Choosing the right hair salon in Kiawah Island, SC, is a little bit like finding the perfect outfit. The materials feel great on your skin, the fabric is flattering to your body type, and when you try it on, you just know – this is the outfit that you have been looking for.
With thousands of hair salons and stylists in South Carolina, choosing the right one can be difficult. You want a salon that is clean, comfortable, and chic. But, more importantly, you need a stylist that “gets” you. Someone who takes the time to understand your preferences, your style, and your personality. You need a stylist who listens, is honest, and has the technical skills to turn your vision into a reality.
An excellent stylist epitomizes all those traits and knows how to adapt to changing beauty trends. They aren’t afraid to take on a challenge.
where the most talented hair stylists in Kiawah Island help bring out the beauty in each of our clients. We strive to provide each of our customers with the highest levels of customer service in the beauty industry. At Chroma, we offer a relaxing environment, skillful professionals, and a variety of products with environmentally safe and good-for-you ingredients. Our goal is to make your salon experience special, from the moment you walk in to the second you leave. With a variety of professional hair and beauty services to choose from, we’re sure you will rediscover the “beauty of you” every time you visit our salon.
The key to a great haircut and salon experience is to understand the services we offer, so you can choose the best selection for your needs. What do our salon services entail? Keep reading below to find out.
Let’s be honest: DIY hair kits can be tricky to get right. They can be complicated to apply and usually have hard-to-understand instructions. Half the time, the color you’re left with looks nothing like it does on the front of the box. In a perfect world, you should be able to pop into Target, pick a boxed hair color, apply it at home, and emerge out of your bathroom with a new, beautiful hair color. For most people, this never happens.
That’s why ladies who want flawless color, professional application, and ease of convenience get their highlights at Chroma Hair Studio & Spa.
Whether you are changing your hair color completely, or just want a few highlights to switch things up, we are here to create the look and style that you’ve been dreaming about. At Chroma Hair Studio & Spa, we specialize in the latest hair coloring trends using cutting-edge technology. That way, our clients get the freshest looks, coolest colors, and longest-lasting highlights in Kiawah Island. When you get your highlights done at our professional hair salon in Kiawah Island, SC, we want you to leave excited and ready to share your new hair all over social media.
Don’t spend hours in the store trying to find the color you think will look great on you. Our team of professional stylists will consult with you about your vision and craft a custom highlight plan that fits you’re your unique style. There’s a reason why so many customers trust us with their highlights – we genuinely care about your hair and how it looks.
Our professional hair coloring services in Kiawah Island are a combination of art and science. The artistic results only last as long as the hair coloring products used, and we use the best. Our hairstylists and colorists are committed to helping you look and feel fabulous, whether you’re planning a special occasion or just want to impress that special someone.
Ever taken a chance on a new look or hair color, only to end up embarrassed and unsatisfied with the results? You’re not alone – we get calls every week from people just like you who need hair color correction in Kiawah Island. Sadly, sometimes even the professionals get a color procedure wrong. Other times, you change your mind about your hair color and simply don’t like it. Whatever the reason, your hair needs to be stripped and recolored quickly.
We’ve treated all sorts of hair problems that need correction – from multiple bands of different colors and tones to uneven re-growth and brassy highlights. Sometimes, our client’s entire hairstyle needs to be corrected. To do this, we stock multiple types of color, bleach, toning and corrective tools to ensure our results meet your color correcting needs. Our team always puts a priority on the health and integrity of your hair. We don’t want to ruin it further, so it may take more than one visit to get your hair looking fabulous again.
Whether it’s for a super special occasion or just a date night out, a professional makeup application is an easy way to look amazing. When it comes to professional makeup, there are many choices out there, but only one you need to know about: airbrush makeup.
