Hilton Head Island Ranked #1 | Vacation Rental Blog

8 Best Kayak & SUP Tours on Hilton Head Island 

There are endless ways to enjoy the local waters of Hilton Head Island, but a guided kayak or SUP tour with a local naturalist is by far the most intimate Lowcountry experience available. 

Hilton Head’s network of nature trails extends to miles of tranquil paddling trails that lure you away from the white sandy beaches to explore the tidal creeks, salt marshes, and coastal wetlands of Hilton Head Island. Imagine yourself surrounded by Lowcountry beauty with the freedom of paddling alongside playful dolphins and manatees, sighting minks and otters in the marshlands, and bald eagles nesting above – that’s a Hilton Head Island paddle tour! You can even paddle with your pooch

Sure you can venture out by kayak alone, but the benefits of a locally guided tour are abundant! Our local tours are tailored to beginners so if you’re a first-timer, instruction is included. Your naturalist guide is familiar with Hilton Head’s waterways (hello secret spots!), the history and habitats of our unique coastal ecosystems, and the wildlife that calls Hilton Head home. 

Begin your Lowcountry paddle adventures with our Sunset Rental’s Guide to Kayak & SUP Tours on Hilton Head Island, SC. 

1. Outside Hilton Head

Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina
Guided Tours on Broad Creek & Daufuskie Island

Explore the hidden channels of Broad Creek with the outdoor experts at Outside Hilton Head, a local favorite since 1979! Winding 7 miles inland from Calibogue Sound, Broad Creek is Hilton Head’s largest creek with calm sheltered waters, tranquil marsh channels to explore, and bountiful wildlife, birdlife, and bottlenose dolphin encounters. Broad Creek is a favorite feeding ground for our Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, playful and curious enough to cruise alongside your kayak! 

The kayak and SUP tour options at Outside Hilton Head are endless! Choose from a Guided Kayak Nature Tour, Outback Kayak Tour, Full Moon Kayak Tour, Shelter Cove Fireworks Paddle, Kayak Fishing, May River Excursions, Intro to Stand Up Paddling, SUP Yoga, or a peaceful SUP Nature Walk on Broad Creek. Group tours or private customized adventures are available and you’re your adventures are over, there’s shopping, restaurants, and amazing outdoor events at Shelter Cove

2. Kayak Hilton Head

Broad Creek Marina
Guided Tours on Broad Creek & Pinckney Island

Located across the creek at Broad Creek Marina, Kayak Hilton Head has been guiding the scenic waterways on Hilton Head since 1995. Broad Creek Marina is Hilton Head’s newest marina and offers a wide variety of dolphin and nature cruises, sailboat charters, parasailing, fishing charters, and kayak and SUP tours with Kayak Hilton Head. End your paddle experience sipping cocktails, savoring Lowcountry cuisine, and unwinding with scenic waterfront views at Fishcamp on Broad Creek or Up the Creek Pub & Grill.   

Kayak Hilton Head offers daily 2-hour guided kayak and SUP tours of Broad Creek, private full-day tours, Shelter Cove Fireworks paddle tours in the summer, and kayaking eco-tours of historic Pinckney Island, one of the best birdwatching spots on Hilton Head Island. Their experienced outdoor adventure guides are fun and friendly with an intimate knowledge of the island’s wildlife and waterways.    

3. H20 Sports

Harbour Town Marina
Guided Tours on Calibogue Sound

H20 Sports are the only water sports activity provider at Sea Pines Harbour Town with activities for every age and adventure level! Whether you’re seeking a thrill, a casual cruise, or a self-guided tour of Calibogue Sound, you’ll find it at H20 Sports at Harbour Town. Kayak and SUP tours from Harbour Town explore the Calibogue Sound, a wild ocean channel between Hilton Head and Daufuskie Island with hidden creeks, coves, and marshes teeming with life. 

