Hilton Head’s near-perfect weather, stunning natural beauty, and abundance of recreational opportunities make it an ideal vacation spot. So it’s really no surprise that tourists flock to the island during the spring and summer. That said, we firmly believe that the Lowcountry has just as much to offer during the cooler months. If you’re thinking of spending some time in Hilton Head, here are five reasons to consider doing so in the winter.
Top 5 Reasons to Visit Hilton Head this Winter
1) The weather is still temperate in Hilton Head
If you’re used to frigid and gloomy winters, Hilton Head just might be the perfect escape for you. During the coldest months of the year, the island’s average temperature is a comfortable 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Not only that, but we get more days of sunshine per year than the national average. Depending on your personal preferences, you might actually find that it’s nicer to hit the links or take a walk on the beach when it’s cooler out. Come discover the Lowcountry’s pleasant winter weather—we promise you won’t regret it!
2) You can enjoy the golf and tennis facilities
Among Hilton Head’s many claims to fame, the island is home to a number of world-class golf courses and tennis courts. While these attractions are well worth checking out at any time of year, they’re often on the busy side during peak season. Fortunately, they tend to be a lot less crowded in the winter. For golfers, this is a great time to check out Hilton Head’s incredible courses. Fan favorites include Harbour Town Golf Links (the site of an annual PGA event) and Heron Point (a masterpiece from well-respected golf course designer Pete Dye). If you’re a tennis enthusiast, consider scoping out the renowned Palmetto Dunes Tennis and Pickleball Centre—before prime tourist season hits.
3) The island has a stellar arts and culture scene
On cooler days, consider checking out Hilton Head’s arts and culture scene. The Arts Center of Coastal Carolina is a regional hub for music, theatre, visual arts, and more. The center offers a little something for everyone (from ballet to jazz), so we suggest keeping a close eye on its events calendar. If historical sites are more your thing, take a tour of Honey Horn Plantation—a beautiful, 68-acre property that’s over 300 years old. Those interested in their ancestry should visit the Heritage Library (named one of the world’s top 10 places to research your roots by USA Today). Last but certainly not least, the Hilton Head Chamber of Commerce hosts some top-notch cultural events. We’re especially excited about Chamber Restaurant Week (February 4-10), where diners can sample delicious fare from prix-fixe menus at participating restaurants.
4) It’s prime redfish season
No doubt about it: Hilton Head is a great place to go fishing. One of the best things about casting your line in our waters is that there’s plenty of action year-round—including during the winter. When the cooler weather hits, redfish (also known as spottail bass) are abundant. These deep-water dwellers can live for decades, which means they often grow to massive proportions (though it’s worth mentioning that there are size restrictions related to what you can take home). In addition to being prime redfish season, winter is a great time for sight fishing on Hilton Head. The water tends to be clear and free of algae, which makes it easy to see into its depths.
5) You can shop until you drop in Hilton Head
If you’re looking for something fun to do on Hilton Head in the winter, you might want to peruse the local shops. Whether you prefer popular retailers or charming boutiques, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for in the island’s unique shopping districts. Some of our favorite spots include Coligny Plaza Shopping Centre, Shelter Cove Towne Centre, and Main Street Village. Each of these districts hosts an eclectic mix of stores and restaurants—so you can check out some unique wares and grab something savory to nosh on. Old Town Bluffton is another great place to find charming shops—whether you’re looking for antiques, children’s books, or the perfect handbag. Bluffton also has a Tanger Factory Outlet location, which is perfect for bargain hunters who love name brands like Polo Ralph Lauren, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Reebok.