Kiawah Island is a barrier island off the Atlantic coast, about 25 miles from Charleston, South Carolina.

The island is operated as a private gated beach and golf resort – the Kiawah Island Golf Resort. This exclusive upscale community enjoys 10 miles of fine, sandy beaches, lovingly preserved maritime forests, ancient sand dunes, grassy marshes full of birds, and calm seas teeming with fish. Residents – property owners – and guests can enjoy world-class golf courses, tennis courts, swimming pools, a spa, and endless activities on land and in the water.

1. Night Heron Park

Night Heron Park
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For kids, Night Heron Park is the epicenter of fun on Kiawah Island. There is a lot to choose from: disc golf, kiddie playgrounds, basketball, tennis, soccer, volleyball, paddling, fishing, and so much more. There is a calendar of organized team sports events, and one of the most popular is extreme laser tag, with two age divisions. Other available sports are paddleboarding and kayaking, which are not only fun and recreational but are also a way to learn about the island’s wild side. There are also regular live concerts and outdoor movies. The Sundown Festival is hosted one day a week for 18 weeks every year and includes jump castles, live music, inflatables, train rides, and a photo booth.

Kiawah Island Pkwy, Kiawah Island, SC 29455

2. Tidal Trails, Kiawah Island

Tidal Trails, Kiawah Island
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If you want to explore Kiawah Island up close and personal, Tidal Trails will make it easy and comfortable – they have been doing it since 1997. Join their instructors and guides for exclusive outdoor activities in the unique barrier island environment of Kiawah. Choose a trip in a kayak or on a paddleboard. Go and watch dolphins in their natural environment, free and happy. Watch birds in their nest or as they soar through the clear blue sky. You can also go on your own. The equipment is perfectly selected to suit the Kiawah environment. Surfing is another fun activity Tidal Trails offer for their customers, and if you have never tried it, there is no better place than Kiawah with its calm, warm waters.

Kiawah Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-768-5680

3. Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Freshfields Village

Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Freshfields Village
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Freshfields Village is more of a charming old-fashioned village center than a shopping center – a lively mix of shops, businesses, services, and restaurants set in an upscale, well-designed setting where you can find everything you need while in Kiawah, whether you are a resident or just visiting. You can take care of just about any errand while in the village, from shopping for groceries, getting your teeth cleaned, dry-cleaning your clothes, or doing your nails to buying a home, renting a bike, or just grabbing something to eat. There are regular seasonal events and live music on the quaint village squares, which are smothered in flowers.

165 Village Green Lane, Kiawah Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-768-6491

4. Kamp Kiawah

Kamp Kiawah
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If you want your kids to have truly memorable stay on Kiawah island, then Kamp Kiawah has several options for kids aged 3 to 15. Located in the lovely Night Heron Park, the kids experience different kinds of adventures under the watchful eyes of highly experienced and dedicated counsellors. Besides their traditional Kamp Kiawah day camp, they also offer Camp Xtreme, featuring extreme fun for children aged 8 to 15. It includes all kinds of sports, team building games, scavenger hunts, a ninja warrior course, and more. For those kids who prefer a more independent adventure, Adventure Camp offers kayaking, motorboat trips, cast netting, paddle boarding, tennis, bike scavenger hunts, archery, and more.

One Sanctuary Beach Drive, Kiawah Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-768-2121

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5. Alligator Bike, Kiawah Island

Alligator Bike, Kiawah Island
© Alligator Bike

Most people come to Kiawah Island for its fantastic golf courses, but there is much to do besides golfing and the best way to explore the island is on a bike. Alligator Bike has been serving the island for the last 30 years and you can count on them to find just the right bike for you. They have bikes, trikes, trail-a-bikes, cargo trailers, child carriers, kids’ bikes, and cub trailers, all in perfect condition and ready to take you along the 30 miles of island trails or along the 10 miles of sandy beaches. To make it even more fun, they will bring the bike of your choice right to your hotel or house.

Johns Island, SC, Phone: 843-559-8200

6. Kiawah Island Bicycle Rentals

Kiawah Island Bicycle Rentals
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Kiawah Island is famous for its abundant natural beauty and rich wildlife. With mostly flat terrain, 30 miles of paved trails, and 10 miles of packed sand beach, the best way to explore the island and its secret nooks, dunes, and lagoons is by bike. Kiawah Island Bicycle Rentals offers beach cruisers for visitors of all ages. You can get a bike with a child seat, training wheels, tow carts, add-a-bikes, and complimentary helmets. You can get your bikes delivered at your hotel or villa or you can pick them up at the nature center in Night Heron Park or at the Sanctuary Bike Pavilion. If you are planning a longer trip, ask for a basket for your bike so you can stock up on water and snacks.

