Spinnaker Resorts


Hilton Head offers more than 14 miles of pristine, sandy beaches. While most of it is along the Atlantic Ocean coast, some is along the Calibogue Sound, some on the Port Royal Sound at Port Royal plantation and Hilton Head plantation has a small beach next to Dolphin Head, also on Port Royal sound. The recently opened Fish Haul Creek Park offers a little known beach access to a beach on the Port Royal Sound. The beach there is quite private (NO, not that private!) and offers gentle waves instead of pounding surf.

The sand below the mid tide line is usually hard packed enough to support a bicycle with wide tires, and biking on the beach at or near low tide is a popular pastime. Be aware, though, that hitting a patch of soft sand will bring you to a sudden stop. Beach bikers have learned to check the wind direction before heading out—riding into the wind is like riding uphill, and vice versa.

There are seven “public access” beach areas popular with visitors (most are attended by life guards from Memorial weekend to Labor Day). Pay parking is available at all but the Islander’s Beach Park, and there are reserved parking spots for those who purchase annual beach tags (available to Hilton Head property owners only).

Click here for the latest on public parking and Hilton Head Island Beaches.

Coligny Beach

This beach is located at Coligny circle at Pope Avenue and South Forest Beach Drive. It’s the island’s busiest beach, in part because volleyball nets are available and an outdoor bar is located just off the beach at the Holiday Inn. There are rest rooms, changing rooms, water fountains, sand showers, pay telephones and other amenities. Mats designed to make the beach wheelchair accessible are at this location. Life Guards rent beach equipment, Hobie Cats, recumbent bikes, sand trikes, umbrellas, etc.

Free parking is available at the town parking lot at the corner of South Forest Beach Drive and Pope Avenue. The entrance is on Pope across from the Exxon.

There is also parking closer to the beach, on Coligny Circle on the North side, but it fills up quickly.

Coligny Plaza, adjacent, offers many shops and eateries. Please don’t park in the Plaza to go to the beach – the merchants don’t appreciate it and your vehicle may be towed.

Fish Haul Creek Beach

Tucked away near the end of Beach City Road, this 31-acre preserve is a sanctuary of quiet far removed from the busy visitor attractions. A shaded trail through a pristine maritime forest leads to the seashore. This section of beach, located at the heel of the shoe-shaped island, is excellent for clamming and fishing. Dog owners can let their pets run free in the sand and surf and not have to worry about disturbing sunbathers or kids building sandcastles. Another trail takes you to a boardwalk and observation deck extending into the salt marsh, offering more opportunities to view herons, egrets and other shore birds. Binoculars are available to see far off into the sound and across a vast expanse of Spartina grass. The park also features restrooms and a small pavilion with two picnic tables. A bike path connects the park to the main recreational trail along Hilton Head Parkway, and ample parking is available near the trailhead leading to the beach.

Burke’s Beach

Burke’s Beach is located off William Hilton parkway (278 Bus.) at Burke’s Beach Rd. The parking is limited, though you can park next door at Chaplin Park. There are no amenities, however there is a lifeguard stationed there. There is no beach matting for wheelchair access, but this beach is usually uncrowded. During the season, it is dog friendly only before 10 a.m. and after 5 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day weekends, and is walking distance to the Chaplain Community Park, which includes the Best Friends Dog Park. Parking is free at the Community Park, and metered at the beach access point.

Driessen Beach

Driessen Beach is also off William Hilton parkway, at Bradley Beach Rd. It has Life Guards, plenty of parking, rest rooms, sand showers and vending machines. It has a playground and a few picnic tables, one with a grill nearby. The boardwalk to the beach is quite long and requires healthy legs. If you park here, note the number of your parking space and go to the machine at the building housing the restrooms to pay. It takes quarters. This beach is equipped with the mats that make it wheelchair accessible.

Folly Field Beach

Folly Field beach is located on Starfish Road, a right turn off Folly Field Road. Parking is somewhat limited (52 spaces at meters at 25¢ per 15 minute period), but restrooms, sand showers, Life Guards and water fountains are available. While dangerous conditions such as riptides and undertows can exist on any beach, the Folly is an area where swimmers have (rarely) gotten in trouble.

This beach also is equipped with the mats that make it wheelchair accessible. It is the favorite beach for surfers.

Islanders Beach Park

Islanders Beach Park, surrounded by a beautiful natural environment, encompasses a boardwalk through dunes, beach matting helps persons in wheel chairs or with other handicaps navigate across the sandy surface, playground areas, picnic pavilion and other amenities.

Tower Beach

Tower Beach is located in Sea Pines plantation on the Atlantic ocean. While this beach is intended for use by property owners, and parking is restricted to property owners, it is otherwise accessible to anyone by bicycle or on foot. It provides restrooms, water fountains, and a picnic area with barbeque grills.


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