South Carolina's National Parks
South Carolina is a beautiful state. Throughout the state there are sites of historic interest and importance. Visitors will find some truly fantastic sites and ecosystems preserved and protected within these parks. Here is some information on each of South Carolina's national parks.
Charles Pinckney National Historic Site
This National Park preserves this coastal plantation in remembrance of Charles Pinckney. Charles Pinckney was an author and signer of the Constitution, however, he is known as the "forgotten founder." This park tells the story of the life of Charles Pinckney, and the plantation history. Visitors to Charles Pinckney National Historic Site can walk on the 1/2 mile walking trail to learn all about the history of the site. In addition, visitors can explore the museum at the farmhouse on the former plantation.
Congaree National Park
Congaree National Park preserves the largest remaining example of old-growth floodplain forest. This park has an amazing array of large old-growth hardwoods and pines, animals and plants. Visitors to Congaree can enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, educational and ranger led programs. One of the best ways to enjoy the wonders of Congaree National Park is by canoeing and kayaking tours, both self and ranger guided.
Cowpens National Battlefield
This National Battlefield preserves the site and provides visitors with information on an historic battle in the Revolutionary War. The Battle of Cowpens is known as the turning point of the war in the South, and led to the eventual victory at Yorktown. In addition the battle is also known for being the only Double Envelopment in the Revolutionary War, which is rare military tactic. Visitors can learn about this important battle at the Visitor Center, which has a museum with weapons from the time period and other exhibits. In addition visitors can tour the battlefield. There is a partially paved walking trail with exhibits. Visitors can also take the Auto Loop Road, which tours the perimeter of the battlefield.
Fort Sumter National Monument
Fort Sumter is the site of the start of the Civil War. Visitors can start at the Visitor Education Center, which has many exhibits about the events and circumstances that led to the start of the Civil War at Fort Sumter. In addition the museum exhibits at Fort Sumter detail the building of the Fort and the battles waged there, and the exhibits follow the Fort through to modern history. Visitors can take the ferry to Fort Sumter and enjoy the Ranger talks offered, as well as learn about the Fort at the exhibits around the Fort.
Kings Mountain National Military Park
Visitors to Kings Mountain National Military Park can learn about the historic battle that took place on this site in 1780. This was the first major victory during the war, and was an important point in the Revolutionary War. Visitors can stop at the Visitor Center to enjoy a short film and explore the exhibits to learn about the battle that took place at this site. In addition visitors can hike along the 1.5 mile battlefield trail, which tells the story of the battle, how it happened, who participated and why it was so important. Visitors may also see some special events held by various groups that showcase the weapons and people of the militia.
Ninety Six National Historic Site
Ninety Six National Historic Site preserves the site of two Revolutionary War battles. At this site visitors will see the original Star Fort, siege trenches, historic roads and original town sites and much more. Visitors can take Ranger led tours of the park throughout the year. In addition there are special events that highlight life during the Revolutionary War period. Visitors can also enjoy the Historic Interpretive Trail which has information about a variety of sites within the park. There are also hiking trails, which are great for enjoying the nature of the area. Another wonderful feature of this park is the small museum, which has artifacts from the site, as well as oil paintings and more.Located on North Carolina's Outer Banks, the Cape Hatteras National Seashore is an amazing destination for recreating, relaxing and much more. The seashore has many beautiful beaches for visitors to explore and enjoy. Visitors can enjoy looking for shells, birding, kayaking, hiking and more. The Outer Banks are also an excellent spot to go windsurfing, especially on Hatteras Island. Cape Hatteras National Seashore also has three historic lighthouses, the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is open for visitors.