Less than 30 minutes outside of the Charleston city limits is a wildlife escape.? From the sounds of the birds to the slither of snakes to the restful ominous stare of the alligators, Caw Caw Interpretive Center and Wildlife Preserve is a categorical natural wonder.? From the rice fields to the swamps, each path introduces you to a new segment of the ecosystem.? With miles of pathway, you can lose yourself in this park system.
We warn you not to go alone.? There is calming silence throughout, so when the sound of a bird echos, a sea creature lurks from the swamp or squirrels hop from tree to tree you may get a little shocked.? At times, the sounds of the birds resembled instruments being tuned up for an orchestra performance.? As we walked the grassy path, we encountered five alligators, two snakes crossing the walk way, heron, cardinals and so much more.
From swampland and forests that provide shelter from the scorching sun to open skies and rice fields all around, Caw Caw is educational, healthy and full of natural wonder.
It truly summarizes the authenticity of the Lowcountry from its early nature roots.? Pay close attention to the aging and decay of trees, many of which are hundreds of years old.
For $2.00 a person, you cannot beat this bargain.? They do cater to tours as we were fortunate to see a group of bird watchers all decked out in their binoculars.
Come with us and see for yourself through these images we captured in our two hour excursion:
Pack the kids or your special someone, put on some comfortable shoes and grab some water and make a day out at Caw Caw.
Ever have one of “those” days? Sure you have; we all have. The type of day where you just want to be alone and escape life for a bit. Between work, school, family, friends, and the constant connection with technology, places where you can just be alone are difficult to come by.
However, as long as you do not check in on Facebook or Yelp when you get there, you can seclude yourself and escape life if you wish to do so. Turn off your phone, bring a book, magazine, your puppy, a notebook, or simply your own thoughts, take a few deep breaths and enjoy your solitude.
Here are a few of the best hidden places in Charleston to escape life, if only for a few minutes.
Folly Beach: You have a few options here. The best places to go to be alone with your thoughts are as far east as you can go on the island, and as far west as you can go. On the east end you will enjoy a scenic view of Morris Island Lighthouse. The far west end is a bit further of a walk, but totally worth it. The walk there is part of the destination itself.
Charleston Waterfront Park swings at night: There’s not a sound much more soothing than the sound of water, and when accompanied by the feeling of gently swinging back and forth under the moonlight, worries seem to melt away. Bring a comfy sweatshirt, even in summertime as it tends to get a little chilly.
Melton Peter Demetre Park (formally Sunrise Park): If you want a unique view of Charleston and the surrounding areas, here is your spot. Nestled deep within James Island, this is the perfect place to start your day or spend the afternoon in peacefulness.? In the distance you can view the Cooper River Bridge or the church steeples of the peninsula.
Fishing and Crabbing Dock at James Island County Park: Even if there is someone fishing, they usually just nod to say hi and focus on catching a big one. The dock is large enough for you to have your own spot to yourself. Bring your fishing pole, crab net, or just sit and enjoy the view.
Allan Park: Located just off of Ashley Avenue near Hampton Park, Allan Park is a splendid half acre of tranquility. There is a large fountain in the center and plenty of grass for picnics. There are also benches around the fountain if a blanket is not your thing.
Caw Caw Interpretive Center: Located about sixteen miles from downtown Charleston, Caw Caw Interpretive Center has remained virtually untouched over the years. Once several rice plantations, it is now home to a multitude of wildlife which you can enjoy along over six miles of trails winding throughout swamplands, cypress trees and boardwalks.
Magnolia Cemetery:Not many people think “relaxing” when it comes to cemeteries, but trust us on this one. Magnolia Cemetery is located on the banks of the Cooper River and in our opinion has to be one of the most beautiful places one could spend their resting days. Taking a stroll through this 92 acre stretch of land can give a whole new meaning to “escaping life”.
MUSC Urban Farm:? Right in the heart of the medical district off of Bee Street between Ashley and Courtenay is a safe haven.? In the heart of this square escape is an educational community garden where you will find everything from lemons, to rosemary to sunflowers with free gardening and nature lessons weekly.? Just outside the garden are open grassy areas and benches to relax, have a meal or just daydream.? Also, enclosed in this area are stretching equipment to keep your body physically fit.? This is a true mental and physical realm of health and solitude in the heart of the Charleston peninsula.
We know there are more, but we do not want to give away all of the secrets! If you have a favorite spot that you like to go to escape life and would like to share, please comment below.