hilton head island

Daufuskie Island

Making South Carolina Vacations Memorable!

hilton headisland activities

Daufuskie Island is a small island sandwiched between Hilton Head Island and mainland South Carolina which offers the opportunity for a variety of adventure outdoors. Even though the island can only be accessed by boat and has only 429 year-round residents, it has numerous claims to fame.

It was the setting for Pat Conroy's famous novel, "The Water is Wide," and its artists have been featured in both Coastal Living and Southern Living magazines.

The island is a true delight for art lovers, and its unique beauty serves as inspiration for a number of artists who reside on the island. Chase Allen is a renowned metalwork artist, and his creations can be seen at his studio, The Iron Fish.

Nearby, Silver Dew Pottery houses the work of Lancy and Emily Burn, who have been creating works of pottery that are both functional and beautiful since 1996.

The Daufuskie Gallery hosts art in a variety of media from more than one dozen island artists. There is something for everyone here, with art that runs the gamut from folk art to sublime fine art, including exquisite sculpture pieces.

Take a Historical Tour

Visitors to Daufuskie Island have an opportunity to see all of these artistic works and more on a fabulous guided boat tour of the islands historic district, departing from Hilton Head Island.

hilton head island activities

Other popular sights on the tour include the oldest building on the island – First Union African Baptist Church – which is still in use today as a place of public worship. The church was built in 1882. The tour also includes the Mary Fields School, which was featured by Pat Conroy in his fictionalized memoir "The Water is Wide."

The boat tour provides a wonderful opportunity for adventure outdoors through experiencing the historical art, architecture, and natural beauty of the island making South Carolina vacations memorable.

hilton head island activites

The Daufuskie Island History and Artisans Excursion: Join us for a small-group tour of the "undeveloped side" of Daufuskie with our interpretive guides and USCG Licensed Captains.

We'll begin with a boat cruise down Broad Creek, through the backwater marshes, and across the Calibogue Sound to Daufuskie, just as Daufuskie residents have for generations.

We'll visit several one-of-a-kind places: the First Union African Baptist Church, the Praise house, the Mary Field's School where author Pat Conroy taught, the site of the Bloody Point Lighthouse, and several artisans' studios.

Price includes boat ride there and back, golf cart use, all of the stops on the tour, USCG licensed Captain and Interpretive Historian, and a light refreshment and snack. $85 per person. Reservations Required.

About Daufuskie Island

Before the arrival of European settlers, Daufuskie Island was home to Daufuskie's Yamasee Indians, who lived off of the island's pristine lands long before Daufuskie's recorded history began in the early 1700s. These peoples gave the island its name, which in their native language, means "land with a point."

It was on this land that the native inhabitants of the island lived in humble dugout style dwellings and hunted deer, wild boar, water fowl, and all kinds of sea creatures, including fish and shellfish.

hilton head island activities

A key period in Daufuskie's history was the Yamasee War that took place between 1715 and 1717. This pivotal conflict between the native population of then pristine Daufuskie and the newly arrived colonist settlers was the first real challenge to European colonial dominance.

In the end, the colonists won out, and this meant the demise of the Yamasee people. Bloody Point, located at the southern tip of the island, takes its name from the bloodstained beaches that were common during this difficult period in the history of Daufuskie Island.

From the end of the civil war in 1865 until fairly recently, the island was also home to the largest Gullah population in the United States. Inhabiting the low country region of Georgia and South Carolina, the Gullah are descendants of African American slaves who have lived in relative isolation and preserved more of their native African ancestry than any other African American group in the United States.

Make your South Carolina vacations memorable by visiting this quiet island only accessible by ferry or private boat. No cars, no crowds just you and your own two feet with a bike or an electric cart is how you will see this island. A ferry is available for those that want to explore on their own but I highly recommend the tour first.

Happy Exploring

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