And the winner of the the Best Beach Town in the South goes to…….you guessed it: Hilton Head Island!
Southern Living magazine has given Hilton Head this title and we are very proud to accept it! We’re so proud that we’d like to reiterate some of the reasons SL called us “Number 1.”
#1. The Beach.
Hilton Head has 12 miles of hard-sandy beaches. At low tide, the beach seems to go on forever. It’s the perfect beach to walk, bike, run or sit and enjoy with plenty of room for privacy. With the soothing waves our area, swimming and water sports are a delight. Air and water temperature average 70 degrees. The Island offers wheel chair access mats for wheel chairs. Not to mention, dogs are allowed on the beach several months out of the year.
It is the home of Mitchelville, the first town developed specifically for the freedmen of the Civil War. In its beginning, it had almost 1,500 residents. “Gullah,” a blend of slave, native, cadence, and Elizabethian English was spoken here. This rich culture, developed over the years of slavery, survives to this day. Historic Mitchelville, located mid-Island, is now a center for touring and education. It hosts Gullah-focused tours, festivals, and showcases the language, dance, cuisine and way of life. Hilton Head Island is greatly invested in its preservation of this culture and sharing it with visitors and locals.
#3. Hilton Head is an eco-community
Hilton Head Island is no asphalt jungle. There are no billboards, neon lights or high rises here. Real estate developer Charles Fraser carved out a plan in 1956 for the vision he had of the Island. It has matured into a collection of neighborhoods connected by bike paths and shaded canopies. Live oaks, magnolias, and palmettos majestically border the boulevards. Intertwined in all of this beauty are the upscale amenities. There are ample grocery stores, bars, boutiques, hotels, more than 250 restaurants and don’t forget, GOLF.
#4. Wilderness and Water
Even though Hilton Head offers all of the conveniences for vacationing those who reside here, it is nature that stands out. Yachts line the marinas, while shrimp boats stroll the creeks. Dolphins and alligators can be seen on any given day. The marsh is home to wading birds, oysters and spartina grass. The tide, which is the essential essence of this area creates an ever-changing landscape, ideal for fishing, cruising or just solitude.
#5. With all of this and more, no wonder Hilton Head Island won the “best” vote.