24 Best Kid-Friendly Activities in Charleston, SC

Charleston is a terrific spot to spend your next family vacation because it has a wide range of exciting attractions for tourists of all ages. There are abundant opportunities for outdoor activity. The majority of teens will enjoy the South. There are the Lowcountry Children’s Museum, the Fire Truck Museum, and the Carolina Aquarium.

You’re in luck if you’re planning a family vacation to the South Carolina Lowcountry! There’s no need to worry about what to do next in the car. Borrow the list of the most excellent Charleston teen activities! After that, check out the accessible Sea Island Vacation Guide for more kid-friendly activities. So many individuals have used the recommendations to create the perfect Charleston beach vacation. Here is the 24 things to do in charleston, sc, with teens recommendations, bike rentals, parks, activities, and more.

1. Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The first idea about things to do in charleston, sc, with teens is The Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry. It is a great place to take teens from birth to age ten, especially if they like to. It contains a little grocery, a water play area, a soft play area, a medieval castle, and an arts and crafts section, among other things. At two years old, Otis was utterly enthralled by the whole event. It was the favorite among the Charleston, South Carolina, kids’ activities.

Nothing excites teens more than a new and fascinating area to explore. The Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry (CML) is a vast interactive playground where teens of all ages are encouraged to use their imaginations and play with interactive displays in fun places. Even the youngest teens can play in the Infant and Toddler Playspace, which has many tactile toys that are good for fine motor skills. If you live in the region and want to visit frequently, you can get an annual membership that allows you and your teens to stay free for a year.

2. The Angel Oak

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The Angel Oak is a stunning sight for the entire family. It is one of the United States’ oldest oak trees. There’s a large park surrounding it, and it’s on the outskirts of Charleston, so it’s a beautiful picnic location if you’re passing by.

The gnarled, towering Angel Oak Tree on St. John’s Island is approximately forty minutes from downtown Charleston and makes an excellent day trip on your teen’s holiday. It is the largest oak tree east of the Mississippi River, estimated to be between 300 and over a thousand years old. Remember to mark the occasion before leaving the island. One of Charleston’s most popular teens activities is taking a group photo beneath its vast canopy.

3. Battery and White Point Gardens

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Don’t forget to include the Battery and White Point Gardens in your Charleston itinerary. This park has even more breathtaking views and a collection of Civil War cannons that your teens will love.

Battery and White Point Gardens, located in the heart of Charleston’s gorgeous historic neighborhood, is a public park with beautiful vistas and a safe location for teens to run around and play. The park has stunning views and places to sit in the shade and think. It also has a great collection of cannons and mortars from the Civil War, when the park was part of the city’s defenses. Surrounded by these antiques, Battery Park and White Point Gardens are the ideal places to teach your teens about South Carolina’s exciting past.

4. The North Charleston Fire Museum

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

If you want to do something in Charleston with your teens that will get their attention, take them to the North Charleston Fire Museum. This one-of-a-kind museum will bring out the youngster in everyone, with twenty vintage fire vehicles on exhibit dating back to the 1780s. Even more astonishing, every piece of equipment in the museum is still operational. The museum also features interactive displays demonstrating what it’s like to be a firefighter and how the job has evolved.

All Charleston visitors should visit the North Charleston Fire Museum and Education Center, especially if you have a budding firefighter in the family. The museum’s most fantastic collection of old fire engines and firefighting gear still works in the country. The museum is not only entertaining for the entire family; it may also save lives by teaching families how to react in the event of a fire in their homes. Younger visitors can color, while older teens can participate in hands-on bucket rallies and other fun activities that teach and entertain simultaneously.

5. Nearby Outdoor Activities: Cypress Gardens

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The magnificent Cypress Gardens in Charleston are a delight to visit with teens of all ages. Younger teens will enjoy learning about nature as they explore the massive Butterfly House, which houses numerous real butterflies, birds, plants, and even an observation beehive.

The enormous Swamparium is another popular garden feature where teens may examine large tanks and terrariums featuring indigenous fish, amphibians, and reptiles. Older teens can go on a Swamp Boat Adventure, paddling along marked pathways in search of unique swamp critters and plants, while the entire family can explore over 3.5 miles of nature trails.

