6 Day Trip Activities at Edisto Beach

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*This article was originally published in 2016 and updated in 2024.

I know we have some awesome beaches at our fingertips, but if you want to branch out to a place that holds a piece of my heart, you should try Edisto Beach in South Carolina!

My family has been vacationing there for quite some time, and it is an easy day trip from anywhere in the Charleston area as well. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a small island on the other side of Wadmalaw and Seabrook Islands.

Here are some great things to do as a family at Edisto Beach! And for even more ideas and things to do on Edisto, check out Exploring Edisto Island: A Guide for Families.

Argus Monitor at the Serpentarium on Edisto.
An Argus Monitor can be found at the Serpentarium.

6 Things to Do at Edisto Beach

1. Enjoy the Beach!

The beaches are beautiful and are rarely busy or crowded, although the ocean-side beach will be busier than the one on the bay side. My family stays on the bay side typically, but you can easily hop over to the ocean side if you’d like to jump some waves. The bay side is especially good for dolphins at any time of the day. You can access the beach along the main road where you see any blue beach access sign, and parking is easy as well.

2. Camping

If you want to make it an overnight trip, there is an excellent campground at Edisto Beach State Park. I’ve seen many friends go there — it’s a good site if camping is your thing!

3. Serpentarium

A good stop for children who enjoy reptiles and things that slither is the Serpentarium. You can explore so many varieties of alligators, turtles, snakes, and lizards! I have family members that go every year. I’d suggest you hit that place on the way into town before going to the beach.

4. Botany Bay

If shells and fossils are a favorite of yours, Botany Bay is a must. However, it is about a half-mile walk to the beach, and legally you can’t take any of the shells with you. As a sanctuary for wildlife, it really is quite breathtaking and children always enjoy seeing the shells. I highly recommend this as a stop, maybe on your way back home around sunset- awesome photo opportunity. Check their website calendar for open dates, and rules for visitors, before you go.

A conch shell at Botany Bay on Edisto.
A conch shell at Botany Bay.

5. Rent Bikes

You can rent bikes on the island at Island Bikes & Outfitters or Edisto Bike Rentals. There is a nice trail and a bike route along Jungle Road. Make sure you take a walk on the beach and look for Eddie Stow — he’s fun to get in a picture. You can usually spot some Loggerhead Sea Turtle nests too in the early summer.

6. Restaurants

There are also plenty of restaurants on the island, with my personal favorite being the Waterfront Restaurant as a family-friendly option of delicious, fresh seafood. Note: it’s not actually on the waterfront.

A tree trunk dressed up on Edisto Island.
Eddie Stow on Edisto Island

You can’t go wrong if you venture out to Edisto Island; the locals are friendly, and there is plenty to do. I would try and stop at King’s Market on Hwy 174 on your way out of town for a scrumptious Tomato Pie to bring home — it’s worth every penny!

What is something your family likes to do at Edisto Beach? Share with us in the comments below!

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