Thursday, December 19, 2013

Day Trip From Hilton Head to Daufuskie Island

Hilton Head Island is full of activities for the vacationer but if you would like to experience something a little different, take a day trip to Daufuskie Island. Daufuskie is full of history and culture just waiting to be explored.  Daufuskie was originally occupied by native Indians prior to the arrival of European explorers in the 16th century. Plantations covered the island prior to the Civil War when they were occupied by Union Soldiers. Freed slaves then occupied the island and grew cotton which has left a legacy of rich Gullah history. Remaining virtually untouched,  Daufuskie Island offers a glimpse of what other sea islands were like before technology and urban growth.

Visitors won’t find the hustle and bustle of city life. In fact Daufusie has very few paved roads and not a single traffic light. Instead the visitor will find unspoiled beauty of the lowcountry, quiet beaches, and natural woodlands filled with pines and live oaks dripping with Spanish moss. Included in the natural flora and fauna of Daufuskie Island, you’ll find loggerhead turtle nests, herds of deer, the rare black fox squirrel, alligators sunning on banks, bald eagles soaring the sky, and pods of dolphins frolicking along the shore. Exploring this beautiful island, you’ll find treasures including arrowheads and pottery from Indian settlements, relics from revolutionary and civil war battles, and remains of china from large plantation homes that once occupied the island. Daufuskie is also home to some of the few remaining tabby ruins in Beaufort County. Serving as plantation slave quarters, these homes were constructed of a mixture of crushed oyster shells, lime, sand, and water. Few know that Jimmy Buffet’s 1988 song, “The Price of Tides” laments the urbanization of the island and the loss of the Gullah culture. And Pat Conroy’s book, The Water is Wide, was set on Daufuskie island where Mr. Conroy recounts his experiences of teaching on the island in the 1960’s.

Daufuskie is home to approximately 250 full time residents and 400 part time residents. Haig Point and Melrose include private residences and rental cottages but the rest of the island remains undeveloped with a few homes scattered throughout the island.

Daufuskie is accessible by passenger ferry or private boat with travel times ranging from 15-45 minutes.  Ferry boats to Daufuskie Island leave from Hilton Head Marina at various times. Once you arrive on the island, golf carts are available for rent. Be sure to rent your cart for at least two hours giving you plenty of time to explore. You’ll be provided with a detailed map of the area including landmarks you won’t want to miss. Once you’ve finished your exploration, the island offers two restaurants, the Old Daufuskie Crab Company at Freeport Marina and Marshside Mamas at the county dock. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Shrimp or Crab...Which Lowcountry favorite do you prefer?

Also referred to as Frogmore Stew, this one-pot wonder is enjoyed by many throughout the south. The traditional Lowcountry Boil is a simple dish consisting of shrimp, sausage, corn and potatoes. It’s easily served up on newspaper, which provides for quick clean up, and usually paired with melted butter and cocktail sauce. Lowcountry Boil is guaranteed to be a crowd pleaser.  The recipe is pretty basic but feel free to add in onions or blue crabs to make it your own.

Lowcountry Boil
4 pounds small red potatoes
5 quarts water
1 (3-ounce) bag of crab boil seasoning
4 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
2 pounds kielbasa or hot smoked link sausage cut into 1½-inch pieces
6 ears of corn, halved
4 pounds large fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined optional
Cocktail sauce
Add potatoes to large pot, then add 5 quarts water and seasonings. Cover pot and heat to a rolling boil; cook 5 minutes. Add sausage and corn, and return to a boil. Cook 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
Add shrimp to stockpot; cook 3 to 4 minutes or until shrimp turn pink. Drain. Serve with cocktail sauce. Serves 12.
(Adapted from Southern Living, August 2002 and Real Simple, August 2001)

Found to be plentiful throughout the inland waters of the Lowcountry, blue crabs are another favorite a favorite in the south. Simple to prepare and similar to that of Lowcountry Boil, crabs are best enjoyed around a newspaper topped table with friends. No extras or frills needed here, just melted butter and your cracking skills. Enjoy!
Paula’s Savannah-Style Blue Crabs
3 heaping tablespoons crab seasoning, such as Old Bay                                                                         1 tablespoon white vinegar   
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 dry bay leaves
2 lemons, split in half
1 bunch fresh parsley, roughly chopped
6 blue crabs
Melted butter, for serving

Bring a large stockpot of water to a boil. Add the crab seasoning, vinegar, peppercorns, bay leaves, lemons, garlic and parsley to the pot. Add the crabs and boil until they are red, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the crabs using a spider, and then let the crabs cool to the touch. Crack the crabs over newspaper and pick out all their sweet meat. Serve with melted butter.

(Recipe from Paula Deen from the Food Newtork show, Paula’s Best Dishes, episode: Feeling Crabby.), a division of Performance Development Corporation (PDC), features information about Hilton Head Island, South Carolina from vacation rentals to real estate featuring details on events, hotels, restaurants, golf, activities, shopping & spas. Created for visitors and locals alike, is the source for all things Hilton Head Island.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Hilton Head Alligators

Ever wonder about all those Alligators you see on Hilton Head Island? Our Alligator population likely exceeds 1000 so it’s probable that you will see one of these island residents during your stay. It’s best to watch these native creatures from a distance but if you would like to get up and personal with them, an “Alligator Wine and Cheese Cruise” may be right up your “alligator alley”. Hosted by H20 Sports, you’ll take an early evening cruise through the Sea Pines Forest Preserve.  As you journey through the Forest Preserve (enjoying your wine and cheese), you’ll see the island in a whole new light. Few visitors OR residents take advantage the many activities provided on Hilton Head to experience the island’s natural beauty. This is a great way to pick up a little history and explore Hilton Head’s flora and fauna.

For those who prefer to stay on land, The Coastal Discovery Museum is having a “Meet and Greet Reptiles on Hilton Head Island” on December 30th 2013 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This informal presentation will be held in the Sea Island Room and no reservations are needed.

The most important thing to remember is “Don’t Feed The Alligators”.

 is your guide to all of what our island has to offer.  At, you’ll find accommodations, things to do, local dining spots, Island beach information, local events, articles, weather, and Real Estate information. You’ll know Hilton Head Island front and back before you even cross the bridge. Visit us today at

Monday, December 9, 2013

Movie on the Green

Holidays in the Lowcountry bring plenty of activities to be enjoyed by the family. If you haven’t tried a “Movie on the Green” in Palmetto Bluff, you’ll have your chance on Saturday, December 14th 2013. It’s the perfect way to celebrate the season! “A Christmas Story” will be playing on the big screen under the stars. Pack your chairs, blankets, family and friends; the gates open at 4:30 p.m. to mix and mingle with Santa. Hot toddies and movie snacks will be provided and the movie begins at 6:00 p.m.

 is your guide to all of what our island has to offer.  At, you’ll find accommodations, things to do, local dining spots, Island beach information, local events, articles, weather, and Real Estate information. You’ll know Hilton Head Island front and back before you even cross the bridge. Visit us today at