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Wildlife Preserves and Nature Trails in South Carolina Lowcountry

“Take only pictures, leave only footprints”

Read our blog on hiking in the SC Lowcountry.

BEAUFORT AREA – HUNTING ISLAND

Hunting Island State Park Trails
2555 Sea Island Parkway, Hunting Island | (843)838-2011
Hunting Island State Park attracts more than a million visitors a year. Five miles of pristine beach, thousands of acres of marsh and maritime forest, a saltwater lagoon and ocean inlet are all part of the park’s natural allure. The park has eight different trails to explore, winding through the beach, forest and along Johnson Creek. Visitors can view a vast array of land and marine wildlife. (843)838-2011
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HUNTING ISLAND STATE PARK BLOG
HUNTING ISLAND MARSH BOARDWALK BLOG

Marsh Boardwalks at Hunting Island State Park

BEAUFORT AREA – LADY’S ISLAND

Crystal Lake Park
124 Lady’s Island Drive, Beaufort  | (843)255-2152
Crystal Lake Park is a 25-acre park winds through forested habitats, salt marsh and around Crystal Lake. The park has many opportunities for visitors to learn about the Lowcountry’s natural resources. Walk the trail or visit the interpretative center. Catch and release fishing can be done from the docks.
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CRYSTAL LAKE PARK BLOG

BEAUFORT AREA – PORT ROYAL

Cypress Wetlands Walking Trail
1700 Paris Avenue, Port Royal | (843)986-2200
Come to the Cypress Wetlands Walking Trail to view abundant populations of native wildlife. The forests, fresh and saltwater marshes, cypress swamps, and ponds provide habitat for a diverse community, including over two hundred species of birds.   The highest species diversity can be seen in the winter. Several species of wading birds including Egrets and herons can be seen nesting in the Rookery as well.
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CYPRESS WETLANDS BLOG

SANDS BEACH & HENRY ROBINSON BOARDWALK
Sands Beach Road, Port Royal | (843)986-2211
The Henry Robinson Boardwalk along Port Royal’s Battery Creek is a great place for a stroll. Enjoy the wildlife while walking along the vast waterway. Located on the southern tip of Port Royal, Battery Creek flows into the Beaufort River. Search for shark’s teeth on the sandy beach. Boats and kayaks can be launched from a ramp into the river. The boardwalk is a popular place for strolling, crabbing and fishing. An observation tower is located near the end of the boardwalk.
TRAIL MAP
SANDS BOARDWALK BLOG

BEAUFORT AREA – BEAUFORT

Spanish Moss Trail
Beaufort’s Spanish Moss Trail is 10-mile-long hiking and biking trail that is a favorite outdoor recreation destination. The trail offers beautiful water and marsh views along with coastal wildlife viewing.
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SPANISH MOSS TRAIL BLOG 1
SPANISH MOSS TRAIL BLOG 2

BLUFFTON

Victoria Bluff Wildlife Management Area
Sawmill Creek Road, Bluffton | (843)546-8119
The Victoria Bluff Wildlife Management Area is located in Bluffton on Hwy 278 and the Colleton River. Controlled hiking, bird watching, picnicking and camping. Regulated hunting. Check website for closings. 1(800)922-5431
TRAIL MAP

Victoria Bluff Wildlife Management Area

WRIGHT FAMILY PARK
111 Calhoun Street, Bluffton
Wright Family Park is located along the may River in Bluffton. This 2-acre park is great for walking, lawn activities, scenic viewing, and fishing
WRIGHT FAMILY PARK MAP

HILTON HEAD ISLAND

Audubon Newhall Preserve
55 Palmetto Bay Road, Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head’s Audubon Newhall Preserve is open to the public at no charge from dawn to dusk daily.
It has a series of short, easy walking trails through the fifty-acre preserve. Pick up a trail guide at the entrance which will guide you through a wide variety of trees and plants, from Florida Scrub to native hardwoods.
TRAIL MAP

Coastal Discovery Museum of Hilton Head Island
70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island | (843)689-6767
Discover and explore the wonders of the South Carolina Lowcountry at the Coastal Carolina Discovery Museum. Take a leisurely stroll around the museum’s 68-acre property. Trails include the sea shell nature trail which leads to Jarvis Creek, and the camellia garden with its 120 different varieties of bloom and color. Visit the region’s only native butterfly enclosure and experience the life cycle of the local butterfly population.

Jarvis Creek Park
50 Jarvis Creek Road, Hilton Head Island
Jarvis Creek Park has a freshwater pond for fishing, floating dock, playground, grass meadow, picnic facilities, grills, swings, paved pathways, mulched trails and restrooms.

