South Carolina

I've been looking forward to writing about South Carolina. You may wonder why. Well, it's partly because it is a fascinating state with a huge history and partly because of the quarterly newsletters I get from 5 or 6 places in the state. In these newsletters there are recipes. I have tried several and they all turned out good. So grab a snack and something to drink. I have all the normal materials ready and we can begin to explore South Carolina.

In 1776, the Palmetto State declared independence from Great Britain and set up their own government. It was the first state to ratify The Articles of Confederation, the first American Constitution. They were briefly re-captured by the British and then reclaimed by the United States after the Battle of Cowpens. They became the 8th state to ratify the present Constitution of the United States. South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union before the Civil War. Soon after, Confederate forces attacked Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor in the first basttle of the Civil War. Only Mississippi took longer to ratify the 19th Amendment granting voting rights to women. The state insect is the Carolina mantis. The state craft is sweetgrass basket weaving. The Black Water River with the Edisto River makes the longest completely undammed and unleveed blackwater river in North America. The world's largest collection of outdoor sculpture is at Brookgreen Gardens and the oldest landscaped gardens in the United States is at Middleton Place.

Falls Park has numerous intertwining trails. While traveling through groves of indigenous trees, you can see some of South Carolina's most beautiful botany beds.  Liberty Bridge is the best observation point for viewing Reedy River Falls.

The Wompus Woods has an unusual attraction. From late spring to early fall while walking through the woods, you might come across the Wompus Monster. There is a 16 mile trail so your chances are pretty good. The 7 mile Stevens Creek Bike Trail in nearby Sumter National Forest should provide some fun for bikers. No monsters, just high-speed mountain trails.

South Carolina is proud of its genteel southern heritage. They still have a lot of the original plantations. Boone Hall Plantation still has 9 original slave cabins to show what life on the plantation was like. The lane leading to the plantation has 265 year old oak trees dripping with Spanish moss to form a canopy. The fields that used to grow indigo and pecans now produce tomatoes and strawberries.

Charleston Tea Plantation on Wadmalaw Island is the only tea plantation in North America. They harvest fresh tea leaves from May through October, but you can come look around at any time of year. Samples are available as well as some to purchase for taking home.

If you like camping and water sports, the west coastal areas are as good as the east coast or ocean side. Hamilton Branch Recreation Area has camping and hiking available. And most campsites are right on the lake.

A lot of times it's good to get off the beaten track. Three Rivers Greenway allows you to walk along the Congaree, Saluda, or Broad Rivers. There are trails for jogging. You can just look around at nature. Or maybe you'd like to grab a kayak or canoe. This greenway is also dog friendly so your best friend can join you.

The Hunting Island Lighthouse is the only lighthouse in South Carolina that allows you to climb the stairs to enjoy the view. It was built of brick and wood but 3 years after it was built, it was blown up during the Civil War. It was rebuilt after the war. After an earthquake, it was moved about 1 and 1/2 miles inland to where it now stands.

South Carolina has plantations, rivers, wetlands, ocean beaches, trees, gardens... you get the picture. You can take a cruise or just lay back and take advantage of a laid-back southern day. The travel guide also has recipes, so you must know they are big on seeing you fed. You will need to not only let me know where your adventures have taken you, but you need to try some of these recipes and let me know your favorites. I am going to see if I can get permission to see where the atom bomb accidentally fell from a plane. Then I'm off to the Oyotunji African Village that claims to be its own nation and not part of the United States. There are links below for you to do your planning.


Official South Carolina Site
Travel Guide
State Parks
National Parks
Offbeat Tourist Attractions


  1. I like to hang out here for the holidays, get a bit of ocean sand in my clothes.


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