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Wandering Wildlife on Hilton Head Island

January 15th 2016

Hilton Head Island is a perfect island retreat, known for world-class golf courses and miles of beautiful beaches. But few places can compete with the island for nature lovers. Wildlife abounds on land, in lagoons and in the ocean, and Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort guests have the pleasure of sharing their pristine, natural environment. Wondering where to see the wandering wildlife? We’ve got the scoop! Let us fill you on the best places to spot wildlife on Hilton Head Island.

Palmetto Dunes Lagoon

The 11-mile inland lagoon at Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort runs through our backyard and is a perfect place to get up close and personal with our wildlife. Take a scenic kayak or canoe ride and you’re almost guaranteed to see one of the 160 bird species or variety of fish that call our island home. Keep an eye out, and you may even spot a low-country alligator sunning themselves.


Explore our miles of beaches to catch crabs crawling around the tide line and spot bottlenose dolphins playing by the shore. If you’re visiting in the spring or early summer, you may be lucky enough to have the unique experience of witnessing a Loggerhead Sea Turtle crawl up the beach to lay their eggs or, a couple months later, watching their hatchlings return to the sea.

On the water

One of the best ways to experience Hilton Head Island wildlife is on the water. Discover the fisherman within you by joining one of our fishing charters out of Shelter Cove Marina and cast a line for trout, redfish, ladyfish, jack crevalle, cobia, tarpon and sharks – or king mackerel if the conditions are right. If you’re looking to get even closer to our marine life, jump on a paddleboard or catch a wave with our surf lessons.

Around the Island

Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort offers nearly 5 miles of paved paths while the entire island of Hilton Head offers more than 80 miles of trails. Explore the island by foot or by bike, and along the way you’ll see even more of our island natives – including furry friends like deer, rabbits, and minks, and more slithery species such as snakes, frogs, toads, lizards and salamanders.

Now that you know the best wildlife spotting sites, grab your camera and capture our wildlife in their natural environment. “Like” us on Facebook and share your animal photos using #PalmettoDunes.

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