Hilton Head Travel: Going Where Everyone Goes
You've probably seen people with a shirt from Hilton Head's Salty Dog Cafe: It's the one with a dog wearing a yellow hat. The place certainly is a top tourist spot--and maybe even a tourist trap--but the island *is* for tourists. The cafe's just playing to the market.
Located within the Sea Pines Resort, it will cost you $5 for a day pass just to visit the place. Once inside Sea Pines you'll want to see the Hilton Head Island lighthouse in Harbour Town. The lighthouse was actually built as an attraction and just holds a shop inside; there's no boat protection here. Oh, if you want to go to the top, that's going to be $3.
Once you finally make it to the actual cafe at the South Beach Marina, you'll be greeted with waterfront seating. There's usually someone playing covers of popular beach tunes with people shouting out requests for their favorite Jimmy Buffet song. As the summer winds down so do the crowds, but if you want to visit when it's busy, go on October 4 and participate in the 13th Annual Oyster Roast. They're going to crack open more than a ton of oysters and cook 'em on the grill. The first ten customers even get one of those shirts.