South Carolina

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

A- Overview:
The intriguing Sea Islands, separated from the mainland by expanses of estuaries and salt marshes, make up more than half of South Carolina’s coastline. Among these islands lies tasteful, low-key Hilton Head, offering glorious white sand beaches and superb golf courses. Biking, tennis, fishing, and sailing are popular as well

Hilton Head Island is located at the extreme southern tip of South Carolina, about 30 miles north of Savannah and 100 miles south of Charleston. At seven miles in width and fourteen miles in length, it is the second largest Atlantic coast barrier island. A toll expressway expedites traffic from the mainland to the island’s resort areas.

This semitropical barrier island resembles an artistic masterpiece with its oak and pine woodlands and meandering lagoons. It is part of the Low Country, the picturesque region of flat plains and tidal salt marshes that stretches across the eastern expanse of South Carolina and Georgia. Hilton Head Island is almost bisected by Broad Creek, which is navigable for most of its length and is home to several upscale marinas.

Hilton Head is shaped roughly like a tennis shoe, with the ”toe” known as the south end, the ”ball” of the foot as Forest Beach, and the ”top” as the north end. There is no ”downtown” on Hilton Head. Shopping and other activities are spread throughout, although more heavily concentrated on the south end of the island. Located in the heart of Hilton Head Island, the Self Family Arts Center is a remarkable showcase for the visual and performing arts.

Hilton Head Island is separated from the mainland by the Calibogue sound and the Intracoastal Waterway. Between Hilton Head and the mainland are two other islands. Daufuskie Island is accessible only by water. Part of this island remains in its natural state as a large wildlife preserve; and part has been developed to a limited extent for tourism.

Pinckney Island is accessible from the bridge linking Hilton Head to the mainland, and is a National Wildlife Refuge popular among bird watchers. At the Penn Center on St. Helena Island, freed slaves first found schooling. Neighboring Edisto Island remains low-key, scenic, and a relaxing place to visit.

Hilton Head Island has 8 marinas, more than twenty- five golf courses, 300 tennis courts and miles of bicycle and walking paths. The island also features two stables and ample areas for horseback riding, including forest preserve and waterfront. Fishing, parasailing, skiing, horseback riding, miniature golf and, of course, dolphin watching and beach walking are also popular with vacationers and residents alike. There are over two hundred restaurants, eight art galleries, three movie theaters and many shops, boutiques, and outlets.

Hilton Head welcomes families with children. There are no “arcades” or amusement parks, but there is a wealth of outdoor activity, in an ideal climate, for family members to enjoy together. Whether you explore the woods and beaches on horse back, take a dolphin-watching cruise, fish, sail, cycle or relax in the peaceful surroundings, there are always just enough things to do every day on this lovely island. Visit South Carolina’s Treasured Coast for the vacation of a lifetime.

B- City Information:
Population: 26,700 and over 2.5 million visitors annually

Time Zone Hilton Head is in the eastern time zone. When it is noon in New York City; it is also noon at Hilton Head.

Weather:

Hilton Head enjoys a semi-tropical climate, with an average temperature of 71 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius) making it a perfect location for year-round enjoyment. Average daily temperatures climb to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius) in the hottest months, and fall to a not unpleasant 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius) in the cool season. The area enjoys over 200 sunny days each year, with April the sunniest month.

Hurricane season is June through November, with the highest probability starting mid August and ending late September. Hilton Head was last hit by a hurricane in the year 1896.

Average Temperatures:

Month
High
Low

January
59F
44F

February
60F
44F

March
65F
50F

April
73F
58F

May
81F
66F

June
86F
73F

July
88F
75F

August
88F
75F

September
83F
70F

October
75F
61F

November
66F
50F

December
59F
44F

Local Seasons

Spring is one of the most attractive seasons in South Carolina. Throughout the region, cherry blossoms are followed by azaleas, dogwood, and camellias from April into May, and by apple blossoms in May. Summer can occasionally be hot and humid, but temperatures are cooled by gentle breezes in this coastal area. Folk, craft, art, and music festivals take place in summer, as do sports events. Fall brings spectacular foliage. In winter, temperatures average in the 60s. Summer temperatures range from the high 70s to the mid-80s.

