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Old 04-24-2014, 08:15 AM
 
Location: Eastern Long Island, NY
45 posts, read 57,229 times
Reputation: 94

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I live on Long Island and seriously considering reloation to HH Plantation. I love love Long Island beaches and swimming in our oceans. I've gotten mixed messages about HHI beaches. (a friend who wants me to move down there with her insists the ocean and beaches are better than LI but then I finally got her to confess that she never EVER goes into the water....duh.) First, it is not true that a beach is a beach is a beach. LI beaches are beautiful soft white sand. You walk out into the water and within 20 feet you are over your head - it's exciting, fun, refreshing. Early in the season the water is quite cold, too cold for most people, but in summer it's heaven and great for anyone having arthritis and joint pain. So I swim, float, ride the waves from July through October. I want to be able to do that close to year round.

The reason I am wanting to head south is: first, LI is so expensive I just can't do it any more. (taxes here $9,000 on a small home - taxes in HH, around $1K)

Winters here are harsh and affect my health terribly. I need a longer summer, warm weather year round.

So, understanding how important the ocean and beaches are to me, can someone out there who is an ocean/beach lover (this does NOT mean just walking on the beach). You actually go into the ocean and swim at HHI, tell me what it's like?

Are most people in HHI area geriatric? I'm only 58 and don't want to live where everyone else is either transient or in their 70's and 80's.

Thank you so much!
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Old 04-24-2014, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
34,674 posts, read 33,681,492 times
Reputation: 51867
Quote:
Originally Posted by sslainey View Post
I live on Long Island and seriously considering reloation to HH Plantation. I love love Long Island beaches and swimming in our oceans. I've gotten mixed messages about HHI beaches. (a friend who wants me to move down there with her insists the ocean and beaches are better than LI but then I finally got her to confess that she never EVER goes into the water....duh.) First, it is not true that a beach is a beach is a beach. LI beaches are beautiful soft white sand. You walk out into the water and within 20 feet you are over your head - it's exciting, fun, refreshing. Early in the season the water is quite cold, too cold for most people, but in summer it's heaven and great for anyone having arthritis and joint pain. So I swim, float, ride the waves from July through October. I want to be able to do that close to year round.

The reason I am wanting to head south is: first, LI is so expensive I just can't do it any more. (taxes here $9,000 on a small home - taxes in HH, around $1K)

Winters here are harsh and affect my health terribly. I need a longer summer, warm weather year round.

So, understanding how important the ocean and beaches are to me, can someone out there who is an ocean/beach lover (this does NOT mean just walking on the beach). You actually go into the ocean and swim at HHI, tell me what it's like?

Are most people in HHI area geriatric? I'm only 58 and don't want to live where everyone else is either transient or in their 70's and 80's.

Thank you so much!
The average age on Hilton Head is 50.9 which is younger than you but pretty old in terms of town population averages.

57.36% of the people living there are married which is also higher than average. Your profile says you are single.

Married with no children - a high 64.62% of the HHI population.

Only 37.2% of the HHI population says they are religious. This is down from the US average of 48.78%.

It may be cheaper than Long Island but HHI is not cheap. It exceeds the national average on groceries, utilities, health, miscellaneous and especially housing which is twice the national average.

55% of the voters are Republican.

Looks like it has good air and water quality.

There are no stats on percentage of golfers.

Since you don't mention the Long Island town you live in, can't compare it to HHI.
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Old 04-24-2014, 09:07 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,147,825 times
Reputation: 22373
Here is some info on the beaches . . .

Hilton Heads Beaches
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Old 04-24-2014, 01:31 PM
 
10,813 posts, read 8,058,272 times
Reputation: 17015
Unless we change plans, I'll be in HH tomorrow and will give you my impression.

I've been to Tybee Island, just south of HH. The swimming season there is longer than what you're used to, warm water lasts from April-September.
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Old 04-24-2014, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Eastern Long Island, NY
45 posts, read 57,229 times
Reputation: 94
thank you all for the input. The list of beaches is great....was unable to find that list online myself. I do realize it's politically conservative in the south. I don't plan on talking politics anyway. As long as EVERYONE isn't married, it's fine. I'm not holding my breath for a man. I'd rather have a few great female friends to spend quality time with anyway. I'll check back in over the next few days to see what else any of you come up with. Thank you sincerely.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:11 PM
 
10,813 posts, read 8,058,272 times
Reputation: 17015
Just returned from HH, only spent about 5 hours there because it wasn't our cup of tea.

Beach report: we only visited one, Coligny, but all the beaches share the same long stretch so they'd all be the same. Nothing particularly positive or negative noted about the beach and water. The sand is light brown, nicely packed and soft, clean enough. The slope is extremely gentle and long and the water is accordingly shallow. Water is typical Atlantic murky. You'd have to go out a long, long way to reach water over your head. Surfing is not allowed. Waves were quite strong, I can't imagine swimming or floating because there are no spots calm enough. Jellyfish weren't as obviously abundant as on Georgia islands but saw several beached in a few hundred yards.

