Hampton County Area

Hampton County

Hampton County

Watermelon Capital

Once mapped as “Indian Lands”, this county of deep forests, swamps, and ponds is today famous to many sportsmen, hunters and fishermen for its exceptional hunting grounds and excellent river and creek fishing.

Not only does the Lowcountry offer one of the longest hunting seasons in the country, it also contains the largest whitetailed deer populations in the state.

Evidence of this area’s first residents, the native Indians can still be seen through such fascinating river names as the Salkehatchie, the Combahee and the Coosawhatchie. Hunting for Indian artifacts is a popular pastime, especially over a freshly plowed field after a good rain where many an arrowhead or pottery shard can be discovered.

The town of Hampton is the county seat, named after General Wade Hampton, an important Civil War military leader and  state governor. Hampton, along with its sister town of Varnville are the hosts of the annual Hampton County Watermelon Festival, South Carolina’s oldest continuing festival dating back to 1939. Hampton County is a major producer of watermelons in the state and each June over 60,000 visitors come to help celebrate and enjoy this delicious summertime crop.

Yemassee, just one mile off Interstate 95, hosts an annual Shrimp Festival in September, celebrating the abundance of shrimp caught locally each year and featuring a boat parade, kiddie rides and unique shrimp cuisine. Furman, Estill and Gifford are hosts to spring, summer and fall festivals. Brunson is host to a “Fun Day” for you and Varnville celebrates with a “Day in the Park”.

Recreation abounds at Lake Warren State Park, a 1,390 acre fishing, boating and picnic area. Nature lovers can view alligators and water birds from the pier or along the lake’s edge.

Other attractions throughout this county of friendly rural towns are farms and numerous antebellum plantation homes, historic churches and cemeteries. There are many Places to Go and Things to See in Hampton County.

Unique sights to see include the Webb Wildlife Center, Hampton’s town and county museums (both in historic buildings), and the town of Varnville which was the setting for 1930s scenes from the movie “Forrest Gump.” The Hampton Museum & Visitors Center is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Hampton County Attractions

Click on the name of the attraction for more information.

Brunson’s Famous Town Hall
The Brunson Museum and Visitor Center was cited in “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” as being the only stilted, octagonal town hall in the world. Built on stilts in 1906, the town hall provided shade to an artesian well. Benches were placed around it to provide a recreational spot. Over the years, the tiny town hall was encroached by the modern highway and railway systems, so in 1959, it was removed from its stilts and moved to its current location. The building continued to serve as the center of town government until 1996. The museum offers a wonderful collection of artifacts, photographs, paintings, and other memorabilia documenting the history of Brunson and the surrounding area.
Although no longer on stilts, it stands tall and proud as a landmark of this once “largest town” on the Charleston & Western Railroad.
800 Railroad Avenue, Brunson

Hampton’s American Legion Hut
This home of American Post 108, located at 302 Hoover St South, was built of cypress logs in 1933. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Hampton County Courthouse
This “Temple of Justice” is on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1878, the same year the SC General Assembly declared this northern portion of Beaufort County its own separate county. Hwy 278.

Hampton County Museum
702 First Street West, Hampton, (803)943-3387 or (803)943-5484, Th 10am-noon & 4-7pm, Sun 3-5pm. Housed in the former Hampton Jailhouse building, operated & maintained as a joint effort by Hampton County & the Historic Society. Contains a Civil War memorabilia, including various maps, uniforms, photographs of the county, its people & their ancestors.

Hampton Museum & Visitors Center
15 Elm Street East, Hampton, (803)943-5318
This museum contains military artifacts, as well as a children’s room. Exhibits antique medical equipment donated by local physicians & a section dedicated to ethnic cultures of the Lowcountry. Local craftsmen & artisans also contribute to continuous rotating exhibits. On National Register of Historic Places.

Hampton Walking Tour
Leaves from Hampton Museum & Visitors Center or Chamber of Commerce Offices, 15 Elm Street East, Hampton. (803)943-5318 or (803)943-3784. Peaceful walking tour of a small southern town’s historic buildings, elegant gardens & quaint shops.

Lake Warren State Park
Located off Hwy. 601 South, (803)943-5051. 400-acre park offers pier fishing, boating, picnicking, & nature viewing on a shady lake. Open dawn to dusk.

Lawtonville Baptist Church
Corner of 2nd & Lawton Avenue, Estill, (803)625-2871. Constituted in 1775, boasts pictures, brochures & interesting artifacts of Hampton County’s past.

Lawtonville Cemetery
Circa 1819. Site of Lawtonville Village (destroyed by Gen. Sherman’s troops). View remains of masonry staircase of one of the oldest Baptist churches in South Carolina. Near Estill.

Palmetto Theater
108 Lee Avenue, Hampton. Circa 1946. Built in the Art Deco influenced Art Moderne style that became popular after the war. When supplies were hard to come by, this style evolved to use an artistic approach to cheaper building materials. The results were stunning.

Stoney Creek Presbyterian Chapel
25481 Pocotaligo Rd, Circa 1832. Built in the high piney woods in McPhersonville. Plantation owners & their families had summer residences here. Many gave up portions of their property to provide place of worship. The chapel was also used as a hospital during the Civil War.

Town of Varnville
Originally known as “Dixie”, circa 1800. View lovely old homes. It was said that the aristocrats settled in Varnville. One of the original founders, James Varn, operated a sawmill. Scenes from the movie “Forrest Gump” were filmed here. Town Park features gazebo and restored caboose.

