Hilton Head Island Villas

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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If the smell of salt air and wind rolling over sand dunes makes you pause, then Hilton Head Island villas will turn your head. The more you learn about the island--its lush fairways and long stretch of beaches and countless marinas--the more you'll want to stop and vacation there. The first bridge spanned the intra-coastal waterway in 1956 and Hilton Head has been renowned as a resort since then. It's no wonder that it has been.

The island's appeal and history stretch back, as archaeological relics indicate, about 10,000 years. The first Europeans were the Spanish, who arrived about 1525. The British followed, with English sea captain William Hilton surveying the island in 1663 and claiming it for the British crown.

Geography around Hilton Head Island Villas

Hilton Head Island lies off the southeastern tip of South Carolina. Shaped like a boot with its sole in the Atlantic, it runs more or less 12 miles from toe to heel and perhaps five miles from heel to ankle. It seems to stand on tiptoe, just above the Georgia state line.

Cut almost in two from west to east by Broad Creek, Hilton Head embraces about 29,000 acres--some 42 square miles. Dotted by saltwater marshes and freshwater wetlands as well as numerous creeks, coves, and inlets, the island sits only just above sea level. All of its beaches lie on the sole of the boot along the Atlantic coast.

Amidst the waterways and marinas wander the fairways of Hilton Head's many golf courses. At last count there were 24 (totaling roughly 4,000 acres). Overall the climate is temperate year-round, but winter sometimes stops in for a brief visit, dropping temperatures five or 10° Fahrenheit. Hurricane season can make late summer and autumn a bit unpredictable, but Hilton Head Island villas are built to withstand those storms.

Community Recreation at Hilton Head Island Villas

The bridge from Beaufort County comes across--down the ankle of the boot--to the more residential end of the island. This protected side is home to the South Carolina Yacht Club. Windmill Harbor, Spanish Wells, Indigo Run, and Hilton Head Plantation are the first communities of Hilton Head Island villas you'll encounter.

Toward the center of the island is the 1,800-acre Palmetto Dunes-Lemington Plantation area, another residential and resort community of Hilton Head Island villas, condominiums, timeshares, and houses. It is home to three championship golf courses, an 11-mile network of lagoons, numerous hiking and biking trails, tennis courts, and fishing spots. Perhaps the greatest single attraction is the 12-mile stretch of beaches along the sole of the Hilton Head boot. These are washed by seven-foot tides and roll into sand dunes.

In the toe of the Hilton Head boot, to the southeast, is Sea Pines. The island's oldest and largest community, it is a mix of residential and holiday Hilton Head Island villas. Four first-rate golf courses and two marinas complement a forest preserve and miles of Atlantic beach. Whether you're looking at Hilton Head Island villas to rent or buy or share, you won't regret doing so. Most who enjoy the island, whether for several weeks or the entire year, are active people. The island has long been celebrated for its golf, tennis, and marine sports, but is coming into its own with a strong mix of visual and performing arts as well.

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