Hilton Head Island

Hilton Head Island

History of Hilton Head Island

Hilton Head Island is famous for its twelve-mile stretch of glistening sands. However, a visit here is much more than a day at the beach. There’s golf – perhaps more quality courses and programs than anywhere else on earth, including, of course, the RBC Heritage of Golf, one of the top events on the PGA Tour. And don’t forget tennis.

Then, too, there’s fishing, biking, boating, outlet shopping, rollerblading, horseback riding, nature watching, and a wealth of cultural and artistic activities to explore, and all that beach to enjoy.

History and nature are inextricably mixed on Hilton Head Island. The first islanders were Indians who lived here as early as 4000 B.C., supported by the rich bounty of earth and sea. In 1663, the fertile land of the New World drew English sea captain William Hilton to explore the Island on behalf of a syndicate of Barbadian planters. His report was enthusiastic, and in honor of his pioneering explorations, the Island was christened Hilton’s Head – a reference to the headlands that marked the way into Port Royal Sound. However, it was not until the threat of the Spaniards to the south and the Indians to the west was quelled in the closing years of the 17th century, that English colonists would settle permanently in the area.

As the 18th century dawned, the Island prospered with large indigo and, later, rice plantations. But it was sea island cotton – first successfully cultivated in the 1780s – that made the planters wealthy beyond their dreams. By the mid-1800s, at the height of the plantation era, more than a dozen large land-owning families divided the Island’s riches among themselves.

The onset of the Civil War brought an abrupt end to the cotton dynasties. The fine homes and fertile fields of the planters were destroyed by occupying Union troops after what would prove to be the largest naval engagement of the entire war: the Battle of Port Royal. A freedman’s village, Mitchelville, sprang up briefly, but its life was short, and when the Union troops left, the Island returned to a long period of bucolic quiet, with those who remained making a modest living farming, fishing and oystering.

Highly developed, yet in harmony with nature, Hilton Head has no billboards, neon signs, roller coasters or skyscrapers. In fact, no building can be higher than the trees. Signage ordinances keep signs low key and unobtrusive. Only 40,000 permanent residents live on the island, along with wildlife such as deer, osprey, pelicans, alligators, herons, and near-shore dolphins.

Be sure to visit the Coastal Discovery Museum located at 70 Honey Horn Drive. The museum features historical and ecological exhibits of Hilton Head Island’s colorful history and lush natural beauty and varied wildlife. Museum staff can tell you about upcoming environmental lectures and beach walks. Browse through the gift shop and make reservations for one of the historic or environmental tours hosted by the Museum.

The Arts Center of Coastal Carolina sponsors many ongoing activities and events. For information or a calendar of events, call the Center at 842-ARTS. The Coastal Discovery Museum sponsors nature walks, lectures and classes. For information call 689-6767.

The Hilton Head Art League sponsors ongoing exhibitions, lectures and workshops. For information call 843-681-5060.

Enjoy your visit to Hilton Head Island, an internationally known playground and family vacation spot.

alt

Hilton Head Area

Click on the name of the attraction for more information.

Audubon Newhall Preserve
Palmetto Bay Road, (843) 842-9246
Audubon Newhall Preserve is a beautiful inland park on Hilton Head Island. It has a number of nice hiking trails winding their way through the woods. There are benches placed along the path. The center of the trail contains a scenic pond and wetland and boardwalk. In this 50-acre preserve, many native plants & many birds have been identified. Dogs are welcome on these trails.  According to the trail guide, “The Audubon Newhall Preserve was established in 1965 as the Island Wildlife Preserve, when Caroline “Beany” Newhall, (recognizing the need to conserve woodlands,) persuaded Charles Fraser of the Sea Pines Company to deed 50 acres of land for the preserve.”

Coastal Discovery Museum At Honey Horn
70 Honey Horn Dr. (843)689-6767
Honey Horn consists of 68 acres of breathtaking natural beauty and a dozen historic structures scattered throughout the property. Guided Walks and Terrace Talks teach of the varied nature and rich history of the area. An art gallery and interactive exhibits are found in the main structure.
Read our Coastal Discovery Blog.

Harbour Town Lighthouse
This beautiful marina is located at the end of Lighthouse Road in Sea Pines Plantation.  See the Harbour Town Lighthouse, Harbour Town Yacht Basin and many charming boutiques and restaurants. Admission fee to Sea Pines.

Heritage Library Genealogy & History Center
2 Corpus Christi, Suite 100, (843)686-6560
The Heritage Library offers research assistance on ancestry, along with classes and tours focused on Hilton Head Island’s history from prehistory to the modern era. The Heritage Library owns two historic sites, Ft. Mitchel and the Historic Zion Cemetery & Baynard Mausoleum.

