Edisto Beach, SC
If you ask us, South Carolina’s best-secluded beach is Edisto Beach, in the southeastern tip of Colleton County. The town of Edisto is cut off from the rest of the county by the Edisto River, and there is only one access road to the town, making it a secluded community of just over 400 people. Despite the small population, the Island is one of the most affluent communities in South Carolina. It is one of the few uncommercialized beaches on the South Carolina Coast. Edisto is a family oriented community, with “gently” conditioned beaches. The beaches are for the most part in their natural states and have little conditioning done to them, except to repair storm damage. The sunrises at Edisto Beach are worth the early rise and rival any sunrise on the Atlantic Coast.
Fishing on Edisto
Anytime hubby and I get a chance we head out to Edisto Island. We love the laid-back atmosphere and uncrowded beaches. Hubby’s first and foremost desire is to wet a hook from the shore. There is just something about sitting on a 5-gallon bucket and watching the waves come in and waiting for that rod to bend. It really doesn’t matter if he catches that monster fish or the smaller “catch and release” varieties. He is content to just be there, relaxing. However, he almost always catches sheepshead, black drum, and small sharks. Sheepshead are quite interesting as they have rows of teeth that look almost human. They are almost as scary as sharks to me and I wouldn’t want to have an encounter with a large one while in the water!
A shark caught at Edisto Beach
This is a Sheepshead Fish
The last time we visited Edisto, shore fishing was a little bit challenging. For reasons unknown to us, there were many Horseshoe Crabs along the shoreline and Hubby caught 14 or so accidentally. He released then back into the water and immediately would catch another. The Horseshoe Crabs look much like a prehistoric animal and have actually been traced back to the Dinosaur era. They have a hard shell, that looks sort of like a helmet, with a slender tail. They are a little intimidating but they don’t bite or pinch, and they say you should turn them over if you find one upside down so they can get back to the water.
Other catches have included rays. We have seen several people catch rays, and hubby has caught small ones. I am always nervous when I see someone catching a ray. I remember the Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin, was killed by a ray. They called it a freak accident, but I have a great respect for those creatures, and I give them all the space they need!
Shelling on Edisto
Beachcombing is my favorite activity at Edisto. The beaches are not crowded or plowed and raked like other touristy beaches. The sand is a light brown and soft and many treasures lie in the shell wracks near the water’s edge. I always find interesting shells at Edisto and I always have a plan for a special craft for my beach treasures. You can see some of them here!
There is a boat trip you can take out to Shell Island that is an amazing adventure. Shell Island is a little barrier island just to the east of Edisto and is accessible only by boat. I have had the pleasure of taking that trip with my sister-in-law and nieces, that were visiting us a few years back when we were working in Charleston. We found many sand dollars, conchs, and welks at Shell Island and enjoyed the boat ride through the marsh. The captain of the boat even let my little niece steer the boat for a minute. It was a great adventure for us all.
Earthing at Edisto
When I have picked up all the shells I can carry, I spread out my beach mat and lay on the warm sand. There is nothing so healing as being at the beach, listening to the ocean crashing on the shore. It’s not only the sound of the waves that bring a calming to my spirit but the actual warmth of the sand on my feet. I love the energy that I feel from walking on the beach. They say there is a scientific reason that people feel so good after a beach vacation, its called earthing. Soon I will share a post about that theory.
Places to eat at Edisto
One of our favorite places to eat is Dockside Restaurant & Bar on the Big Bay Creek side of the island. Dockside is the oldest waterfront bar and grill in Edisto. You can dine in or outside on a deck over the water. We always choose the outside deck so we can watch the shrimp boats coming and going. If you watch closely you almost always see dolphins in the canal playing near the fishing boats. The food is great there, often caught and served the same day, and the prices are very reasonable.
On the east end of the island, there is another a nice place to eat, Finn’s Island Grill. Finn’s is on the Atlantic side of the Island and is built over the beach with a pier that goes out over the water. We have eaten there several times and loved it. They also have a souvenir shop adjacent to the restaurant.
Edisto Beach State Park
At the east end of the island is Edisto Beach State Park. We have never camped there, but it’s a very nice campground and its right on the beach. Several times that we have been there, the conservation people were there marking sea turtle nests.
Sadly, hurricane Irma and a tornado from the storm wreaked havoc at the Park and it’s shut down for the rest of 2017. The island beaches suffered some damage as well, but much less than what was expected. Edisto is a close-knit community and is busy even now cleaning the sand from the streets, and debris from the storm surge. Edisto will make a comeback, they always do. We are praying for Edisto’s recovery from Hurrican Irma.