HHI 2022 Pt. 1

August 3, 2022

 Part one of our Hilton Head vacation + some favorite local spots!

Recently, in a conversation with a friend, I had to figure out how long I have been going to Hilton Head. Because I can't quite remember if I was 19 or 20 on that first visit, it's been between 12-13 years. That's a long time, and I cannot believe it's been over a decade since I was first introduced to the island. I very much love this place, and have passed that affection on to my husband and children. 

I truly just adore the place, but I'm really taken by the details of the low country. There's Spanish moss dripping from overarching branches; the song of cicadas; charming details in the architecture; and the low buzz of bicycles along the paths that trace the island. To top it off, it really doesn't feel touristy, which is such a highlight for me. It's quaint and homey, perfect for getting away! Truly, if South Carolina had a robust fall season with chilly weather and changing leaves it would tempt me to make a move further south. But alas, I'm far too smitten with autumn in the mountains and just couldn't give that up. So I'll keep this little gem for anticipated pop ins!

A perk of having visited the island for so many years is really learning the ins and outs of the place - how to get around on back roads instead of the main drag; your favorite restaurants; the fastest way to the grocery store; etc. And while there's so much we have learned about HHI, there's still so much more to discover! 

Here are some of our favorites:
  • Crazy Crab at Jarvis Creek 
    • dinner spot for seafood
      • Boiled Seafood Platter (the crab cake is my favorite part!)
      • Peach Colada for a fun drink
    • can make reservations
  • A Lowcountry Backyard Restaurant
    • dinner spot for low country cuisine
      • May River Blue Crab Dip
      • Fried Green Tomatoes
      • Shrimp & Grits
    • first come first serve - so arrive early (like 4:15 for their 4:30 opening)
  • The French Bakery and European Cuisine
    • great for grabbing pastries for enjoying throughout the week
    • get there first thing in the morning before it gets crowded and/or all the pastries are picked over! 
  • Bluffton Oyster Co. (in Bluffton)
    • where we order fresh-caught blue crab (they will steam and season them for you)
  • Barnacle Bill's
    • another great spot for fresh, locally-caught seafood - we get shrimp here!
  • POPS of HHI (in Coligny Plaza)
    • a little candy shop, but our favorite for the popsicles!! (my favorite is the coffee one)
    • and there are dairy-free popsicle options!
  • Frosty's Italian Ice
    • great spot for Italian ice (the chocolate is actually really good!)
    • this is perfect for a cold treat that is dairy free! 
  • Marley's Shrimp & Burger Shack
    • good fried pickles and lobster roll
  • Hinoki
    • a Japanese restaurant - we love to do take out from here on our first night after driving in and settling. 
    • favorite order from there is the bento box 
  • The Greenery Inc. Garden Center, Gift & Home
    • such a fun store filled with some antique and unique wares. Its also located in an old church building with beautiful architectural features! 
  • Hilton Head Outfitters & Bike Rentals
    • our pick for bike rentals - great for the selection of bikes and also for their delivery and pick-up of the bikes which is complimentary with at least a 3-day rental! 
  • Old Town Bluffton, SC
    • quaint little shops/restaurants and super charming architecture - fun for walking through, and grab your fresh crabs while you're there!
  • Savannah, GA
    • a short 45 minute trip away from HHI - makes for a great day trip!!

And now for the first round of pictures! And be sure to come back tomorrow for part two!