We had the most magical trip down south and I can not wait to tell you all about it!! Also, in major news, the Montage Palmetto Bluff is giving Pure Joy Home readers a complimentary 3rd night with bicycles for exploring the property (read to the end of this post for all the details!).
Although we’ve traveled to Florida a bunch, we never really did “the South”, so it was a brand new experience for all of us. Everything from the architecture, the people, the food, the hospitality, the weather, the beach, it was all SO different, and we LOVED every minute of it!! In fact, we can’t wait to get back!
We traveled to Palmetto Bluff in late June, and I’m going to be completely honest here, we’ve done quite a bit of travel as a family, this place completely blew us away.
Travel To and From Palmetto Bluff
To get to the Montage Palmetto Bluff we flew into Savanah. From the moment we stepped off the airplane we could just feel in the air that we were in a totally different pace from the hustle and bustle in NYC where we had departed. People moved a little but slower, there seemed to be a lot more smiles, and a man who was cleaning the airport bathroom actually asked us if we would like him to block it off so we could go in as a family privately (???). A far cry from LaGuardia airport. Our driver had a little sign reading “Joy” and off we went on our next adventure. The driver was so sweet and gave us a little history about Palmetto Bluff which was a nice introduction. The property is set on 20,000 acre property along the May River and lies between Hilton Head Island and Savannah. It’s enormous and stunning.
Welcome to Palmetto Bluff
We pulled up to the main inn and the valets greeted us by name, “Hello, Joy family and welcome to Palmetto Bluff! Let’s get you inside for some sweet tea and get you all checked in”. We checked in and had the sweetest tea we had ever tasted!
Accommodations at Palmetto Bluff
Our accommodations were incredible. We stayed in a beautiful two-bedroom, two bathroom home with every single comfort you could imagine! We had a beautiful screened porch, stunning kitchen, living room with a fireplace, sun room, LAUNDRY room, and more. I told Brian we were never leaving. As a nice touch, we even had our own bikes parked out back! It was just gorgeous and we were all so pleasantly surprised with how comfortable they made this arrival for us.
Food + Activities at Palmetto Bluff (our itinerary)
We had a pretty packed itinerary to make sure we were able to experience most of what Palmetto Bluff had to offer, even though we could have probably stayed for month and never get tired. The property houses Inn guests and permanent residences so you really get a community feel while you’re there. The homes are all so spectacular, we were able to see all the neighborhood homes from an inland waterway cruise on our last day and it beautiful.
We took part in the Montage Merits Itinerary which was SO fun for our family. With the Montage Merits program, you earn badges for the various adventures and activities you complete during your stay. It could be earning s’mores merit, or seeing a bald eagle! On our first night we had dinner at Buffalo’s which was amazing. The food at Palmetto Bluff is INCREDIBLE, like dangerously good. I loved everything we ate from all the different restaurants and really appreciated that there was a kids menu at every spot. As much as I’d like to say Grace and Brian eat off the adult menu, they love a good chicken tenders and fries meal and it makes going out a lot less stressful. Brian also discovered Shirley Temples on this trip 🙂 After dinner we roasted s’mores in the big fire pit which the kids LOVED. They do this every night for the guests, with gourmet marshmallows I might add.
We got a great night’s rest and began our adventure in the morning. We went on a conservancy tour and got to discover lots of the various wildlife living on property. Brian was enamored with this tour and, to be honest, I had no idea he liked learning about wildlife so much! Our tour guide was amazing and took a full two hours with us. Grace lasted about an hour due to “being Grace”, but Big Brian and Little Brian got to learn and experience so much, even seeing an alligator!
Afterwards we went to the family pool and spent our afternoon there. They have a great bar/restaurant attached and we had yet another amazing meal. Plus they bring around fresh watermelon for you at the pool. yum.
In the early evening we all got to try out archery!! It’s probably something I would never seek out and do on my own but it was SO much fun! And we got a merit badge!
We ended the day with a fantastic southern style dinner at Cole’s and bowling in the private alleys attached to the restaurant. Our kids were in absolute HEAVEN at this point with the whole trip. Do not miss the fried chicken bucket and pickles if you make it to Cole’s, incredible!
The next morning we took the kids to the stables on property where they got to ride Winter, the pony which Grace renamed, “Sparkles”. They each took nice long rides on Winter and afterwards got to PAINT THE PONY! Winter was a beautiful white and actually loves being painted, she even fell asleep as the kids painted her “nails” pink and drew their names on his sides. We made sure Winter was a fan of this activity and clearly she was. Pretty sure we’re taking up horse back riding.
That afternoon led us into our favorite activity, the “Ultimate Lowcountry Day” with Outside Palmetto Bluff out on the May River. We went out with Captain Duke for three hours, got a beautiful tour of the lowcountry, went tubing and even made a pit stop at the infamous five story tree house on property. Our favorite part was when Captain Duke brought us out to where you could see the ocean outside of Hilton Head and we all jumped in and swam around. I’ll never forget that afternoon, it was really special.
We took bike rides, explored the different playgrounds on property, went crabbing off the docks, and so much more. This was definitely the most adventurous vacation we’ve ever taken as a family and it was SO FUN so I definitely see more in our future.
We’re so thankful to Palmetto Bluff for having us, we will never forget the amazing time we had and will most definitely be back!
NOW, for the fun part!! You can book your family’s dream adventure vacation with a FREE night for using my code MPBPureJoy!!
3rd Night Complimentary (no advanced purchase contingencies) with two bicycles for exploring the property.
Valid June 20 – September 30, 2019
Annnd the photos!
I sincerely hope you consider Montage Palmetto Bluff for your next family vacation! I promise 100% that you will LOVE and make the most special memories with your family! And don’t forget the 3rd night on me!