6. Outdoor Activities Near Me: Folly Beach County Park

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Folly Beach County Park is only a short distance from downtown Charleston. This Atlantic beach is only thirty minutes away and features white sands, protected dunes, and brown pelican rookeries. Renting beach chairs and umbrellas, lifeguards, restrooms, dressing spaces, outdoor showers, and a boardwalk will make this a convenient and enjoyable place to spend the day.

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A gorgeous day at the beach is a surefire way to entertain youngsters and adults. Folly Beach Country Park has a large sandy beach and more than 100 acres of riverbank marshes and sand flats where teens can fish, explore, and go crabbing. The oceanfront sandy beach is especially popular with families since it provides shallow wading and ideal conditions for bodyboarding. Lifeguards are on duty in July and August, as well as an umbrella and chair rental service and a snack bar. On-site facilities include showers, changing rooms, and toilets.

7. Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

About 40 miles north of Charleston, you can find the Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests. They are a vast outdoor playground for families with lots of fun things to do. Aside from beautiful hiking trails, there are also mountain bike and horseback riding trails to explore.

Pack a picnic to eat at one of the waterfalls, find the best fishing site, or bring your OHV for an off-road adventure. If you like camping, you can get a tent or an RV and spend a night or two with your teens around a campfire. There are also a variety of motorized and non-motorized water activities available.

8. Charles Pinckney’s Snee Farm (Charles Pinckney National Historic Site)

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

When you take your teens to Charles Pinckney’s Snee Farm in Mount Pleasant, you will have an excellent opportunity to combine outdoor fun with learning about the area’s rich past. Before, rice and indigo plants were grown on this 28-acre plot.

The quaint home from 1828 that was recently converted into a museum and visitor center now offers film screenings and exhibits for families to enjoy. Upon arrival, parents can sign their teens up for the Junior Ranger Program, which will allow them to get a badge upon completion of their tour. Picnicking, honing your photography chops, and exploring the expansive grounds and nature walks are just some of the activities you can participate in.

9. Gibbes Museum of Art

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Everyone who walks through the Gibbes Museum of Art’s doors is treated to an enlightening and enjoyable experience. Teaching young teens to value the arts and get them involved in artistic activities is essential. With this goal in mind, the museum has several programs and events for kids.

Story Time at the Gibbes is open to teens ages 2 to 5. In contrast, older teens are more likely to enjoy activities such as a cell phone photography session, art and sculpture instruction, or one of their art workshops at their summer or winter camp. At the museum, teens are encouraged to pick up an activity kit to learn more about the displays.

10. Patriot’s Point

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Patriot’s Point is a naval and nautical museum in Charleston Harbor. It is near the mouth of the Cooper River and has fun things for teens and adults to do. You can start your trip by touring the USS Yorktown on your own, the itinerary is well-defined, and the youngsters will get an excellent sense of what life was like for naval officers during WWI. Teens can take photos in a submarine and a fighter plane’s cockpit. There are also simulators at the Flight Academy that let teens as young as six feel what it’s like to be a combat pilot.

11. Charleston RiverDogs

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

If your teens appreciate baseball, you should take advantage of the chance to take them to see the Charleston RiverDogs play at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Park. Most Friday night games (see the online schedule) are followed by fireworks displays, providing another reason to bring the youngsters to see their heroes at “the Joe.” Arrive early to enjoy delicious burgers or pizza before watching the game. If you live nearby, your teens under 12 can join the MUSC Children’s Health Teens Club (free membership), which gives them free entrance to all Sunday family games and year-round teen programs. RiverDogs items can be purchased online.

12. Charleston Water Taxi

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The Charleston Water Taxi is more than just a method to get from one tourist destination to the next; it also serves as a great family trip. You can purchase an affordable Day Pass (teens under three years old ride free) and travel by water to various popular Charleston children’s attractions such as the Aquarium Wharf, Patriot’s Point, and Waterfront Park.

The Charleston Water Taxi also offers fun cruises to see dolphins and simple tours of the beautiful Charleston Harbor. The trips last around an hour, making them ideal for restless little travelers, and strollers are welcome. You can board at one of four locations.

13. Carolina Ice Palace

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The Carolina Ice Palace is a popular attraction for teens of (almost) all ages. The cutting-edge facility provides a wide choice of lessons for youngsters as young as four. Most people start with basic ice skating lessons to gain confidence before moving on to figure skating classes and junior ice hockey training.

