Thousands of visitors come to Hilton Head Island each summer for its pristine beaches, high-class small town atmosphere, and resort vacationing. Summer is a fabulous time for a beach vacation on Hilton Head Island and with over twelve miles of sparkling sand beaches, there so many areas to enjoy the sun and surf. All of Hilton Head’s beaches are public, from the ocean to the high water mark, although access to the beach is often private.
Public beach access points are Alder Lane, Coligny Beach, Fish Haul Park, Driessen Beach Park, Burkes Beach, Folly Field Beach Park, and the Islanders Beach Park. Wheelchair access is available at Alder Lane Beach Park, Driessen Beach Park, Folly Field Beach Park and Islanders Beach Park. With so many great options, it may be hard to choose where to set up your umbrella and lay your towel.
For those that are vacationing in the Forest Beach area, the closest public beach is Alder Lane Beach. Located just off South Forest Beach Drive, Alder Lane beach provides meter parking, handicap access, restrooms, outdoor showers and seasonal life guards. The beaches here are wide and usually full of families enjoying the sand and surf. Also located in the Forest Beach area is Coligny Beach. Along with parking, showers, restrooms, handicap access, and seasonal life guards, Coligny beach also has WI-FI and seasonal Beach Rentals. Located at the end of Pope Avenue, just off Coligny Circle, Coligny Beach is within walking distance to shops and restaurants.
Mid-Island beaches include Driessen Beach Park, Folly Field Beach Park and Islanders Beach Park. All three of these public beaches are located off William Hilton Parkway around the Folly Field area. They all provide metered parking, handicap access, a boardwalk, restrooms, and seasonal life guards. Driessen Beach Park and The Islanders Beach Park include grills, picnic pavilions, and playgrounds. These areas provide the perfect space to take a break from the sun to have lunch or just let the kids play on the shaded playgrounds.
Mitchelleville Beach Park and Fish Haul Park are located off Beach City Road on the northern end of Hilton Head Island. These beaches are great for shelling or just taking in the natural beauty of Hilton Head. These less crowded strands of beach are surrounded by woods, tidal creeks, marshes and mudflats. Located on the Port Royal Sound, these mud flats are excellent feeding and resting habitats for many shorebirds.
Hilton Head Island has done a wonderful job of protecting its beautiful shoreline. While visiting, there are a few rules to abide by in order to keep our beaches in their natural state.
- Pets are not permitted on the beach during the hours of 10 A.M. to 5 P.M., from the Friday before Memorial Day until the Monday of Labor Day weekend. From April to May, pets must be leashed between 10 A.M and 5 P.M. and from October to March, leashes are not required at any time. Local law requires owners to clean up after their pets.
- Fishing and casting are prohibited in designated swimming areas.
- Liquor, beer or wine, glassware, horses, sleeping on the beach after midnight, and the operation, launch or landing of motorized watercraft are prohibited on Hilton Head Island’s beaches.
HiltonHeadIslander.com, 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, HiltonHeadIslander.com is the source for all things Hilton Head Island.