Monday, January 25, 2010

A Home Away From Home...Sort Of

Let me tell you a story--I promise it won't be long--about a place I used to go when I was younger. Just to provide a little background for you, my family is big into tennis. We all play, my parents, my brother, and I. When spring vacation hit--that's right "vacation", not "break" seeing as that implies drunken partying on the beach in Cabo--my family would head to the warm, crisp, salty air of Hilton Head, South Carolina. For one glorious week, we would stay at hotels located minutes from the beach and play tennis at the Van Der Meer Tennis Academy. My brother and I would participate in the junior camps, while our parents enjoyed the adult clinics. And we always made sure we visited during the Family Circle Tennis Tournament, which Van Der Meer hosted, because we were able to sit in the club box with a perfect view of the matches. (Free food and drinks were also a plus.) Needless to say, those vacations were some of the best I had as a child. And lately I have been craving a return to my childhood oasis, if even just for a weekend.

Besides the tennis, which was always enjoyable, there is so much more to experience in Hilton Head. If your an outdoorsey type, there are plenty of nature preserves to hike and bike through, as well as horseback riding and dolphin tours. The island provides an elite golf course, sailing excursions, kayaking rentals and numerous fishing areas. If you prefer a more relaxed vacation, the shopping around the island is ideal for cute boutiques and fashionable shops. With more than 200 stores, you're sure to find what you're looking for. Among the twisting streets and paths are upwards of 250 restuarants where you can sample the local cuisine--or any other cuisine for that matter. Be sure to visit the famous Salty Dog Cafe. If none of this tickles your fancy, there are always daily events going on around the island, from art shows to wine tastings, from concerts to museum tours, there is sure to be something everyone will like.

And if the attractions don't pull you in, then these shots certainly will...

At least I think it's gorgeous!

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