12 Kiawah Beach Dr, Kiawah Island, SC 29455-5677, Phone: 800-654-2924

7. Kiawah Island Club

Kiawah Island Club
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Kiawah Island Club is a private exclusive club for the owners of properties on the island. It gives them superb opportunities to get to know their neighbors and to make most from the living on the island. They can take part in many social functions, golf and tennis tournaments, happy hours, pub nights, yoga, aqua aerobics, book clubs, bridge, wine groups, needlepoint, and much more. There are also the Summer Youth Program, the Amazing Race, the Fishing Derby, and other activities for the kids. Members of the Kiawah Island Club have access to all the club’s private facilities, such as the Beach Club, River Course, the sports pavilion, Cassique, Sasanqua Spa, BizHub, Marsh House, and the Kiawah Island Sporting Club.

10 River Course Ln, Kiawah Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-768-5715

8. Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Kiawah Island Golf Resort
© Kiawah Island Golf Resort

The Kiawah Island Golf Resort is a luxury exclusive resort on Kiawah Island in South Carolina. It opened in May 1976 and has a reputation for superb activities in harmony with the lush, unspoiled nature. The resort combines high class accommodation, excellent amenities, a rich social life, and access to the magnificent coastal environment. The resort is world famous for its five golf courses, where the pros come to play. One of the world’s best is the legendary Ocean Course, which hosted the 2012 PGA Championship and the 1991 Ryder Cup. There are also 24 tennis courts, a spa, gourmet restaurants, pools, access to the fantastic sandy beach, bike trails, kayaking, and guided tours of the island.

1 Sanctuary Beach Dr, Kiawah Island, SC 29455-5434, Phone: 843-768-2121

9. Kiawah Island Tennis

Kiawah Island Tennis
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As you stroll through the pine trees and down a winding path surrounded by fragrant oleander, palmettos, and pampas grass, you will come to the Kiawah Island’s great pride – 24 superb tennis courts. Since the grand opening in 1976, the nine courts grew into two world-class tennis complexes. The Roy Barth Tennis Center features three hard courts and nine Har-Tru clay courts. The West Beach Tennis Club has two lighted hard courts and ten Har-Tru courts. Both offer a weekly series of programs with mini camps, instructional clinics, round-robins, and private lessons. From basic strokes to angles and strategy, the team of certified tennis pros will take your game to the next level.

1 Sanctuary Beach Dr, Kiawah Island, SC 29455-5434, Phone: 843-768-2121

10. Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Saltfisher Charters

Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Saltfisher Charters
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If you want to try your hand at catching that elusive trophy fish while on Kiawah Island or you want to go dolphin watching, have a birding tour of the island or have a history tour of the harbor, let Saltfisher Charters with Captain Michael Waller take you on an adventure onto the deep blue. You will travel in the comfort of a Shearwater Z 24, a 24-foot bay boat with a stable, spacious, and wide deck. The boat can accommodate six people comfortably and has a Bimini top to provide shade on hot summer days. Saltfisher and its captain are licensed by the US Coast Guard and have all the safety gear on board, as your safety is their priority.

876 Kiawah Island Pkwy, Kiawah Island, SC 29455-5850, Phone: 843-224-8197

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11. SeaCoast Sports and Outfitters

SeaCoast Sports and Outfitters
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Whether you live on Kiawah Island or you are coming on vacation, you need the proper gear for all the year-round activities like hanging out at the beach, swimming, playing golf on one of the world-class courses, playing tennis, hiking, paddleboarding, kayaking, or so much else. Whatever you need, from sandals and sunglasses to a new bikini or hat, SeaCoast Sports and Outfitters are sure to have just the right one for you. As the island's biggest sporting goods shop, they stock everything you might need, even surfboards and fishing rods, as well as kayak and bikes to rent by the day or week.

585 Freshfields Dr, Johns Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-768-8486

12. Sonny Boy Charters

Sonny Boy Charters
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A visit to Kiawah Island would not be complete without exploring the deep blue waters that surround it. You might want to go watch dolphins as they play in their environment, take a quiet romantic sunset cruise of the harbor, or go fishing. Either way, Sonny Boy Charters promises you an adventure of a lifetime. Whether you are an old hand at fishing or have never had a fishing rod in your hand, Captain Brad will take you for an unforgettable inshore or nearshore adventure. He knows just where to go, since he grew up on these waters. He will teach you, or your kid, about the fishing basics and the Lowcountry ecosystem. Even if you do not catch any fish, the Lowcountry is spectacularly beautiful and you will enjoy every minute of your trip.

