Traveling To Hilton Head Vs St Simons Island: Which Is Better?

Hilton Head and St. Simons Island are popular South Carolina or Georgia coast trip destinations. Hilton Head is known for its picturesque beaches and golf courses, while St. Simons Island offers a more laid-back atmosphere with charming streets and historical landmarks.

It is also home to many luxury resorts and high-end dining options, while St. Simons Island has a more casual vibe with local seafood joints and beachside bars. Hilton Head and St. Simons Island are popular options for those seeking a serene and scenic getaway in the southeastern United States. Both are known for their pristine beaches, lush greenery, and charming small towns.

We will delve into the geography and location of each island, including the differences in their beaches and natural surroundings. Then, we will explore traveling to Hilton Head Vs. St Simons Island. We will consider other factors such as accommodation options, transportation, and overall ambiance.

Hilton Head Vs St Simons Island

About Hilton Head Island

About Hilton Head Island

The second largest of the barrier islands that make up South Carolina. Hilton Head consists of four barrier islands, which are to be found at different points along the coast. All have their characteristics: Palmetto Dunes National Park stretches over a rough 3 km stretch between Captain Quarters Beach Road south to Long Bay and Hilton Head Plantation Pines. Ocean Drive and Cumberland Gables end in front near Gap Creek.

Life on an island lifestyle affords many benefits, including a low cost of living as long as one’s income can cover vacation expenses. Hilton Head Hospital is the main hospital facility for Traveling To Hilton Head Vs. St. Simons Island provides medical services related to preventative care and emergency care within a 35-minute drive time radius. Hilton Head’s population was estimated at 37 thousand by 2010.

About St Simons Island

About St Simons Island

An extensive housing market with luxury homes for less than $1 million abutting more modest neighborhoods of single-family houses for around $200,000. “St. Simons Island is a relatively large island with the third-highest residential property values in Georgia according to 2008 data on and 119th overall.”

The City of St Simons hosts its municipal government, which is responsible for law enforcement, public services (fire and EMS), planning/zoning, road maintenance, etc. A wide range of luxury homes is clustered near Palmetto Bay, including 5-star golf resort residences atop coastal dunes by the oceanfront “Pointe” at high prices, both new or well-preserved Antebellum-style plantation homes. Most residential properties include manicured lawns, tennis courts, and pool areas. And ocean views within the gated community of Windward Estates with a “sprawling clubhouse.”

Difference Between Traveling To Hilton Head Vs St Simons Island

Difference Between Traveling To Hilton Head Vs St Simons Island

The climate and history of Hilton Head Island differ from those of St. Simons Island. But many things link to make a community. According to Wikipedia, both islands are relatively small, with the farthest point being 2 miles northwest.

At the same time, mountains surround much of it. Low humidity helps increase quality of life expectancy compared to metropolitan areas such as Atlanta or Charlotte, primarily due partly to Savannah River pollution/class levels reaching throughout Georgia and South Carolina.


One of the most important aspects to consider when planning a vacation is accommodation. Hilton Head and St. Simons Island offer various options for different preferences and budgets. Hilton Head, known for its luxurious resorts and world-class amenities, offers various accommodations. From high-end hotels with stunning ocean views to private villas and beachfront condos,

there is something for everyone in Hilton Head. The island is home to some of the most renowned resorts, such as The Sea Pines Resort and Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort, which offer top-notch amenities like golf courses, spa services, and multiple dining options.

The highest-priced listing on the island is a $6,995 ocean view listed in Hilton Head and St Simons, while purchasing a similar property would net around $1.3 million depending on the price difference between the two islands, depending on where you live, according to according to data collected from 2008 which has seen an increase over time.

Hilton Head Vs. Simons Island

Hilton Head Vs. Simons Island

While Hilton Head and St. Simons Island are popular vacation destinations, the two have some critical differences. Hilton Head is known for its beautiful beaches, world-class golf courses, and upscale resorts. It has a more polished and refined feel, with plenty of high-end shopping and dining options.

On the other hand, St. Simons Island has a more laid-back vibe with a charming downtown area and a focus on outdoor activities like fishing, kayaking, and biking. It also has a rich history, with several historic sites and landmarks to explore. So whether you’re looking for a luxurious beach vacation or a relaxed outdoor adventure, Hilton Head and St. Simons Island have something to offer – it depends on your preferences.

Description Of The Geographical Location Of Hilton Head

Hilton Head, nestled along the beautiful coast of South Carolina, boasts a prime location that offers both tranquility and convenience. Situated near major cities, such as Savannah and Charleston, residents and visitors can easily access the island via various transportation options.

