7 Ways to Get Outside in Charleston

Enjoy activities outside in Charleston

1. Take a hike

Whether you want gravel or dirt, there are several perfect hiking or biking options for getting outside in Charleston. The West Ashley Bikeway is the perfect 20-mile bike ride, run, or walk through West Ashley. Pass through woods, marshes, farms, and just about everything else on this gorgeous paved trail. Looking for something a little more adventurous? The Palmetto Trail is a 425-plus-mile trail that covers the entire state. You can access a good portion of it just past Mount Pleasant and get on the Awendaw entrance. Here you will see marsh, woods, and beach.

2. Take a walk

If a 425-mile bike ride seems like a bit much, remember you can always walk these and other trails, or even just walk around downtown. When a city is filled with this much to see, you can go in any direction and expect to be amazed. Do boat rides sound like fun? Take the ferry to Fort Sumter and walk around the old Civil War camp, or walk to the end of Folly Beach and take a peak at the lighthouse located about five miles off the shore.

3. Take a tour  

When you live in a city that only has the best seasons, you can accomplish so much! Case in point: a history lesson. Choose from any of the plantation tours (the Tea Plantation is my favorite) or a garden tour (Magnolia Gardens is fantastic) and see Charleston in a whole new light. While this exercise isn’t really “exercise,” it is still a way to experience Charleston first hand and see what makes this city so fabulous.

4. Take a kayak

Cars are so overrated; not to mention they harm our environment. Solution? Rent a kayak or paddleboard from Folly Beach, Sullivan’s Island, Isle of Palms, or even Shem Creek, and go explore Charleston the way nature intended: by sea (or marsh, depending on where you rent).

5. Take a second helping

Eat. Everything. Charleston is known for its gourmet meals, so why not grab some food to go from your favorite place (or one of my favorite places) and pack a picnic in White Point Gardens, Folly Beach, or just a quiet corner downtown? Most restaurants offer great take-out options, so you won’t miss out on anything. Plus, you can bring your own wine (just don’t get caught!)

6. Take a nap

Seriously. These things make me tired just writing them, so why take a little siesta? The beauty of this is that you have a choice of some of the most diverse landscape imaginable! Choose between the sandy beaches, the cobble stone roads (I would not advise laying in the road), the soft grass under the large oaks, a picnic bench outside an old plantation … the sky really is the limit here. Plus, if just reading this post makes you exhausted, maybe this is a good way to “get outdoors” without hurting yourself.

7. Take a friend

Truth is, Charleston is a very friendly city filled with very friendly people. But, the above mentioned items are best enjoyed with a friend. How else can you get pictures of yourself kayaking through Shem Creek or biking along the Palmetto Trail? You could always call yourself out as a tourist and buy one of those selfie-sticks, but then who will you share your shrimp and grits with at dinner?

Looking for more great ways to get outside in Charleston and beyond? Check out our Essential Southern Road Trip along the South Carolina coast.
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you want something else?

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