Jarvis Creek Park

Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge
Off Hwy 278 past Graves Bridge, Hilton Head Island | (843)784-9911
Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge is 4,052 acres that preserve the salt marsh and maritime habitat. It offers a variety of opportunities to explore and enjoy the great outdoors from sunrise to sunset every day. You can observe and photograph wildlife, go fishing, or during the season, hunt white-tailed deer.
TRAIL MAP
PINCKNEY ISLAND NWR BLOG

Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge

Sea Pines Forest Preserve
(843) 785-3333
The Sea Pines Forest Preserve is a protected area for wildlife habitat and outdoor exploration. The preserve includes bridle paths, wetland boardwalks, bridges and fishing docks. Explorers can choose from guided boat tours, horseback rides, fishing expeditions, or wagon tours, or simply pick up a map and stroll the trails independently.

COLLETON COUNTY – EDISTO

Botany Bay Plantation Wildlife Management Area
Botany Bay Rd, off Hwy. 174, Edisto Island | (843)844-8957
The 4,360.5 acre Botany Bay Plantation Wildlife Management Area is located adjacent to the waters of the Atlantic Ocean in the southeast corner of Edisto Island. The area’s location near the North Edisto river places it within the boundary of the ACE Basin Focus Area, one of the largest remaining relatively undeveloped wetland ecosystems along the Atlantic Coast.
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BOTANY BAY WMA BLOG

Edisto Beach State Park Trails
8377 State Cabin Road, Edisto Island | (843)869-2156
Edisto Beach State Park has seven different trails that lead explorers through the maritime forest and along Bib Bay Creek. The Spanish Moss Trail takes hikers on a four mile walk to one of South Carolina’s oldest Native American shell mounds.
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EDISTO BEACH STATE PARK BLOG

Spanish Mount Trail at Edisto Beach State Park

Edisto Island Serpentarium
1374 Hwy. 174, Edisto Island | (843)869-1171
The Edisto Island Serpentarium features snakes, alligator pits, turtles, lizards. You can view these beautiful creatures in both indoor and outdoor facilities. alligators and turtles swim and play in outdoor ponds in outdoor gardens, while other reptiles bask in the large indoor solarium.
EDISTO ISLAND SERPENTARIUM BLOG

Edisto Island Serpentarium

Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge
8675 Willtown Road, Hollywood | (843)889-3084
The Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge helps protect the largest undeveloped estuary along the Atlantic Coast. Located on a former rice plantation, the area is home to a wide variety of wildlife.  The refuge office is located in the Grove Plantation house. Built in 1828, it is one of a few surviving antebellum mansions in the ACE Basin area.
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ACE BASIN NWR BLOG

COLLETON COUNTY – GREEN POND

ACE BASIN GREENWAY/The ACE Trail
Intersection of SC Hwy 303 and Folly Creek Lane, Green Pond
The Historic Ace Trail is located on a three acre site about 2 miles north of the intersection of US Hwy 17 and SC Hwy 303 in Colleton County.  It is adjacent a CSX rail crossing in the Green Pond community. The 3-mile trail is ideal for walking, biking, general exercise and bird watching.
TRAIL MAP

Bear Island Wildlife Management Area
42 TiTi Road, Green Pond | (843)844-8957
The Bear Island Wildlife Management Area  is managed to provide quality habitat for wintering waterfowl and other wetland wildlife including threatened and endangered species such as wood storks and bald eagles; to provide habitat for upland game and nongame species; and to provide recreational opportunities for the hunting and nonhunting public. Open Feb. 9th – Oct. 31st. Sunrise to sunset. Located between the Ashepoo and South Edisto Rivers, off US Hwy 17 and approx. 2 miles east of Green Pond.  Regulated hunting. 
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BEAR ISLAND WMA BLOG

Bear Island Wildlife Management Area

Donnelley Wildlife Management Area
585 Donnelley Drive, Green Pond | (843)844-8957
With more than 8,000 acres of diverse habitats, Donnelley Wildlife Management Area is a favorite Lowcountry destination for bird watchers. Located in Green Pond on land once used for rice cultivation, the property features a historic rice field system now managed to attract waterfowl and other migratory birds. Donnelley is part of the ACE Basin ecosystem and is one of 17 SC sites designated a global Important Bird Area by the Audubon Society. An 11-mile driving tour of the property takes you to some of the best spots to see the variety of birds and other wildlife.
TRAIL MAP
DONNELLEY WMA BLOG

Donnelley Wildlife Management Area

COLLETON COUNTY – JACKSONBORO

Edisto Nature Trail
17038 Ace Basin Pkwy., Round O
The Edisto Nature Trail is located within the ACE Basin. Hikers can choose between a short or long looped trail. The scenic trail offers several historic features including an old phosphate operation, an old canal, rice fields, and an old railroad tram, all along the historic King’s Highway.
EDISTO NATURE TRAIL BLOG

