Disney Hilton Head Resort offers Disney level accommodations, service, and activities along with access to beautiful Hilton Head beach. Disney Hilton Head is a great way to experience that Disney magic while exploring Hilton Head and the beautiful Low Country.
Four Reasons to Choose Disney Hilton Head for a Magical Vacation
Our family went to Walt Disney World for the first time a year ago and we loved it so much we have become one of “those” people who are planning their next Disney trip before the current one is over. The kids were 3 and 5 and felt like the perfect age for it. My husband and I had never been to Disney so it was so special to see it for the first time together as a family.
As I was immersing myself in all things Disney I learned Disney actually has resorts outside of its parks. We made the 16 hour drive from our home outside Houston and visited the beautiful Disney Hilton Head Resort property in South Carolina and were able to explore an incredible new place and still experience the Disney Magic we’ve grown, let’s face it, addicted to. Disney Hilton Head is a casually elegant resort fashioned after a 1940’s hunting and fishing lodge and features 12 miles of picturesque Atlantic beaches. In case you’re wondering Disney Hilton Head is 340 miles from Walt Disney World. Here’s four reasons Disney Hilton Head is a magical vacation destination.
We rented a two bedroom villa and we could have just moved right in and never left. The villa had a large master bedroom retreat with a soaker tub and shower and large flat screen TV.
The second bedroom was surprisingly spacious and the kids made it their own little home away from home. It featured two queen beds, a full bath with shower and tub, spacious closet with pack and play, plenty of storage, and another flat screen TV for watching Disney Junior after a fun filled day.
The living area was comfy and well-appointed, and felt very much like an apartment. There was plenty of seating to relax, another large TV, and the sofa and chair are both pull out sleepers.
I love to cook and Disney Hilton Head features a full kitchen that is completely stocked. We grabbed some things at the local grocery store and I whipped up some easy money saving meals. There are a few local grocery stores in Hilton Head but they are very protective of local business so there aren’t many big chains. The Mercantile at the resort does have some groceries but of course those are pricier.
There is a dining area right off the kitchen, but our favorite place to eat our meals was the very large balcony with picnic table and beautiful view of the wetlands.
Disney Hilton Head features studio, one bedroom, and two bedroom villas and are priced comparable with a moderate WDW resort. The villas also come with a washer and dryer and a mudroom entrance area which was super handy when we came back from the beach wet and sandy.
Disney Hilton Head has three pools to choose from. The Big Dipper and The Little Dipper are located at the main resort area.
The Big Dipper is a 72,000 gallon heated pool and spa with a water slide reminiscent of an old school swimming hole. The pool is smaller than the pools we’ve experienced at WDW but there’s plenty of room for having fun and it’s well maintained to Disney standards.
The Little Dipper pool is located directly next to The Big Dipper and is perfect for the little ones. It’s a small shallow pool with spitting frogs that the kids will love.
The third pool is at the Disney Hilton Head Beach Club. It is important to note that the Disney Beach is actually across the street from the main resort. There were resort shuttles to take us back and forth but we piled into our van and made the less than mile drive over.
Hilton Head has a beautiful beach and is a charming coastal town and named one of the top South Carolina vacation destinations (by Home Away) which is why Disney chose to build their resort there. They have created a wonderful beach club for their guests to enjoy.
As I mentioned, the beach club is not directly at the resort but across the road on the beach side. Whether you take the handy shuttle or the trusty mini van as we did, you’re certain to have a magical beach day. The beach house has cozy furniture to take a break from the sun, Foosball tables, and a large screen TV.
The beach club is also where the third of the resort pools is located. There are restrooms and changing rooms, a concession stand, and chairs for lounging. We opted to take the short boardwalk down to the beach for splashing and sandcastle fun.
We had never been to an Atlantic beach but were hooked right away. Disney Hilton Head has a beautiful, clean beach with great sand for making castles and blue waters made for splashing.
Like the other Disney properties, there is no shortage of fun activities for families at Disney Hilton Head. They have everything from Disney movies by the pool, bike rentals, campfires and s’mores, crafts, Goofy bingo, and even fishing, crabbing or dolphin watching. Disney Hilton Head also has a large DVD library of (what else?) Disney movies for just relaxing in the villa.
Another important thing to note about Disney Hilton Head is that there are no characters to meet and no character dining. One thing you can get at Disney Hilton Head that you cannot get at any other Disney property is to meet Disney’s only live animal mascot. Shadow is a sweet senior Golden Retriever and we did a nature walk with her and Bleu who shared Low Country folklore like Briar Rabbit. This was fun and unique but it would have been nice if it were a bit more interactive with maybe a scavenger hunt because some kids including my own became restless.
We also did the Backyard BBQ while there. The BBQ is seasonal and does sell out so definitely purchase tickets upon check in. It was held poolside and had burgers, hot dogs, brisket, beans, potato salad, apple pie and watermelon- all the things you would want at a backyard BBQ. The kids could also participate in pirate makeovers with bandanas, face painting and eye patches.
Wherever we go, we try to take the kids to a museum as a hands on way to experience local history and culture. Hilton Head was no different. We visited the Coastal Discovery Museum which was a fun and educational way for the whole family to learn about Low Country Life.
We also did a dolphin watching cruise that featured a fireworks finale. Hilton Head does fireworks once per week throughout the summer. Check when you’re booking to make sure there are fireworks offered that day.
The Disney parks are their own special brand of magic and we can’t wait to return in November, but Disney magic is not just for the parks as we learned at Disney Hilton Head. With amazing accommodations, great pools, beautiful beaches and fun activities, Disney Hilton Head had us saying, “See ya real soon!”
Kathy Penney is the writer behind Penney Lane, a family food and travel blog covering easy recipes and their family travel adventures from Dallas to Dublin. She shares inspiration and information to help others plan their adventures often with a special needs mom’s perspective as her son has sensory processing disorder and ADHD. With her husband from Ireland, Kathy has taken her two kids (born in 2010 and 2011) to 28 states and 5 countries (and counting!) making it a point to visit museums along the way for them to experience local culture and history hands on. When she’s not putting miles on the mini van or stamps on the passport and frequenting museums, you can find her planning their next Disney trip, leading her son’s Scout troop, or taxiing her daughter to gymnastics and dance in rural Texas.