Bluffton Sights to See
Bluffton Oyster Factory Park
63 Wharf Street, Old Town Bluffton | (843)757-4010
Located on the May River in Old Town Bluffton, the park celebrates the oldest continuous operating oyster shucking facility in South Carolina. Opened in the early 1900’s, the 4.5 acre site on the pristine May River was purchased by the Beaufort County Open Land Trust and has evolved into a community park. The Garvin-Garvey Freedman’s Cottage sits on the bluff overlooking the river.
Bluffton Shell Art Trail
Throughout Old Town Bluffton | (888)587-4593, ext. 2
The Shell Art Trail is a new cultural art exhibit. 21 unique fiberglass oyster sculptures have been placed throughout Old Town Bluffton. Each oyster is a true work of art, painted by a local artist. Download a digital map or print out your own Shell Art Trail Passbook and get ready to follow the trail to the most spectacularly decorated sculptures you’ve ever seen. A special plaque on each will provide you with a unique “oyster fact” in answer to questions in your Passbook. Match questions and answers to increase your knowledge as you travel the Trail.
Bluffton’s Shell Art Trail Blog Post
Campbell Chapel AME Church
23 Boundary Street, Bluffton | (843)757-3652
The Campbell Chapel AME Church is the oldest surviving church within the historic district of Bluffton. Constructed in 1853 by the Bluffton Methodist Episcopal Church, the property changed hands in 1874 when it was purchased by freedmen. The church is believed to have been built by slaves.
Campbell Chapel AME Blog Post.
Church of the Cross Episcopal
110 Calhoun Street, Bluffton | (843)757-2661
This Gothic structure was built in 1857. Inside visitors will find soft pink plaster walls and exposed pine timbers, along with a walnut alter. In 1863 Federal troops burned much of the area but left this church untouched.
Church of the Cross Blog Post
63 Wharf Street, Bluffton | (843) 757-6293
This 1870 Freedman’s Cottage is a great example of the late 19th century Carolina Lowcountry architecture. It was constructed by Cyrus Garvin during the Reconstruction era. Guided tours are available and last approximately 30 minutes.
Garvin Garvey Freedman’s Cottage Blog Post
The Heyward House
70 Boundary Street, Bluffton | (843)757-62293
Built-in 1841 as a summer cottage for a Lowcountry planter, the Heyward House is Southern Beaufort County’s only house museum and Bluffton’s official welcome center. It offers free information on things to see and do Also available are docent-guided tours of the site.
Heyward House Blog Post.
Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge
Off Hwy. 278, between the bridges to Hilton Head Island | (843) 784-2468
This 4,053 acres refuge preserves salt marsh and maritime habitat. Historical marker commemorating Major General Charles Cotesworth Pinckney. It offers ideal opportunities for hiking, bicycling, photography, and wildlife observation.
Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge Blog Post
Pritchard Pocket Park
End of Pritchard Street, Bluffton | (843)706-4500
A living example of Bluffton’s River Overlay Protection District, this planted buffer provides visitors the opportunity to see how vegetated buffers along waterways protect water quality and enhance property aesthetics.
Society of Bluffton Artists
6 Church Street, Street, Bluffton | (843)757-6586
A co-op gallery of Bluffton artists and craftspeople, the Guild is located in the historic Planters Mercantile building. Featuring original paintings in various media and styles, hand-made pottery, jewelry, turned wood pieces, baskets and more.
Victoria Bluff Heritage Preserve/Wildlife Management Area
Sawmill Creek Rd. Bluffton | (843)546-8119
The 977 acre Victoria Bluff Heritage Preserve provides an escape from the crowds. The preserve contains an example of the pine-saw palmetto flatwoods community, which is rare in South Carolina. As the name suggests, the pine-saw palmetto community is dominated by longleaf and slash pine in the overstory and saw palmetto in the understory. The other community type located on the preserve is the mainland maritime forest. This community occurs adjacent to the saltwater creeks and is dominated by live oak, cabbage palm, and slash pine. The preserve provides an excellent area for birdwatching, particularly in the spring. Pine, yellow-throated, and yellow rumped warblers, white-eyed vireos, summer tanagers and flycatchers can be seen in a short time. White-tailed deer, fox and gray squirrels can also be observed.