Mitchelville Freedom Park
226 Beach City Road, (843) 255-7301
Visit Hilton Head’s historic Mitchelville freedom Park. This is the site of the first settlement for former slaves. This park is very important in the history of freedom towns that were established during the Reconstruction era. Tour the park at your own pace or join a tour group.

Old Zion Cemetery
574 Wm. Hilton Pkwy,
Grave sites of families of prominent Lowcountry Sea Island cotton plantations, most pre-dating 1860. Site of the Zion Chapel of Ease, part of the Angelican St. Luke’s Parish, established 1767.

Sea Pines Forest Preserve
The Sea Pines Forest Preserve is a 605 acre protected area for wildlife habitat and outdoor exploration in the heart of Sea Pines. The preserve includes bridle paths, wetland boardwalks, bridges and fishing docks. (843)671-7170, (800)732-7463

See what our visitors love about the
SOUTH CAROLINA LOWCOUNTRY

Use the #hashtag #sclowcountry to get your image featured!

The Lowcountry & Resort Islands Region of South Carolina includes the four, southern-most counties in the state, Beaufort, Jasper, Hampton, and Colleton, which are bordered on the east by the Atlantic Ocean and on the west by the Savannah River and the state of Georgia.

Beautiful South Carolina Lowcountry
•
Thanks for the tag 📸exodusfoto
•
#southcarolina #southcarolinacoast #lowcountry #lowcountryliving #sclowcountry #lifeonthecoast #coastliving #coastalsouthcarolina #saltyair #saltlife #wildlife #wildlifephotography #spanishmoss #sunrisesunset
simplysoutherncottage keeps us in awe with each her projects. This bed swing refresh is one of our favorites!
⠀⠀
⠀
📸: simplysoutherncottage⠀
.⠀
.⠀
.⠀
.⠀
.⠀
⠀
⠀
#bedswing #prettyinpink #backporchliving #backporch #porchdecor #cottagestyle #bhgprojectjoy #bhghome #slhomes #southernstyle #bohostyle #bohodecor #bohochic #lowcountryliving #summervillesc #realestate #summervillerealestate #visitsummerville #sclowcountry #explorechs #mysouthernliving #charlestonrealtor #charlestonsc #summervillerealtor #72soldsc #jimbrantleyrealtor ⠀
⠀
A different type of sunrise for #sunrisesunday today. This is blue hour on Pawleys Island. Blue hour lighting hits different. Especially in places like this where there's such a vastness to the sky and you can see a gradient from stars to blues to the earliest purples from the sun's first rays in the sky, long before it even crests the horizon. Added benefit, no one in their right mind wakes up this early to be out an hour before sunrise. Except for me, that is. So, with my gas station coffee in hand, I get to enjoy this beautiful beach without another soul around. Just me, the waves, and the noseeums aggressively attacking me.
The shore gently recedes beneath the stunning Pawleys Island Pier. The unique island town, located about 25 miles south of Myrtle Beach and 70 miles north of Charleston, exudes laid-back, beachy vibes. Locals have definitely adopted an island state of mind and encourage visitors to as well. When you go, make sure to relax on the beach, explore the famous sand dunes, or fish in one of the many adjacent creeks.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: We guarantee that you’re going to want to spend a whole day here. We recommend getting to the beach at around 10am.🗓️ Best time of the year: Pawleys Island has the best weather during the spring and early summer months.🏖️ Things to do while there: Pawleys Island Nature Park, Pawleys Island Chapel, Hopsewee Plantation.🐠 Things to visit in the area: Brookgreen Gardens (brookgreen_gardens), take a walking ghost tour, Myrtle Beach (mymyrtlebeach), Harborwalk Marina, South Carolina Maritime Museum (southcarolinamaritimemuseum).🏨 Where to stay: The Oceanfront Litchfield Inn (oceanfrontlitchfieldinn), Litchfield Beach and Golf Resort (litchfieldbeachandgolf), Sea View Inn (seaviewinn), 620 Prince (620prince).Photo by qcphotographer
#southcarolinaliving #southcarolina #edistobeach #edistosc #southcarolinanature #bestofthepalmettostate #onlyinsouthcarolina #treesofinstagram #treeporn #lowcountry #lowcountryliving #sclowcountry #southcarolinabeaches #charleston #charlestonsc #ig_naturelovers #ig_southcarolina #viewsofthesouth #charlestonlife
Headed down the road....Edisto Island.  #edisto #sclowcountry #trees #endofday  #beauty #islandsofsc
Magnolia Plantation and Gardens
•
Thanks for the tag 📸trbtbone
•
#magnoliaplantation #southcarolina #southernliving #southernview #southernlife #sclowcountry #scenicviews #charlestonlife #charlestonliving #charlestonsc #coastalsouthcarolina #coastaliving #lifeonthecoast #lifeincharleston #spanishmoss #explorethecoast #exploretheoutdoors #godscreation #getoutside
