Skip to content

The Best Charleston, SC Kayaking

Shem Creek in Charleston, SC

South Carolina is home to some truly spectacular kayaking. With so many rivers, lakes, creeks and coastal inlets, it brings kayakers in from all over the world. At the heart of it all is Charleston.

Charleston Kayaking Destinations

You can’t go wrong no matter where you kayak in Charleston. The coastal city is surrounded by ocean, marshlands, creeks and rivers. Check out the list below for a few of the best places to kayak in Charleston, South Carolina. 

Shem Creek

This famous waterway is one of the best and easiest to access kayaking spots in the Charleston area. Just a few minutes from downtown, the creek is always bustling with kayaks, paddleboards and shrimp boats. A quick paddle from the Charleston Harbor, you’ll enjoy views of the city’s most famous landmarks or venture inland toward the marsh lands and a chance to spot wildlife in the warm calm waters. You may even spot a few dolphins.

Folly Beach

Just south of Charleston, you’ll find Folly Island and Folly Beach, one of Charleston’s most popular beaches and kayaking spots. You can enjoy a scenic paddle exploring the marshes, creeks, tidal flats and barrier islands where you might spot dolphins, osprey, wading birds and sea turtles. Or you can paddle out to Morris Island with its famous lighthouse. The paddle is long, four miles each way, but mostly sheltered making it suitable for beginners.

Isle of Palms

Isle of Palms is a unique coastal barrier island just a few minutes’ drive from Charleston. It offers an incredible kayaking experience with many small coves and a marshy coastline to explore as well as six miles of white, sandy beaches. It has one of the most diverse coastal ecosystems plus an abundance of wildlife including crabs, seagulls, a variety of fish and even possible dolphin sightings.  

Capers Island

Capers Island also know known as Capers Island Heritage Preserve, is an amazing destination for nature loving paddlers. It’s just off the coast north of Charleston and is home to a variety of animals including alligators, sea turtles and a variety of birds. The island is four miles off the shore and only accessible by boat or kayak. You’ll need a permit from the Department of Natural Resources, but the island has oyster beds, salt marshes, maritime uplands, and even a boneyard beach of dead, salt bleached trees that were eroded by the ocean.

Lake Moultrie

Off the coast, about 40 miles north of Charleston, is Lake Moultrie. The huge lake covers 60,000 acres, with paddling options for every level of kayaker. Beginners may want to stay near the shore where more advanced kayakers may want to venture out on the Jungle paddling trail. Part of the Berkeley Blueways, this trail cuts through shallow, swampy waters that are too narrow for larger vessels. Its home to unique flora and fauna as well as alligators, massive clusters of water lilies, wading birds and fish.

Charleston Kayak Racks & Storage

Make sure your kayak is always ready for adventure with Log Kayak Rack and our 100% cedar log kayak storage racks. As beautiful as they are practical, our log kayak racks safely store kayaks high and dry, neatly organizing shorelines, backyards, parks and rental facilities while protecting your kayak. Shop our kayak racks online now or contact us for a custom kayak storage solution to meet your Charleston, SC  kayak storage needs.