Historic Port Royal Plantation is 1250 acres and Hilton Head Island’s only private oceanfront residential community with views of golf courses, deep woods or the Port Royal Sound. It is located where the Port Royal Sounds meets the Atlantic Ocean and where Captain William Hilton (Hilton Head’s namesake) landed in 1663. It is also where the Union Troops came ashore during the Civil War in 1861. Landmarks can be found throughout this plantation dating back to Civil War times.
The Steam Gun – Located at the end of Fort Walker Drive are the remnants of a large cannon that was operated by pressurized air. It was built at the beginning of the century to defend against a possible coastal attack. In a park-like setting, parts of the turret cannon, steam piping and boiler rooms are visible.
Fort Walker was established in 1861, soon after South Carolina seceded from the Union by the Confederate Army near the end of what is now Fort Walker Drive. Historical markers at the end of Fort Walker Drive and the Beach House tell about it.
Fort Sherman was built by Union forces after Fort Walker was captured and has entrances on Sherman Place and Sherman Drive. The earthen walls built by the troops occupying the fort are now populated with trees and plants. Leisure paths wind through the area.
Port Royal has a dual personality – two distinct communities. A security gate at the entrance to the residential section separates owners from Resort guests at the many Villa Complexes and the Hilton Head Westin Resort and Spa.
Although residents of Port Royal share their plantation with numerous resort guests, there is a distinct separation between resort and residential areas. Many amenities are available for “residents-only” use. Beach access to over 4 miles of beautiful beach is available through private beach walks and The Residents’ Club, which also features a full range of amenities. It features an Olympic size outdoor pool, a children’s pool and locker rooms. An indoor facility is also available for residents use for private parties and gatherings.
For nature lovers there is the Arboretum which consists of walking paths with native plants identified. Port Royal is fortunate to have both fresh water and salt water fishing. The fresh water lagoons contain large mouth bass and crappie. Salt water fishing in the ocean and Fish Haul Creek produce spottail bass (red fish), flounder, trout, croakers and crabs.
The Westin Resort is located just outside the security gate and offers a fabulous spa, gorgeous swimming pools, a fitness facility, restaurants and conference facilities.
The Port Royal Clubhouse is open to the public. It is home to conference facilities, gourmet dining and Bayley’s a smaller pub-style restaurant.
The Port Royal Golf club features three 18-hole Golf Courses: Barony, Planter’s Row and Robber’s Row. On a rotating basis, one of the three remains private.
The Port Royal Racquet Club features 16 courts and offers clay, hard, and grass courts. You will sometimes find a famous tennis player practicing for Wimbledon here. Four courts are private, eight are lighted.