Westvaco Nature Trail

COLLETON COUNTY – WALTERBORO

Colleton State Park Nature Trail
147 Wayside Lane, Walterboro | (843)538-8206
Conveniently located just five minutes off I-95, Colleton State Park’s Cypress Swamp Trail is a great place to stretch your legs and enjoy the SC Lowcountry. Pick up a self-guided nature brochure for this short, level, easy walking, loop trail. Numbered signs will help you identify a variety of trees and plants including cypress, poplar, hickory, sweetgum, maple, dogwood, birch, and magnolia. You can follow the canoe dock board walk spur trail to the dark water of Edisto River. Watch for a variety of birds, deer, turtles, snakes and other wildlife. Other amenities include a campground and picnic shelters. (843)538-8206
TRAIL BROCHURE
COLLETON STATE PARK BLOG

Edisto River Canoe & Kayak Trail
The Edisto River Canoe and Kayak Trail is a recreational gem comprised of a series of access sites and points of interest along a 62-mile stretch of the Edisto River’s Main Stem. The trail starts at Green Pond Church Landing and meanders eastward past Colleton State Park.  At roughly the halfway point in the trail, the river passes Givhans Ferry State Park.  The trail officially ends at Lowndes Landing.  With ample camping and access throughout its length, the Edisto River Canoe and Kayak Trail offers a variety of single and multi-day trips for all ability levels. For inquires about the trail contact Colleton State Park at (843)538-8206

WALTERBORO WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Detreville St., Walterboro
Comprised of over 600 acres of braided creek and hardwood flats. The Walterboro Wildlife Sanctuary offers boardwalks, bridges, bike and walking trails for viewing natural Lowcountry wildlife and beauty. Spanish Moss drips from Cypress trees and wildflowers abound as you pass a beaver pond, duck pond and butterfly garden.
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WALTERBORO WILDLIFE SANCTUARY BLOG

Walterboro Wildlife Sanctuary

HAMPTON COUNTY – HAMPTON

Lake Warren State Park Walking Trails
1079 Lake Warren Road, Hampton | (843)943-5051
Hampton’s Lake Warren State Park has three trails for outdoor enthusiasts. The Interpretive Trail winds through the woods and around the fishing pond with an overlook area. The Fitness Trail has 10 exercise stations to help you crush your fitness goals. The Yemassee Nature Trail follows a path along Lake Warren. Interpretive signs are placed throughout the Interpretive and Yemassee Nature Trails.
TRAIL MAP
LAKE WARREN STATE PARK BLOG

Webb Wildlife Management Area
1282 Webb Avenue, Garnett | (843)625-3569
Webb Wildlife Management Area is located off Hwy. 321, bordering the historical Savannah River. The 25,000+ acres provide excellent viewing of deer, wild turkeys, bobwhite quail, gray squirrel and many types of birds. Several nature trails. Ponds available for fishing. Regulated hunting.
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WEBB WMA BLOG

Webb Wildlife Management Area

JASPER COUNTY – HARDEEVILLE

Savannah National Wildlife Refuge
694 Beech Hill Lane, Hardeeville | (843)784-2468
The Savannah National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center and nature trail is located on Hwy 17, north of the Georgia border, near Hardeeville. The 5-mile drive through old rice field dikes can be accessed via Hwy 170. The refuge is home to over 7,000 acres of wetlands flora and fauna. There are also over 40 miles of hiking and biking trails for your enjoyment.
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BLOG POST

Turtle Island Wildlife Management Area
(803)625-3569
Turtle Island Wildlife Management Area can be reached by boat access only between Daufuskie Island and Savannah. 1,700 acres of salt marsh, maritime forest and barrier beach. The beach is an important foraging and resting area for migratory shorebirds as well as a known nesting area for beach-nesting shorebirds.
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Turtle Island Wildlife Management Area

JASPER COUNTY – RIDGELAND

Blue Heron Nature Trail
321 Baily Lane, Ridgeland | (843)726-7611
This 10-acre green space boasts the Blue Heron Nature Trail, a quarter-mile  trail around a three-acre pond, and a quarter-mile of boardwalk through forested wetlands. The property also includes a butterfly garden, picnic area, outdoor classroom, observation decks and a  Learning Center. Trailside displays help visitors learn more about the native flora and fauna of Jasper County and the Lowcountry. Exit 21, Ridgeland,
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BLUE HERON BLOG

Blue Heron Nature Trail

JASPER COUNTY – TILLMAN

Tillman Sand Ridge Heritage Preserve / Wildlife Management Area
Sandhill Rd, County Road 119, Tillman | (843)546-8119
Located 5 miles west of Tillman on Hwy 119. The Tillman Sand Ridge Wildlife Management Area is a 952-acre tract protects the endangered Gopher Tortoise.  The preserve also protects more than a half mile of frontage on the Savannah River. Trail access can be found just before the boat ramp at B & C Landing.
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Tillman Sand Ridge Wildlife Management Area

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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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