Friday, December 2, 2011

Planning for Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort

Hilton Head Insider Card
Hilton Head Island Website
If you have read any of my post on Disney vacation Club you know that we have been DVC members since 1993.  Since joining, we have been on Disney vacations once or twice a year.  Most trips have been to Walt Disney World, but we have been on Disney Cruise Line, to Disney’s Vero Beach Resort and Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort.  It has been several years since our last trip to HHI, and after adding on to our DVC points, we decided to spend a week there.

We have made so many trips to WDW that “trip planning” is almost automatic.  We decide if we want to do the Disney Dining Plan (most trips this is – No) and do we want to make any dining reservations.  Which park we go to on any given day is decided by were we want to eat.  Our up-coming HHI trip is a little different.

One, we actually have to do some planning and research.  Since it has been several years since our last trip we have to re-familiarize ourselves with the area.   I have done quite a lot of research on what restaurants are on Hilton Head, their proximity to the HHI resort, and something new for my planning – are they child friendly and will Tink eat what they serve.  Yes, this trip will be another family trip and Amy and I both have been researching for this trip.  Since HHI is not located at a Park where restaurants and entertainment are “built in” we have to look outside the resort for most meals and activities.

For research I’ve used websites and, something fairly new to me, my iPhone. 

I started with the DVC members’ site to read what Disney has to say about Hilton Head.  They have basic all the basic information on the resort plus floor plans for the rooms and pictorial tours of the room.  Since it will be fairly cold while we are there, I don’t know that either of the pools will get much use.  There are 2 snack bars, with one at Disney’s Beach House.  The Beach House has access to 12 miles of private beach which should provide some nice long walks along the surf. 
Hilton Head Island APP

Since there is not a sit-down restaurant, we must look outside the resort.  A quick search on Google finds the “official” site of .  On my iPhone I found the corresponding App for Hilton Head.  Both provide what I was looking for in local events and restaurant reviews plus lots more.  One App I have found especially helpful is tripadvisor.  Again, there is a corresponding web site, but I have found I like the App more.  Type in a city or address and tripadvisor will give you a list of restaurants by distance and ratings.  From here you can locate the restaurant on a map, read reviews, and for some you can make reservations, all on the App.  I was glad to find the Hilton Head Diner listed.  While not the highest ranked (150 of 182) it was one place we have been to on several trips and I thought Audrey would like it.
Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort

Amy found one restaurant she would like to go to if her parents will babysit (please make me keep my granddaughters).  She would like to try Robert Irvine’s eat! (13 of 182 on tripadvisor).  Both of us found another place we may try called A Lowcountry Backyard.  The reviews are good with one commenting it is “hard to find at night” and recommended to locate it in the daylight.  If you have never been to Hilton Head, this is a MUST for finding most places.  There is a tree-line along the main roads that stores “hide” behind and all signs are short.  Even if you know where you are going, at night, it can be difficult to find.

I will be doing more research as the trip gets closer.  We’ve found where Publix grocery stores and Sam’s Club are located.  And there are some good restaurants and shopping in walking distance of the resort.  There are Dolphin watching cruises offered.  There is plenty to do, and nothing to do except relax and enjoy being with family.  I just hope it is not so cold I can't enjoy a hammock for a while.

I’ll give you a full trip report once we actually go to Hilton Head in a couple of months.

--Disney Dad


  1. I am really looking forward to the trip! Andy and I were talking about it last night and it's next month now! Yay!

  2. Have an amazing time!! I live about 15 minutes from the HHI resort and it's a great Disney fix when we have a break between visiting the parks. If you need any suggestions on fun things to do or places to eat, let me know. :) Do you know if you'll be coming at the beginning or end of January? It's just starting to get cold now (40s and 50s in the mornings) but still kind of warm (mid 60s) during the day. It seems like the beginning of January is much colder than the end. Have an awesome time!!

  3. Lynn,
    We will be there the last week of January. Even though we have been doing our "homework" your recommendations would be appreciated. Nothing replaces that first-hand experience.

  4. We have been once (in-laws live in SC) and are planning a return trip this next year. We went in late May. We ate at a nice local restaurant and it was great. If I can remember the name, I will return and leave it in a comment for you. It's a great resort.

  5. Lynn and Kristi, I'd love any tips you can offer! Thank you!!


Thanks so much for visiting us and reading this post. Please leave us a message because we love to hear your Disney stories and tips too!