H20 Sports is all about “the FUN, the WATER, and YOU!”. Tour options include guided kayak tours, sunset kayak tours, SUP lessons and tours, or customized family adventures on the water. Other water sports activities available include Hilton Head Parasailing, Alligator & Wildlife Tours at Sea Pines Forest Preserve, Dolphin Tours, Hilton Head Sailing Charters, and jet ski, wave runner, and boat rentals to head out on your own expedition. 

4. Island Water Sports

Sea Pines South Beach Marina
Guided Tours on Calibogue Sound

If you’re spending your vacation in Sea Pines South Beach, Island Water Sports at South Beach Marina is your go-to for Kayak and SUP tours of Calibogue Sound. Situated on Braddock Cove at the southernmost tip of Hilton Head Island, South Beach Marina is a scenic launching point for paddle adventures on Calibogue Sound, and one of the most spectacular sunset spots on Hilton Head Island – best enjoyed from the world-famous Salty Dog Café!    

Island Water Sports offer a 90-minute Guided Kayak Tour, or “nature walk on water” through the creeks of Calibogue Sound, stand up paddleboarding through the salt marshes of South Beach Marina, and a variety of water activities. Take a banana boat ride on Calibogue Sound, explore Vanishing Island on an eco-tour, or rent a pontoon or powerboat to plan your own adventures. 

5. Hilton Head Outfitters

Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort
Guided Tours on the Palmetto Dunes Lagoon System

The Palmetto Dunes 11-mile lagoon system offers easy paddling for families and beginners. The saltwater lagoon system winds through the neighborhoods and golf courses in the Palmetto Dunes Resort area with calm waters, and an incredible variety of saltwater species for kayak fishing! The Palmetto Dunes lagoons boast some of the best island fishing on Hilton Head with an abundance of redfish, flounder, spotted sea trout, and tarpon. A South Carolina saltwater fishing license is required to fish in the lagoon system. 

Hilton Head Outfitters is located on the shores of the Palmetto Dunes lagoon system and offer single and tandem kayak rentals, three person canoes to explore and fish the calm waters of the lagoon, and inshore skiff charters with a naturalist guide. 

6. Coastal Discovery Museum

Honey Horn Plantation
Guided Tours of Jarvis Creek & Daufuskie Island

The ultimate Lowcountry experience awaits at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn Plantation. Aside from the spectacular plantation grounds with native gardens, wildlife habitats, and excellent exhibits, the Coastal Discovery Museum offers a long list of guided eco-tours on land and water. From artisan & history tours, heritage garden tours, and wildlife tours to epic excursions on the coastal creeks, Coastal Discovery Museum has tours for every traveler. 

Take a kayak tour of Jarvis Creek, a small creek perfect for beginners and families, or immerse yourself in the full splendor of Hilton Head Island on their Kayak the Outback Tour, a 4.5-hour paddle through the peaceful and pristine creeks of Page Island and Daufuskie Island. 

7. Sea Monkeys Watersports

Hilton Head Harbor & Marina
Guided Tours on Skull Creek & Pinckney Island

Situated on the north end of the island, Skull Creek separates Hilton Head from Pinckney Island to join the Port Royal Sound. While Skull Creek is well known for its excellent waterfront dining and fresh seafood straight from the docks, it also offers some of the best paddling on Hilton Head Island with coastal charm, wildlife, and scenic views of Pinckney Island Wildlife Refuge.   

Sea Monkeys Watersports launch their guided jet ski, kayak, and paddleboard trips on Skull Creek and Pinckney Island from Hilton Head Harbor & Marina. They also offer boat rentals by the hour, perfect for a casual dolphin watching cruise with the family. Linger a little longer and enjoy fantastic food and the island’s best sunset and waterfront views at Sunset Grille, consistently recognized as one of Hilton Head Island’s best kept secrets! 

8. Vayk Gear Kayak & Paddleboard Rentals

THE source for Beach Gear Rentals on your Hilton Head, SC vacation!

There’s no need to pack a kayak or SUP when you spend your Hilton Head vacation with Sunset Rentals. Our exclusive Beach & Bike Gear credit program with Vayk Gear gives guests staying in participating properties up to $350 credit on complimentary kayak and SUP rentals to explore the Hilton Head Island rivers, creeks, and lagoons at your own pace. Vayk Gear credit can also be used towards bike rentals, outdoor games, coolers, beach chairs, umbrella rentals, and beach carts to transport it all in one trip.