With its idyllic setting between Jekyll Island and Tybee Island, Hilton Head is renowned for its pristine sandy beaches, which provide the perfect backdrop for relaxation and outdoor activities. Whether a quick getaway or a lengthy vacation, Hilton Head’s convenient travel time and ease of access make it an ideal destination.

Description Of The Geographical Location Of St Simons Island

Description Of The Geographical Location Of St Simons Island

St. Simons Island, located off the coast of Georgia, is a stunning destination known for its picturesque landscapes and charming atmosphere. With its beautiful East Beach, visitors can soak up the sun and enjoy the refreshing ocean breeze.

The island is also famous for its historic Christ Church, a magnificent structure showcasing the area’s rich heritage. Whether exploring the pristine beaches or immersing yourself in the island’s history, St Simons Island offers a truly unforgettable experience.



Regarding food, Hilton Head and St. Simons Island have unique offerings for travelers. Many restaurants in Hilton Head serve fresh seafood, including locally caught shrimp and oysters. The island has several upscale dining options, including steakhouses and fine Italian restaurants. On the other hand, St. Simons Island is an excellent destination for Southern cuisine, with many restaurants serving classics like fried chicken, collard greens, shrimp, and grits.

The island also has a thriving farm-to-table scene, with many restaurants sourcing ingredients from local farms and markets. Both destinations offer plenty of delicious options for foodies. So, it ultimately comes down to personal preference when deciding where to travel for your next culinary adventure.


Hilton Head and St Simons Island may both offer beautiful coastal destinations, but there are distinct differences when it comes to sports and recreation. Hilton Head is renowned for its world-class golf courses, lush fairways, and stunning ocean views. The island also boasts many water activities, such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and fishing.

On the other hand, St Simons Island is known for its charming bike trails and picturesque beaches, perfect for leisurely walks and beach volleyball. Additionally, St Simons Island offers opportunities for birdwatching and exploring its natural reserves. Both destinations provide unique experiences for sports and recreation enthusiasts, ensuring an unforgettable getaway.

Local Transportation

Hilton Head and St. Simons Island rely on fixed-rail transit, making them secluded. There are noticeable differences in local transportation between traveling to Hilton Head and St. Simons Island. In Hilton Head, you’ll find a well-developed network of bike paths, making it easy to explore the island on two wheels.

On the other hand, St. Simons Island offers a more car-centric experience, with wider roads and ample parking options. Both destinations offer public transportation, but Hilton Head’s system is more extensive, with shuttle buses and trolleys connecting various attractions. Overall, the choice between the two depends on your preferred mode of transportation and the level of convenience desired.


The island of Hilton Head has numerous shopping areas and restaurants, including Folly Field, located close to the south end of Hilton Head Island. There are noticeable differences in terms of entertainment when traveling to Hilton Head and St. Simons Island. Hilton Head offers a bustling atmosphere with its numerous golf courses, upscale resorts, and vibrant nightlife.

On the other hand, St. Simons Island is known for its laid-back charm, showcasing beautiful beaches, historic sites, and a more relaxed pace of life. Whether you prefer an energetic getaway or a tranquil retreat, both destinations have unique offerings to satisfy any traveler’s preferences.


When comparing the average cost of traveling to Hilton Head and St. Simons Island, there are several factors to consider. Both destinations offer beautiful beaches, luxurious resorts, and a variety of activities. However, Hilton Head tends to be slightly more expensive, with higher accommodation and dining costs. On the other hand, St. Simons Island offers a more budget-friendly experience, with affordable accommodations and dining options. Choosing between the two will ultimately depend on your budget and personal preferences.


Several factors must be considered when deciding between Hilton Head and St. Pete, Simons Island. Hilton Head offers pristine beaches, luxurious resorts, and world-class golf courses that attract tourists from all over. On the other hand, St. Simons Island has a more laid-back and charming atmosphere, with picturesque coastal landscapes and historic sites to explore.

Both destinations offer a variety of outdoor activities, delicious seafood, and a chance to unwind and relax. Whether you prefer the lively energy of Hilton Head or the tranquil ambiance of St. Simons Island, both choices promise an unforgettable vacation experience.

What Are The Benefits Of Visiting Hilton Head Vs St. Simons Island?

What Are The Benefits Of Visiting Hilton Head Vs St. Simons Island

Hilton Head, a popular destination on the east coast of Georgia, has seen increased tourism due to the development of Shell Ocean Discovery and other energy exploration companies. With more visitors each year, it ranks high in Airbnb’s Global Ranking of Beaches and boasts a healthy approach to developmental tourism.

