When you’re looking for a fantastic family getaway, look no further than Hilton Head Island. With pristine beaches, diverse wildlife, rich history & culture, and delectable Lowcountry cuisine, there is something for every member of your family to enjoy. Hilton Head features everything from children’s camps, junior golf academies, interactive museums, eco-adventures, arts and culture workshops, and days spent on some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. Enjoy beach favorites like mini-golf and fireworks. Or head to nearby Charleston or Savannah for some history and insanely good food.
SONESTA RESORT HILTON HEAD ISLAND
As a destination that describes itself as a resort that’s just as much for kids as it is for adults, the Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island is an obvious choice! This AAA-approved, Four Diamond family-friendly hotel offers the unique Just Us Kids Club. Activities are different every day, but families can be comfortable knowing that their kiddos are enjoying the beach, game time, arts & crafts, and so much more in a fun & friendly environment while giving parents an opportunity to unwind and relax. Plus, the Resort is pet friendly, so you can even bring Fido along on your vacation. My favorite feature is the ‘Dive-In’ movies on Saturday nights where families can enjoy a feature poolside under the stars.
PALMETTO DUNES OCEANFRONT RESORT
This lush, expansive resort offers accommodations consisting solely of vacation home rentals of all kinds. Spanning many acres, Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort is home to award-winning golf courses, many tennis & pickleball courts, miles of pristine beach, and so much more. Guests of all ages will enjoy recreation clinics in pickleball, tennis, and golf, and outdoor enthusiasts have ample opportunities to explore the diverse nature and wildlife that surrounds the resort.
THE SEA PINES RESORT
Noted as one of Hilton Head Island’s premier destinations, The Sea Pines Resort provides a stay like no other! Indulge in luxury amenities, gourmet restaurants, and breathtaking views. Take delight in one of their many activities or tours, including horseback riding, wilderness excursions, and world-class tennis and golf facilities. The Sea Pines Resort is also the prime home base for exploring Harbour Town, where you can treat yourself to a seaside shopping spree. With over twenty boutiques, galleries, and gift shops, Harbour Town’s selection is unbeatable.
OMNI HILTON HEAD
If you are looking for the best hotels in Hilton Head, you won’t want to miss our stunning resort. Located on sugar sand beaches off the coast of South Carolina on the #1 island in the Continental United States, as ranked by Travel + Leisure, and the #1 island in the US by Condé Nast Traveler. As part of the prestigious Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort community, we offer access to an 11-mile lagoon system with bike trails, tennis courts and three championship golf courses. Paired with sparkling pools and delicious dining, you will be captivated by this perfect getaway.
RELAX AT THE BEACH
Hilton Head Island has been recognized as one of the top 10 family beaches in the country. There are over 12 miles of what are considered the best beaches in the US with many pristine stretches of sand, warm waters, and days filled with sunshine. With so many beaches come all of the perennial favorites of any beach town – you will find great mini golf and incredible ice cream
SHELTER COVE HARBOR
Enjoy all kinds of water sports here year-round — from boating and crabbing to fishing, sailing, cruising, and dolphin watching. There are also events to join, which are among the top free kid-friendly things to do in Hilton Head. Kayak, Zodiak
SANDBOX CHILDREN’S MUSEUM
This interactive children’s museum was founded in 2005 and features playground areas, an indoor climbing wall, and a spaceship. All play areas are designed to spark creativity and encourage kids to discover the world around them.
JUNIOR PLAYERS GOLF ACADEMY
The Golf Academy in Hilton Head, South Carolina is one of the most respected golf schools in the world. Featuring lessons, clinics, and one-on-one golf instruction from former PGA Tour professionals and professional instructors, the Academy offers a variety of programs for golfers of all ages and all skill levels. There is even a free golf clinic and demonstration every Monday with an opportunity to win prizes.
PIRATES OF HILTON HEAD ISLAND
Awarded the area’s #1 rated attraction! From beginning to end the action is non-stop as they transform kids into Pirate Crew on a custom-built ship. Everyone gets a pirate name and learns how to talk like a pirate before searching for treasure on the Hilton Head Pirate Cruise!
