Tomorrow is the first day of summer and the weather in North Carolina has already been pretty hot. I haven't been able to venture to the beach as much as I would like, but I was fortunate enough to travel to Hilton Head Island in South Carolina for a week with my parents. We had a wonderful time relaxing on the beach and exploring the island.
If you're planning a trip to Hilton Head I have a couple of suggestions to help make your trip extra special!
3. The Inn at Harbour Town - If you like to be in the center of the action, then The Inn at Harbour Town is for you. It is located in the central hub of shopping and nightlife on Hilton Head. Not to mention, the accommodations are absolutely fabulous! Natural light floods the luxurious lobby and spacious living quarters, constantly reminding you that you're on island time.
2. Tybee Island Bed and Breakfast - This Bed and Breakfast was featured in Cooking with Paula Deen magazine. Need I say more? The charming yellow house welcomes you with it's winding path and large live oak trees. Each room is unique and can cater to each guest's specific needs. Call the staff today and they will be happy to assist you!
1. Main Street Inn - This resort has taken it above and beyond with their accommodations and spa. Every inch exudes elegance. From the dark hardwood floors to the trickling fountain in the courtyard, relaxation and sophistication is around every corner. You'll feel like the princess, or prince, of the island while staying here.
3. The Salty Dog - Though the food isn't anything above the classic fried fish and shrimp, this restaurant is a must see. I normally don't recommend restaurants that are high on the tourist's radar, but you'll see so many Salty Dog t-shirts around the island that you'll be dying to go. This restaurant is located in the South Beach Marina and all the night life surrounding it! The Salty Dog usually has live music and guarantees a good time. Though there is a fee for parking, you don't let that money go to waste, however, and explore the charming shops that are found there while waiting for a table!
2. Chart House - Many restaurants in Hilton Head boast of an Early Bird Special from 4:00-5:30/5:45 for dinner. These usually include an appetizer, entree, and dessert for a fraction of the price. The Chart House is one of these places. My family and I decided to take advantage of the special and it was worth the lost 30 minutes from the beach that day. The food was delicious and the staff was extremely friendly! When making reservations, ask if you can sit outside. The view is breathtaking and there is nothing like watching the sun set over the sound while eating a fish that was swimming in it that very morning.
1. Old Fort Pub - The Pub also has an early bird special worth taking advantage of. The chef creates new and delectable entree items every day. I dined on their delicious crawfish cakes and left delightfully satisfied. Everything on Old Ford Pub's dessert menu was enticing, but I went with their homemade heath ice-cream. It took everything I had not to lick my bowl clean. I recommend sitting outside here as well. Not only is the view of the sound astounding, it is also located next to an old Civil War fort. It was fun to slowly walk through and read about the battle that took place there as my food digested. My family and I had a wonderful time here and I'm certain yours will as well!
3. Tanger Outlet Mall - I know, you're at the beach. You should be outside soaking up rays and throwing the frisbee with your dad. Contrary to popular belief, however, the sun does eventually set on the coast. Window shopping as the cool ocean breeze rustling your shopping bags is a fun way to spend an evening. They have stores to please the entire family, including one of my favorites, J. Crew. I wouldn't suggest spending your entire vacation here, but it's a good way to spend a free night.
2. Coastal Discovery Museum - If you're a museum fan like myself, then you have to check this one out. It tells you everything you need to know about Hilton Head Island and Lowcountry life. The museum also monitors sea turtle nests around the island and is a great source for any information you wish to learn about these beautiful creatures.
1. Rent a Bike - Not only does the island have safe, beautiful bike paths that will take you anywhere you want to go, the beaches are perfect for long, luxurious bike rides. The place where my family and I stayed rented bikes to us for $15 for the week. If your hotel does not offer this service, there are numerous locations that rent bikes. My mom, dad, and I loved riding beneath the lush trees and swaying Spanish moss on the island paths and rode our bikes to the point every morning on the beach. The wide beaches and compact sand made for easy riding and memories I will cherish forever. This is a must do activity.
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image by: bomobob