This past Thursday through Sunday, we were in Hilton Head. If someone were to hold a gun to my head and tell me I had to pick my favorite American Atlantic Coast beach, hands down it would be Hilton Head. Perhaps the Outer Banks may be more scenic, but nowhere else has the perfect combination of beach, non-tacky overbuilt infrastructure, tennis, other sporting activities, and shade. Oh, the shade. Hands down, if there were an annual competition for “Best Shade in the USA” Hilton Head would win every year. When you get tired and too hot from all of the sun on the wide beaches, you can retreat to the Live Oaks and Spanish Moss. There is no other beach side destination that can top that part of Hilton Head, even on the Gulf Coast, where my favorite beach in the US is. Also, what I appreciate about Hilton Head, is that like me, it isn’t trendy at all. Well, it isn’t trendy for anyone under the age of 70 and who isn’t an avid golfer, which suits me just fine. I don’t mind enjoying a beach that is a real retirement destination. In fact, I told David that we should consider retiring here. Granted, 33 may be a bit young to start pondering such things as retirement, but it just seems appropriate that the place I spend my twilight years should maybe be the place where I sang the theme song to “The Love Boat” with my sisters in the Harbourtown Children’s Talent Show when I was five years old. Some days when I am feeling particularly selfish and/or particularly forgettable, I think I might not mind an endless loop of beach >pool>tennis for the remainder of my days.
On this trip, we added in another element to the typical loop. We rented bicycles. This marks the second occasion upon which I have ridden a bicycle in the last 15 years. Hilton Head’s well-planned bike paths, low-stress environment, and shaded lanes made this one of the few places where I am willing to exhibit my wobbly riding skills. David, of course, is a much abler bike rider than I am and even showed the advanced skills of “Riding a bike to the beach in flip flops” without managing to slice a toe off, as I am sure I would have. Not exactly safety first for us.
In two days at the beach I managed a nice sunburn in spite of my copious applications of SPF 30 to my body and SPF 110 to my face. For our morning walk at low tide on the last day, I thought it more appropriate to stay covered up.
The beach at low tide at Hilton Head is enormous.
Unfortunately, there were a few of these guys too, but we all managed to avoid a sting.
On Friday, some of our friends joined us for the remainder of the weekend. We rescued tree frogs from pools, enjoyed water slides, and catching the tail end of island sunsets.
Seriously, I wish every weekend in the summer consisted of the loop. Heck, if every summer weekend were a Hilton Head weekend, I may even invest in owning a bicycle. But I think I would be just fine with the beach, the pool, and tennis.