What to Pack

Weather in Hilton Head is semi-tropical. In winter temperatures rarely drop below freezing. In the summer it can get quite warm, with July and August highs reaching 100 degrees. On hot summer days, tropical afternoon thundershowers are common, though not long lasting. Be sure to pack sun block for protection while on the beach.

Hilton Head Island is very informal. Shorts and shirts are the usual attire in summer.

In winter a sweater or sweatshirts will usually do. If you plan to walk the beach in winter, bring a windbreaker. Jeans are appropriate for everything except golf.

Business Hours

Banks are usually open weekdays 9 to 3 and some Saturday mornings; the post office from 8 to 5 weekdays and often on Saturday mornings. Shops in urban and suburban areas, particularly in indoor and strip malls, typically open at 9 or 10 daily and stay open until anywhere from 6 to 10 PM on weekdays and Saturdays, and until 5 or 6 on Sundays.

Holidays

New Year’s Day Jan. 1.

Washington’s Birthday: 3rd Mon. in Feb.

Memorial Day last Mon. in May;

Independence Day July 4

Labor Day 1st Mon. in Sept.

Election Day: 2nd Tues. in Nov. in even years

Veterans Day: November 11

Thanksgiving Day 4th Thurs. in Nov. and day after

Christmas Dec. 25 and 26

New Year’s Eve Dec. 31.

Electricity

The U.S. electrical standard is 110 volts/60 cycles AC. Visitors from other countries, traveling with dual-voltage appliances will not need a converter, but they will need a plug adapter. The standard U.S. electrical outlet takes a plug of two flat pins set parallel to one another.

Emergencies

Ambulance, Fire , Police (Phone: 911).

Taxes

The sales tax in South Carolina is 5%.

Local tax, lodgings and meal taxes are added in addition to this.

Tipping

At restaurants, a 15% tip is standard for waiters; up to 20% may be expected at more expensive establishments.

Telephones

The country code for the United States is 1. The area code for Hilton Head is 803.

All U.S. telephone numbers consist of 10 digits – the three-digit area code, followed by a seven-digit local number. If you’re calling a number from another area-code region, dial “1” then all 10 digits. For calls within the same local calling area, just dial the seven-digit number.

Getting There

By Plane

Hilton Head Island Airport (HHH) (120 Beach City Rd., 843/689-5400) is served by one airline, US Airways Express.

Either fly straight to the Island or fly to the new Savannah Airport. It is exactly 1 hour driving time from Savannah Airport to the center of the Island. You can get a rental car, taxi, or limo at the Airport.

If you have a private aircraft, there are parking and tie-down facilities at the airport.

Savannah International Airport

Most travelers to Hilton Head use the Savannah International Airport (SAV) (400 Airways Ave., I-95, exit 104, 912/964-0514), in metro Savannah, 15 minutes from downtown Savannah and about a 45-minute drive to Hilton Head.

Rental cars are available.

By Train

Amtrak train service is available into Savannah.

By Car

Visitors traveling to Hilton Head Island by car should exit I-95 at Exit 8 and take Hwy 278 direct to the Island. Resorts on Hilton Head Island’s south-end are best reached via the Cross Island Parkway; which has a moderate toll for 2-axle vehicles. It is about 30 minutes from the I-95 turnoff to the bridge onto the Island.

If you are driving from the South, you’ll be on I-95 heading North. Get off I-95 at Exit 8 and take Route 278 straight to the Island.

U. S. Route 278 is the only highway coming to Hilton Head Island. 278 extends all the way to I-95 ( Exit #8 ). After you cross the large bridge ( which spans the Intercoastal Waterway ), you are on the Island. After driving 2 miles onto the Island, you’ll see signs for the New Cross Island Parkway, ( stay in the left lanes ) or Business 278 ( stay in the right lanes ). Until 1998, Business 278 was the only road traversing the Island, and ended at Sea Pines Circle.

