Living the Locals Life at Lowcountry Beaches

Sullivan's Island Convention and Visitors Bureau
Sponsored by: Chslocals.com
Feel like watching the sun rise over the ocean? Need to stick your toes in the sand and recharge after a tough week at work? Want to change up your usual running route to include beach views?
When you live in the Charleston area, it’s easy. Most people are 30 minutes or less from getting their feet wet in the Atlantic. You can catch a Saturday sunset or lie on the sand on a Tuesday – that’s the beauty of being a Charleston local!
And, sometimes, we take those majestic ocean views and the feeling of warm sand between our toes for granted. When was the last time you explored Charleston’s beaches? There’s no time like the present to pack up the family and head to one of the three area beaches:
 

Isle of Palms

For a family day at the beach, IOP is perfect. Arrive early and park at the Isle of Palms County Park. If you happen to have a Gold Pass with Charleston County Parks, you can park for free. Plus, you have easy access to restrooms, showers and changing areas. Lifeguards are also on duty during the summer to help you keep an eye on your surfers in training.

Isle of Palms

Isle of Palms

For a beach-themed date night, dine on crab cakes or roasted scallops at Acme Lowcountry Kitchen. For a spectacular sunset, book at table at Morgan Creek Grill to enjoy dinner with a view of the Intracoastal Waterway and surrounding Lowcountry marshes.

Folly Beach

Montage Palmetto Bluff

Folly Beach

Folly Beach

Folly Beach

For that eclectic, laid-back beach vibe, plan an afternoon at Folly Beach. Locals know “the washout” at the northern end of the beach is a favorite spot for surfing or simply a good place to watch the experts ride the waves.

The Washout, Folly Beach

The Washout, Folly Beach

If you want a place to play in the sand or spread out your beach blanket, head to a spot closer to Folly Beach County Park. That’s also a good place to park your car for the day (and Gold Pass holders with Charleston County Parks are admitted for free). You can even visit the Folly Beach Pier and try ocean fishing (rent all the gear you need on site).
When it’s time for lunch, grab a table at Rita’s Seaside Grill and order a crab cake sandwich or fried shrimp basket. Or try the new Pier 101 for beachfront dining with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Rita's Seaside Grill, Folly Beach

Rita's Seaside Grill, Folly Beach

Rita's Seaside Grill, Folly Beach

Pier 101, Folly Beach

Pier 101, Folly Beach

Walk off your lunch with a trek to the northern end of the beach. You really can’t have too many photos of the Morris Island Lighthouse. Built in 1876, it’s no longer a working lighthouse, but it is a beloved historic landmark and beautiful symbol of Folly Beach.

Morris Island Lighthouse, Folly Beach

Sullivan’s Island

 

Sullivan's Island

Sullivan's Island

This beach is only 3.3 miles, but it’s one of Charleston’s most pristine spaces. The beachfront lands are owned by the town and protected under easements, so the natural beauty and unspoiled views make it a sandy Charleston treasure.
The slim black and white lighthouse on Sullivan's is a reminder of Charleston's status as a busy seaport. You can access the lighthouse via Station 18 1/2.
After a morning of sunshine and saltwater air, the biggest decision of the day will be what to have for lunch: a pulled pork sandwich at Fiery Ron’s Home Team BBQ or tacos and margaritas at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina.

Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, Sullivan's Island

Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, Sullivan's Island

Home Team BBQ, Sullivan's Island

Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, Sullivan's Island

Seabrook Island

Only about 30 minutes from downtown Charleston is private Seabrook Island where visitors can enjoy 3 miles of pristine beaches, championship golf courses, horseback riding, a marina and more. Seabrook Island is a heavily forested island dominated by majestic live oaks, palm trees, pines, hickories, magnolias and sweetgum trees.

Seabrook Island

Seabrook Island

For a truly unique experience, book a guided trail ride with the Equestrian Center, offering one of the few beach rides on the East Coast.

Kiawah Island

This quiet community has a 10-mile stretch of beach available to property owners and resort guests or those staying at a rental property. Public access to the beach is available at Beachwalker County Park, located on the west end of the island. The park has a picnic area, restrooms and lifeguards on duty seasonally in the designated swimming area. Leashed dogs are welcome at this beachfront park, so you can bring along your pup for some fun in the sun.

Kiawah Island

Beachwalker County Park, Kiawah Island

Kiawah Island is a beach setting surrounded by the natural beauty of marshes and thick forests of pines, magnolias and massive live oaks.
If you’re looking for a break in between beaches, stop at Freshfields Village on Kiawah Island for a unique shopping experience. The picturesque outdoor center offers a great mix of boutiques, restaurants and service establishments. So you can grab a sweet treat, sit down for an elegant dinner or find a beautiful new outfit – all in one convenient village.
Each Lowcountry beach has its own character and vibe, but there’s one thing they all have in common: spending time at these beaches is a great reminder of why living in Charleston really is living the good life.
To discover more of the amazing sights and experiences Charleston has to offer locals, visit the Home, Historic Home website at chslocals.com.