Generally speaking, airbrushing uses compressed air, which mists your foundation lightly across your skin, using unique foundation cartridges and a pen-like applicator that sprays the makeup. If you’ve ever watched an awards show, you’ve probably seen makeup artists applying airbrush makeup on celebrities as they walk down the red carpet. With that said, airbrush makeup isn’t just for the rich and famous; it’s for you, too!
This revolutionary technique creates a flawless finish and a natural look for your skin. We can brush off skin imperfections using high-def makeup products, leaving you ready for your close up on any special occasion. With airbrush makeup at Chroma Hair Studio & Spa, you can wear your makeup all day and never have to powder your nose. This unique makeup foundation is even smudge-proof and waterproof, meaning you can perspire and even touch your face without worry.
A few benefits of airbrush makeup include:
If you’re looking for a cost-conscious way to stand out from the crowd, we recommend stopping by hair salon in Kiawah Island, SC. Our team will speak with you about your event, talk to you about your makeup preferences, and will work hard to give you the look that you’ve been craving.
Picking the perfect wedding dress is tough, but choosing your hairstyle can be even more difficult. On your wedding day, you want to be sure that your appearance is stunning and flawless. The biggest day of your life is not the day to take chances with your hair or makeup. If you’re looking for the highest quality wedding hair and makeup services in Kiawah Island, look no further than Chroma Hair Studio & Spa.
Our flexible, talented hair stylists can handle your entire bridal party’s pre-wedding beauty routine. We have the experience to create any style that you’re interested in, whether you’re looking to achieve a modern or vintage look. We’ll even give you advice on what kind of hair and makeup to use for the wedding dress that you will be wearing.
Your wedding day hair and makeup can be applied at our salon in Kiawah Island or at your wedding venue – whichever is easier for you. We offer a relaxing salon atmosphere, skillful stylists, and only the best in professional products, such as Keratin Complex, Scruples, and Schwarzkopf. We also offer a variety of haircare products with non-toxic ingredients. That way, you can rest easy knowing you’re not inhaling strange fumes while you’re walking down the aisle.
Shopping on a budget? We offer a wide range of pricing so that your wedding day makeup and hair are stellar, no matter how much you’re looking to spend.
Today, our bodies are constantly bombarded – by pollution, stress, and a host of other irritants. These problems often manifest on our faces, which can quickly become riddled with oil and other substances that leave you looking worn-out and tired. One of the most popular ways to refresh, rejuvenate, and reverse the signs of stress and pollutants is with a professional facial from Chroma Hair Studio & Spa.
There’s no facial more personalized to your needs than our custom blend facials. Each step is a fusion of science, aromatherapy oils, natural botanicals, and luxurious techniques combined with clinical-strength ingredients designed specifically to deliver results. The first step begins with a SkinReading® which we use to determine your concerns and goals. We follow that up with an invigorating cleansing, deep exfoliation, and relaxing skin sedation.
If you're looking to switch up your hair color but can’t decide between Balayage or Ombre because, well, you don't know the difference – don’t worry. You’re not alone!
Balayage is a French technique for highlighting the hair in which the dye is painted to create a natural-looking effect. The goal is to create soft, subtle highlights that make your hair look like it’s been kissed by the sun.
While Balayage is the technique of painting the hair, Ombre focuses on the style of the hair. It is the transition of a lighter shade to a darker shade. Typically, Ombres work best for brunettes, but the style can is suitable for blondes too. To achieve the effect of an Ombre, it is crucial to have a smooth transition between colors. While the Ombre is a beautiful look, you’ll need to work with a professional to get the best results.
Luckily, we offer both Ombre and Balayage hair coloring at Chroma Hair Studio. Short on time? Busy schedule? Only available on weekends? Chroma Hair Studio offers flexible appointment scheduling to accommodate even the busiest clients. You deserve a fresh new style, and we’re here to help when the time is right for you.
