Residence to 47 state parks, South Carolina has no scarcity of choices in the case of tenting throughout the state. There’s a spot for each kind of out of doors lover, whether or not you favor enjoyable in a stay oak forest surrounded by pristine seashores or kayaking in a crystal-clear mountain lake stuffed with hidden waterfalls. Additionally, tenting in South Carolina is not only restricted to these with tents and campers—most of the campgrounds have cabins obtainable as nicely. Be sure that to seize your Ultimate Outsider stamp for every South Carolina state park as you cross them off your record.  

Need to study extra? Learn our How to Go Camping, and you should definitely try events at your local REI Co-op. These courses and occasions are a wonderful technique to increase your information and make connections.  

Huntington Seaside State Park (Murrells Inlet) 

To not be confused with the following spot on the record (Searching Island State Park), Huntington Beach State Park is understood for its wildlife, salt marshes and breathtaking seashores. The campground is the biggest on this roundup with 173 choices between the North Campground and South Campground (all of that are inside strolling distance from the seashore). The North Campground is older and has bigger websites with extra shade. These campgrounds are pricier than most of the alternate options on this record, however they’re extremely well-maintained and rank extremely for cleanliness. Make your reservations here.  

It may be tough to discover a campsite on this park through the hotter months as a result of its reputation, so make certain to plan accordingly if you wish to go to within the spring, summer season or fall. Visiting from November to March is right for those who’re planning a last-minute journey or need to benefit from the park through the low season when there’s a bit much less hustle and bustle and charges are discounted.  

By way of issues to do, Atalaya Castle and Brookgreen Gardens are inside strolling distance of the state park, and each are value visiting if you’re within the space. Different actions embrace fishing, boating, swimming, bird-watching and biking. You’ll be able to experience your bike all the way down to Pawleys Island, the place you’ll discover a wide range of eating choices.  

Searching Island State Park (Saint Helena Island) 

Situated on a quiet barrier island, the scenic campground at Hunting Island State Park is ideal for these in search of a seashore oasis surrounded by nature. Searching Island is without doubt one of the hottest spots on the South Carolina coast—for good purpose. The well-maintained park has 102 commonplace campsites, 25 rustic tent websites and a cabin. Each the usual websites and tent websites have restrooms with showers. Make your reservations here

The island feels secluded however is only a 20- to 30-minute drive from Beaufort. Whether or not you’re in search of rest or journey (or slightly little bit of each), the 5,000-acre island has you lined. You’ll discover miles of undeveloped shoreline simply minutes out of your campsite. Strolling on the seashore at dawn or sundown is a should. Different issues to do within the space embrace exploring the marsh boardwalk, visiting Searching Island Lighthouse, watching wildlife and occurring a hike. Look out for loggerhead sea turtles through the summer season months, after they nest on the island.  

The park has a well-stocked camp retailer, however you’ll have to journey to Beaufort or Girl’s Island for laundry and groceries. One other factor to notice: The mosquitos might be fairly brutal within the hotter months, so make certain to pack your insect repellent.  

Edisto Seaside State Park (Edisto Island) 

Edisto Beach State Park is right for campers seeking to escape the crowds and revel in a refreshing noncommercial coastal getaway. Though this spot is just about an hour south of Charleston, its numerous ecosystems, wildlife and lack of busyness make it really feel like an actual hidden gem.  

There are two campground choices within the space and a number of other absolutely furnished cabins. Whereas the campgrounds are solely a few mile aside, they’re fairly completely different. The Dwell Oak Campground is immersed in a lush forest of stay oak timber with extra shaded and personal websites, whereas the Seaside Campground is by the seashore and supplies views of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s value noting that seashore websites are more durable to come back by, so take that into consideration when planning your journey. If you happen to go through the low season, the park might be particularly quiet. Make your online reservations here

The island is dwelling to the state’s longest system of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)–accessible trails. Climbing and biking are two standard actions for guests. Bikes are a wonderful technique to get across the campgrounds and to eating places and outlets within the space.  

Whereas on Edisto Island, make certain to go to Botany Bay, a 4,600-acre wildlife and nature protect stuffed with historical past with miles of undisturbed shoreline. Additionally, cease by King’s Farm Market (open February to December) for contemporary produce, do-it-yourself pies, breads and extra. Like on Searching Island, the bugs might be relentless. Don’t overlook bug spray!  

Poinsett State Park (Wedgefield) 

The South Carolina Midlands are one more glorious location for tenting within the Palmetto State. An hour outdoors of Columbia, you’ll discover Poinsett State Park—an incredible spot for mountaineering, biking, boating and wildlife viewing.  

The campground at Poinsett State Park is properly shaded and has 24 commonplace websites plus 26 tent websites. There are a couple of furnished cabins obtainable for lease as nicely. Some websites have extra privateness than others, so pay shut consideration when reserving if that’s vital to you (website 36 provides privateness whereas nonetheless being near facilities just like the loos). The roads resulting in the park and campground are slim and might get tough, which is one thing to remember, particularly for those who’re touring with a rig. Make your reservations here

The park is adjoining to the 28,000-acre Manchester State Forest, which provides a wide range of outside actions. Congaree National Park can also be close by. Tenting in Congaree Nationwide Park is one other nice possibility, however its campgrounds (Longleaf and Bluff) are restricted to tent-only campers.  

