The Best Beaches to Live Near in Charleston
September 11, 2019
Charleston is well known for its historical landmarks, colonial architecture, southern cuisine, friendly hospitality, and, of course, pristine beaches. Naturally, many buyers are drawn to residential neighborhoods that are within walking distance to the white sand, gentle waves, and salt-infused air. Deciding which beach town in the Charleston area is best suitable for one’s family is a time-consuming task, especially for those unfamiliar with the Lowcountry setting. Here are a few of the more popular beaches for permanent and seasonal residents.
Reverently referred to by tourists as “The Edge of America” and affectionately nicknamed “The Washout” by locals, Folly Beach is one of Charleston’s most unique areas to live. With a very beachy, laid back, hipster vibe, Folly Beach attracts quite a mixed group of residents, ranging from free-spirited young adults to retirees that have settled down in one of the many luxurious beachfront properties for sale. Folly is also a top location for vacation homes, but it is still an excellent place to reside permanently, as students are zoned for James Island Charter High School, one of the top 20 in the state of South Carolina.
Sullivan’s Island, known by most as the setting for several of Edgar Alan Poe’s short stories and poems, such as “The Gold Bug,” has charm beyond its extensive literary history. An ideal place to purchase a “forever home,” Sullivan’s Island has some of the loveliest beach houses in Charleston, and the convenient location is perfect for growing families. However, many listings are ideal for vacation homes as well. Nearby schools include Academic Magnet High School, recently named by U.S. News and World Report as the top public school in the nation.
Quite similar to Sullivan’s Island, Isle of Palms is a wonderful, family oriented place to live, vacation, and invest in a house. The gorgeous, secluded beaches are the ideal area for sea turtles to nest, and some lucky residents are able to see the turtles hatching and embarking on their journey to the ocean. Real estate in this area is ideal for young families, empty nesters, and retirees, and the central location makes it easy to access all of Charleston. Isle of Palms is zoned for Academic Magnet High School as well.
A little more secluded than Sullivan’s Island, Isle of Palms, and Folly, Kiawah Island is a nature lover’s paradise. Every home is surrounded by plants native to the area, and, if you’re lucky, by the deer who call the island home. Very few people live permanently on Kiawah, but most that do are older and do not have children at home, as there are no schools on the island, and it is a considerable drive to any public or private school. Kiawah is an excellent beach to go on vacation or to retire, as it is quiet and secluded from the hustle and bustle of Charleston.
Directly adjacent to Kiawah, Seabrook is also private and peaceful, and home to many local plants and animals, such as the Carolina Marsh Tacky, a breed of horse native to South Carolina, or the piebald deer, rare animals scarcely seen anywhere else. Like Kiawah, there are no schools on Seabrook Island, making it ideal for older residents and those looking to purchase a second home. However, Seabrook Island has some of the most upscale restaurants when compared to the other beaches, as well as luxurious spas, country clubs, and golf courses. This beachfront style of living is some of the most exclusive in Charleston, and is an opportunity that shouldn’t be passed by.
Located farther than the aforementioned beaches, Edisto Island is unique in its own right. The ecotourism business is thriving, and many private chartered and group tours are available. Edisto Beach State Park is also an incredible place to visit. There are numerous homes and lots available, whether you want a pre-built home or a custom one. Most residents are retired, but families that move to the island are zoned for Jane Edwards Elementary School, Colleton Middle School, and Walterboro High School.
Of course, the best way to determine which beach town is best for your family is to tour the area with an experienced waterfront real estate agent at NV Realty Group. Walking the beaches, visiting the nearby stores and boutiques, touring the schools, and viewing beach homes for sale will give you a firsthand look at the saltwater lifestyle.