The speed limit is 45 mph, and there are many stoplights along the way. It used to take between 25 & 30 minutes to get to the Sea Pines Circle on Business 278. With the new Cross Island Parkway ( speed limit 55 mph and no lights ), it takes only 5-6 minutes to get to Sea Pines Circle. The new Parkway is about 6 miles long, and there is a modest toll.

Bicycles are for rent with helmet and chain lock. These are beach bikes with no gears – fine for a place as flat as Hilton Head

By Boat

If you have a boat, you can access Hilton Head Island either from the Ocean or the Inter-Coastal Waterway. There are numerous Marinas for boaters.

C- Attractions/Things To Do:
Coastal Discovery Museum

100 William Hilton Parkway (US 278).

(843) 689-6767

The Coastal Discovery Museum (at the foot of the Bridge, next to Crazy Crab)

Open year round, call for special tours & schedules.

Hands-on exploring of the history, wildlife and heritage of Hilton Head Island.

The Lowcountry’s cultural and environmental heritage is interpreted through interactive exhibits, tours, walks, cruises, programs and a unique Museum gift shop.

Self Family Arts Center

15 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

843 686 3945

Includes an art gallery and theater for the Hilton Head Playhouse

Shelter Cove Harbour and Palmetto Dunes

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

The following is a description of one of the “plantations” on Hilton Head Island :

Palmetto Dunes Plantation is set on a three mile stretch of white sandy beaches. This makes it ideal for a variety of watersports, including wind-surfing, sailing and beach cruising. It features three championship golf courses. The Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center has 25 courts. Convenient bicycle paths wind through beautiful Palmetto Dunes and Shelter Cove Marina. At Shelter Cove you will enjoy many boutiques, excellent dining and spectacular views.

The Beach

Five beach accesses include Alder Lane, Coligny Beach Park, Driessen Beach Park, Folly Field Beach Park and Islanders Beach Park.

Sea Pines Forest Preserve

Sea Pines Plantation,

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

Gullah ‘n’ Geechie Mahn Tours

847 Sea Island Pkwy.

843/838-7516

tours are at 9:45 and 1:45.

has tours of Beaufort and sea islands such as St. Helena that focus on the traditions of African-American culture.

Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge

On US 278, 1/2 mile west of Hilton Head.

Open daily dawn to dusk.

7.9 mile round trip.

Contains over 4000 acres of salt marsh and small islands. 14 miles of trails for walking or biking; no cars allowed past the parking lot.

Waddell Mariculture Research and Development Center

On Sawmill Creek Road about 3 miles west of Hilton Head.

Near the intersection of 278 and SC46.

The center researches the cultivation of marketable marine life. Tours of the facility and ponds by appointment only.

Grove Plantation.

Grove Plantation, Jebossee Island Rd., Edisto Island

843/889-3084.

Free.

Daily 7:30-4.

This 850,000-acre area, named for the rivers that bound it (the Ashepoo, Combahee, and Edisto), is one of the largest, most pristine estuarine ecosystems in North America. More than 100 bird species, sea turtles, otters, and other wildlife live here, 17 of which are endangered or threatened, including the wood stork and loggerhead sea turtle.

Harbour Town Lighthouse

The lighthouse was constructed by developer Charles Fraser in 1970 and is internationally recognized as the symbol of Hilton Head.

Audubon-Newhall Preserve.

Palmetto Bay Rd., Hilton Head Island,

843/785-5775.

Free.

Daily dawn-dusk.

Located in the south of the island, the preserve is 50 acres of pristine forest, where you’ll find native plant life identified and tagged. There are trails, a self-guided tour, and seasonal plant walks

Edisto Beach State Park.

843/869-3396

This park has 3 miles of beach with excellent shelling, housekeeping cabins by the marsh, and campsites by the ocean (though severe erosion limits availability). Luxury resort development has begun to encroach around the edges of the park

Edisto Island Presbyterian Church.

