A full moon kayaking experience

Gliding through the night

Story by Sheila Paz + Photography by Jordan Matthis


You are nestled in a kayak, surrounded by other adventurers, lit by the surprisingly bright glow of the full moon. The sound of dolphins surfacing and taking a breath punctuates the stories and fascinating facts shared by Outside’s interpretive naturalist kayak guide. This “in the dark” opportunity only happens once a month, when the sun, earth and moon align, creating spring tides that push our tidal waters further back into the salt marsh. This higher water and the radiant moon create a kayaking experience like no other. 

Born and raised in Rome, Italy, Sebastian De Angelis is one of the many kayak guides at Outside Hilton Head. Join one of his tours for an educational lesson about local ecosystems.

The journey begins at Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina, where you are outfitted with all you need for a safe and fun on-the-water adventure. Your guide then walks you through a brief (but entertaining) paddle clinic, providing valuable instruction that will have you feeling like a kayaking pro in no time.

Once you’re on the water, the real excitement begins. Soak up the serenity as the sun sets and the moon takes its place in the sky. Take a brisk paddle into areas of Broad Creek that can only be reached at high tide. Learn about the intriguing history and environment of the tidal marsh and surrounding Lowcountry. Maybe hear a ghost story or two. 

As you return to the dock, you will appreciate the acoustics of the nighttime as water reflects sound differently in the tranquility of the night. 

Outside Hilton Head’s full-moon kayak tour lends a new perspective to the beauty of our Lowcountry waters. It is not to be missed.

Experience it

Full Moon Kayak Tour

When: 7 p.m., Sept. 28-29; 6:30 p.m., Oct. 27-28

Where: Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina

Details: Embark on a captivating journey under the radiant full moon, exploring hidden corners of the Lowcountry’s tidal waters on a guided kayak excursion. Immerse yourself in the serenity of the night, surrounded by nature’s wonders and fascinating stories, creating an unforgettable experience on the water. $75. outsidehiltonhead.com

Did you know that the moon is gradually distancing itself from Earth? Space.com reports that the moon drifts approximately 3.8 centimeters further from our planet each year. It’s believed that when the moon first formed, it was a mere 14,000 miles from Earth. Today, it stands at a staggering distance of about 239,000 miles away.

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