If you’re looking for a hair salon that offers high-end styling without expensive pricing, you’re in the right place. Our goal is to exceed your expectations and leave you feeling beautiful, whether you need a touch-up or a total makeover. We offer a relaxing salon atmosphere, skillful stylists, and only the best in professional brands. When it’s time for your next haircut, highlight session, or facial, look no further than Chroma Hair Studio & Spa.Appointment Request
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – A Lowcountry chef was named one of South Carolina’s ‘Chef Ambassadors’ during a special ceremony at the Statehouse Wednesday morning.Gov. Henry McMaster was joined by the Commissioner of Agriculture, Hugh Weathers, and South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism Director Duane Parrish as they appointed three chefs to serve as South Carolina Chef Ambassadors for 2022.These chefs prepare dishes using Certified South Carolina produce, meats and seafood, support local...
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – A Lowcountry chef was named one of South Carolina’s ‘Chef Ambassadors’ during a special ceremony at the Statehouse Wednesday morning.
Gov. Henry McMaster was joined by the Commissioner of Agriculture, Hugh Weathers, and South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism Director Duane Parrish as they appointed three chefs to serve as South Carolina Chef Ambassadors for 2022.
These chefs prepare dishes using Certified South Carolina produce, meats and seafood, support local farmers and highlight the state’s rich food traditions.
“South Carolina Chef Ambassadors do South Carolina a great service by shining a light on our state’s destinations, signature dishes and locally grown foods, and their own incredible talents,” said Gov. McMaster. “We’re proud to have these three great chefs represent our state.”
Among them is Executive Chef John Ondo of The Atlantic Room on Kiawah Island.
Chef Ondo grew up playing in the tidal creeks of the Lowcountry, according to the governor’s office. It’s something he said left an indelible mark on him as he has spent his 20-plus-year culinary career drawing inspiration from the area’s fields and waterways.
It was here in Charleston where Chef Ondo developed long-lasting relationships with local farmers and fishermen. He often stops by to visit and discuss how crops are coming in and to pick up produce that will appear on plates that same night at The Atlantic Room.
“With his wry sense of humor and affable nature, Chef Ondo is a recognizable spokesperson for Lowcountry foodways,” said Gov. McMaster’s office.
Ondo accepted the honor along with fellow Chef Ambassadors, Chris Williams of Roy’s Grille in Lexington, and Haydn Shaak of Restaurant 17 at Hotel Domestique in Travelers Rest.
“Man, had y’all told me all these cameras were gonna be here today I would have brushed my hair,” Ondo joked as he stepped before the podium, just seconds before First Lady Peggy McMaster reached up to brush his hair with her hand.
“This is a huge honor to be able to represent my home state and the hard-working farmers and fishermen and shrimpers, just producers of Carolina products,” he said. “This is a huge honor and I’m happy to be here.”
The governor’s office said the Chef Ambassadors, a program now in its eighth year, will represent South Carolina at food festivals, media events and other forums.
The program was created in 2014 to highlight the state as a top culinary destination. It unites agribusiness and tourism, two of the state’s largest industries, which together contribute tens of billions of dollars to the state’s economy each year and account for hundreds of thousands of jobs statewide, according to Gov. McMaster’s office.
“These three talented Chef Ambassadors honor South Carolina’s diverse culinary heritage and local ingredients,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers. “Chefs connect with and promote our state’s farmers and help teach us all how to eat fresh, local food in season.”
“Our hospitality industry has been on a rollercoaster ride since March 2020,” said Duane Parrish, Director of the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism. “From shifting to a to-go model almost overnight, to navigating workforce challenges, to welcoming an influx of visitors as tourism began to rebound – they’ve really seen it all in a very short timeframe. The Chef Ambassador program highlights and celebrates some of the very best of what this resilient and tenacious industry has to offer, and helps showcase just how significant and extraordinary our culinary scene is in the Palmetto State.”
To learn more about the program and past Chef Ambassadors, visit discoversouthcarolina.com/chef-ambassadors.
