History and Nature Abound at Charles Towne Landing State Park

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Have you visited Charles Towne Landing? If you’re heading to Charleston and looking for a way to spend the day without breaking the bank, you don’t want to miss it. Charles Towne Landing is a South Carolina State Park that has something for everyone including a history trail, 17th century sailing ship, an animal nature park, and beautiful grounds. We think you should put this attraction on your Charleston bucket list!

Charles Towne Landing Musuem

Charles Towne Landing is a Historic site, located off of the Ashley River where the English settlers landed. These brave travelers first set foot on the shores of South Carolina in 1670 and stayed creating what became the Carolina colony.

All of that historical relevance will probably be a hard sell for the children in your family however, this 664-acre state park is so much more than just a lesson in history.

The Legare Waring House

This unique state park includes 80 acres of grounds and gardens to wander. There are beautiful live oaks leading up to the Legare Waring House. This nearly 200-year-old home is a popular place for weddings and events.

The grounds make a beautiful backdrop for vacation family photos or a lunchtime picnic. Those beautiful moss dripped trees that the south is so famous for provide children with a natural playground while visiting. We took so many photos in the gardens. Make sure you pack a travel tripod, so everyone can get in the photo!

During the months of January, February, July, and August the park offers ranger-guided tours of the grounds and the house.

The Adventure Ship & History Trail

Have you ever wanted to board a 17th-century sailing ship? Your family can see what it was like for the approximately 120 brave settlers who traveled across the Atlantic. The ship is functional; however, the ship is moored to the dock and doesn’t take passengers on rides.

Step back in time by walking the History Trail complete with reconstructed fortifications, a crop garden, and more. Settlers occupied this area from 1670 to 1680.

The Animal Forest

This trail will introduce guests to the wildlife that originally inhabited the area when the settlers arrived. These are animals your child will recognize as native, and some that even adults will be surprised to see up close. The trail winds next to the river and you might even catch glimpse of wildlife that isn’t part of the exhibit! During your visit to the 22-acre natural habitat zoo, ask a ranger if there are any animal enrichment activities happening during your visit.

Bicycles & dogs are not permitted inside the Animal Forest.

Charles Towne Landing

Important Info About A Visit To Charles Towne Landing

  • If all of the trails are walked between exhibits, the distance is 7 miles. Free use of strollers and wheelchairs are available at the ticket counter.
  • Depending on the time of year, the heat and humidity can become overwhelming. I can’t urge readers enough to bring ample drinking water with them.
  • Cannons and muskets are fired off during the “Black Powder Program.” If you have a child with sensory issues take note of whether this program is happening during your visit.
  • Guests can come and go from the park with the price of admittance. This is helpful if you are visiting during the hot summer months. You can leave and grab lunch and then come back for a few hours before the park closes.
  • If you have your four-legged family members with you on the trip, leashed dogs are permitted on the grounds (with the exception of the Animal Forest).
  • The park rents bicycles for $8/person per hour or $20 per person for the entire day.  Visitors are also welcome to bring their own bicycles and enjoy the park’s six miles of paved and natural trails.

Admission To Charles Towne Landing

Guests with a South Carolina State Park Passport will get into the park for free! If you are a fan of South Carolina State Parks, I encourage you to consider this pass. It’s worth the money paid.

Admission for all others:
$12 – adult
$7.50 – South Carolina Resident Senior
$7 – youth age 6-15
Free for children 5 and younger

1500 Old Towne Road, Charleston, SC 29407

Have you been to this unique state park? What was your favorite part?

About the Author
Melanie is a native New Yorker, who landed in the Upstate by way of Florida. She is the mom of two awesome kids, and the three of them love going on adventures!

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