Just because you can’t jump in the ocean to go swimming doesn’t mean spending winter in Hilton Head is a bad idea. In fact, it’s quite the opposite if you’ve never been big on ocean swimming anyway. The winter months are definitely cooler here on the island, but that just means you’ll have fewer tourists to contend with during your stay. Fewer tourists mean better rates on lodging, fewer wait times at restaurants, and avoiding all the peak season traffic. Escape the cold in your hometown and spend a few of your winter days here in Hilton Head. If you need a little more convincing, here are a few ideas on how to best spend your time during the winter months on the island.

Take a Snow Day

While it’s rare to experience the same kind of winter wonderland here that you might find in the northern states, you can always count on at least one good snow day every year, thanks to the Island Rec Center. Their annual Snow Day event has inflatables, rides, a snowfield, and entertainment for the whole family. This year’s Snow Day is Saturday, January 27th, at Shelter Cove Park from 11am until 4pm. Dress warm and get ready to make snow angels (and memories) with your loved ones.

Immerse Yourself in the Culture

There are two major festivals held in the winter months here on the island that would allow you to get the full Lowcountry culture experience in just a week. The 17th Annual Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival is a week-long indulgence into the best culinary achievements, custom cocktails, celebrity guest chefs, and so much more. Join us February 19th through the 25th for the best seafood and true island experience you could ever want.

Starting January 28th and running through until March 1st, the Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration showcases the rich cultural heritage of the Gullah people. Rated as one of the Top 20 Events in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society, the Gullah Celebration has a diverse lineup of events from poetry events to a dinner cruise that will entertain as it educates.

Enjoy the Trails

Not including the trails only meant for hiking, there are over 60 miles of paved bike paths on the island and 19 miles worth of densely packed sandy beaches to ride on. Being on the island during the off-season almost gives you full reign of those paths. With the milder temperatures, you could ride all day without breaking a sweat. You don’t even have to worry about lugging your bike on a long trip because you can just rent one when you get here. 


With its beautiful sandy beaches and thriving summer season, it’s understandable not to think about spending winter in Hilton Head. Hopefully, we’ve changed your mind and will see you soon!