virginica, or the Eastern Oyster. As you might assume, each type of oyster differs depending on the environment they’re found in. As far as the oysters in Beaufort County go, their briny sweetness is considered some of the best you’ll ever taste!

Remember the “R” Rule

The local oyster season officially runs from September to April. 

The official rule of eating oysters states that you should only indulge in oysters during a month that includes the letter “r”. During the summer months the waters are warmer, becoming the perfect time for oysters to spawn. Restaurants that offer oysters year-round may source from farmers located in colder waters or have different cultivation methods that allow for safe consumption. However safe they may be to eat, spawning typically makes the oyster more watery and less flavorful than they’d be in season. 

Prioritize Freshness 

If you’re planning on hosting an oyster roast or serving them at an upcoming holiday meal, the best time to buy them is either the day of or the day before. If you need to store them overnight, ensure that you keep them alive and in an open container with a wet towel over top. This will keep the oysters from drying out. Speaking of hydrated oysters, check for oyster liquor—the official name of the natural juice found inside.

Incorporate Oysters in your Thanksgiving Dinner 

There are many ways to serve oysters, and what better way to incorporate them into your Thanksgiving dinner than in one of the tastiest side dishes? Try this recipe from Bon Appétit for the ever-delicious BLT Oyster Stuffing

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Thanksgiving 2021 on Hilton Head Island [Restaurant Guide]

If you’re lucky enough to be spending the Thanksgiving Holiday on Hilton Head, you may be wondering which restaurants are open and serving Thanksgiving Dinner. Here are a few options for Thanksgiving Day Dining on Hilton Head Island.


Hilton Head Diner

Marina Side Drive at Highway 278 next to Pirates Island Adventure Golf

843-686-2400

7:00am -10:00pm

View Menu


Skillets Cafe & Grill

Marina Side Drive at Highway 278 next to Pirates Island Adventure Golf

843-686-2400

8:00am – 3:00pm

Thanksgiving Day Menu


Nick’s Steak and Seafood

Park Lane at Highway 278 – 1/2 Mile from Shipyard

843-686-2400

8:00am – 3:00pm | RESERVATION REQUIRED

Thanksgiving Day Menu


Fishcamp on Broad Creek

11 Simmons Road

843-842-2267

12:00pm – 7:00pm

View Menu


Thanksgiving with the Beach House (Porch Restaurant)

1 South Forest Beach Drive | Off Coligny Circle

843-785-2900

12:00pm – 8:00pm

$45.00/person

Thanksgiving Day Menu


Thanksgiving Day Feast at Grand Ocean Terrace at the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa

2 Grassland Avenue | Port Royal Plantation

843-681-1055

1:00pm | 3:00pm | 5:00pm Seatings – RESERVATIONS REQUIRED

Cost: $75 ages 13 and older; $29 ages 6 to 12 years old   

Children ages 5 and under eat free with a paying adult


Old Oyster Factory

101 Marshland Road

843.681.6040

12:00pm – 7:00pm

Four-Course Dinner | Adults $50 | Children $25

Thanksgiving Dinner Menu



Need help planning your Thanksgiving Holiday Vacation to Hilton Head? Contact Hilton Head Guest Services today!

Top Outdoor Dining Patios in Hilton Head

This is my second fall season in Hilton Head and in my opinion, this is the best time of the year to visit this beautiful island. The weather is finally under 90 degrees, the humidity has begun to drop and there is a refreshing salty breeze in the air. It is the ideal time to take advantage of the outdoor dining patios at restaurants, coffee shops, and bars located throughout the island.

Here are some of the best patios on Hilton Head where you can enjoy a great culinary experience along with breathtaking views.


Fishcamp on Broad Creek

Fishcamp on Broad Creek is an island staple and a must-stop for tourists when they come to Hilton Head for their family vacations. Even as a local, my husband and I love having a date night at Fishcamp. This restaurant allows you to dine right on the banks of Broad Creek while soaking in an indescribable Lowcountry sunset. The outside bar is perfect to grab a local beer, craft cocktail, or glass of wine with friends for happy hour or while you’re waiting for your table.

