Hilton Head Island is consistently regarded as one of the best island destinations in the United States, thanks to its wide, clean beaches, world-class golf, gorgeous parks, biking paths, and stunning coastal wetlands.
But it’s also known for its superb Lowcountry cuisine, which includes some of the most exquisite meals in the South, if not the whole nation. Continue reading to learn about our top Hilton Head Island restaurants.
Since Hilton Head is surrounded by ocean, there is an abundance of fresh fish. Yet, most Hilton Head restaurants support the local farm and fish-to-fork concept.
These restaurants are dedicated to delivering the freshest vegetables available at all times of the year.
It wasn’t easy to choose our favorites since there are so many fantastic places to eat on Hilton Head Island. But, these culinary standouts are among the greatest Hilton Head restaurants, deserving of top billing for their food quality, dedication to perfection, exceptional service, and atmosphere. And many have fascinating backstories to boot.
Not in the mood to dine out? Click here to have Grubhub deliver right to your door from the greatest restaurants in town.
When in Hilton Head, don’t miss out on the following activities that will let you immerse yourself in the city (get them while they’re hot!):
- Hilton Head Island: Guided Dolphin Tour
- Hilton Head Island: Sunset Dolphin Cruise
- Hilton Head Island: Round-Trip Ferry Ticket to Savannah
- Hilton Head Island: Pirate Cruise on the Black Dagger
- Hilton Head Island: High-Flying Parasail Experience
Visiting more places in the area? Check out our other tasty guides:
- 10 Must-Try Daniel Island Restaurants
8 Must-Try Restaurants in Hilton Head
On the Docks, Hudson’s Seafood House
Hudson Road, +1 (843) 681-27721
I like restaurants with a rich history! And Hudsons has a beautiful one.
This Hilton Island restaurant has been a Hilton Head restaurant institution for more than fifty years, having been converted from a fish processing business in 1967.
Local fisherman bring fresh-caught seafood directly to their piers.
Visitors may eat exquisite oysters, shrimp, soft shell crabs, and other delectable dishes for lunch, brunch, and supper. Our Chargrilled Oysters beginning with Cajun butter, garlic, thyme, smoky paprika, lemon, and parmesan cheese was the perfect brunch companion.
The Maryland-style Crab Cake Benedict, cooked with giant lump crab, poached eggs, toasted French bread, and Cajun hollandaise over creamy stone-ground grits, was suggested by our kind waitress.
Indeed, it was decadently delicious. The blackened local shrimp was a nice touch. And let me state unequivocally that I am not a fan of hushpuppies. But now that I’ve tried Hudsons, I’m a believer!
Make place in your stomach for Hudson’s handmade Key Lime Pie, the ideal finale to a superb dinner. While reservations are not taken, my advise is to arrive early for your dinner. The restaurant’s tables fill up quickly, and for good cause.
Wonderful view, terrific history, and an excellent pick among Hilton Head Restaurants.
Fishing on Broad Creek
Simmons Road, +1 (843) 842-226711
Capn Charlie Simmons would bring food, supplies, and people to and from the mainland before Hilton Head Island had a bridge.
His fishing camp was built in 1955, and the seafood restaurant still runs in the same structure today, keeping the tradition and spirit alive.
Yet it is true that getting to this famed Hilton Head restaurant nowadays is lot simpler than it was in 1955.
The historic waterfront location is breathtaking, with ancient moss-draped trees, vintage fishing boats, and creekside seats.
We couldn’t stop ourselves from splitting the lightly battered Calamari and Pickles, which were presented crisp with tangy lemon aioli and spicy tomato sauce. That was completely different from anything we’d ever eaten before.
Local-caught Roasted Flounder with spinach, crab meat, lemon beurre blanc, goat cheese chive risotto, and seasonal veggies was delicate and flavorful.
Lump blue crab, slaw, fire-roasted red pepper remoulade, and crispy thin potatoes topped the Daufuskie Blue Crab Cake.
The scenery, service, and cuisine all contributed to a great evening on the creek, propelling Fishcamp to the top of the Hilton Head Restaurants list.
40 Lighthouse Road, +1 (843) 671-2779140 Lighthouse Road
CQs provides American cuisine meals every evening after 5 p.m., nestled amid the enormous bearded oaks of Harbour Town.
The Hilton Head Island restaurant was established in 1970, but it has an older, more vintage ambiance with wood flooring, banister steps, ancient pictures, and an antique bar.
We appreciate CQs’ meal selection, particularly if someone in the party isn’t a seafood fan. Seasonal menus reflect offerings from the surrounding waterways, land, and farms. Hilton Head is known for its Iceberg Wedge Salads, and CQs serves one of the finest.
The kitchen will gladly divide it for two. Divers Scallops are pan-seared and served over a butternut puree with ribbons of spinach, zucchini, and squash. They are tender and sweet, and they genuinely satisfy the tongue.
My husband still claims that his Seared Ahi Tuna entree is one of the greatest he’s ever eaten. It’s covered in sesame seeds and pan-seared to perfection, and it’s served with edamame hummus, veggie slaw, pickled ginger, and a delectable ponzu sauce.
CQs is one of the greatest Hilton Head Restaurants if you want a variety of offers, from sea to farm to pasture.
