Day Trip: Hunting Island State Park

Posted by Paige Rose on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019 at 10:44am

Day Trip Hunting Island

Day Trip to

Hunting Island, SC

  

Hunting Island Lighthouse

Hunting Island is a stunning 5,000-acre barrier island just 16 miles east of Beaufort on U.S. Hwy. 21. The island is South Carolina's single most popular state park, attracting more than a million visitors a year. Teeming with wildlife and lush vegetation the park offers a delightful day for anyone interested in nature or history.

Hunting Island offers five miles of pristine South Carolina beaches, thousands of acres of marsh and maritime forest, a saltwater lagoon, and a 132.5-foot tall lighthouse.  The Hunting Island lighthouse is the only lighthouse in the state that is publically accessible. A climb up the 167 lighthouse steps provides breathtaking panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the surrounding maritime forests. Hunting Island is a stunning 5,000-acre barrier island just 16 miles east of Beaufort on U.S. Hwy. 21. The island is South Carolina's single most popular state park, attracting more than a million visitors a year. Teeming with wildlife and lush vegetation the park offers a delightful day for anyone interested in nature or history.

The Hunting Island Lighthouse was constructed of large cast-iron sections lined with bricks. With its iconic black and white stripes, the Hunting Island Lighthouse not only was a beacon to boats but also served as the halfway point between Savannah and Charleston. In 1889 beach erosion caused the lighthouse to be moved 1.3 miles to its current location.

Beyond the lighthouse, the island has a pier for fishing, shaded picnic areas, a nature center, playground, and beach walkways. Nestled among the pines and palms is the Visitors Center where you can learn more about the island's nature, historic lighthouse, and pick up a park map.

 Known for its natural beauty, the surrounding marshes of Hunting Island were used in the movie, Forest Gump, as the backdrop for the Vietnam War scenes. Additionally, Hunting Island forests were used in the jungle and water camp scenes for the movie G.I. Jane.

The island is perfect for a day trip, but for those who want to stay a little longer than a day, the park offers 100 campsites with water and electrical hookups at each site and shower and restroom facilities nearby.

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