The ocean-hugging upscale resort of Kiawah Island reached a new milestone in 2021 with more than $1 billion in property sales.Kiawah Island Real Estate, which handles the majority of sales in the gated community, ended the year with $795.7 million in sales plus others that will close in the new year for a total of $1 billion in sales, a 40 percent increase from 2020.When sales by other agencies are factored in, the total climbs to $1.05 billion, up 30 percent overall from the roughly $808 milli...
The ocean-hugging upscale resort of Kiawah Island reached a new milestone in 2021 with more than $1 billion in property sales.
Kiawah Island Real Estate, which handles the majority of sales in the gated community, ended the year with $795.7 million in sales plus others that will close in the new year for a total of $1 billion in sales, a 40 percent increase from 2020.
When sales by other agencies are factored in, the total climbs to $1.05 billion, up 30 percent overall from the roughly $808 million recorded the previous year, according to Kiawah Island Real Estate.
Last year, the agency saw 493 closings, a 21 percent increase from 2020 and a 165 percent jump from 2019.
The island as a whole reported 734 closings, up 12 percent and 130 percent from the prior two years, respectively.
The record-breaking year included the most expensive residential property to change hands in the Charleston area to date. The Vanderhorst Mansion, set on 16.5 acres on the edge of the Kiawah River and dating to the early 1800s, sold June 24 for $20.5 million.
Kiawah Island Real Estate also is handling sales and reservations for two other developments set to hit the market this year.
The Burn at Cassique will offer seven homesites along the Tom Watson-designed golf course at the private Cassique Golf Club. Pricing will be available in late January.
On the inland side of town, the agency is handling reservations for Seafields at Kiawah Island, a luxury community for the 62-plus group.
The $180 million development, which broke ground last September, will feature 90 luxury one-, two- and three-bedroom residences, as well as 16 assisted-living units and continuing care services. It also will include a first-of-its-kind, in-house medical clinic operated by the Medical University of South Carolina.
The development is being built off of Seabrook Island Road near Freshfields Village Shopping Center. Construction is scheduled for completion by the fall of 2024.
As of early January 2022, 43 percent of the independent living units had been reserved.
A Charleston-based real estate company will develop an $80 million grocery-anchored project in North Carolina.
Adams Property Group will build a 48,387-square-foot Publix, 19,800 square feet of retail space and a 290-unit apartment complex in West Edge in Winston-Salem.
Construction is expected to start in a couple of months. Adams is handling the leasing.
As he jetted home that night from Kiawah Island, Phil Mickelson popped the cork on a favorite vintage and tapped out a message on his phone.“Life is good,” Mickelson wrote, and it was so.Mickelson wrote the golf story of 2021 — and one of the best golf stories of all time — on the wind-swept Ocean Course on Kiawah Island in May. The 50-year-old, who was eight years removed from his last major title, became the oldest major champion in the sport’s history by winning the 103rd PGA Championship on Pet...
As he jetted home that night from Kiawah Island, Phil Mickelson popped the cork on a favorite vintage and tapped out a message on his phone.
“Life is good,” Mickelson wrote, and it was so.
Mickelson wrote the golf story of 2021 — and one of the best golf stories of all time — on the wind-swept Ocean Course on Kiawah Island in May. The 50-year-old, who was eight years removed from his last major title, became the oldest major champion in the sport’s history by winning the 103rd PGA Championship on Pete Dye’s punishing 7,800-yard layout.
The six-time major champion played it cool all week, moving at a deliberate pace with his brother Tim on the bag, and hiding his emotions behind a pair of ever-present shades.
But there was no playing it cool for the thousands of spectators at Kiawah. After a year in which PGA Tour events were sparsely attended due to COVID-19, the floodgates seemed to open at Kiawah, especially when Mickelson emerged as a contender against a field stuffed with younger stars.
Mickelson fans shouted their support during the week, climbing into trees to get a glimpse of their hero and following him in droves.
