Hilton Head Island Travel Guide

Sharing my review and recommendations tonight of our week in Hilton Head! This was our first time there. We went for the week with Eli’s parents. If you don’t want to read this whole post and just want to know if I liked it, we loved it!! We will definitely be back. It was my favorite family vacation spot. It didn’t have couples/honeymoon vibes or party vibes but was perfect for families or a group of friends that wants a chiller beach vacation.

I’m going to run through: where we stayed, what we did, and of course- where we ate!

Where We Stayed:

We stayed in Palmetto Dunes which is a resort on the Island. It is a huge resort with I believe over 5 miles of bike trails. Attached to Palmetto Dunes is a shopping center full of restaurants and shops called Shelter Cove. It also had a Whole Foods and Kroger! You could drive, take a free shuttle, or ride bikes on the trails there. We rode bikes over there for breakfast, happy hour, dinner, and dessert (not all in the same day though haha). It was about a mile and a half bike ride, not bad at all!

We stayed in a condo that had a pool we could use and was right on the beach! The condo was very cute, clean, and had a nice view of the beach.

Another popular place to stay is Sea Pines so I would look into that as well, I’ve heard great things!

What We Did:

Basically, we sat on the beach, ate a lot of food, rode bikes, and had fun cocktails. What more do you need in a beach vacation? I don’t have a ton of activities to recommend to you guys besides restaurants because we didn’t book anything besides our bike rentals. But 10/10 you need to rent bikes if you go! You can bike everywhere and it feels really safe. We rented our bikes for the week and almost every place we rode to had places you could lock your bike up at. Plus it’s an easy way to explore the island and see a bunch of unreal houses!!

Hilton Head Island Review

We loved riding around Palmetto Dunes and looking at the pretty beach houses!

Where We Ate:

Now to the most important part- food!!! We loved all the food we had, we didn’t have a bad meal! I know people who have been to Hilton Head a million times are going to have places I should have gone and don’t worry, we’ll be back! These are just the places we went and enjoyed.


1-Palmetto Dunes General Store

This was only about 1/4 mile away from where we were staying so it was very convenient! If you stay in Palmetto Dunes, they have great breakfast there and it’s super close! We would walk or ride our bikes there and bring it back to our condo. It’s always pretty crowded unless you go early!

2- The French Bakery

You guys… the pastries here were AMAZING! These tasted like a toaster strudel but 10x better. You’ll want to go here every morning. We rode our bikes here and delicious coffees too!


The Dunes House

This was right next to our condo so we could walk on the beach here, ride bikes, or walk on the bike path. It’s right on the beach so you have a pretty view too!

Big Jims BBQ and Pizza

This was also in Palmetto Dunes so we could walk, take a free shuttle, or ride bikes here. It’s right on the golf course so you can sit outside and watch the golfers while you eat!

Holy Tequila

One of my favorites!!! The food was sooo good! If you can only go one place for lunch, I would go here out of the places I listed. We rode our bikes here too but it was about a 5 mile bike ride from Palmetto Dunes. Well worth it for the carnitas tacos and chicken nachos!

They had a good lunch special too!


Pool Bar Jim’s

Everyone kept telling me this is a famous Hilton Head spot. The drinks were amazing!!! Seriously so tasty and they give you a ton! It’s on the beach so you get a view of the water while sipping on your frozen drink.

The Dune’s House

A very convenient spot if you stay at Palmetto Dunes to go get fun frozen drinks!

Holy Tequila’s

We loved their margs! If you love margs, they had sooo many options!! It’s almost overwhelming haha.

San Miguel’s

Their skinny margarita was so good! This was another spot we rode bikes to. We went here for happy hour one day and then went back the next night for dinner haha. You can put your name in for a table, go down to the bar, get a drink, and then walk around a little bit looking at the boats and water!

Skinny margarita was so good!


Skull Creek Boathouse (waterfront)

This was by far the most recommended spot for dinner! We made a reservation so we didn’t have to wait because I heard the line gets crazy. I would recommend going here but making a reservation if you can! The food is great and it’s on the water so you get a pretty view too!

San Miguel’s

Like I said, we went back the next night for dinner. I had tacos and we had nachos for the table. Good drinks and good food!

ELA’s On The Water (waterfront)

This was my personal favorite spot for dinner! Eli and I shared these lobster nachos and they were delicious! We sat outside and had a wonderful view (can you tell I like a view at dinner haha). It was little windy but we got to see a lot of boats and watch the sunset!

Ice Cream:


You can get this ice cream other places but it’s so good! We always get it when we go to the beach. This was an easy bike ride away from Palmetto Dunes, about a mile and a half.

Hilton Head Ice Cream

But, I would recommend Hilton Head Ice Cream! We all liked it better and it’s a local spot! This is the cake batter ice cream and we got it two nights in a row haha.

Overall, we seriously fell in love with Hilton Head! If you like a slower paced vibe, lots of bike riding, and lots of good food- I highly recommend! We rode bikes multiple times a day and loved that. Also we didn’t have any kids with us but I think it would be a great family vacay with kids of all ages! Let me know if you found this helpful and if you end up going anywhere on this list!