During the summer, your teens can attend hockey camps to learn valuable team-building skills and make many new friends. The Ice Palace is also an excellent place for a particular birthday party. You only need to bring a cake and the birthday party; skate rental is included in birthday packages., entry, refreshments, and “Walkers” to help the teens have fun on the ice.

14. Outdoor Activities Near Me: Hampton Park

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Hampton Park is a fantastic place to take the teens for outdoor fun. Teens can run around and get rid of some energy in the large grassy area. In addition to the popular children’s playground, your teens will love strolling, biking, or rollerblading along the paths.

If you visit on Saturday mornings or after 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, the park is closed to all traffic, allowing everyone to work out, run, stroll, or roll in peace. Bring a lunch, a ball, and a Frisbee, and let the teens have some healthy outside fun for a few hours.

15. Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry is a great place to take teens from birth to age ten, especially if they like to. It contains a little grocery, a water play area, a quiet space, a medieval castle, and an arts and crafts section, among other things. At two years old, Otis was utterly enthralled by the whole event. It was the favorite among the Charleston, South Carolina, kids’ activities.

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The Lowcountry Children’s Museum is not your typical children’s museum. Its purpose is to help young teens realize the power of play. The museum contains several interactive displays to pique kids’ interest, curiosity, and creativity. There’s an art studio, a theater, a kid-friendly garden, a shoppable market, and much more. If you have teens aged six and under, This is one of the top activities to do with teens in Charleston, SC.

16. Catch a show at the Dock Street Theatre

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The historic Dock Street Theater is the country’s oldest continuously operating theater. It’s a lovely location for a performance, and there are many family-friendly shows throughout the year. The Dock Street Theatre launched Charleston’s journey into the performing arts, opening its doors in 1736 as the first structure built exclusively to house dramatic and musical events in the United States.

While the original structure, which staged the first opera in America, is long gone—likely destroyed by the city’s 1740 fire—its history lives on in a reconstructed three-story brick building near the intersection of Church and Queen streets. The City of Charleston now owns the Dock Street Theatre, which is home to Charleston Stage. Julian Wiles, a playwright, director, designer, and teacher, started Charleston Stage as a non-profit in 1978.

Charleston Stage is the most well-known professional company based in the Palmetto State. It has 33 actors, dancers, singers, and musicians on staff who are dedicated to their jobs and to giving school-aged teens in the Lowcountry a better theater experience. Since its inception at the intersection of Church and Dock Street (hence the name), the Dock Street Theatre has undergone numerous changes. Still, it has always maintained its status as an icon in a city of symbols.

17. Savannah Bee Company

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

King St. in downtown Charleston, SC, is well-known for its shopping, but which stores are the best for families to visit? Savannah Bee Company, without a doubt! The company began in Savannah, Georgia, but its first store outside of that city was in Charleston. Honey, honey, and more honey—in lotions, mead, honeycomb, without honeycomb, you name it.

Aside from being very excellent, what makes it enjoyable is that you can taste [or try] everything. And it’s fantastic [did I mention that already?]. Bonus: The store associates are outstanding. Do you want to learn more about honey or bees? They’ll gladly share their expertise with you so you can be [see what I did there?] informed.

18. Bessinger’s BBQ

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Few things say Lowcountry more than slow-cooked barbecue. Bessinger’s BBQ is simple in design yet bursting with flavor. This family-owned restaurant in Charleston has been serving BBQ mainstays, including brisket, pulled pig, and smoked chicken wings, since the 1930s.

Bessinger’s BBQ is located on Highway 17 South in Charleston, right after passing the rows of auto dealers. Since the 1600s, the same family has been running a business. Every warm-ish month, they have an auto show on the first Wednesday. This is a great night out for the entire family, and dinner is included. 

Then there’s the judgment and award. The teens choose the tickets, giving them their first taste of power. I took the Bentley and earned a prize, but everyone else did. It’s not about the money; it’s about reconnecting with old friends and having a little mild fun at a slower pace than most of the lives. The band was also fantastic!

19. USS Yorktown [40 Patriots Point Rd, Mt Pleasant, SC]

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Because Charleston is about history, this list of things to do in Charleston, South Carolina, with teens includes visiting the USS Yorktown. It is located in Mt. Pleasant, SC; however, it is just a 15-minute drive from the city center.

The USS Yorktown [CV-10] was the US Navy’s tenth aircraft carrier. For its service in WWII and Vietnam, the ship got 16 combat stars. It has even brought back the eight Apollo astronauts and the spacecraft they were in. This is the place to learn about family activities in Charleston, SC.