1880 Andell Bluff Blvd, Johns Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-708-1486

13. St. Johns Tours

St. Johns Tours
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Let St. John’s Kayak Tours give you a water view of the Lowcountry. Explore the marshes and estuaries of the Kiawah area in a kayak or on a paddleboard in the company of knowledgeable guides who love the area and will show you what makes it so special. You can have a fishing adventure with one of the local captains, go shrimping aboard the Sea Bounty, and experience the pleasure of hauling up a full net and checking your catch. You can also book a boat to go dolphin watching, beach combing, or have a romantic sunset cruise. In safety and comfort, you will have great time on the water.

Betsy Kerrison Pkwy., Kiawah Island, SC, Phone: 843-330-9777

14. The Sanctuary Spa

The Sanctuary Spa
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The Spa at The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort is one of the resort’s key offerings. It is one of the reasons why this resort has such fantastic world-wide reputation. After you get your adrenaline flowing with a round of golf, tennis, kayaking, or swimming, treat yourself to a calm retreat in the spa’s tranquil environment, where the knowledgeable staff will renew and reawaken your senses and body. You can enjoy only one of the spa services, such as an Ocean Fossil Fusion or a full day of pampering. Start with a private session at the resort’s gym, then detoxify your body with Athletic Recovery Massage, indulge in a Sodashi Luxury Facial, and treat yourself with a Sanctuary Makeover.

1 Sanctuary Beach Dr, Kiawah Island, SC 29455-5434, Phone: 843-768-2121

15. Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Urban Nirvana

Things to Do on Kiawah Island: Urban Nirvana
© Urban Nirvana

Urban Nirvana is one of Kiawah’s well-kept secrets. Snuggled in the Freshfields Shopping Center in Kiawah, Urban Nirvana offers very special pampering that includes massage therapy, a hair and nail salon. and superb skin care. You can choose a type of massage that suits your needs, or let their licensed specialist recommend a treatment just for you: prenatal massage, couples’ massage, hot stone, aromatherapy, Wild Blossom, the Whiplash, cocoa shea wrap, or ginger lemongrass wrap and rub. You will feel all your stress go away, your energy restored, and your balance recovered.

445 Freshfields Dr, Johns Island, SC 29455, Phone: 843-212-5292

16. Kiawah Beachwalker Park

Kiawah Beachwalker Park
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Spend a relaxing and soul-restoring day surrounded by a gorgeous beach at the Kiawah Beachwalker Park. Home to long stretches of fine and clean sands and crystal-clear water stretching as far as the eye can see, the Kiawah Beachwalker Park is great for introverts or visitors who want a quiet beach experience. It has relatively fewer crowds compared to other beaches in the area but still has all the public amenities that one could need. From shower facilities to picnic areas and ample parking, Kiawah Beachwalker Park is the ultimate destination for a beach day at Johns Island. Be sure to grab a snack or drinks at the concession area to stay hydrated and fueled for a day under the sun.

4341 Betsy Kerrison Parkway, Johns Island, South Carolina 29455, Phone: 843-768-3635

17. Wells Gallery

Wells Gallery
© Wells Gallery

Tucked away within the beautiful Sanctuary Resort is Wells Gallery, a premiere gallery with a small but remarkable collection of contemporary art depicting the Lowcountry and the quintessential Southern experience at Kiawah Island. Innovative, unique, and spectacularly curated, the Wells Gallery features the work of over 20 artists such as Gary Gowans, Curt Butler, E.B. Lewis, and Karen Larson Turner. Guests are welcome to spend as much time as they want enjoying paintings and other works of art up close or even participate in workshops hosted by the Wells Gallery and the artists that they invite. Whether you’re staying at the Sanctuary Resort or not, this gallery is truly a must-visit when spending time on Kiawah Island.

1 Sanctuary Beach Drive, Kiawah Island, South Carolina 29455, Phone: 843-576-1290

18. Jasmine Porch at The Sanctuary

Jasmine Porch at The Sanctuary
© Jasmine Porch at The Sanctuary

There are many reasons to pay a visit to Jasmine Porch at The Sanctuary. Apart from being a stupendous example of Lowcountry cuisine, and beyond the accolades and prestigious titles it’s been bestowed, Jasmin Porch is simply the best place on Kiawah Island to enjoy downhome cookery. With Chef Kyle Bowling at the head of Jasmine Porch’s kitchen, dishes are unique and well thought out using seafood plucked straight out of local waters and served alongside organic local produce. Tuck into comforting dishes like Pan Seared Scallops, classic fares like the Shrimp and Grits, or tummy-warming options like the Swordfish Bouillabaisse.

1 Sanctuary Beach Drive, Kiawah Island, South Carolina 29455, Phone: 800-654-2924

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