Daufuskie Island is a hidden gem. And- like the island itself- many of the activities, businesses and restaurants are also well kept secrets. You really need a Daufuskie Island Bucket List to make sure you don’t miss anything!
Our family had the opportunity to visit Daufuskie earlier this month. If you missed my first post about our trip, you can catch it here: The Island Less Traveled. In a nutshell, we fell in love. We loved the people. The landscape is phenomenal. And we found the whole island vibe super charming.
You might assume that on a tiny island (3 miles by 2.5 miles to be exact) you couldn’t miss anything.
But you’d be wrong!
Of course, one could go to Daufuskie and do absolutely nothing. In fact, one day soon I plan to do exactly that. However, if it’s your first time visiting, there are a few things you don’t want to miss.
Everything on Daufuskie is tucked into the natural landscape. There is no city-center and no tourist area. And, to truly experience Daufuskie you’ll need a golf cart to make your way around. (Contact Krissy and Kevin at Island Accommodations to set this up for you!)
Dafuskie Island Bucket List
- Ferry Ride: Lucky for you, this is your only way onto the island…so it would be hard to miss! My kids loved sitting up with the Captain and we even saw several dolphins riding our boat waves.
- Sunrise: I’m a firm believer that vacations are meant for sleeping in. Thankfully, my kids completely disagree with me. But trust me, you’ll want to set your alarm (at least once) to watch sunrise over the Calibogue Sound. It’s spectacular!
- Sunset: One of the benefits to being on such a small island is that you can see the sun rise AND set over water. Head over to the Public Dock to catch the best view of the sunset.
- Horseback Riding On The Beach: Daufuskie Island is one of the only places in the United States where you can actually ride a horse on the beach. It’s absolutely a once in a lifetime experience. Reach out to Haig Point Equestrian Center to book your ride.
- Community Farm: I had no idea how much fun my children would have feeding goats. This cute, volunteer-run farm was one of the highlights of our trip. You will see a variety of other animals too. But the goats…you can’t miss!
- Stars: After the sun goes down, Daufuskie Island is pitch black. So while you may not be able to see your own hand in front of your face, if you look up you’ll have the most spectacular view of the night sky! You may even want to bring a basic Astronomy Guide with you on your trip. We were able to find so many constellations that we’d never seen before.
- Get Lost: If you feel comfortable, put the map away and spend some time just getting lost on the island. Take a few turns on unmarked paths and enjoy the feeling of exploring without the constraints of a GPS system guiding your every move. There’s something really freeing in having the option to turn left or right and not knowing where either road will lead you!
- Melrose Beach Club:This is a great spot to grab dinner! The atmosphere is amazing, the service is excellent and the food will have you coming back for more (trust me- we did!) The Club also has a pool that is open seasonally.
- Daufuskie Island Rum Distillery: This award-winning rum is one of only a few rums actually created on an island. If you’re over 21, you will definitely want to schedule a tour. (Tip: The Community Farm is right next door so the rest of the family can head over there!)
- Wildlife: Because so much of the island is undeveloped, it’s the most perfect animal sanctuary. The highlight is the number of bald eagles. But you’ll also see deer, turtles, and much more.
- The Iron Fish: I never knew our family was into visiting Art Galleries until we stumbled on this treasure. Not only is it some of the coolest art ever– but it’s sold completely on the honor system.
- Meet Sallie Ann Robinson: She’s a local legend. As a 6th generation native, historian, author, and celebrity chef- she’s somewhat of a jack-of-all-trades. Stop by her website to schedule a tour or cooking experience with her.
- Lucy Belles: There is NO better place on the Island to have lunch (and I’m not just saying that because it’s one of the only places on the island to have lunch! Ha!) Lucy Belles has been featured on the Food Network and has a menu that will make your mouth water. Don’t miss out on trying their famous Deviled Crabs.
- Historical Landmarks: This list would have gotten too long if I’d tried to name them all- but you definitely need to spend an afternoon driving (your golf cart) around the island and checking out all of the historical landmarks. Most of them have a special plaque with a description of the significance.
- Morning High Coffee: This particular coffee shop is located in the famous two-room schoolhouse where Pat Conroy taught back in the late 60’s. You won’t want to miss getting a delicious cup of coffee and touring the rooms.
- Downtime: You can’t go to Daufuskie and not relax! Be sure you build in a little time to unwind and do nothing. There is truly not another place in the world as peaceful and relaxing…so enjoy it!
As I mentioned earlier, Island Accommodations is a concierge service that will help you plan your trip to Daufuskie Island.
One of the huge benefits of using Krissy and Kevin to plan your trip is that they literally think of everything. You select your lodging option straight from their website (I HIGHLY recommend Seaside Escape on Melrose Beach!) and from there they will arrange for your transportation, golf cart, activities, meals, etc. You even have the option to purchase trip insurance.
Unfortunately, we got to experience first hand how important trip insurance can be when traveling to coastal areas when not one, but TWO different hurricanes forced us to postpone!
We will definitely continue to book our Daufuskie Island travel through Island Accommodations because they make everything so easy! In fact, we’re already planning our next trip…it’s truly our new favorite place in the world!
Don’t forget to go back and check out Daufuskie: The Island Less Traveled.
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*Island Accommodations hosted our trip to Daufuskie Island; However, all of the opinions and experiences written about in this post are uniquely our own.