2164 U.S. 174, Edisto Island

843/869-2326.

Free.

Grounds and cemetery, daily 9-5; church usually locked except during services.

Though founded in 1685, the present church dates from 1830. The pink Legare mausoleum at the back of the cemetery is said to be haunted by the ghost of a young girl who was inadvertently buried alive in it.

Edisto Museum.

2343 U.S. 174, Edisto Island,

843/869-1954.

Admission charged.

Tues., Thurs., Sat. 1-4.

This tiny museum houses artifacts and historical items about the history of Edisto.

Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park.

This park, off Bay Street, is a great place to survey the scene. Barbra Streisand filmed Prince of Tides here. Its 7 landscaped acres along the Beaufort River, part of the Intracoastal Waterway, include a seawall promenade, a crafts market, gardens, and a marina. Some events of the popular mid-July Beaufort Water Festival, as well as a seasonal farmers’ and crafts market, take place here.

Hilton Head Beaches.

Hilton Head Island has 12 miles of ocean beach, and although the resort beaches are reserved for guests and residents, there are four public entrances to the beach. Two main parking and changing areas are at Coligny Circle, near the Holiday Inn, and on Folly Field Road, off U.S. 278. Signs along U.S. 278 point the way to Bradley and Singleton beaches, where parking space is limited.

Sea Pines Forest Preserve.

Hilton Head Island, accessible via U.S. 278,

843/785-3333.

Sea Pines Plantation

Cost per car for nonguests, includes access to preserve.

Daily dawn-dusk; closed during Heritage Golf Classic in Apr.

Sea Pines is a 605-acre public wilderness tract with walking trails, a fishing pond, a waterfowl pond, and a 3,400-year-old Indian shell ring. Both guided and self-guided tours are available.

York W. Bailey Museum.

Land’s End Rd., St. Helena Island,

843/838-2432.

Donation suggested.

Tues.-Fri. 11-4 and by appointment.

The museum was named after a Penn School graduate, the first African-American doctor to serve the Sea Islands. The collection includes photographs, arts, and crafts of the Gullah people, as well as oral histories.

Animal Life on Hilton Head Island

Wildlife abounds on land, in lagoons and in the ocean of Hilton Head Island

Birds: Sanderlings and Sandpipers. Egrets are found more often in lagoons and marshes than on the beach. These are the large, pure white, long legged birds with a very long thin neck. The Great White Egret is the larger one, distinguished by a yellow beak. The smaller Snowy Egret has a black beak. During nesting season both these birds display beautiful, long, delicate plumes. The huge grayish blue birds similar to Egrets are Great Blue Herons. They can be seen in lagoons and marshes, but they do come to the beach at dusk and often remain until nightfall.

The Ibis, often found on golf courses is identified by a long, curved beak. The Ibis is white when mature, but the young are mostly brown.

The Wood Stork is becoming more common on Hilton Head as they lose their habitat in Florida , due to wetlands drainage. This bird looks all white when walking, but reveals half black wings (underside) when flying. The Wood Stork is endangered, with a declining population.

Brown Pelicans glide gracefully through the air, skimming above the water

The dark colored birds standing with their wings outstretched are either Anhingas or Cormorants. Cormorants are more common and can be identified by a hooked beak, whereas the Anhinga has a straight, pointed beak. They feed by swimming under water.

The most common bird on the beach is the Sea Gull. They are scavengers, usually eating dead things that wash up on the beach.

Hilton Head’s inland birds include songbirds such as the Cardinal, Tufted Titmouse, Mocking Bird , Sparrow, Chickadee, Woodpecker and Wren. Grackles, a type of blackbird, are very common and very noisy. The males are an iridescent black and the females are brown. Ring-necked Turtle Doves are becoming increasingly common. They are a smoky beige in color, with a black band at the back of their necks. Finches, Warblers, Hummingbirds various Ducks and Vireos, among others, are migratory visitors.