Right next door to Fishcamp is Broad Creek Marina. Whether or not you’re a boat enthusiast, it’s fun to catch a glimpse of the local boats docking after being out on the ocean. Fishcamp offers lunch, brunch, and dinner with a variety of dishes the whole family will love.

Carolina Crab Company

Located in Palmetto Bay Marina, Carolina Crab Company is the perfect atmosphere to kick back, enjoy a drink and crack open a crab leg or two! The menu has an array of seafood, burgers, and even light, healthy options for those who are trying to maintain their beach bodies.

The patio at Carolina Crab is also the perfect spot to bring your four-legged friend to enjoy the ambiance along with you.

Also, the Palmetto Bay Marina facilities were just recently fully renovated. The renovations included dock, restrooms, fueling stations, patio areas, and more. So, after dinner take a stroll to the end of the docks where you may be able to see a dolphin or two swim by!

Local Pie

Who doesn’t love pizza?! When I first moved to the area, I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to find a pizza place I loved as much as the pizza places up in the northeast. Boy, was I wrong!

Local Pie’s wood-fired pizza is a pizza enthusiast’s dream! With gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options, they have options for everyone.

They have two locations, one on Hilton Head and the other in Bluffton. Both locations have patios that provide a low-key, casual atmosphere where you can enjoy some live music, watch a sports game and try some local beers.

#Insider Tip: If you have kids, your server will bring you a ball of dough while you are waiting for your food. Kids love trying out their pizza-making skills!

Old Oyster Factory

The Old Oyster Factory has been around for over 30 years! This family-friendly restaurant is located on the marsh side of Broad Creek. The panoramic views of the marshland landscape, make this patio one of Hilton Head’s finest waterfront dining destinations.

From seafood to steaks, there is plenty of variety on the menu for everyone in the family to enjoy. Of course, you can’t forget to order some freshly cached oysters. Hundreds of fresh oysters are shucked daily at Old Oyster Factory. You can even watch the professionals shuck them over at the Oyster Bar.

The Crazy Crab

This local favorite has two locations on the island: One in Harbour Town located within Sea Pines and the other off of Hwy 278 on the North End of the island.

The Jarvis Creek location has a patio you are going to want to take advantage of to see a picturesque Lowcountry sunset. Also, located on property, is a playground and the largest salt-water fish tank in Hilton Head. These are great ways to keep the young children entertained during dinner. Don’t forget to order the award-winning crab legs, you will not be disappointed.


Vacation fun at an affordable price is a top priority at Hilton Head Guest Services! With our FREE TICKETS and DISCOUNTED VIP PACKAGES, you can indulge in your getaway without spending a lot of money! Get ready to enjoy all that Hilton Head has to offer.

Call 843-612-6917 or fill out the short form below for more information and receive our Mini Island Discount Packet, which includes a coupon for a FREE order of Local Pie’s famous GARLIC KNOTS,  just for inquiring. 

Sea Pines Traffic Circle Hilton Head Island

How to Navigate Hilton Head Island’s Sea Pines Circle [A Visitor’s Guide]

I’ve always found traffic circles to be confusing. That wouldn’t be at all surprising if you knew me. My special gift is getting lost. I can get lost in the most familiar places; places I’ve visited over and over. It’s probably one of the reasons I chose the human equivalent of a GPS as my life partner. He and I and our 7-year-old son moved from Michigan to Hilton Head less than 3 months ago, in May 2021. Along with all the usual trials that come with moving to a new place, Hilton Head Island presented a particularly confusing new normal for me, The Sea Pines Circle. For those of you unfamiliar with this “traffic circle” or “round-a-bout”, Sea Pines Circle can be a bit overwhelming. The good news is, with a little guidance and a few quick tips, you’ll be navigating this infrastructural phenomenon like a pro in no time. Understanding this 4-exit exchange is your all-access pass to this amazing Lowcountry destination. So buckle up! 

Sea Pines Traffic Circle Hilton Head Island

For starters, let’s talk traffic circle rules.

  1. When entering the Sea Pines Circle from any of the roads that feed into it, you must do so from the left lane. If you’re in the right lane, you’ll have to turn right when you reach the circle.
  2. You must yield to all traffic in the circle when entering. Drivers in the circle always have the right of way.
  3. Signal when exiting. Traffic will flow more easily through the circle if people waiting to enter know that others are going to exit. 
  4. If you miss your exit, don’t worry. Just take another lap around the circle until you reach your desired destination road. 