COASTAL DISCOVERY MUSEUM
The whole family can discover and explore the wonders of the South Carolina Lowcountry at the Coastal Discovery Museum. The museum encompasses a majestic 68-acre property where you can investigate the salt marsh on the boardwalks.
Hilton Head’s location makes it a perfect jumping-off point for some great day trips.
OLD TOWN BLUFFTON
Old Town Bluffton is only a short drive over the bridge and offers the ideal example of a Lowcountry town. There are cute boutiques, delicious restaurants, and breathtaking views of the May River.
If you’re willing to drive a little farther, Savannah, Georgia is about an hour away and is a stunningly beautiful, historic city full of great food, shopping, and culture. It is also said to be one of the most haunted cities in the country, so there are fun options for historic tours and museum visits.
Lastly, about two hours away is the charming city of Charleston. Charleston is known for its cobblestone streets, horse-drawn carriages, and pastel antebellum houses. Charleston is a cool spot to visit for history buffs, and you can even visit Fort Sumter, a federal stronghold where the first shots of the Civil War rang out. Additionally, it is home to the South Carolina Aquarium, which is fun for the whole family.
KID’S PROGRAMMING AT THE RESORT
If you need a little break from family fun for a day on the course or at the spa, most of the resorts offer kids programming in the summer.
At the Sonesta, Children 3-12 years are invited to join for a fun-filled day with games, arts and crafts, swimming as well as visits to local fire stations, mini-golf, dolphin cruise or the Sandbox(children’s museum)
The Omni Kids camp for Kids ages 4-13 has daily themes like Move and Groove Monday and Super Soaked Saturday at their fully supervised camp.
For kids who want a sports experience, Sea Pines offers a “Future Stars” Junior Golf Program for a fun introduction to the game by PGA golf professionals. Children also can benefit from the expertise of former U.S. Open and Wimbledon champion, Stan Smith, at Sea Pines Racquet Club, ranked one of the top tennis programs in the nation by Tennis Magazine.
You have to visit Duck Donuts.
One of the Top 5 Favorite Restaurants in the World is Husk and they have locations in Savannah and Charleston, both easily accessible from the island
If you have a little more time, we love to fly into Savannah to spend a few days downtown, spend some time in Hilton Head, and then a few days in Charleston before heading back to Boston.
I love to book family photoshoots when I travel. It is the best possible souvenir and I am actually in the picture. A great location is Hidden Beach. (flytographer affiliate link)
Rockfish Restaurant is the perfect date night location because they have Built-In Babysitters
Word is that Tom Hanks used to love to come to the Chocolate Tree when he was filming Forrest Gump in Beaufort. This chocolate is heavenly.
The fireworks at Shelter Cove are one of Hilton Head Island’s most beloved summer traditions! In addition to spectacular fireworks displays, you can also look forward to great food, arts and crafts, and live entertainment. This summer festivity takes place each Tuesday evening at dusk from June through August.
Coligny Plaza is one of the best places to go for kid’s entertainment. Children’s entertainment takes center stage in the summer from June through August. Magic acts, silly clowns, and family-friendly live music are a few performances to look forward to!
The Gregg Russell Family Concerts are a true Hilton Head tradition. For over 24 years, families have enjoyed songs under the Liberty Oak in Harbor Town. All ages are welcome, but the performers here especially gear their songs towards younger children. These concerts take place from Sunday through Friday.
Shannon Tanner Family Concerts has performed family shows for over 23 years in Shelter Cove Harbor. Concerts are Monday through Friday from April through August, with two shows per evening.
While most people come to the island to enjoy the outdoor recreations, prepare yourself for the possibility of a rainy day. In other words, make a rainy day activity list in the offset if you do experience some bad weather on your vacation.
Visitors wanting to explore nearby Daufuskie Island or downtown Savannah can hop aboard the Spirit of Harbor Town with Vagabond Cruise, enjoying a ride down the river and four hours to explore the island or the city
Carolina’s Story: Sea Turtles Get Sick Too
P is for Palmetto: A South Carolina Alphabet” by Carol Crane
Gullah Gullah Island – preschoolers
Top Chef Season 14
Lady and the Tramp (2019)
Secret Life of Bees (PG-13)
Forrest Gump (PG-13)
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