1. Book your vacation to Hilton Head Island! Complimentary Beach Gear is offered year round on select Sunset Rentals vacation homes and villas with 4-21 night stays. The value of your complimentary beach gear varies by property and ranges in value from $150 – $350. 

2. After booking, watch for an email from our gear partner Vayk Gear. Your rental house name and check-in date in the subject line. Click on the link in the email directing you to the beach gear rental page and input your reservation number. The complimentary beach gear credit will be applied automatically.

3. Select your desired beach gear, add any optional extras, and check out! Choose from top quality beach gear items like bikes, chairs & umbrellas, kayaks, paddle boards, corn hole, beach carts, skim and boogie boards and more.

4. Vayk Gear will take care of the rest! Select the items you want at least 48 hours prior to your scheduled arrival date and we’ll deliver everything for you on the day you are scheduled to arrive and pick everything up on your scheduled departure day. Just leave your gear clean and where you found it the night before your scheduled departure (gear pickups start at 6am ET), we’ll take care of the rest.

All that’s left to do is take a tour of the resort areas of Hilton Head to choose a neighborhood, find a vacation home or villa with Vayk Gear credit, and start planning your HHI paddle adventures with our team at Sunset Rentals. We hope to see you on the waterways soon!

You Might Also Like

Where to Play Pickleball on Hilton Head Island

Get ready to dink and dive your way into the sensational pickleball phenomenon sweeping the shores of Hilton Head Island! Whether you’re a curious newcomer or a seasoned pickleball pro, Hilton Head Island’s pickleball scene offers an irresistible invitation to be part of a sensation that’s not just a game – but an island-wide obsession!  …

Read More

Hilton Head Autumn Events Calendar 2023

Who doesn’t love autumn on Hilton Head? From sunny beaches, world-class golf, and outdoor adventures in nature to al fresco oceanfront dining, one-of-a-kind shopping, and coastal homes for the holidays, Hilton Head Island offers a smorgasbord of fun this fall season.  Whether you’re seeking private access to miles of uncrowded beaches, heated pools, spacious gourmet …

Read More

5 Best Dog-Friendly Restaurants Near Port Royal

One of the top questions on our guest’s minds when planning a vacation with their furry family members is where to find cafés, restaurants, and bars on Hilton Head Island that allow dogs.  You asked, and we listened! This month we feature the best dog-friendly restaurant near the Port Royal Resort Area and  Hilton Head …

Read More

9 Food Festivals Not To Miss Near Hilton Head, SC

Traveling to Hilton Head and want to enjoy some of the region’s most celebrated food festivals? Get ready for a culinary adventure like no other! Lowcountry cuisine is alive and well in South Carolina, and this region reflects that rich & diverse culinary history. From the cobblestone streets of historic Charleston to the beautiful sea …

Read More

Top 5 Resort Areas On Hilton Head Island

Whether you’re a beach lover, a golf fanatic, or an outdoor and nature enthusiast, the beautiful island of Hilton Head has something for everyone. From sunny white sand beaches, sparkling Atlantic Ocean waves, and Lowcountry waterways, to the lush fairways of world-class golf courses and miles of nature trails, Hilton Head Island has it all.  …

Read More

10 Remote Work Hotspots on Hilton Head Island 

The laid back Lowcountry lifestyle on the South Carolina coastline naturally blurs the lines between business, life, and leisure! Here on Hilton Head Island, you can trade your suits and ties for flip flops and tees, your daily commute for a bike ride, and your home office for an oceanfront retreat on the award-winning shoreline …

Read More

Top Dog-Friendly Restaurants Near Sea Pines Resort

Our team at Sunset Rentals has put together the ultimate guide to dog-friendly restaurants on Hilton Head Island. We’ve even taken it a step further so you can discover the best places to take your dog to dinner near your Hilton Head Island vacation rental. This month, we highlight the best dog-friendly restaurants near Sea …

