Daufuskie Island

#2 in Best Things To Do in Hilton Head
Daufuskie Island picture
Daufuskie Island
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akaplummer/Getty Images

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Beaches, Golf, Hiking, Natural Wonders, Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Swimming/Pools, Free, Neighborhood/Area Type
Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend
4.7scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 3.0Food Scene
  • 5.0Atmosphere

Daufuskie Island offers Hilton Head vacationers a getaway within a getaway. The island, located west of Harbour Town across the Calibogue Sound, feels like a world away thanks to its remote nature. Daufuskie is only accessible by ferry, has few inhabitants (around 300 full-time residents), is almost completely devoid of cars and is awash in hundreds-year-old Spanish moss oak trees and crowdless beaches. The island is also a historical hub, so much so that it was added to the list of National Registry of Historic Places in 1982. 

Today's Daufuskie Island houses residents that range from retirees to artists and features antebellum-style mansions scattered about (the island was once a prime place for cotton picking) as well as landscapes prime for recreational activities and adventures. Here, you can glide down one of the island's many bike-friendly trails, kayak or paddleboard around the waterways, ride horses or golf along the beach. If you're interested in learning more about the island's history, you can partake in a history tour with Tour Daufuskie or take a self-guided tour along the Robert Kennedy Historic Trail, which takes visitors to various historical sites around the island. The island is also home to art studios and galleries, as well as a rum distillery and community-run farm.

Most visitors who venture to Daufuskie Island only come for the day, though there are accommodations options available on the island. To get to Daufuskie Island, take the Daufuskie Island Ferry ($35 roundtrip), which offers service every three hours to and from Daufuskie. If you take this ferry, you are required to arrange transportation on the island ahead of time. There is no entry fee to get into Daufuskie Island or set hours, however, individual businesses maintain their own fees and hours. For more information on Daufuskie Island, visit the Hilton Head tourism board's website.

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More Best Things To Do in Hilton Head

Coligny Beach
Mitchelville Beach
Type
Time to Spend
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#1 Coligny Beach

Coligny Beach is by far the most popular beach in Hilton Head. The shoreline is scenic as can be and the adjacent beach park features a wealth of amenities perfect for beachgoers of all ages. Not only are there restrooms and showers but also separate changing rooms, plenty of benches and gazebos with swings to shade yourself from the sun. There's also loads of eateries just a stone's throw from the sand (think: coffee shops, ice cream shops and seafood restaurants) and should you forget an umbrella, you can rent that here in addition to beach chairs. What's more, parking is free.

Recent visitors, especially those traveling with families, love Coligny Beach. Along with the beautiful Carolinian coastal scenery, visitors praise the beach's clean facilities and nearby amenities. And although the beach is known to get pretty crowded during summer, some travelers note that if you walk long enough down the shore, away from the beach park, you can find fewer people taking up spots in the sand. If you are visiting during the summer though, be very wary of jellyfish. Sea Nettle jellyfish permeate the beach's waters from June to August or September. While lifeguards are equipped to deal with jellyfish injuries on the spot, it's stingray stings that are much more severe and often lead to a trip to the emergency room. Before getting in the water, ask lifeguards about conditions to avoid injury. 

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Courtesy of the Hilton Head Island Visitor & Convention Bureau
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