On championship Sunday, the dam broke as Mickelson marched up the 18th hole toward victory. He and playing partner Brooks Koepka were swallowed up by thousands of delirious fans who flooded the 18th fairway in a memorable scene.
“Certainly one of the moments I’ll cherish my entire life,” he said after the triumph. “I don’t know how to describe the feeling of excitement and fulfillment and accomplishment to do something of this magnitude, when very few people thought that I could.”
Mickelson’s unexpected victory thrilled his competitors, as well.
“It was like the Phil that I remember watching just when I turned pro and it was great to see,” said South African Louis Oosthuizen, who tied for second with Koepka. “I mean, what an achievement to win a major at 50 years old, and he deserves all of that today.”
Phil’s highest finish on the PGA Tour for the rest of 2021 was a tie for 17th, though he won three times on the Champions Tour. The week after the PGA Championship, he missed the cut.
“But, I won the PGA,” he said with a grin. “So …”
Charleston Restaurant Week is (almost) upon us, friends. This celebration, held Jan. 13-23, sheds light on local restaurants and provides the opportunity to try something new from Lowcountry favorites like 39 Rue de Jean, Halls Chophouse + MESU.If you’ve never experienced the holy grail of the Charleston food + bev industry that is Restaurant Week, you’ll need a bit of guidance, as the choice...
Charleston Restaurant Week is (almost) upon us, friends. This celebration, held Jan. 13-23, sheds light on local restaurants and provides the opportunity to try something new from Lowcountry favorites like 39 Rue de Jean, Halls Chophouse + MESU.
If you’ve never experienced the holy grail of the Charleston food + bev industry that is Restaurant Week, you’ll need a bit of guidance, as the choices can get overwhelming — though too many options is never a bad thing, right?
Different eateries offer special deals to encourage people to get out + dine in at local restaurants. With 40+ Charleston area restaurants participating, the hardest part will be choosing where to dine. We’re here to highlight a few of the participating restaurants and their Restaurant Week deals.
39 Rue de Jean, 39 John St. | 3 dinner courses for $45 | Stop by this brick-walled bistro + enjoy French classics and cocktails from the bar.
Bourbon N’ Bubbles, 570 King St. | 3 dinner courses for $45 | We have to say, it’ll be hard to decide between the bruschetta + crispy tempura shrimp.
CO, 340 King St. | 3 dinner courses for $25 or 4 for $30 | Spicy crab rangoon with the option of a sake pairing? Sign us up.
Coast Bar & Grill, 39D John St. | 3 dinner courses for $45 | You can’t go wrong with any dish from this seafood eatery, but the surf & turf is definitely grabbing our attention.
Coastal Provisions, 200 Grand Pavilion Blvd., Isle of Palms | 3 dinner courses for $40 | Calling all gnocchi lovers: the sweet potato gnocchi dish looks ah-mazing.
FortyEight – Wine Bar & Kitchen, 547 Freshfields Dr., Kiawah Island | 3 dinner courses for $35 | There’s just something special about the ambiance of a wine bar. Pair it with the FortyEight Pimento Burger? We’re in.
Florence’s Lowcountry Kitchen, 90 Folly Rd Blvd., Ste B-4 | 2 lunch courses for $20, 3 dinner courses for $30 | This Lowcountry eatery has blessed us with two opportunities to enjoy its delicious Southern dishes. I’ll have an order of the shrimp & grits, please.
Frothy Beard Brewing Co.,1401 Sam Rittenberg Blvd.| 2 people for $30 | Pro tip: This brewery includes two pints of beer in its Restaurant Week deal.
Jalisco Taqueria & Tequila, 1217 Folly Rd. | Saturdays only: 3 lunch courses for $25, 3 dinner courses for $25 | Enchiladas, and salsa, and churros — oh my.
MESU, 570 King St. | 3 dinner courses for $25 | Can’t decide between Mexican + sushi? Grab an app of chips and guac before enjoying one sushi roll as your main course. Best of both worlds.
