At the entrance to Charleston Harbor is historic Sullivan's Island. This bustling beach community has a lot to offer visitors, especially history buffs who want to get their fill.
The barrier island offers family-friendly beaches and plenty of access to the glistening waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Sullivan's Island Attractions
Sullivan's Island has a long military history and is the home of Fort Sullivan, known today as Fort Moultrie. The fort was the site of the first decisive patriot victory of the British Navy. It occurred on June 28, 1776, at the palmetto log fort, as it was held by colonial forced under Colonel William Moultrie. A flag on top of the fort inspired the state flag for South Carolina and in what would later become known as the Battle of Sullivan's Island, a celebration is held every year on June 28 to honor Carolina Day. The fort is also the only part of the National Park System that can trace the entire 171-year history of American seacoast defense.
The Charleston Light can be found at the northern entrance to Charleston Harbor and replaced the former Morris Island Light. The lighthouse helps to guide ships into the harbor. The lighthouse is also triangular shaped, much different from the typical build of these structures.
Sullivan's Island is surrounded by beaches so take the kids to the water and let them enjoy fun in the sun. They can build sand castles on the shore or learn to boogie board in the water.
Things to Do
Shopping: There are antique, jewelry and clothing stores in Sullivan's Island as well as art galleries, so you'll be able to find yourself something to commemorate your visit. Head to the Tanger Outlet Center for brands such as Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th, Banana Republic Factory Store, Jos A. Bank, Michael Kors and Nine West. Additional stores include The Embroidery Boutique by The Charleston Angler, Copper Penny, the Mt. Pleasant Towne Centre, Hampden Clothing, Croghan's Jewel Box and Gwynn's of Mount Pleasant. For art, check out Adele's Pottery Studio and Gallery, City Gallery at Waterfront Park, Corrigan Gallery, LLC, Edward Dare Gallery and Sandpiper Gallery.
Dining: Grab a bite to eat at one of Sullivan's Island's eateries including Sullivan's Restaurant, Poe's Tavern and Fiery Ron's Home Team Barbecue. You'll find a variety of cuisines served in Sullivan's Island including Italian, seafood, American, barbecue, Asian and Mexican. There's also Dunleavy's Pub that provides guests with good food and friendly staff.
Just off the coast from Sullivan's Island is Fort Sumter National Monument. This was the site where the first shots were fired by Confederate soldiers on Union forces that signaled the beginning of the Civil War on April 12, 1861. Children who visit the site can participate in the Flat Soldier Program where they'll learn about different times of conflict in the nation's history including the American Revolution, the War of 1812 and the Civil War.