Unlike most towns, Hilton Head does not have a “city center”. It is more a collection of strategically placed shopping and gathering areas. But, if you ask local residents, Coligny Circle and the surrounding Forest Beach and Lagoon Road area would be voted the “most likely” downtown – the Island’s heart and soul.
The reasons are numerous. It is easy to find and it is freely accessible (no gate fees) by foot, car and bike. It is located at the end of Pope Avenue at South Forest Beach Drive. It’s also on the most popular public beach. Plus, there are many shops and restaurants.
Coligny Plaza first opened for business in 1956 making it the oldest shopping area on the Island. It is a delightful place to wander, spend some money, and unwind. It features 25 stores, 24 restaurants and food shops, a movie theatre, and year-around family-oriented events and live entertainment. Across Forest Beach Drive is the Beach Market with more shops and restaurants.
And then you come to Hilton Head’s most popular and busiest beach. Although it can get crowded, you don’t need to walk far to find plenty of space in which to spread out. Don’t miss the new interactive water fountain, playgrounds and volleyball nets, rest rooms and changing rooms, a picnic pavilion and rental concessions, vending machines and showers. The beach is wheelchair accessible and public parking is available.
A free daily trolley service between Coligny Circle and Shelter Cove Harbour is available beginning mid-July and will run through mid-October. The trolley runs between 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on a 30-minute cycle. The trolleys will have Wi-Fi and bike racks, and will be fully handicapped accessible.