When you think of Hilton Head, you might conjure images of pristine beaches, world-class golf courses, and luxurious resorts. While these are undoubtedly fantastic aspects of this beautiful destination, a treasure trove of unique activities in Hilton Head is waiting to be discovered. Step off the beaten path! Pack your bags, book your stay at a charming Beachside Hilton Head vacation rental, and get ready to experience a side of the island that’s as captivating as it is unforgettable.

Visit the Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park

Address: 40 Harriet Tubman Way, Hilton Head Island, SC 29926

Phone: (843) 255-7301

Heading back in time, Hilton Head unveils a piece of history that’s both enlightening and humbling. The Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park is the first self-governed town of formerly enslaved people in the United States. This living testament to resilience and community spirit offers guided tours that shed light on the town’s origins, its significance during the Civil War, and the enduring legacy it represents.

It’s a profound experience that adds depth to your vacation, a reminder that Hilton Head’s allure goes beyond its natural beauty. As you walk the same paths that the town’s original residents trod, you’ll understand their struggle for freedom and community autonomy.

Tour the Gullah Neighborhood

Address: 70 Honey Horn Plantation Rd, Hilton Head Island, SC, 29926

Phone: (843) 681-7066

Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture and rich heritage of the Gullah people, descendants of enslaved Africans who preserved their traditions and language in the Lowcountry. Having preserved their African traditions across generations, the Gullah people offer an enriching insight into their distinct way of life, rarely experienced elsewhere.

Walking through the neighborhood allows you to admire the craftsmanship of the local artisans, taste the unique Gullah cuisine, and enjoy the soulful rhythms of their music. This enlightening cultural immersion highlights the diverse influences that make America’s cultural landscape.

See the King Neptune Sundial

Address: 1 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928

Phone: (866) 661-3822

While Hilton Head is famous for its shores, there’s a unique celestial attraction. The King Neptune Sundial, tucked away in the Shelter Cove Community Park, is a captivating blend of art and science. Sculptor Wayne Edwards and engineers made precise calculations before situating the massive, one-ton statue. They ensured the perfect angle for accurate time indication, oriented towards true south by aligning it with the Ursa Major constellation and the North Star!

This gargantuan structure is a striking example of public art and a testament to the blend of creativity and intellectual prowess. So, whether you’re a fan of astronomy, an art lover, or a casual tourist, the King Neptune Sundial is sure to leave a lasting impression.

Explore the Stoney-Baynard Plantation Ruins

Address: Plantation Dr, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928

Phone: (843) 686-6560 (The Heritage Library Foundation)

Nestled between Baynard Park Road and Plantation Drive in the contemporary Sea Pines area, the historic Baynard estate’s tabby ruins are notable in Hilton Head’s history. The site, alternatively known as Baynard Ruins or Braddock’s Point Plantation, encompasses nearly six acres of underground archaeological remnants and four distinct ruins.

Constructed by Captain Jack Stoney in the 1790s, the Baynard house was a magnificent plantation mansion that once commanded a spectacular view of the Calibogue Sound. Now, it’s a place to reflect on the passage of time and the stories etched into the island’s landscapes.

Become Pirates of Hilton Head

Address: 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928

Phone: (843) 363-7000

Let the kids unleash their inner buccaneer with a swashbuckling adventure! Join a pirate-themed cruise and set sail on the waters around Hilton Head. The excitement is unrelenting from start to finish as they convert the children into their pirate crew. Every participant gets a pirate moniker and learns the art of pirate lingo before embarking on a treasure-seeking adventure aboard the Hilton Head Pirate Cruise.

Becoming a pirate in Hilton Head is an absolute must-do, especially for families with young children. This unique adventure is an immersive experience that allows kids to fully indulge their imagination and live out their pirate fantasies in a fun and safe environment. So, don the eye patch, hoist the Jolly Roger, and embark on this unforgettable adventure at Hilton Head Island!

Meet a Mermaid

Address: 43A Jenkins Rd, Hilton Head Island, SC 29926

Phone: (843) 271-6441

Dive into a whimsical experience that will enchant both children and adults alike! The Mermaid Encounter Tour is a fun-filled 75-minute interaction where each child receives a unique tattoo and a magical name tag. They can also engage in a thrilling bubble battle against the malevolent Professor Al G. And the highlight? Meet a real-life mermaid and get the opportunity to ask her a question!

This tour is an experience that extends beyond the ordinary, providing both children and adults with a unique, unforgettable encounter. It’s an adventure inspired by the children’s story, The Mermaid’s Friends, and you can only find it at Hilton Head Island.

Reach the Top of the Harbour Town Lighthouse

Address: 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928

Phone: (866) 305-9814

For a panoramic view that will leave you awe-struck, make your way to the top of the Harbour Town Lighthouse. As you ascend the steps, the mesmerizing landscape of Hilton Head unfolds before you, a tapestry of ocean, greenery, and sky. It’s a view that captures the essence of the island’s beauty and offers a moment of serenity.

While the lighthouse itself is a landmark, the breathtaking vista it offers is the real highlight. Take a moment to bask in the grandeur of your surroundings and take home lasting memories of this fantastic experience. Don’t just see the lighthouse; reach the top and see Hilton Head from a new perspective!

Hilton Head Island in a New Light

Hilton Head Island is a destination that goes beyond its sun-soaked beaches and golf courses. It’s a place where history, culture, and creativity intertwine. As you plan your escape to this coastal paradise, try stepping away from conventional plans and immerse yourself in these unique activities in Hilton Head. And after each day of exploring these unique activities in Hilton Head, return to the comfort of Beachside Hilton Head, your vacation rental through offers relaxation and rejuvenation, ensuring that your journey into Hilton Head is nothing short of extraordinary. See you soon!