Calhoun Falls State Park (Calhoun Falls) 

For a quiet and secluded campground by a phenomenal lake, try Calhoun Falls State Park. This park is a tenting favourite due to its giant, stage websites which can be shaded and spaced out. Even the tent websites are spacious. Between campgrounds 1 and a couple of, there are 86 commonplace websites and 14 walk-in tent websites. Each campgrounds provide campsites with lakeside views of Lake Russell, which is the park’s foremost attraction. Campground 1 might be closed for renovations starting December 1, 2022, so you should definitely test availability earlier than you go. Make your reservations here

Calhoun Falls State Park is extremely underrated, and journey lovers will really feel proper at dwelling. Hire a kayak and go for an early morning paddle, or go for a scenic stroll on the Cedar Bluff Nature Path. If you happen to’re there through the hotter months, reap the benefits of the general public entry seashore space. 

There aren’t many shops in shut proximity to the park, so be additional attentive when packing to make sure you have all the pieces you want! 

Cheraw State Park (Cheraw) 

The campground at Cheraw State Park could also be small, however that’s a part of its appeal. Open year-round (and ideal for low season journey), the campground has 17 campsites in a wooded space. The websites are cut up between the Important Campground and a Hike-In Campground by Lake Juniper (there are a number of waterfront websites). Moreover, there are 9 furnished cabins. Make online reservations here.  

Some standard actions at Cheraw State Park embrace biking, bird-watching (maintain an eye fixed out for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker), fishing, kayaking and swimming. Relying on what time of yr you go to, you would possibly be capable to take part in a moonlight paddle journey supplied by the state park. Examine the park’s events page to see what’s occurring throughout your keep. The boardwalk supplies the dreamiest views of Lake Juniper—attempt to catch a dawn or sundown right here for those who can. Hike the boardwalk to the spillway for extra unimaginable views.  

Devils Fork State Park (Salem) 

Devils Fork State Park is without doubt one of the most unusual locations to camp in South Carolina as a result of it provides the one public entry level to Lake Jocassee. It’s a remarkably clear lake within the Southeast that’s a well-liked vacation spot for numerous actions corresponding to kayaking, boating, swimming, paddleboarding and mountaineering. There are two campgrounds by the lake, one among which has 59 commonplace campsites and 25 tent websites. The opposite campground has 25 boat-in websites. Along with the campgrounds, Devils Fork State Park additionally has 20 absolutely furnished villas. Make your reservations here

If you happen to go to Lake Jocassee with out getting out on the water, you’ll be doing your self a disservice. Hire a ship or kayak to discover elements of the lake you’ll be able to’t see from the shoreline. There are a number of waterfalls scattered across the lake which can be solely accessible by boat. 

The closest grocery shops are a methods away, so it’s a good suggestion to pack what you’ll need. As a result of Devils Fork State Park is the one public entry for Lake Jocassee, it’s value noting that this place can get busy, particularly on weekends and holidays. 

Oconee State Park (Mountain Relaxation) 

If mountaineering and chasing waterfalls sound like your thought of an ideal getaway, you’ll love tenting at Oconee State Park. This space’s hike accessibility is one among its finest options—six hiking trails originate within the park. You’ll additionally discover the city of Walhalla and numerous waterfalls close by. Ask for a waterfall map if you test in. There are 139 commonplace campsites, 15 rustic tent websites and 19 cabins. Make reservations here.  

The campground is open year-round, however fall is a superb time to go to for cooler temperatures and gorgeous foliage. If you happen to occur to go through the third week of October, attempt to catch Walhalla’s Oktoberfest celebration. Throughout the winter months, Oconee is the right vacation spot for fishing and cozying up by the campfire. Summertime brings extra crowds however is right for swimming and boating. North Carolina and Georgia are simply accessible from Oconee, that means you gained’t be restricted when it comes to issues to do. Take a look at areas simply throughout the North Carolina border, corresponding to Gorges State Park in Cashiers, and Nantahala Nationwide Forest. Or head over to Georgia’s Tallulah Gorge State Park to see probably the most spectacular canyons within the Southeast. 

Desk Rock State Park (Pickens) 

Table Rock State Park is a mountain lover’s paradise, with ample alternatives for mountaineering and exploring charming mountain cities like Vacationers Relaxation in addition to larger cities like Greenville. Between the Mountain Laurel and White Oak campgrounds, there are 94 commonplace campsites (for each tents and RVs) and 14 furnished cabins. The Mountain Laurel Campground tends to be busier, so go for White Oak Campground for a extra laid-back expertise (particularly website 83 if it’s obtainable as a result of it backs as much as a small creek). Make your reservations here.  

If you happen to’re up for a problem whilst you’re at Desk Rock State Park, deal with the Table Rock Trail. It’s steep and lengthy, however nicely definitely worth the effort for the sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the summit. Different state parks to go to if you’re within the space embrace Jones Hole State Park (really helpful hike: Rainbow Falls) and Paris Mountain State Park (really helpful hike: Lake Placid Loop). Climbing isn’t the one factor to do within the space: Guests may go fishing, bird-watching, kayaking and swimming.  

If not one of the state park campgrounds on this record match what you’re searching for, try the South Carolina state parks web site for extra choices. Alternatively, you’ll be able to try privately owned spots corresponding to these listed on Hipcamp, which are typically pricier however could provide distinctive experiences or extra seclusion.  

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