Read More

Hilton Head Winter Events Calendar 2023-24

Hilton Head Island has long been celebrated as a destination where pristine beaches, world-class golf courses, and a welcoming family-friendly atmosphere blend seamlessly. But, Hilton Head is America’s favorite island year-round and doesn’t only shine in the summer season!  If this is the white Christmas you’re dreaming of this year, trade in white snow for …

Read More

Childcare & Babysitting Options on Hilton Head Island 

Planning a family vacation to Hilton Head Island, SC? As you prepare for your much-needed break along the stunning South Carolina shoreline, it’s important to consider the well-being and happiness of every single family member, including the little ones, elderly grandparents, and your furry best friends!  We’ve taken the pressure off your family vacation planning …

Read More

Top 10 Dog-Friendly Restaurants Near Shelter Cove

One of the top questions on our guest’s minds when planning a vacation with their furry family members is where to find cafés, restaurants, and bars on Hilton Head Island that allow dogs.  Hilton Head Island is surrounded by coastal waters and lush marshlands, so the freshest food & seafood is widely available across the …

Read More

Why Spend Labor Day Weekend On Hilton Head?

Soak in those last few days of summer and enjoy local events on Hilton Head Island over Labor Day Weekend. There’s no better way to celebrate than supporting local establishments, relaxing on the beach, and taking a trip to one of America’s top vacation destinations – Hilton Head Island! As summer comes to an end …

Read More

Top 5 Reasons to Stay in Port Royal

Port Royal is Hilton Head Island’s only completely private oceanfront residential community. Located at the tip of the Island, with approximately 1 mile of pristine beachfront landscapes, Port Royal Sound meets the Atlantic Ocean. Residents and vacationers alike can walk along the quietest beach on Hilton Head Island right from home in Port Royal. There’s …

Read More

7 Best Dog-Friendly Restaurants On Hilton Head Island

One of the top questions on our guests’ minds when planning a vacation with their furry family members is where to find cafés, restaurants, and bars on Hilton Head Island that allow dogs.  Hilton Head Island is one of the best dog-friendly vacation destinations on the East Coast with wide beaches that welcome your pup, …

Read More

6 Reasons To Explore Hilton Head This Fall

Whether you’re seeking a quieter (and more affordable!) shoulder season escape or a second summer on secluded beaches, head to Hilton Head Island this fall for a vacation on America’s favorite island, without the crowds!  Nestled on the southern tip of the South Carolina coastline, Hilton Head Island is a small coastal town with world-famous …

Read More

7 Tips for Responsible Wildlife Watching on Hilton Head

Hilton Head Island is a destination known for its stunning beaches, diverse ecosystems, and unique habitats abounding in wildlife. Whether it’s witnessing the marvel of baby sea turtle hatchlings, getting up close and personal with our beloved marine mammals, encountering alligators, or discovering Hilton Head’s best birding spots with your binocs, you’ll soon discover a …

Read More

Top 7 Reasons To Stay In Palmetto Dunes Resort Area

Hilton Head Island was named the #1 Island in the U.S. and Canada in Travel+Leisure 2021 World’s Best Awards for the 5th consecutive year! The award-winning Palmetto Dunes is one of the most well-known and popular resort areas of Hilton Head, nestled mid-island on 2,000 acres of lush oceanfront landscapes with world-class amenities, 3-miles of …

Read More

When Is The Best Time To Visit Hilton Head Island?

Hilton Head Island is a destination for all seasons! Our beautiful barrier island is nestled on the southern tip of the South Carolina coastline with a balmy sub-tropical climate, an average of 215 sunny days a year, and mild temps to enjoy our pristine beaches, serene waterways, untouched nature preserves and award-winning golf and tennis …

Read More

Top 20 Spots To Watch The Sunset On Hilton Head

The distinctive Lowcountry scenery and tranquil waterways on Hilton Head Island provide the perfect canvas for some of the most breathtaking sunsets you’ll ever witness. As the sun dips slowly below the horizon, fiery palettes of reds, oranges, pinks, and purples paint the skies casting a warm glow over Hilton Head’s white sandy shoreline, untouched …

Read More

10 Best Kept Secrets on Hilton Head Island

Hilton Head Island is widely-known as one of America’s favorite islands, being voted the “#1 Island in the Continental US” numerous times by Travel+Leisure. The Island is home to 24 championship golf courses, world-class tennis facilities, action packed adventures, award-winning restaurants, and beautiful beaches, but you’ll also find that Hilton Head Island also has some pretty special secrets that you won’t want to leave uncovered!

