Fall is upon us here in Hilton Head Island and it couldn’t be a better time of year to visit! Milder temperatures are headed our way, with October’s average low at 57, average high of 76. Crisp morning air invigorates the senses and rejuvenates even the workaholic in your family.
A day of vacation could easily be filled with walks on our 12 miles of beach, bike riding on one of our many paths and trails, and a cold drink with hot seafood at a harbourside restaurant. It’s easy to sit back, relax, and enjoy the natural beauty our island has to offer. For a more local feel, check out area shopping and restaurants. Some fall favorites of these Resort Rental locals include:
The Sea Pines Forest Preserve – Hiking, fishing, picnicking, and wildlife viewing opportunities abound in the 605-acre preserve established by Sea Pines Plantation developer Charles Fraser. The 4000 year-old Indian Shell Ring is on the National Register of Historic places and numerous trails allow for hiking throughout the preserve. Bring your fishing rod (and license please!) because the four lakes in the preserve are the largest open freshwater resources on the island. This blogger mastered a cane pole at these very lakes many years ago.
Bluffton Farmer’s Market – On Thursdays in Bluffton, Carson Cottages in Old Town offers seasonal fruit and vegetables, freshly prepared foods, live entertainment and a relaxing shopping environment for the whole family. You may run into Krystal and Kim from Resort Rentals, they’re loyal patrons of this local favorite!
Oyster Roasts – From Salty Dog Caf?to Old Oyster Factory, as soon as the chill hits so does the craving for everything oyster! Momma always said you can only eat oysters in months that end with R, so by October oyster season is in full swing. Try them raw, steamed, roasted, battered and fried, Rockefeller or Savannah. If you’re in the mood for a day trip to Beaufort (about an hour’s drive) cap off that waterfront shopping with a visit to 11th Street Dockside and check out their Buffalo Oysters – this local’s favorite and a sure crowd pleaser.
However, for the more adventurous vacationer, festival season is here! Take your family and meet new friends at some of the area’s oldest (and newest) festival traditions:
Cajun Food Festival – October 16, 11-5pm – Shelter Cove Park plays host to some of our favorite festivals yearly and this one is no exception. Featuring music by Chris Jones and Liquid Ginger, a specialized kids area, and of course authentic Cajun food by area restaurants this may be the best $5 you spend all week.
Historic Bluffton Arts and Seafood Festival – October 17-24 – Weeklong festivities take place all over historic downtown Bluffton, just across the bridge from Hilton Head. Events include a 5K Run, Family Night, Children’s Fishing Tournament, and a Seafood Extravaganza. Be sure to utilize the shuttles from Bluffton Village as there is no festival parking downtown.
59th Annual Savannah Greek Festival – October 14-16 – Include a day trip to Savannah on this weekend to participate in one of the most gastronomically pleasing festivals of the year. Whether you’re Greek Orthodox or just wish you had a big, loud Greek family, you’ll all feel a little closer after your experience. Eat, drink, dance, and be sure to tour St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church, a 103-year old congregation. And with $2 admission, this bargain is worth the drive. More spanikopita please!
Savannah Film Festival – October 30-November 6 – Featuring the best in independent and innovative film from around the world, this festival is hosted by the Savannah College of Art and Design. It presents a full range of cinematic creations from award-winning professionals as well as emerging student filmmakers. The director’s choice film is always on the last night, and last year this blogger was lucky enough to see Academy Award nominated “Up in the Air” two months before its release. Amazing! But who doesn’t love George Clooney? Check out filmfest.scad.edu to secure tickets beginning October 1.
As always, check out our Hilton Head calendar of events for more great activities during your stay. Enjoy the gorgeous weather, and don’t hesitate to call for recommendations!
*Mention reading this month’s blog when you call to make your reservation and receive 2 free bike rentals for a week!*