Hunting Island State Park
Hunting Island State Park Review
This secluded park 18 miles southeast of Beaufort via U.S. 21 has 4 miles of public beaches—some dramatically eroding. The light sand beach decorated with driftwood and the raw, subtropical vegetation is breathtaking. The state park was founded in 1938 to preserve and promote its natural existence, and it harbors 5,000 acres of rare maritime forests. You can kayak in the tranquil lagoon; stroll the 1,300-foot-long fishing pier, which is among the longest on the East Coast; and go fishing or crabbing. For sweeping views, climb the 167 steps of the Hunting Island Lighthouse (built in 1859 and abandoned in 1933). It costs $2, and kids must be at least 44 inches tall. Bikers and hikers can enjoy 8 miles of trails. Barefoot Bubba's (2135 Sea Island Pkwy., St. Helena 843/838–9222), less than 1 mile from Hunting Island, rents bikes and kayaks and will deliver them to the park or anywhere in the area. The nature center has exhibits, an aquarium, and lots of turtles; there is a resident alligator in the pond. The campground has 200 sites, about 180 of which are for RVs and tents; 20 are for tents only. Expect to pay about $25 for campsites with electricity, $21 without. Amenities: none. Best for: solitude, sunrise, swimming, walking.
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