Read More

5 Tips For Hosting a Family Reunion on Hilton Head

Situated only 30 miles from historic Savannah Georgia, Hilton Head Island boasts a stunning and serene seaside location, welcoming southern charm, a relaxed Lowcountry lifestyle, and a wide range of family-focused activities and vacation homes that appeal to guests of every generation.   Not only is Hilton Head the “#1 Island in the Continental US”, but …

Read More

Top 4 Hilton Head Golf Courses For Your Winter Getaway

If you’re visiting Hilton Head Island in winter and want to hit the links, where should you go? The team at Sunset Rentals has some ideas. Here’s our list of the best courses to play in Hilton Head on your winter golf trip.

Read More

9 Fun Summer Festivals On Hilton Head 2023

Hilton Head Island, SC hosts a range of popular festivals that draw many thousands of visitors to the island every year. The Island’s event calendar includes local arts, nightlife, family activities, festivals, and much more. The team at Sunset Rentals has compiled a list of our favorite upcoming events on Hilton Head Island. Be sure to check some out during your getaway to the stunning shoreline of South Carolina!

Read More

8 Best Kayak & SUP Tours on Hilton Head Island 

There are endless ways to enjoy the local waters of Hilton Head Island, but a guided kayak or SUP tour with a local naturalist is by far the most intimate Lowcountry experience available.  Hilton Head’s network of nature trails extends to miles of tranquil paddling trails that lure you away from the white sandy beaches …

Read More

16 Free Things To Do On Hilton Head Island

When it comes to planning a vacation on Hilton Head Island, visitors have an abundance of world-class golf courses, racquet clubs, nature tours, and charters to add to their itinerary, but many of the island’s best experiences can be savored without reaching for your wallet. From our wild, scenic beaches, lush waterways, and tranquil trails …

Read More

Hilton Head Island Grocery Stores & Food Delivery Services

For many travelers, shopping for groceries is a fun beginning to a vacation, but for others, well it’s a burden they would rather leave behind. One of our guests’ most frequently asked questions about Hilton Head Island is where to stock up on groceries, find the freshest seafood, and fill the cooler with beverages during …

Read More

5 Dog-Friendly Activities On Hilton Head

Unquestionably, the most difficult aspect of planning a well-deserved vacation is lining up necessary pet boarding for your favorite furry friend. It’s never easy saying “goodbye” to a pet (or pets), even if it’s just for a week. However, one of the fastest-growing trends in the hospitality industry is the rise of pet travel. Instead …

Read More

9 Dog-Friendly Delights at Coligny Plaza

Our team at Sunset Rentals has put together the ultimate guide to dog-friendly restaurants on Hilton Head Island. We’ve even taken it a step further so you can discover the best places to take your dog to dinner near your Hilton Head Island vacation rental. This month, we highlight the best dog-friendly restaurants near Coligny …

Read More

4 Rainy Day Activities On Hilton Head Island

When you vacation on Hilton Head Island the main things to do is enjoy the sun, shopping and eat amazing food. But the big question is what is there to do when it is raining outside? Here are the top things to do when it is raining outside on Hilton Head Island. 1. Nash Gallery …

Read More

14 Dog-Friendly Restaurants Near Bluffton, SC

Love traveling with your favorite furry friend? Our pets are part of our family, and taking them out to dine should be a part of your pet-friendly vacation. Our team at Sunset Rentals has put together the ultimate guide to dog-friendly restaurants on Hilton Head Island. We’ve even taken it a step further so you …

Read More