Spanish moss drapes the live oak trees that are ubiquitous to the Edisto Island area. Did you know that Edisto gets its name from the native Edistow people? The Edistow Native Americans were a sub tribe of the Cusabo indians, a group of Native Americans who lived along the Atlantic coast in South Carolina.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: Stop by mid-morning. That way you can explore the island, grab lunch, and stay for the amazing sunset if you choose.🏖️ Things to do while there: Edisto Environmental Learning Center, Boneyard Beach, Scott Creek Inlet, Big Bay Creek, SeaCow Eatery.☀️ Things to visit in the area: Jungle Road Park, Bay Creek Park, Otter Islands, Spanish Mount Point.📆 Best time of the year to visit: For warmer weather come anywhere from March-August.🏨 Where to stay: Fripp Island Golf & Beach Resort (frippislandrsrt), Seabrook Island Club (seabrook_sc), The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort (kiawahresort), Charleston Kiawah Island/Andell Inn (andellinn).Photo by qcphotographer
Reposted from coastaldiscoverymuseum Hilton Head Island has the second highest tidal range on the East Coast, second only to Canada’s Bay of Fundy. The average tidal range here is 7-9 feet between high and low tides.The Salt Marsh is one of our area’s most prominent features, not to mention an essential resource. Most coastal creatures depend partially or even fully on the Salt Marsh for survival as it serves as a nursery, as well as a water filter vital for the functioning of the entire coastal ecosystem.Explore the Lowcountry up close with a visit to the Coastal Discovery Museum and head out into the marsh via the Osprey Outlook floating dock on a self-guided tour or register for the weekly Salt Marsh Discovery program to learn from an expert how and why this particular environment is so important. (843) 689-6767 ext. 223 or coastaldiscovery.org.
.
.
.
.
.
#coastaldiscoverymuseum #honeyhorn #hiltonheadisland #saltmarshsaturday #hightide #lowtide #saltmarsh #ospreyoutlook #boardwalk #floatingdock #ecosystem #exploremore #familyfun #familyadventures #communitymuseum #smithsonianaffiliate #sclowcountry #lowcountrylife #visithiltonhead #discoversc
At the beach…lock.latch#lockandlatch #lockandlatchinstalls #windowinstallation #doorinstallation #customhome #newbuild #southcarolina #sclowcountry #architecture #craftmanshipdetail
South Carolina lowcountry
•
📸jonpuckett
•
#southcarolina #southcarolinacoast #lowcountry #lowcountryliving #sclowcountry #lifeonthecoast #coastliving #coastalsouthcarolina #saltyair #saltlife #wildlife #wildlifephotography #spanishmoss #sunrisesunset #charleston
A visitor takes a leisurely stroke under a canopy of live oaks draped with Spanish moss in the Palmetto Bluff (palmettobluff) neighborhood of Bluffton, South Carolina. Palmetto Bluff is a picturesque community that sits in the heart of Lowcountry. Nestled along the May River, it’s abundant with beautiful walking trails, historic sites, and stunning views.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: There is no wrong time to visit Palmetto Bluff. However, we highly recommend sticking around for one of their spectacular sunsets.🛶 Things to do while there: Stop by Cole’s for some regionally inspired Southern fare, paddle board, kayak, or canoe along the May River, go saltwater fishing, take a tour at Bluffton Jack's Old Town Tours.🌊 Things to visit in the area: Palmetto Bluff Conservancy, Old Town Bluffton, Bluffton Oyster Factory Park, May River Sandbar, Heyward House Museum and Welcome Center (heywardhouse).📆 Best time of the year to visit: For the best weather, we recommend visiting between March and May or from September to November.🏨 Where to stay: The Montage Palmetto Bluff Resort (montagepalmettobluff) is the only resort in Palmetto Bluff. However, there are plenty of places to stay in the surrounding areas including: Old Town Bluffton Inn (oldtownblufftoninn), The Inn & Club at Harbour Town (theinnandclubatharbourtown), Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island (sonestahhi).Photo by jpgriceoz
Built in 1790, The Cuthbert House is a historic mansion turned Bed and Breakfast with stunning water views  in Beaufort, SC
.
#beaufortcounty #beaufortcountysc #beaufortsc #explorebeaufortsc #explorebeaufortcounty #explorebeaufort #landscapescapture #beautifulscenery #boatsatsunset #marinabeauty #sclowcountry #sclowcountryliving #beautifulsouthcarolina  #discover_carolinas #explorebft  #bestofthepalmettostate #onlyinsouthcarolina #onlyinsouthcarolina❤️#scnaturelovers #southcarolinabest #bestofsouthcarolina #southcarolinacollectives #viewsofthesouth #carolinacollectives #historicmansion #historicbedandbreakfast #bedandbreakfasts #oldsouth #cuthbert #cuthbertmansion