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Hampton Museum

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The Lowcountry & Resort Islands Region of South Carolina includes the four, southern-most counties in the state, Beaufort, Jasper, Hampton, and Colleton, which are bordered on the east by the Atlantic Ocean and on the west by the Savannah River and the state of Georgia.

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The shore gently recedes beneath the stunning Pawleys Island Pier. The unique island town, located about 25 miles south of Myrtle Beach and 70 miles north of Charleston, exudes laid-back, beachy vibes. Locals have definitely adopted an island state of mind and encourage visitors to as well. When you go, make sure to relax on the beach, explore the famous sand dunes, or fish in one of the many adjacent creeks.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: We guarantee that you’re going to want to spend a whole day here. We recommend getting to the beach at around 10am.🗓️ Best time of the year: Pawleys Island has the best weather during the spring and early summer months.🏖️ Things to do while there: Pawleys Island Nature Park, Pawleys Island Chapel, Hopsewee Plantation.🐠 Things to visit in the area: Brookgreen Gardens (brookgreen_gardens), take a walking ghost tour, Myrtle Beach (mymyrtlebeach), Harborwalk Marina, South Carolina Maritime Museum (southcarolinamaritimemuseum).🏨 Where to stay: The Oceanfront Litchfield Inn (oceanfrontlitchfieldinn), Litchfield Beach and Golf Resort (litchfieldbeachandgolf), Sea View Inn (seaviewinn), 620 Prince (620prince).Photo by qcphotographer
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Headed down the road....Edisto Island.  #edisto #sclowcountry #trees #endofday  #beauty #islandsofsc
Spanish moss drapes the live oak trees that are ubiquitous to the Edisto Island area. Did you know that Edisto gets its name from the native Edistow people? The Edistow Native Americans were a sub tribe of the Cusabo indians, a group of Native Americans who lived along the Atlantic coast in South Carolina.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: Stop by mid-morning. That way you can explore the island, grab lunch, and stay for the amazing sunset if you choose.🏖️ Things to do while there: Edisto Environmental Learning Center, Boneyard Beach, Scott Creek Inlet, Big Bay Creek, SeaCow Eatery.☀️ Things to visit in the area: Jungle Road Park, Bay Creek Park, Otter Islands, Spanish Mount Point.📆 Best time of the year to visit: For warmer weather come anywhere from March-August.🏨 Where to stay: Fripp Island Golf & Beach Resort (frippislandrsrt), Seabrook Island Club (seabrook_sc), The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort (kiawahresort), Charleston Kiawah Island/Andell Inn (andellinn).Photo by qcphotographer
Discover at your own leisure at the coastaldiscoverymuseum 🌳  From century-old buildings with storied pasts, to wooden boardwalks that stretch into the Jarvis Creek salt marsh, there's always something to explore!
A visitor takes a leisurely stroke under a canopy of live oaks draped with Spanish moss in the Palmetto Bluff (palmettobluff) neighborhood of Bluffton, South Carolina. Palmetto Bluff is a picturesque community that sits in the heart of Lowcountry. Nestled along the May River, it’s abundant with beautiful walking trails, historic sites, and stunning views.⏰ Best time of the day to visit: There is no wrong time to visit Palmetto Bluff. However, we highly recommend sticking around for one of their spectacular sunsets.🛶 Things to do while there: Stop by Cole’s for some regionally inspired Southern fare, paddle board, kayak, or canoe along the May River, go saltwater fishing, take a tour at Bluffton Jack's Old Town Tours.🌊 Things to visit in the area: Palmetto Bluff Conservancy, Old Town Bluffton, Bluffton Oyster Factory Park, May River Sandbar, Heyward House Museum and Welcome Center (heywardhouse).📆 Best time of the year to visit: For the best weather, we recommend visiting between March and May or from September to November.🏨 Where to stay: The Montage Palmetto Bluff Resort (montagepalmettobluff) is the only resort in Palmetto Bluff. However, there are plenty of places to stay in the surrounding areas including: Old Town Bluffton Inn (oldtownblufftoninn), The Inn & Club at Harbour Town (theinnandclubatharbourtown), Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island (sonestahhi).Photo by jpgriceoz
Reposted from coastaldiscoverymuseum Hilton Head Island has the second highest tidal range on the East Coast, second only to Canada’s Bay of Fundy. The average tidal range here is 7-9 feet between high and low tides.The Salt Marsh is one of our area’s most prominent features, not to mention an essential resource. Most coastal creatures depend partially or even fully on the Salt Marsh for survival as it serves as a nursery, as well as a water filter vital for the functioning of the entire coastal ecosystem.Explore the Lowcountry up close with a visit to the Coastal Discovery Museum and head out into the marsh via the Osprey Outlook floating dock on a self-guided tour or register for the weekly Salt Marsh Discovery program to learn from an expert how and why this particular environment is so important. (843) 689-6767 ext. 223 or coastaldiscovery.org.
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It’s my last week in the Lowcountry. I will be incredibly happy to be back home, but I will sure miss these views. ☀️🌴[Image Description: a photo of a sun setting over the Lowcountry wetlands. The cloud in the sky are reflected on the water below.]
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The South Carolina Lowcountry Guidebook is filled with many things to see and do in the beautiful Lowcountry of South Carolina. Please fill out the information and we will send you a FREE GUIDE BOOK.


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