Once you’ve mastered the rules of the circle, your options are plentiful. Whether you’re trying to get to the beach, looking for your resort, hoping to enjoy some of the many island activities, or just making a quick grocery run, chances are, you’re going to encounter the Sea Pines Circle. Knowing which exit leads to which destination will be helpful. Let’s break it down.

Grocery Shopping on Hilton Head Island

There are plenty of options for picking up essentials on the island.  Harris Teeter is accessible from the Pope Avenue/Coligny Beach exit.  Looking for Publix? Take the Palmetto Bay Road/Cross Island Parkway exit. Whole Foods and Fresh Market can be reached via William Hilton Parkway (Highway 278), as can Kroger and others. The Piggly Wiggly, where I’m told you can get the BEST fresh, locally caught seafood, is in Coligny Plaza, accessible from the Pope Avenue exit.

Hilton Head Island Beaches

If you’re headed to Coligny Beach, take the Pope Avenue exit toward the south end of the island.  Shipyard Beach Access is reached via William Hilton Parkway, as are Singleton Beach, Folly Field Beach, and Islanders Beach. Shipyard Beach Access is inside the gated community, so be sure you have a pass if you’re planning to go there.

Best Restaurants on Hilton Head

For amazing pizza, try Local Pie, accessible from both the Pope Avenue and 278 exits, or Mellow Mushroom, which can be reached from either the Greenwood Avenue/Sea Pines exit or the Pope Avenue exit.  There are multiple seafood options off every exit. We like The Sea Shack off Pope Avenue, Carolina Crab Company off Palmetto Bay Road, and Nick’s Steak & Seafood off William Hilton Parkway just to name a few. If your kids are hangry and you need something FAST, drive through McDonald’s from the William Hilton Parkway exit, Five Guys Burgers and Fries on Palmetto Bay Road, or Zaxby’s also on William Hilton Parkway.  Hilton Head Diner, a breakfast favorite, is reachable from the William Hilton Parkway exit, and Wild Wing Cafe is a favorite for chicken wing enthusiasts. Get there from the Pope Avenue exit. 

These are just a few of the many fantastic dining options on Hilton Head. Click here for a more complete list of Hilton Head Restaurants.

Sea Pines Traffic Circle Hilton Head Island

Fun Things to do on Hilton Head

If watersports are your thing, exit the circle at Palmetto Bay Road and head to One HHI. There you can enjoy kayaking, jet skiing, and paddleboarding or relax during one of their awesome dolphin cruises. For the more adventurous visitors, head on over to Island Head Watersports, by taking the Palmetto Bay Road exit, for an epic Parasailing experience, or take a drive toward Hilton Head Island Airport off William Hilton Parkway to experience the island from the air on a Hilton Head Helicopter Tour. Take the Sea Pines exit to experience the iconic HHI Lighthouse at Harbourtown.

I’ll admit, with all the options for things to do, I’ve only experienced a few of the amazing island offerings in my 3 short months as a South Carolinian. But suffice it to say, I’m confident there’s something for everyone. I  hope these tips for navigating Sea Pines Circle have been helpful. If I, the perpetually lost, can learn my way around, you can too. But if the thought of driving during the HHI busy season still has you feeling anxious, head on over to Wheelz of Hilton Head to rent bikes for the whole family. With over 60 miles of bike trails, you can easily hang up the car keys for a week and experience Hilton Head from a new perspective.  (editing to add: my colleague and I hopped on a couple of Wheelz bikes and peddled down to The Circle to take some pictures for this article. I hadn’t been on a bike in years, but am happy to report that, despite the blazing HHI summer temperatures, my first experience with the Island on a bike was fantastic. 5 out of 5 stars! Highly recommend it.)

Did you know that you can purchase tickets for many of these activities for up to 60% off through Hilton Head Guest Services? Call 843-612-6917 or fill out the short form below. One of our local experts will guide you through making the absolute most of your time on Hilton Head. Just for filling out the form, you’ll receive our Mini Island Discount Packet, which includes coupons for some of our favorite restaurants and excursions.