New Realm Brewery, 880 Island Park Dr. | 3 dinner courses for $30 | We can confirm that the Ultimate Wagyu Burger is worth the hype.
Swamp Fox Restaurant & Bar at Francis Marion Hotel, 387 King St. | 2 lunch courses for $20, 3 dinner courses for $40 | Enjoy all your Lowcountry favorites at this restaurant. We’re looking at you, hush puppy + deviled egg lovers.
The Salty Dog Cafe – Seabrook, 1882 Andell Bluff Blvd., Johns Island | 3 courses for 2 people for $50 | Looking for your fish ‘n’ chips fix? Look no further.
Virginia’s on King, 412 King St. | 2 for $15 brunch, 3 dinner courses for $30 | Mix it up and enjoy brunch at this popular spot, including a mimosa + your choice of a breakfast burrito or strawberry waffles.
Pro tip: Make sure you’re staying up to date on the restaurants’ latest COVID-19 updates and potential closures.
The best part? This isn’t all. Click here to see all 47 participating Charleston area restaurants + the deals they’re offering.
KIAWAH ISLAND, South Carolina – The young man behind the counter at the West Beach pool helped me pick out a bike, handed me a map and told me to have fun.What a contrast to the security attendant I encountered a few moments before, who made me feel like an interloper at the gated entrance to Kiawah Island.I brushed aside her grouchiness and headed out on two wheels, pedaling first through the island’s leafy interior before heading to the beach, where the sand at low tide cuts an incredible coastal path along the At...
KIAWAH ISLAND, South Carolina – The young man behind the counter at the West Beach pool helped me pick out a bike, handed me a map and told me to have fun.
What a contrast to the security attendant I encountered a few moments before, who made me feel like an interloper at the gated entrance to Kiawah Island.
I brushed aside her grouchiness and headed out on two wheels, pedaling first through the island’s leafy interior before heading to the beach, where the sand at low tide cuts an incredible coastal path along the Atlantic.
Kiawah, the mostly private barrier island about 25 miles south of Charleston, is often included on lists of the world’s most beautiful beaches. For that reason alone, I put the island on the top of my to-do list as I planned a short trip to South Carolina to try out the new Breeze Airways flights out of Akron-Canton Airport.
It’s not the simplest place to visit, however, especially if you’re not spending the night.
There’s one hotel on the island, the tony Sanctuary, a gorgeous, ocean-front AAA five-diamond property with 255 rooms. Rates here run $500 and up during the summer, which was too steep for me.
Instead, I overnighted at a hotel on U.S. 17, a 30-minute drive away, and planned a day trip to the island. Shortly after arrival, however, I wasn’t entirely sure that my plan was a good one.
I had called earlier to make a reservation for the Jasmine Porch, inside the Sanctuary, one of the island’s numerous restaurants. It’s one of several ways that non-guests are encouraged to visit the island, owned primarily by the Kiawah Island Golf Resort and other real estate development companies.
I made it to Kiawah by 10 a.m. on a recent Sunday, told the woman at the gate that I had a restaurant reservation and asked for a map of the island. She told me I wasn’t to linger on the island and wouldn’t give me a map.
“But I’m planning on renting bikes,” I told her. “You’re not allowed to rent bikes,” she told me.
That came as news to the young man at the nearby West Beach pool, who told me I was welcome to rent a bicycle and to pedal anywhere I liked. “Security being security,” he said, and shrugged.
Indeed, non-guests are also welcome to sign up for recreational activities and nature programs, including dolphin encounters, kayak tours, art classes and more.
They’re even allowed to golf – and this island is well known for its spectacular and prestigious courses, including the waterfront Ocean Course, which hosted the 2021 PGA Championship in May. Five courses are open to the public, whether you’re staying on the island or not, including the Pete Dye-designed Ocean Course, Cougar Point, Turtle Point, Osprey Point and Oak Point.