Visiting Hilton Head

  • Beautiful beaches
  • Water sports and activities
  • Golf courses
  • Luxurious resorts
  • Shopping options
  • Restaurants with diverse cuisine
  • Family-friendly attractions
  • Vibrant nightlife

St. Simons Island

  • The quaint atmosphere with picturesque views
  • Less crowded beaches with a relaxed ambiance
  • The rich history and cultural heritage to explore
  • Abundance of nature trails and parks
  • Delicious seafood and local cuisine
  • Unique shopping experiences
  • Opportunities for fishing, crabbing, and shrimping
  • The tranquil environment

Which One Should I Go To?

St. Simons is known as a traditional seafood and restaurant-oriented island. At the same time, Hilton Head takes the flavor of aquaculture, a new version of artistry in food (e.g., Halo Burger). Fitness centers like Equinox have the only five-diamond resort rated out of 2 nearby close islands and golf courses. And some bike paths.

However, many visitors say the main attractions are on both islands. This includes water activities such as sailing boat tours or kayaking at Blue Rock Springs Nature Preserve. And hiking trails from Fripp Island State Park down to Bluffton Trailhead.

Some consider St. Simons Beach more suitable for surfing than Hilton Head Beach because the waves often break in public places. There are “Seaglider”-type motorized surfboards that aim a lot higher for smaller waves, where some pull off tricks such as aerial maneuvers.

The Best U.S.U.S.Ands For Family Vacations

The best U.S. demands for family vacations will vary depending on your family’s interests and budget. However, here are five of the most popular islands that are perfect for a summer getaway with the kids:

  • Martha’s Vineyard: stunning scenery, relaxed atmosphere, swimming, fishing, kayaking
  • Outer Banks: white sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, fishing, shopping, sightseeing
  • Virgin Islands: clear Caribbean waters, luxurious resorts, snorkeling, golfing
  • Hawaii: iconic tourist destinations, Waikiki Beach, relaxation after exploring
  • Puerto Rico: beautiful beaches, world-renowned resorts, relaxation after a hectic day.

Should I Visit Charleston Or Hilton Head Island

There is no wrong answer when choosing which destination to visit, as each has unique attractions and benefits. However, if we had to recommend one over the other, we would recommend visiting Charleston. Here are some reasons why:

  • Charleston is a historic city with cultural and historical attractions
  • The diverse food scene, ranging from the renowned restaurant
  • Perfect weather for beach lovers and snowbirds.

So, whether you’re seeking a relaxing vacation or exploring some of the best food and entertainment in the Southeast, Charleston is an excellent option for a fun and exciting holiday.


There is no clear winner when traveling to Hilton Head vs St. Simon Island. Both destinations offer unique experiences and attractions that cater to different interests and preferences. Hilton Head boasts beautiful beaches, world-class golf courses, and a bustling atmosphere. At the same time, St.

Simons Island offers a more laid-back vibe with charming historical sites, stunning natural scenery, and plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities. Ultimately, your destination will depend on what you’re looking for in a vacation. So why not plan a trip and experience the best of both worlds? Whether you’re a beach bum or a history buff, there’s something for everyone in these two beautiful Southern destinations.

It’s part of the Golden Isles and is known for its gorgeous beaches, pristine waters, and picturesque landscapes. If you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle of life in your hometown, this may be your perfect destination.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Some Things To Do On St Simons Island?

Visit a boat ramp on Highway 17 and try paddleboarding, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, or parasailing on their paddle slides.
Visit the Blue Rock Springs Nature Preserve and bike alongside nature trails, then hike the path down to Bluffton Trailhead.
See the magnificent coastline on St Simons made by three rivers intersecting with an underwater waterfall, which starts at Stanley Henry Railroad Bridge.

Is Hilton Head Or Jekyll Island Better?

St Simons is neither. The island has unique attributes, such as the local plant and animal life not found on other islands.
There’s no “right” destination; it depends on what you’re looking for in your vacation.

Can You Swim In The Ocean At St Simon’s Island?

Yes. The water of the Atlantic is generally apparent so that you can see the coral reefs in just a few feet of water.

Is There A Place To Rent On St. Simons Island?

There are multiple hotels in the area. In addition, most vacation rentals offer their properties for rent as well.

What Is The Climate Of St Simon’s Island?

The average high temperature during the summer months is 95 degrees Fahrenheit, and low temperatures can be below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Michael C. Herrera

I’m a travel blogger with a focus on safety. I’ve been to all seven continents, and I love sharing my tips for staying safe while traveling. I also have a lot of experience with travel hacking and finding the best deals on airfare and hotels. My blog features reviews of restaurants, hotels, and attractions around the world.

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