Big problem imo is the extreme density of housing, condos, resorts, etc., and the lack of access points to the beaches. Housing is far more closely packed than any beach town I've ever visited. People and business (condos, hotels) are paranoid about protecting their private access. You could easily live a block from the beach, in a high-price home, but have to go 1/2 mile or more to find a beach access point. Traffic and parking problems were way worse than I expected on an April Friday morning, I can't imagine what it would be like in high season.

The entire island has the feel of a gigantic planned community - actually it's the sum total of several dozen planned and gated communities. I live in a gated community but HH is way too controlled and secured for my taste. There's no sense at all that it's a beach town and you can't see or otherwise sense the ocean until you are actually on the beach. The island is sprawling, flat, densely wooded, overrun with traffic and houses. Many more chain than local restaurants. Zero ethnic diversity. Lots of luxury cars. People were friendly and polite.

I realize this is an especially negative report - DH and I expected to spend 10-12 hours there but there was no appeal there for us. We'll be returning to one of the Georgia islands this evening where we can feel more in touch with the ocean. You might consider posting your query in the SC forum for a more balanced perspective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sslainey View Post
Are most people in HHI area geriatric? I'm only 58 and don't want to live where everyone else is either transient or in their 70's and 80's.
In our 5 hours there, including an hour on the beach, we saw exactly two demographics: folks in their 50s-70s, almost all couples, and families with young children. It was pretty evenly split between the two.

Last edited by biscuitmom; 04-25-2014 at 01:20 PM..
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:25 PM
 
1,316 posts, read 1,182,554 times
Reputation: 1932
Sounds like a nice place you can go out at night for a pleasant walk and not get murdered for your Rolex....I gotta check it out....
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:26 PM
 
Location: Amelia Island
2,977 posts, read 3,956,584 times
Reputation: 3088
Might I recommend:

Amelia Island Living & Travel eMagazine, Fernandina Beach, Florida

Everything you need is located on island......overwhelming amount of beach acess, biking, kayaking and hiking availability........extremely pet friendly........30 minute drive to major airport.


I am not a realtor.....just a resident!
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:48 PM
 
10,813 posts, read 8,058,272 times
Reputation: 17015
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaffeetrekker View Post
Sounds like a nice place you can go out at night for a pleasant walk and not get murdered for your Rolex....I gotta check it out....
You'd think. But from what we saw, sidewalks are not that easy to come by. The crime rate isn't all that great, higher than the national average in some categories. Word on the street, i.e. according to locals, is there's a sizable drug problem, especially among local youth, and that's what drives the property crime problems.

Last edited by biscuitmom; 04-25-2014 at 02:57 PM..
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Old 04-25-2014, 09:10 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,657 posts, read 1,522,222 times
Reputation: 3632
I spent a long weekend in Hilton Head a couple of years ago at end of a business trip. Although I enjoyed my visit, my thoughts are similar to biscuitmom in that it was way too congested and exclusive for my taste with too many stores and rich people. I wanted to drive around and see the homes and neighborhoods but kept running into these large gated communities and resort hotels everywhere I went that were not accessible to the public. And while I went to some good, medium priced seafood restaurants, I was disappointed in the couple of upscale restaurants that I went to as these did not compare to Charleston or Savannah. I expected better for such an exclusive resort area.

I'm not a swimmer but enjoyed walking on the beach as the sand was very hard and compact. Many people were riding bicycles on the beach and that appeals to me more than swimming. I thought the beaches were beautiful but then I'm from the desert so what do I know. Coligny is the most crowded beach (and was near my hotel) and I went to several that were not crowded at all but this was in October. Actually I was one of the few people on some of the beaches. Several had rather small parking lots so may be difficult to access in the peak season. But if you live in the HH Plantation or another one of the large, gated communities that adjoins the water, I would think it would be easier to access the beach and it would be more private - although all beaches are public, non-residents would have to walk quite a distance to get there. And people in the gated communities ride their bikes to the beach as there are lots of bike paths built into the communities, or so I read.

I did not feel like I was in the South. It seemed that most of the people had northeastern accents or were from other parts of the country. One of my co-workers, who is from Philadelphia, likes to play golf and raves about Hilton Head and his aunt has a condo there and enjoys it. Savannah and Charleston are less than two hours or so away and would be fun to visit. And Beaufort? (maybe Buford) is a darling little city that is somewhat nearby. If the OP likes shopping, doesn't mind living in a congested town, can find a home in a gated community with nearby beach access, and get past the shallow water, it might be a good choice.

Last edited by ABQ2015; 04-25-2014 at 09:18 PM..
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