My favorite sunrise ever......no filter.... #cottoncandysky #cottoncandysunrise #cottoncandycolors #sunrise #softpastels #lowcountrysunrise #lowcountry #hammockcoast #waves #naturespallet #art #seafoam #beachwalks #morningmotivation #getupandshowup #pawleysisland #locallife #shoplocal #supportlocalbusiness #onlyleavefootprints #bestofthepalmettostate #yes_busa #yeshammockcoast #sclowcountry
Lowcountry EgretAnalog collage on 5x7 inch watercolor paperI'm back. I enjoyed my winter vacation at the beach on Isle of Palms, SC. It was great spending some quality time with my husband relaxing, reading and walking on the beach. Taking time off from social media was nice, too. I didn't spend much time making art, but did create this collage.Unfortunately, my creative mojo seems to have taken an extended vacation. I have struggled with my art making for the past 4 or 5 days. To those of you who are exchanging art with me, I haven't forgotten, I'm just in a creative dry spell. I hope to get collages made and on their way to you before too much longer.While stuck in this creative mire, I'm switching gears and focusing on some other things. For example, I'm working on my first Studio newsletter - welcoming my email subscribers and sharing news of some of the creative challenges and collaborations I'm planning for 2023. If you want to get all the news sent directly to your inbox, sign up with the link in my bio. Studio News is coming at the end of January.
.
.
.
.
.
#greategret #sclowcountry #isleofpalms #wilderness #beachtherapy #analogcollage  #gluetogether #collage #cutandpasteart #paperart #collageaddict #paperscissorsglue #pariscollagecollective #brooklyncollagecollective #edinburghcollagecollective #redcollagevenezuela #arizonacollagecollective #loveanalogcollage1 #worldcollagecommunity #contemporarycollagemagazine #kolajmagazine #nationalcollagesociety #internationalcollageguild #collageartist #collagist #multidisciplinaryartist #creativereusegoddess #communitybuilder #bigjuicycreativelife #outsidetheboxstudio
Discover at your own leisure at the coastaldiscoverymuseum 🌳  From century-old buildings with storied pasts, to wooden boardwalks that stretch into the Jarvis Creek salt marsh, there's always something to explore!
South Carolina Lowcountry
•
📸sarah_snydacker
•
#southcarolina #southcarolinacoast #lowcountry #lowcountryliving #sclowcountry #lifeonthecoast #coastliving #coastalsouthcarolina #saltyair #saltlife #wildlife #wildlifephotography #sunrisesunset #charleston
How we love a Beaufort sunset!
.
#beaufortcounty #beaufortcountysc #beaufortsc #explorebeaufortsc #explorebeaufortcounty #explorebeaufort #boardwalk #boardwalkbeauty #landscapescapture #beautifulscenery #boatsatsunset #marinabeauty #sclowcountry #sclowcountryliving #beautifulsouthcarolina  #discover_carolinas #explorebft  #bestofthepalmettostate #onlyinsouthcarolina #onlyinsouthcarolina❤️#scnaturelovers #southcarolinabest #bestofsouthcarolina #southcarolinacollectives #viewsofthesouth #carolinacollectives #bestoftheusa_sunrisesunset2 #raw_sunset #sunsets #sunsetphotography
Fort Fremont was built in 1899 by the Army Corps of Engineers using local labor on condemned private property on St. Helena Island, across the Beaufort River from the Naval Station. It was designed to play a vital role in the protection of the strategic dry dock and coaling station which remained critical to the Atlantic Fleet during the Spanish American War period. For more information on this and other Beaufort attractions visit  https://southcarolinalowcountry.com/beaufort-port-royal-area/
📸 Carmen Pinckney
#thatsmylowcountry #naturallyamazing #sclowcountry
The Boynton House (12"x12" in oil on canvas) in the Donnelley Wildlife Management area in the ACE (Ashepoo, Combahee and Edisto) Basin in South Carolina.... not to be confused with the Boynton house in Rochester,New York, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright !!The Boynton house in Donnelley is a Victorian style home, built in the beginning of the twentieth century by the Boyntons who raised cattle on their property.#boyntonhouse #donnelleywma #acebasin #plantation #southcarolina #sclowcountry #oilpainting #acebasinnationalwildliferefuge #bearisland #tranquility #silence #atmosphere #rustic #andywesselspaintings #luckydutchart #naturephotography #olieverfschilderij #andywesselsphotography #charlestonartistguild #charlestonartistguildgallery

The South Carolina Lowcountry Guidebook is filled with many things to see and do in the beautiful Lowcountry of South Carolina. Please fill out the information and we will send you a FREE GUIDE BOOK.

    Stay Up To Date

    Sign up for our newsletter!