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Shem Creek

The water’s fine in Charleston

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posted August 14, 2020

Although travel is on a temporary halt, the beauty of the South Carolina coast remains, and Charleston’s exciting offerings on the water—and its well-known charm—are awaiting eager travelers.

“When you get to Charleston, you’ll want to find the hidden places in the Lowcountry that only locals know about. There’s where we come in,” says Jennifer Cecil, sales manager with Explore Charleston. “You can go on a paddle with dolphins breaching nearby or take a sunset boat cruise up a secluded waterway. You can explore with a naturalist guide or camp on an underdeveloped barrier island.”

One local outfitter, Coastal Expeditions, offers adventures on the water with unique elements—like a search for shark teeth. The Morris Island Shark Tooth Boat Tour takes groups from Shem Creek dock into the Charleston Harbor to catch glimpses of bottlenose dolphins, manatees, and Eastern brown pelicans before docking. Participants are then led by a naturalist along the beach to hunt for shark teeth and other fossils.

Firefly Distillery
Photo by Firefly Distillery

Captain Sam’s Spit Dolphin Kayak Tour takes Charleston visitors closer to the abundant coastal wildlife. Tours begin at the oak-shaded Farmhouse at Kiawah River and go through a salt marsh, where participants meet pods of friendly bottlenose dolphins and many species of birds on the 5-mile paddle. The kayakers then bank on an inlet (Captain Sam’s Spit) for a seaside picnic and some beach wandering before heading back.

Cecil is excited about a new land-based attraction: Firefly Distillery.

“Nestled amongst live oaks and Spanish moss, and a stone’s throw from the beautiful Noisette Creek, the newly built Firefly Distillery is located near Park Circle, just up the road from downtown Charleston. Groups can tour the distillery and learn about the distillation process from the fine folks who make the spirits, and all tours include a sample of your choice from any of the Firefly brands.”

She also noted the distillery has created its own hand sanitizer.

For more info, email Cecil or go to

Top photo: Shem Creek
Photo by Explore Charleston


Support for Courier articles provided by:
Graceland & Guest House at Graceland
Huntsville, Alabama Convention & Visitors Bureau
Savannah Riverboat Cruises
U.S. Space & Rocket Center