Exploring Edisto Island State Park (Edisto Island, SC)

Ever since getting the news that I’ll be moving to Hawaii this summer, I’ve been trying to explore South Carolina as much as possible. One of the ways that I’ve done this is by reading Falcon’s hiking guide on South Carolina. The book has 60 trails through the entire state and includes maps and other helpful information.

While trying to find a nearby hiking trail, I ran across Edisto Island. It’s about an hour south from where I live, which is a relatively short distance. There are very few trails in lowcountry South Carolina. If you want to see spectacular sights, you have to drive about 4 hours upstate.

Unfortunately, the route is mostly back roads. You begin on a freeway, then move onto a highway, then onto a tiny one-lane road with 60 mph speed limits. As you near the island, maw and paw restaurants and vegetable markets start popping up. Soon afterwards the one-lane road eventually opens up to a scenic byway.

Once on the island, beach houses litter the main road and a small entrance to the state park can be found. The fee was about $5 for my car and includes parking at the beach and at the campgrounds. I arrived late in the day, so I immediately headed for the trails at the campgrounds.

Overall the park features around 3 miles of trails. Many of which include paths deviating from the main trail and lead off into different sections of the forest. I was drawn to the easternmost trail which had the most boardwalks. Here are some images from the trip:



















The guidebook emphasized that Edisto Island is covered in mosquitoes and ticks. I prepared by soaking myself in deet but I didn’t encounter either of them. Most of the trail borders marshland, which makes the trail more scenic but in the summer months, I could imagine swarms of mosquitoes rising out of the water.

If you go, I would recommend bringing a swimsuit for the beach and tennis shoes for the hike. The trail has relatively low elevation gains and is well made. If you go earlier in the day, there is a nature center that you could visit.

Overall, Edisto Island is worth visiting because the trails are family friendly, the views are nice, and there’s versatility while you’re hiking because you can make your trek longer or shorter by changing routes. Even the beach would make a great stop after a few hours of exploration. If you’re in the area, I would definitely recommend visit the island.


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