The Kitchen at Nectar Farm
+84 (3) 682-233735A Office Park Road
The Nectar Farms motto comes from the Lowcountry’s fields, farms, and woods.
The venue’s magnificent farmhouse restaurant and surroundings exude southern charm. Breakfast, lunch, and supper menu items are created using fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
We were searching for a brunch restaurant on Hilton Head and booked an 11 a.m. appointment since breakfast and lunch meals are available until 4 p.m. on the menu.
It was difficult to decide, but we eventually settled on a breakfast and lunch option.
On a toasted sesame bun, the Super Dave Breakfast sandwich consists of fried local farm eggs, two-country sausage patties, thick-cut bacon strips, and American cheese. Tasty and certainly large enough to split for two!
I’m more of a lunch person, and my Chilled Shrimp Salad on house-made toasted multigrain bread with tomato and delicate gem lettuce was delicious.
A serving of organic sweet potatoes was delicious. I also like how they kept the skin on.
Nectar Farm is a great option for traditional American cuisine on Hilton Head. It can compete with any of the Hilton Head restaurants.
On the Water with ELAS
+1 (843) 785-30301 Shelter Cove Road
This award-winning restaurant with spectacular views of Shelter Cove Harbour serves fresh catch seafood, quality steaks, and has a refined environment.
Little and big dishes are ideal for sharing and are served daily for supper and Sunday brunch.
The wine selection is superb, and the vast menu makes it difficult to pick. That’s when a kind, competent server comes in handy.
The bone-in grilled pork chop with truffle risotto, asparagus, and a Cabernet demi-glaze was soft, flavorful, and properly cooked.
I ordered the Pan-Seared Grouper with asparagus and hollandaise sauce, which was a daily fish special. That was incredible!
Despite its relaxed atmosphere, the restaurant is also suitable for a candle-lit date-night supper. If you’re searching for a great dining restaurant on Hilton Head, go no further than ELAs. Look no farther and save the other Hilton Head Restaurants for another time.
Skull Creek Boathouse is located on Skull Creek.
+1 (843) 681-3663397 Road Squire Pope
This historic seaside restaurant is one of the greatest Hilton Head Restaurants.
The cafe, which is located on the gorgeous banks of Skull Creek, offers a large outdoor terrace and bar that is excellent for eating and live entertainment. Guests may also rest on Adirondack chairs in front of the stream while waiting for a table.
For lunch, brunch, and supper, it’s all about the seafood, however the menu also includes a diverse selection of other dishes.
The handmade hushpuppies with seasoned honey butter were another highlight. It was soft shell crab season, which meant I could have a deliciously fresh and tender whole crab sandwich with a Cajun remoulade and handmade fries.
A drink of handmade Skull Creek sangria was delicious on a hot southern day.
You can’t visit the Lowcountry without trying Carolina Shrimp and Grits.
Skull Creeks was also wonderful. This beautifully rich, classic southern dish was lick-your-plate excellent, served with sautéed shrimp, smoky sausage, tasso ham gravy, and South Carolina stone-ground grits.
Just do the math. One of the greatest Hilton Head Island Restaurants has a broad cuisine, a fantastic location, entertainment, and Lowcountry delicacies.
+1 (843) 341-383838 Suite 121, Shelter Cove Lane
This is most likely Hilton Head Island’s greatest Happy Hour eatery. Guests may choose to sit indoors, on an outside terrace, or at the rooftop bar. As the name suggests, seafood reigns supreme here, however non-seafood products are also available. The menu is wide, with everything from seafood to sushi, steaks to the catch of the day presented in a variety of ways to satisfy any diner.
From 4 to 7 p.m. everyday, Happy Hour serves extremely cheap beers, house wines, and mixed cocktails. Oysters on the half shell, shrimp, sliders, and bar snacks like deviled eggs, margherita flatbreads, and more are on the menu. Request a seat at the rooftop bar for the best views of the cove. Try Poseidon for one of the greatest dining experiences in Hilton Head!
A Backyard Restaurant in the Lowcountry
+1 (843) 785-927332 Palmetto Bay Boulevard
It’s no surprise that this restaurant was featured on Food Paradise on Travel Channel. Its tagline of being the island’s home for Lowcountry seafood and cuisine done the old-fashioned manner is very refreshing. The owner’s childhood recollections of growing up on the island inspired the diner, which actually seems to be a step back in time. Moonshine is even on the menu (yes, moonshine).
This lovely restaurant provides a distinct Hilton Head Island dining experience, with everything from appetizers and sandwich boards to salads, BBQ, and home-cookin favorites.
Lowcountry boils (also known as Frogmore Stew) are the greatest, with shrimp, smoked sausage, corn on the cob, fried potatoes, seasonal crab, and Old Bay Butter. The entree is ideal for sharing.
Make place in your diet for a handmade dessert. We ordered the Banana Puddin, and although there was enough to go around, we wished we didn’t have to. Backyard may be the name, but it is at the top of the list of the greatest Hilton Head restaurants.
Hilton Head Island has everything. Gorgeous landscape, pleasant people, and, perhaps most importantly, some of the greatest Lowcountry cuisine available anywhere. The restaurants on this list are only a selection of the finest on Hilton Head; be sure you try them, as well as any others that appeal to you.