Edisto Island is part of a smattering of enclaves located along South Carolina's coastline. The island's location southwest of bustling Charleston, Kiawah Island, and numerous other points of interest make it ideal for exploring. Seaside activity, rich wildlife, historic plantations, sweeping farms, and plenty of sun and sand combine to create an unforgettable destination. The unique style of the island is apparent in its beauty and history. On route to the island, majestic oaks cloaked in Spanish moss create a lofty, tunnel-like avenue to the island generating an air of mystery and intrigue.
Anyone planning a vacation to Edisto Island will enjoy a host of great amenities without the commercial feel of many other South Carolina hotspots. The many Edisto Island beaches offer a deluge of space for visitors to enjoy the seaside, great seaside accommodation, and lots to do and see. Edisto Beach is one of the main island attractions. It's located just south of the Edisto Marina, hugging the most southerly point of the island. Sunny, blue skies, clean, golden sand, and clear ocean water is what you'll find here. Folly Beach is another of the Edisto Island beaches open to visitors. Affectionately known as the "Edge of America," Folly Beach is renowned for excellent seafood, vibrant sunsets, and ample beaches. Aside from the community of Edisto, Folly Beach is the only other area untouched by mass commercialism and towering hotels. Instead, quaint vacation homes line some of the beach area, providing a wonderful advantage for families.
Camping at Edisto Beach State Park is a great way to enjoy the natural surroundings. The campground is directly on the ocean and adjacent to a beach lined with tall palmettos. Renowned for terrific shelling, many visitors spend hours combing Edisto Island beaches for treasures. Edisto Beach State Park has a second campground tucked away in a beautiful, oak-filled maritime forest. There are cabins in the thick of the wooded forest granting a first-hand look at the island's unspoiled marshland, which is full of interesting flora and fauna. At Edisto Beach there are miles of multilevel cycling trails and hiking paths, including one that leads to a centuries-old shell site situated on a picturesque tidal creek.
During a vacation to Edisto Island, a stop at the Edisto Serpentarium is a good idea. A large variety of reptiles are on display throughout both the indoor area and outdoor garden facility. Visitors will see the likes of more than a dozen alligators, diamondback terrapins, several snake species, and soft-shelled turtles. Closer to some of the focal Edisto Island beaches is the Edisto Museum, another worthwhile addition to a things to do. This museum is housed in a historic home donated anonymously to the Edisto Island Historic Preservation Society in 1988. Numerous island events are held at the museum so be sure to check the local calendar. The museum is filled with artifacts spanning from centuries of island history and culture.
Edisto Island offers smaller, family-style South Carolina beach hotels, fantastic dining options, many small shops and grocers and plenty to keep entertained. Characterized by a small-town feel and lack of frenetic pace or crowds, it is clearly a destination where visitors can enjoy South Carolina's natural side, recharge, and get in plenty of quality family time. A vacation to Edisto Island also opens up many opportunities for nearby sightseeing to Seabrook Island, Isle of Palms, and many other prime South Carolina beaches.
Top image: IllinoisHorseSoldier (flickr), CC BY-SA 2.0