Hilton Head Island is a foot-shaped barrier island located off the Atlantic Coast of South Carolina, approximately 45 miles (72 km) north of Savannah, Ga., 90 miles (145 km) south of Charleston, S.C., and 30 miles (48 km) south of historic Beaufort, S.C. The 12-mile (19 km) long and 5-mile (8 km) wide island was the first Eco-planned destination in the United States.
Lying on the Intracoastal Waterway, Hilton Head Island encompasses 42 square miles (68 sq. km) of semi-tropical, Low Country geography. The Island's pristine natural environment offers a relaxing, hospitable atmosphere with subtle signage and no neon lights. Fertile salt marshes, networks of lagoons and creeks, forests of moss-draped oaks, magnolias, pines, palmettos and 12 miles (19 km) of sandy beaches are interspersed with championship golf courses, tennis courts, fine restaurants and luxurious hotels, resorts and private villa accommodations.
Warmed year-round by the Gulf Stream, the Island's average daytime temperature is a mild 70°F (21°C). The average annual ocean temperature is 69°F (20°C).
Approx. 31,000 permanent residents
Approx. 2.5 million annual visitors in 2000
Golf Courses: 23 (10 private) on-Island; 40 in Lowcountry area
Tennis Courts: 300 (8 clubs available for resort play)
Activities: Biking, kayaking, sailing, surfing, scuba diving, parasailing, windsurfing, water-skiing, fishing and crabbing, horseback riding, nature-based tours/nature preserves, miniature golf, playgrounds, swimming pools, dolphin-watching cruises, historic tours, Gullah heritage tours, hayrides, arts and cultural activities, shopping, fine dining and sightseeing
Hilton Head Island boasts a flourishing cultural community of fine art, music and theatrical venues. Island offerings include cultural exhibits, galleries and performances at the Coastal Carolina Arts Center, Hilton Head Playhouse, Reparatory Theatre, Hilton Head Orchestra, Hilton Head Dance School, Coastal Discovery Museum and the Cole-Heyward House Historic Center in Bluffton, S.C.
Hilton Head Island offers 12 miles (19 km) of beaches, with public access and metered parking available at the following locations: Coligny Beach, Alder Lane, Folly Field Road, Dreissen's Beach Park, Islanders Beach Park, Collier Beach Park.
Over 250 restaurants reside on Hilton Head Island, ranging from fast-food to gourmet. Dining venues include all types of major ethnic cuisine, including French, German, Italian, Caribbean, Japanese, Greek, Chinese, Thai and Mexican. For those with a milder palate, the Island also offers great All-American and southern-style fare as well as famous local seafood.
More than 200 shops are located on Hilton Head Island, from elegant boutiques and art galleries to an indoor mall with major department stores and specialty shops. The Island also has three outlet malls featuring designer brands at a significant savings.
South Carolina Facts
Land area: 31,113 square miles
Largest County by Area:
1) Horry County 1,133 square miles
2) Orangeburg County 1,105 square miles
3) Berkeley County 1,099 square miles
Smallest County by Area: Calhoun 380 square miles
Largest County by Population:
1) Greenville 345,173
2) Richland 292,601
3) Charleston 277,601
State Bird: Carolina Wren
State Beverage: Milk
State Butterfly: Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly
State Capital: Columbia
State Flag: When asked by the Revolutionary Council of Safety in 1775 to design a flag for the use of SC troops, Col. William Moutrie chose a blue which matched the color of their uniforms and a crescent which reproduced the silver emblem worn on the front of their caps. The palmetto tree was added later to represent Moultrie's heroic defense of the palmetto-log fort on Sullivan's Island against the attack of the British fleet on June 28, 1776.
State Flower: Yellow Jessamine
State Fruit: Peach
State Game Bird: Wild Turkey
State Gem Stone: Amethyst
State Stone: Blue Granite
State Tree: Palmetto Tree
Top Agriculture Crops:
3) Soybeans *Including non-row crops - Forestry is #1 and then Poultry (turkeys, squab, etc.)
Mining: South Carolina is ranked 25th in the United State in total mineral value and the state is ranked nationally in production and sales of kaolin, and first in the production and sales of vermiculite. Approximate financial impact is $483 million annually. There are 13 minerals extracted presently from 485 active mines in SC, they are: Brick Clay, Fuller's Earth, Gravel,Limestone, Peat, Sericite, Vermiculite, Gold, Granite, Kaolin, Manganese, Schist, Sand, Shale.