The Barefoot Mermaid’s Guide to Beaufort, SC Part II

The Barefoot Mermaid’s Guide to Beaufort, SC Part II

Following up with my first post on where to stay, where to eat and local festivals. This post is all about things to do in the Lowcountry.



The Original Gullah Festival took place in May this year. We have never been but would love to go one day.

Beaufort Water Festival is a week long even. This year the festival will run July 14-23. Many moons ago we saw Josh Turner at the Festival one year. There are all kinds of events during the festival-daily entertainment, art and crafts show, fireworks, parades, shrimp boat tours and much more.

Shrimp Festival on the historic Waterfront takes place in October. Many local restaurants have booths set up selling their dishes featuring shrimp.  There is live music, a 5k and an area of arts and craft for sale. 2017 dates are October 6 and 7.

Light Up the Night is an annual Christmas boat parade. Christmas lights and decorations, boats and a town I adore? Sign me up! Sadly, we have never been but I want to go badly.


Local Markets:

Sea Eagle Market is located off Boundary Street in Beaufort. They are family owned and operated.

Gay Fish Company is located on Saint Helena Island and has been our go to family shrimp spot for years. Always List when we have a kitchen but sometimes I like to stop to see the shrimp boats up close even if we are not buying seafood to cook.

White Shrimp Company is another local market located on Saint Helena Island. We have also purchased shrimp from them.

Barefoot Farms has roadside fresh fruits and vegetables for you. They also have fresh shrimp at times. Jimmy the nice owner let me buy some tomatoes and cucumbers before they opened on our last day there recently.

Dempsey Farms has been around as long as I can remember. Offering a variety of you pick items they also have a stand with other fruits and vegetables available for purchase. We have picked strawberries here before, it was a fun experience and the fresh strawberries in the coming days was a bountiful reward.

Shrimp Roadside Stand I do not have a link or know the name but there is a stand located close to St Helena Elementary school that sells shrimp. Leisa’s Seafood maybe? They have been there for years and we have purchased from them a few times.

Beaufort’s Farmers Market  takes place downtown on Wednesdays in the Summer.

Port Royal’s Farmers Market takes place on Saturdays year round.



Old Sheldon Church located a short drive outside of Beaufort, was burned by the British Army in 1779. It was then rebuilt and burned again by Sherman’s men in 1865. The surrounding Live Oaks provide your quintessential Lowcountry setting.

HWY 21 Drive In we have never been here but we have been to one in Alabama.

Beaufort History Museum again something we have never as we are pretty content just hanging at the beach.


Beaufort’s Waterfront. Take stroll, swing, play, picnic or grab some good eats along the Waterfront. There is also a playground located along the Waterfront. Great for letting the little ones burn off some energy. Always List.



Dolphin and River Cruise with Captain Dick is a fun outing for the entire family. We have been twice now. We have seen dolphins on both occasions ans enjoyed the historical facts provided about Beaufort.

Sea Island Carriage Tours offer historical horse drawn carriage tours throughout Downtown Beaufort.

Southurn Rose Buggy Tours offers the same thing. Ryan and I did one of these one year. But honestly I can not even remember which company we used. I believe we went with the one with two openings in a tour that met our schedule best.

The Spirit of Old Beaufort offers different historical tours in and around Beaufort.


Look for the tabby wall and downtown building that still contain tabby.

Walk, run or bike on the Spanish Moss Trail.

Paris Island Museum is located in base. You have to show IDs but can easily visit after stopping at the guard station. We have never been but hear great things and want to go soon.

Santa Elena was founded on Parris Island in 1566. This museum is dedicated to education about the area.

Coffin Point is a privately owned house that was once a large plantation. We have never been so unsure if you can drive up just to look at the house from your car.

Penn Center was one of the first schools for freed slaves. The museum is located on St Helena Island.


Fort Fremont was part of the Spanish American war. You can now visit and explore the fort. I would take some bug spray.

Hunting Island. There are no words that can adequately describe my love and affection for this place. I have tried. It’s magical. I hope you get to experience it for yourself one day. There are many things to do here. So much so that while writing this I decided to dedicate a full blog post just to it. It will be part III coming soon. Always List.


Kayak the the Beaufort river, march creeks behind Hunting Island or over to Gay’s Shrimp Company to get a different view of the shrimp boats. There are boat landings (another  website listing landings) Russ Point landing at the end of Hunting Island and Butches Island Landing located off the Harbor river. There are kayak rentals in the area. We can not recommend any as we have only used the Tilly Kayaks and gone when Uncle David the ultimate curator of fun was around.

Shop. Many cute, local shops adorn the Lowcountry. See the list of our favorites below. This is in no way a comprehensive list so I encourage you to take a day or afternoon or a few afternoons and just wonder around to see what you can stumble upon.

If you really can not find anything else to do in this area or maybe want a smaller, quieter town to have your home base then Savannah and Charleston are good day trips roughly an hours drive.

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Lulu Burgess is a fun local store. They always have cute beach gift items and kids items as well.

Rhett Gallery contains the paintings and prints of three generations of the Rhett family. We have several of Nancy Rhett’s prints in our house. I have many more on our wish list and I am hoping to soon add one over Ryan’s dresser in our bedroom. It is the wall directly across from our bed so we will see it frequently. Always List.

Olive the Above is a locally owned olive oil and vinegar shop on Bay Street. There are many of these popping up over the country but I enjoy this one since its the first one that I ever went inside.

Scout Southern Market sells cute southern gift items on Bay Street. This is another one of my Always List just to see what fun items they have. They also have treats in the back of store, like a sweet tea float.

Nevermore Books a local independent owned book store.

McIntosh Book Shoppe also a local, independent book store.

Herban Marketplace falls into two categories eats and shop. It seems like a mini Whole Foods having similar items.

Macdonald MarketPlace has recently opened though the retail space has been there for years with different tenants. Ryan and I stopped by last year to check out the new store. They had cute items featuring local artist.

Red Piano is a local art gallery in Frogmore. We have visited for years. Always List.

Bellavista & Octopuses have cute beach decor. We stop by often.

Barefoort Bubba’s is a fun beach shop on the way to Hunting Island. They offer clothing, swim suits, jewelry and some rentals such as kayaks.


Other Resources:

I found a New York Times article from 1986 about the Gullah Island. So fun to read about places we still love today thirty one years later.

The City of Beaufort’s website.

Eat Sleep Play Beaufort’s website has great information and blog post about the area. you can also look them up on Facebook.

Main Street Beaufort website is also a good resource for events, shops and dining in Beaufort.


I'd Love to hear your thoughts

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