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Morris Island Day Trip | Fun Things to Do in South Carolina

Charleston, South Carolina is a beautiful city for a vacation. Rich with history, a fun nightlife scene, and great restaurants, Charleston truly has it all, in general there are so many great things to do in South Carolina! However, to get the full Charleston experience, you may want to consider venturing off the mainland and exploring. A day trip to Morris Island will be filled with fun in the sun with a great side of Charleston history!

About Morris Island

Morris Island is a small, but significant island that sits in the Charleston Harbor. The island forms parts of the cities of Folly Beach and Charleston. However, at only 840 acres, no one lives permanently on the island. Many tourists and locals alike visit here each year to enjoy the natural scenery and learn of its history, this island remains a popular South Carolina thing to do.

Morris Island and the Civil War

Due to its strategic location in Charleston Harbor, Morris Island was a heavily fortified location during the Civil War, particularly around Fort Wagner. In fact, this was location of the first shots fired during the Civil War, aimed at a supply ship trying to send supplies to Fort Sumter. Heavy battle throughout the war occurred as the Union Army fought hard to capture the city of Charleston. One of the most notable, but ill-fated, assaults on the island was by the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, an African-American regiment. Many are familiar with this event due to it being immortalized in the movie, Glory. Eventually, the Confederate Army abandoned the island in 1863 and it was then taken over by the Union Army.

Morris Island Light

In addition to the Civil War battles fought here, the other notable part of the island is the lighthouse. The unusual fact about the Morris Island Light is that it actually now stands in the water, hundreds of feet off the island. It was originally built in 1876, about 1,200 feet from the shore, but heavy erosion shrunk the island. By 1938, the erosion brought the shoreline up to the lighthouse and forced it to be automated, since it was too dangerous to have manned. In 1962, another lighthouse was built as a permanent replacement. However, the city of Charleston has banded together to preserve the Morris Island Lighthouse. Save the Light Inc. leads projects to stabilize and preserve this part of Charleston history.

Book a Tour

Morris Island lies about six miles off the mainland, and fun thing to do in South Carolina that is only accessible by boat. Book a tour of Morris Island and experience everything it has to offer! On your trip to the island, try to spot wildlife as you learn about the ecosystem of the ocean. Once you reach the island, hunt for shells, take photos of the lighthouse, and view the battlefields. For about $47 per person, only $27 for children 12 and under, your whole family can enjoy a day on Morris Island!