Hilton Head Island is renowned for preserving the natural areas of this barrier island. Their ecological focus really benefits our guests with the opportunity to explore the marshes, coastline, tidal pools and natural forests throughout the Lowcountry.
While visiting Hilton Head Island, you may have the opportunity to witness dolphins strand feeding off the coast. Hilton Head is one of the few places on Earth where this unique behavior can be observed. The island also offers several guided boat and kayak tours to allow guests a close-up encounter with these amazing mammals.
Lights Out for Sea Turtles runs May 1 through October 31! In order to protect the future of these fragile creatures, guests and residents are asked to minimize lighting after 10PM near Hilton Head's coastline for the sea turtle's annual nesting and hatching season. During this time, female loggerhead sea turtles come up on the beach to bury as many as 125 eggs in a single nest. Hatchlings use reflected light to guide them to the ocean at night and artificial lighting can confuse them, stranding them and leaving them vulnerable.
There are a number of nature preserves located throughout Hilton Head's wooded coastline and interior. Popular destinations include the Audubon Newhall Preserve, Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge, Sea Pines Forest Preserve, and nearby Hunting Island State Park. The Hilton Head Coastal Discovery Museum also offers a variety of nature programs and displays of regional wildlife.