Other than the beach, the best places for bird watching on Hilton Head are the Sea Pines Forest Preserve and the Audubon Newhall preserve on Palmetto Bay road.

Alligators: Alligators in Hilton Head can grow to about 12 feet in length.

Turtles: The turtles sunning themselves on the banks of lagoons are Diamondback Terrapins. Count the rings on the “diamonds” on it’s shell, to tell its age in years.

The sea turtle you might see will likely be a Loggerhead. These turtles can grow up to four feet in length, weighing 400 pounds. Only one Loggerhead egg in 1,000 will result in a hatchling becoming an adult. Loggerhead hatchlings are guided to the ocean by the reflection of starlight on the water. The laws that protect Loggerheads provide extremely severe penalties for anyone who disturbs a nest or interferes with the hatchlings rush to the sea and also requires lights visible from the beach to be extinguished or shielded.

Dolphins: Dolphins are mammals, not fish. Technically, they are “toothed whales” , with only one blowhole (nostril). Mothers take care of their young during their first year. They can grow up to 12 feet in length and 800 Lbs. in weight and can swim at speed up to 45 mph. Since Dolphins are air breathing they are easily spotted when they surface for air.

Dolphins abound in the waters around Hilton Head. You can see them from the beach or from a boat. About 200 of the dolphin population is permanent, but many more are migratory. Many dolphins are friendly to humans and will come up to a boat out of curiosity.

Zodiac boats hold six people plus the captain and can go almost anywhere. You are almost certain to see dolphin when traveling in a zodiac boat.

Crustaceans: Common crustaceans on Hilton Head are crabs and shrimp. The only edible crab here is the Blue Crab, which is actually mostly green, except for the legs. Other crabs are:

Ghost crabs, which live in holes in the sand above the tide line.

Fiddler crabs are abundant in the mud flats at low tide, They are smaller than a dime and live in holes they dig in the mud.

Hermit crabs live in discarded shells .

Stone crabs are less common. They can grow up to five inches in width, and are reddish brown in color.

Horseshoe crabs are not crabs at all – they are related to spiders. Their large shells, up to 8 inches across and sometimes including legs and their spiny tail, are common on the beaches. Horseshoe crabs are fierce looking but completely harmless to humans.

The shrimp caught in the waters off Hilton Head are Brown shrimp, Pink shrimp, and White shrimp.

Side Trips

There are four main places of interest to visitors to Hilton Head:

Daufuskie Island is accessible only by boat, is across Calibogue Sound from Hilton Head. There are golf courses, condominiums, and gated residential communities, but the charm lies in the sparsely inhabited areas. Much like Hilton Head was before the bridge, the roads are unpaved and motor vehicles are rare. Travel is by foot or by golf cart, except for a few tour buses.

Savannah, GA was recently made famous by the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. You can drive (about 50 minutes to downtown) or you can go by boat (The Spirit of Harbour Town) – the time is about the same. Savannah has much history and charm. One of the best ways to tour is to take one of the ”trolley” tours.

The Riverfront is one of the most recent additions to Savannah. All of the old factories have been turned into restaurants, boutiques, antique shops, and art galleries. What was once the least desirable area has become one of the most popular. The complex can be entered at the river level. Above this are four levels of shops, etc. At street level one emerges onto Factors Walk, a cobblestone street with markers at intervals telling the name of the city and county in which the cobblestones originated in that section of the walkway.

There are many excellent narrated tours of the city which describe its architecture and history.

Beaufort, SC is about the same distance in the opposite direction. It has much beauty and fascinating history. In more modern times it has been the site of several movies. It is best to tour Beaufort by horse drawn carriage. Highlights are the lovely antebellum mansions.

Charleston, SC is about a two hour + drive north There is so much to see and do in Charleston, and the distance is such that it is probably best to make that a separate trip in itself rather than trying to append it to a visit to Hilton Head.