I’m not a golfer, which kept my to-do list simple for my short visit: Explore the island by bike, enjoy a nice meal, check out the beach, maybe witness some wildlife.
I popped into the Nature Center, too, for some air conditioned-relief, where I saw numerous snakes, turtles, a stuffed bobcat and two infant alligators in tanks (the only gators I saw during my visit, despite omnipresent signage warning visitors to stay away from ponds and waterways).
I enjoyed almost all of it – the biking was terrific, with 30 miles of shady, flat, paved paths that rarely intersected with the roadways; and the Southern cuisine at Jasmine Porch was excellent, featuring she-crab soup and crab cakes plus bottomless peach iced tea. The beach, as expected, was absolutely stunning, massive at low tide, flat and perfect for walking, cycling, lounging, even bocce playing.
The attitude of the folks manning the security gates, however, was decidedly unwelcoming. Perhaps purposely so?
Cocktails at the Ocean Course
After we returned our bikes, my husband and I decided to have a drink at the Ryder Cup Bar, at the far east end of the island, overlooking the spectacular 18th hole of the Ocean Course. Our waitress at lunch assured us that the bar was open to the public.
There is a second security gate about midway down the island, which controls access to the eastern half of Kiawah. I told the woman at the gate that we were headed to the Ryder Cup Bar.
She saw the pass from earlier in the day on our car’s dashboard and asked us if we had been to the beach. “Um, yes,” I answered. She then told us that we should not have been on the beach. “If we let everyone on the beach, there wouldn’t be enough room for the people who pay a premium for access,” she said.
That did not seem to be remotely a possibility, given the size of the beach here. But I smiled and nodded.
In a more friendly tone, she said she would make an exception for us, and handed us a pass to proceed to the bar. I thanked her while controlling the urge to roll my eyes.
My husband was put off by her attitude that seemed to suggest we weren’t welcome. I was amused, but also confused.
Other than the security staff, everyone we encountered on the island – vacationers, homeowners, wait staff, shopkeepers – were all wonderful and welcoming. They seemed to want us around.
The drive out to the Ocean Course was stunning, past spectacular, multimillion-dollar-plus properties, along live-oak lined roadways that were draped with Spanish moss.
At the end of the drive: the Ryder Cup Bar, where I very much enjoyed a cocktail called a sweet tea mojito. I sipped my beverage and enjoyed the view.
Thirst (and curiosity) quenched, we made our way back west, toward the only public destination on the island, Kiawah Beachwalker Park, part of the Charleston County Parks system (note: parking here is $15).
While technically all beaches in South Carolina are public, private landowners can (and do) restrict access to those beaches.
Beachwalker park provides public access to Kiawah’s entire 10-mile stretch of sand. Theoretically, a visitor could access the beach here and traverse (by foot or bicycle) the entire stretch of the Kiawah coast.
I wasn’t that ambitious, walking perhaps a mile to the island’s western end, where the Kiawah River joins the ocean. I was hoping to see some dolphins strand feeding, a fascinating practice where the dolphins herd fish onto the sand then launch themselves out of the water to eat. Kiawah, nearby Hilton Head and other low-lying coastal regions are among the handful of places throughout the world where this occurs, typically just before or after low tide.
Alas, I didn’t see any dolphins, but the beach was engaging enough – wide and flat and glorious.
I could have walked longer, but my feet were tired, the sun was setting and my hotel was a half hour drive away.
If you go: Kiawah Island, South Carolina
Getting there: Kiawah is about 25 miles southwest of Charleston, an easy drive from the airport or downtown.
Staying overnight: The Sanctuary offers 255 oceanfront rooms, starting at about $500 per night during the summer. Other options include the Andell Inn, part of the Freshfields Village development, just off Kiawah on St. Johns Island.
The island also has hundreds of villas and private homes available to rent via the Kiawah Island Golf Resort or individual owners.
Note to readers: if you purchase something through one of our affiliate links we may earn a commission.