Our Day on Bulls Island

Beautiful views from Garris Landing where the ferry takes off from

A few Saturdays ago, we explored Bulls Island, which is an island that is part of the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge. Bulls Island is located just outside of Charleston in Awendaw, South Carolina, and features 7 miles of undeveloped shoreline and 16 miles of walking trails. The ferry is run by Coastal Expeditions, a tour company that offers many ways to explore and enjoy the outdoors in Charleston and the surrounding areas, including boat tours, paddleboard tours, kayak tours, and more!

The Bulls Island tour is what we decided upon, and we woke up bright and early on Saturday morning to get to the ferry by 8:30 am, as it was suggested to arrive 30 minutes prior to departure. The ferry schedule changes throughout the year, and ours ran from 9 am to 2 pm. We made sure to pack lots of water, sunscreen, and a lunch, as the website suggested!

The tour kicked off with a 30-minute ferry ride from Garris Landing in Awendaw to Bulls Island. The ferry ride was one of my favorite parts about the day! The views of the marshland are stunning. We saw dolphins on the way to and from the island, which made my day! The ferry ride was also educational, as the tour guide talks about Bulls Island and the history of it, and also about the Cape Romain wildlife refuge.

Views from Bulls Island looking towards Awendaw
Heading out on the trail to the beach

The tour guide provided us with a map of the island and the walking trails, and once we arrived at the island, we were free to explore as we wanted! We decided to take the trail straight to the beach. It was a very warm day, so I was ready to swim in the ocean! The trail to the beach was scenic, and took us about 30 minutes.

Arriving at the beach!

Because the tour consisted of just 25 people, and everyone is able to venture off on their own, you truly feel like you are the only ones on the island! The beaches were beautiful, and we collected many shells as we walked down to the Boneyard, which is a forest in the surf. By this time, we had been walking about an hour, so we were ready to relax!

After spending a couple of hours on the beach, we decided to explore some of the trails on the island. We were warned that there are many alligators that lived on the island, so we kept our eyes peeled, but didn’t end up seeing any! We did see many frogs, butterflies, and bugs (make sure to bring bug spray!).

Exploring one of the many trails
The marsh grass was almost taller than us!
Resting before heading back to catch the ferry
A pod of dolphins that were playing around our boat on the way back to Garris Landing! Check out the video on my Instagram Reels page!

Overall, the day was truly an adventure, and Michael and I both commented that we felt further away from home than we actually were. If you are looking to get out into nature and explore a beautiful barrier island off of Charleston, I highly recommend checking out Bulls Island!

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