Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Charleston Currents feature August 2014

Edisto: A great place for a family day trip
By LEIGH SABINE, contributing editor
Special to Charleston Currents

AUG. 18, 2014 -- Now that school is back in session, it's the return of the occasional weekend family day trip to take a break from the drill of the weekly schedule.
At just over an hour from Charleston, Edisto really is the perfect quick getaway. We recently spent an extra long day soaking in the highlights at three well-known Edisto family-friendly destinations and encourage you to do the same as soon as you need a peaceful break from the ties that bind us. Be sure to pack dry clothes, swim suits, walking shoes and flip flops for your day in the Edisto area.
The Edisto Serpentarium

Did you know that as a young boy Teddy Roosevelt was so enthralled with the study of animals, insects and slithering reptiles that he opened a natural history museum in his bedroom and charged admission?! What boy doesn't love the irresistible allure of reptiles? The more they creep, crawl and slither, the more intrigued a boy or girl becomes (much to the chagrin of the child's freaked out mom!). Watch as your child steels their nerve, stands a little taller and becomes suddenly braver than they knew they could be.

Fifty miles from Charleston lies one of the best serpentariums we've discovered. You really have to allow a few hours to experience everything on offer here as the property consists of indoor and outdoor habitats and enclosures. I recommend sitting in on a snake show led by serpentarium experts, such as herpetologist Anne Clamp of the original Clamp family who opened the serpentarium here in 1999.

Anne's got you covered when it comes to fascinating facts about snake species. Don't miss the wall of historical photos and relics depicting her family's long history with herpetology. These photos trace the story of brothers Ted and Heyward Clamp, who devoted their lives to snake hunting and charming -- truly inspiring.

Your child will come away loaded with new information about some of their favorite creatures. Anne also dispelled a lot of myths regarding snakes too. Many species are actually thriving on Edisto Island! This facility has a shaded snack bar area with umbrella tables, picnic tables on the grounds, cold drinks, and a well stocked gift and information shop.

  • Location: 1374 State Highway 174, Edisto Island, S.C. Tickets: $10.95 to $14.95. Open Thursdays to Saturdays, Aug. 16 to Oct. 25. More.
Edisto Beach State Park
Walking, biking, and swimming with a bit of history thrown in -- it's all in your day trip to Edisto to Edisto Beach State Park. We loved the shaded walking trails, discovering the historical relevance and the Edisto Indian connection and then cooling down in the surf.

There are two entrances to this state park. One provides access to hiking and biking trails as well as an Edisto Indian shell midden and a second entrance takes you straight out onto the beautiful beachfront. Edisto Beach State Park is one of only four waterfront state parks in South Carolina. We recommend checking out this post on the Pluff Mud Kids website to clarify the two park entrances. Allow time to visit both locations.

  • Location: 102 State Highway 174, Edisto Island, SC 29438. Admission: $3-5. Open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.More.
Botany Bay
You have to see this amazing preserve to believe it exists so near to the hubbub of Charleston. This is such a tranquil spot for families to unplug and picnic in peace. End your day here with a beautiful sunset and walk along one of South Carolina's best beaches. To view Botany Bay, click here for a story by Pluff Mud Kids.
PMK tips:
  • This is a wildlife preserve, no pets allowed.
  • The walk from the car park to the beach is 1/2 a mile so plan to take plenty of water and a stroller for little ones. The beach is only accessible by foot and is two miles long, stretching between Seabrook Island and Edisto Beach.
  • You must not remove any "treasures" from the beach. Also be mindful and observe the nesting turtles.

    There is so much more to see on the property! 
  • Check in at the entrance. Click here for complete driving tour directions and the map that is provided when you check in.
  • Location: 1066 Botany Bay Rd., Edisto, S.C. 29438. Admission: FREE. More.

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