D- Family Fun Attractions:
Pirate’s Island

681-4001.

located at mile marker 8.5 on highway; open every day of the year.

During the summer, the crew works 9am until 11pm.

Golf Courses and fun for the entire family.

Captain Kidd’s Challenge

A more difficult course, Captain Kidd’s Challenge (par 56) presents more hazards and requires a steady hand. This course can accommodate the physically handicapped and baby strollers due to lack of steps and barriers. But beware as you pass under the waterfall through the cave; it’s a known Pirate hideout. A treasure and dungeon have been sighted there!

Coastal Discovery Museum

689-6767

Offers nature walks, kayaking, and bird watching tours.

Enjoying nature on the water.

Zodiac boats are inflatable boats with rigid hulls. They hold up to six people plus the captain (a few might hold more if the captain is licensed for more). They are low in the water, so provide a good platform for observing dolphins. Going out on a zodiac, you will also have an expert guide and will be in a small group. Zodiacs have a greater range than kayaks, so they can go farther to find dolphins. Also, you don’t have to paddle them. Here are some places that provide eco tours on zodiacs.

2nd Nature Outdoor Center in Palmetto Bay Marina. 843-341-5590.

Commander Zodiac at the South Beach Marina in Sea Pines plantation. 843-671-3344.

Dolphin Discoveries in Shelter Cove. 843-290-2802.

Enviro Tours in Harbourtown Marina in Sea Pine plantation. 843-671-4386.

H2O Water Sports in Harbourtown Marina. 843-671-4386.

Island Explorer at The Old Oyster Factory restaurant on Marshland Rd. 843-785-2108.

Island Water Sports at Skull Creek, behind Charlie’s Crab restaurant. 843-689-6800.

If there are more than six people in your party and you want to be together, there are enviro tour boats that can hold more passengers but are still small enough to provide a close-up view.

E- Events & Entertainment:
January

3rd week: Winter Roast Annual Oyster Roast with Lowcountry favorites, live entertainment and children games. Sponsored by Island Recreation Center, 4-8pm Palmetto Bay Marina 681-7273

February

De Arts Ob We People: A Gullah Celebration (through 3rd weekend in February) The Self Family Arts Center – 842-ARTS

March

SpringFest (Month of March) During Hilton Head’s Springfest (Hilton Head Island, 843/686-4944 or 800/424-3387), throughout the month of March, you can enjoy concerts, plays, films, art shows, theater, sporting events, food fairs, and mini- tournaments.

Early March

Daily Sea Pines Forest Preserve Wagon Tour The preserve is home to numerous animals & was home to Native Americans hundreds of years ago. 3:30-5pm, 363-4530

Daily Sea Pines Historic Stoney Baynard Ruins Tour Explore this historic tabby ruin & archeological dig site, which was built around 1793. Learn how a cotton plantation was operated. 10-11:30am– 363-4530

Daily: The Spirit of Harbour Town Historic Savannah Cruise Cruise in heated or air-conditioned comfort to the heart of Savannah’s historic district. Spend over 4 hours shopping, sightseeing and dining. 9:30am – 4:30pm, 842-7179

Daily Vagabond Daufuskie Island Adventure includes land tour. call 842-4155 for times and reservations

Daily Beachwalks with the Coastal Discovery Museum This tour is a long time favorite of Island visitors and residents. call 689-6767 for times and reservations

Mid-March:

Annual Chocolate Fair sponsored by the Jr. Sailing Program. Coligny Plaza – 842-6050

2nd weekend: Annual Wine Fest largest outdoor tented wine tasting on the East Coast! includes souvenir tasting glass, 1-4pm, Shelter Cove Harbour – 800-424-3387

2nd weekend: Jazz Fest entertainment provided by the Hilton Head Jazz Society. Free, Hilton Head Factory Stores 1 & 2 – 837-4339

2nd weekend in March

St. Patrick’s Day Parade largest free spectator event on the Island. Free, 2pm, Pope Avenue – 842-4319

Last weekend in March

SpringFest Open House/International Food Tasting Free, 4-6pm, USCB at Hilton Head – 785-3995

Late March

Architects Selected Preview of Homes a 1-day tour of selected homes designed by local architects. 10am-5pm, 836-2929

St. Helena’s Episcopal Church Spring Tours (Church St. and North St., St. Helena, 843/524-0363) offers festive tours of Beaufort’s Colonial homes and lovely Lowcountry plantations in March and April.

