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Butterflies, Butterflies Everywhere!

By Heather Rath

If you have been on Hilton Head Island this September, you couldn’t have missed the seemingly millions of beautiful butterflies out and about. From the parks to the beach to driving down William Hilton Parkway, the Island has turned into a butterfly mecca.

mom and son in front of butterfly exhibit

Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn hosts the Karen Wertheimer Butterfly Enclosure and I knew I needed to take Gray (22 months) since his favorite book thus far is The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

museum grounds


Coastal Discovery Museum is dedicated to preserving the culture and lifestyle of the Hilton Head Island – a visit to the museum is a must during your trip to the Island.  The butterfly enclosure was built to preserve, protect and harvest butterflies – right on the property. The museum offers guided educational talks and tours on the butterfly exhibit twice a week, led by their dedicated volunteers.

guide explaining


What an experience! Our guide, Mimi, led our discovery time and was extremely knowledgeable on the life-cycle of a butterfly. The highly educational hour consisted of identifying different species of butterfly, identifying plants that butterfly feed on, understanding the perfumes of flowers and attraction to butterflies, understanding the life-cycle of the butterfly and so much more! Mimi’s knowledge and passion was amazing, and she knew how to focus her talk to her audience! Lots of touching, feeling and smelling!



We started the tour on the benches outside the enclosure where Mimi went over the stages of a butterfly, from egg to larvae to wings – all with pictures. She talked about the natural history of local butterflies and ones that were specific to our region as well. Then the fun part began! We were able to walk through the exhibit, which is enclosed to capture the butterflies (and it was nice because Gray was free to roam) where we saw at least four different species. Click here to see the video from inside the exhibit! We touched the flowers, plants and even the butterflies!


The grounds at Honey Horn are open daily to the public but I encourage you to come with your little ones and discover butterflies in the Lowcountry!  This exhibit is appropriate for all ages and the guides do a great job catering the presentation to the group.  There are also grounds to explore, including oaks trees that are over 200 years old.

If you go:

The butterfly tour is offered twice a week, click to see the Museums list of programs here.

Cost $10 per adult, $5 per child

The Museum offers guided walks and talks of the Honey Horn property, Sea Turtle walks on the beach, historical site visits and more.   Click here for their facebook page.

In addition to Coastal Discovery Museum’s programs and grounds, they have an interactive children’s area and an amazing local gift shop, perfect to pick up a gift from Hilton Head Island….or grab some local Lowcountry foods!

touch tank
counter of local jams

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