The USS Yorktown is a navy aircraft carrier stationed permanently in Charleston Harbor. It was named after the famous battle of Yorktown from the American Revolutionary War and was used during World War II. Teens like exploring this giant ship and thinking about what it may have been like to be a sailor living onboard.

20. Head out to Morris Island

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Sandlapper Cruises will take your family on a Saturday morning nature excursion to Morris Island. Your teens will into the Atlantic, saw hermit crabs running along the beach, and found a perfect sand dollar on the island.

On the walk back to the Charleston Maritime Center, you can come upon a family of  The tour leader then took up the boat’s crab pot, which had caught two blue crabs for us to inspect.

A nature trip is an excellent approach to allow teens to explore at their speed. It also allows teens to take a break from the constant history lessons that accompany tours of Charleston with children.

21. Paddle a Boat Through the Swamp at Cypress Gardens

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Cypress Gardens, a 175-acre swamp park where you can paddle a boat and view turtles, birds, and alligators, is only 30 minutes from downtown Moncks Corner. It’s a lovely location that has been utilized in various films, including The Notebook. The garden has 3.5 miles of paths, a butterfly house, and a samarium with species from the nearby South Carolina Lowcountry.

Cypress Gardens is ideal for nature-loving adults and teens who enjoy creepy crawlies. The Butterfly House is a large greenhouse containing floral plants, butterflies, a pond, and an observation beehive. It’s an excellent site to learn about the butterfly’s life cycle stages.

22. Challenge yourself at Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

Are you and your family up for an adventure? If so, a day at Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park will test your bravery and expertise with ropes courses for all ages and skill levels. Families with new or young climbers can enjoy an hour-long beginning course, while older teens and adults can try their American Ninja Warrior-inspired intermediate course.

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Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park has outdoor adventure courses for individuals of all ages and skill levels that have won awards. This makes it the best place for a Lowcountry family to have fun during the summer. Beginners should take the Gateway Explorers course, while more experienced explorers should take the Challenge course.

People of all ages and skill levels can take outdoor sports and adventure classes at Wild Blue Ropes. A ropes course for you to undertake in a group or by yourself, exploring your limitations and pushing your boundaries to test your capabilities to the limit! the adventure park is ideal for team-building activities, class trips, birthday parties, and as an after-school program for residents and students in Charleston, James Island, SC, and surrounding areas.

23. Play and camp in James Island County Park

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The 643-acre James Island County Park is located about 15 minutes from downtown Charleston and 20 minutes from Folly Beach. Saltwater fishing, pedal boats, kayak rentals, volleyball courts, a campground, a climbing wall, miles of paved paths, and an 18-hole disc golf course are just a few of the activities available at the park. A Splash Zone Water Park for youngsters, an off-leash dog park with a vast lake, and a picnic area with tables and grills are available at the park. This park has something for everyone in the family. There is parking available in the park, and admission is required to enter. The Splash Zone Waterpark and the Climbing Wall require additional access.

James Island County Park is an excellent area for family-friendly outdoor activities. Summer tourists can enjoy miles of hiking and biking trails before traveling to Splash Zone Waterpark to cool off. Fishing, crab fishing, a climbing wall, horseshoe pits, and an 18-hole disc golf course are also available at the park. If you think you can’t get all of this done in one day, you can stay the night at one of their camping grounds or holiday cottages.

24. Visit Kiawah Island to see the bobcats.

things to do in charleston, sc with kids

The last idea about things to do in charleston, sc, with teens is Kawah Island. Just over twenty miles from Charleston, Kiawah Island offers travelers a surprising new way to get away from the city. The island has ten miles of sandy beaches, over one hundred acres of parks, and a growing bobcat population. Rent kayaks, surfboards, and SUP boards to enjoy the ocean or take a family vacation along the island’s coastline. Always keep a lookout for loggerhead sea turtles along the route!

People at the Kiawah Island Club understand that there is no such thing as a cookie-cutter child. Island youth have as different tastes and interests as Island adults. But every Member’s child or grandchild has one thing in common with everyone else: Kiawah.

GoTeens has transformed island life for youngsters aged 3 to 16 by offering year-round social interaction to the Club’s youngest Members, as well as day camps and clinics throughout the summer. GoTeens encourages fitness, fun, and friendship all over the island, reassuring excited participants that their time away from their phones is well spent.

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