April

Worldcom Classic-The Heritage Of Golf (11 Lighthouse La., Hilton Head Island, 800/234-1107), when more than 100 top golfers play at the Harbour Town Golf Links for a $3.5 million purse.

May

Beaufort’s Gullah Festival in May highlights the fine arts, customs, language, and dress of Lowcountry African-Americans.

July

In July during the Beaufort County Water Festival (Beaufort, 843/524-0600), boats galore turn up for water sports and entertainment. It’s held in the Waterfront Park on Bay Street.

September

Over Labor Day weekend, Hilton Head hosts the Hilton Head Island Celebrity Golf Tournament (Hilton Head Island, 843/842-7711), during which celebrities and amateurs play for three days on three different courses to raise money for children’s charities.

Annual FoodFest – Best of the Lowcountry

Mid-September: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM

The popular event now covers 2 days and is held at Shelter Cove Harbour, starting at 11:00 am. 32 Island Restaurants, (16 different ones each day), showcase samples of a few of their most popular menu items. Contests, prizes, family-style entertainment

For further information for day of event activities please contact the Hilton Head Hospitality Association at 843-686-4944 or 1-800-424-3387.

October

St. Luke’s Tour Of Homes (Hilton Head Island, 843/785-4099), take self-guided tours through beautiful homes and plantations.

Beaufort Fall Festival Of Homes And Gardens (208 Scott St., Beaufort, 843/524-6334), private homes and gardens are open to the public, and you can tour historic sites and attend lectures and special events.

Plantation Tour (Edisto Island, 843/869-1954) of the 18th- and 19th-century former plantations and old churches on the island. Docents at every location give historical background on all the sites.

Call for tickets.

Daniel Island Park Day Saturday, last weekend in October

Daniel Island offers hundreds of acres of parkland. this event is an opportunity to showcase both these new and existing island parks. Each park will have a variety of different activities for all ages. There is no entry fee to attend this event, and most of the day’s activities will be free of charge. Bicycles will be available for rent to allow visitors to tour the island’s parks and neighborhoods and take part in all of the exciting activities. Visitors can also take old-fashioned hay rides around the island in traveling to each destination.

At Children’s Park:

great activities for children and adults alike including the following: “Gullah” story telling for children, local music, fly fishing demonstrations on the dock, sweetgrass basket weaving, and more.

November

1st weekend: Hilton Head Oyster Festival. Shelter Cove Community Commons, 11 AM to 4 PM. All you can eat oysters, plus chili, chowder, burgers and hot dogs. Games and live entertainment. 843-681-7273

2nd weekend: “Taste of the Seasons”. Holiday season specialties from various restaurants. 6 PM to 8 PM, Port Royal Clubhouse. 843-785-2600 ext. 377, M. C. Strong.

2nd weekend: “14th Annual Merrie Christmas Shoppe Arts and Crafts Show”. At the Boardwalk on Folly Field Road. Free admission. 11/8, 6 PM to 9 PM; 11/9, 10 AM to 7 PM; 11/10, 10 AM to 4 PM. 843-681-5092.

3rd week: Hayrides in the Sea Pines Forest Preserve. 3PM to 4PM or 4PM to 5PM. 843-363-4530.

Thanksgiving weekend: Santa arrives at Coligny Plaza, with Yostie’s puppets and Rick Hubbard’s Kazoo band. Noon. 843-842-6050.

Thanksgiving weekend Christmas tree lighting, caroling, crafts, refreshments, Santa and other entertainment. Self Family Arts Center. 843-842-2787.