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Don’t Miss Bluffton’s Eclectic Hidden Gems

Marie McAden Marie McAden
A former staffer with The Miami Herald, Marie moved to SC in 1992. She is passionate about the outdoors, and enjoys exploring the state’s many natural treasures from the Lowcountry to the Upstate.
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In a river-focused town like Bluffton, you’d expect to find some cool things to see and do on the water. But this little tidewater community offers lots of other interesting spots far removed from its famed May River.

Here are some of Bluffton’s most unique hidden gems:

Grace – Experience a bygone era on the stunning antique motorboat, Grace. One of the last remaining pre-World War I gas-powered yachts, the 60-foot vessel once ferried millionaires along the Hudson River and Long Island Sound in the 1920s. Today you can board this beauty at Palmetto Bluff’s Wilson Village for a cruise through the pristine May River.

Brewery – If you love local craft beer, you’ll want to visit Southern Barrel Brewing Co. Open seven days a week, it features a patio, bar and tavern where you can try one of the core beers on tap as well as seasonal selections and limited runs.

Bluffton Brittle – This gourmet kettle-cooked brittle is made by a local candy maker using an old family recipe. The selection of brittle includes everything from jalapeño to white chocolate-covered brittle. You’ll find Bluffton Brittle in local shops in Bluffton and on Hilton Head Island, as well as some candy stores and farmers markets across the state.

Campbell Chapel AME Church – The oldest sanctuary in Old Town Bluffton, this church was built in 1853 and originally served as the Bluffton Methodist Church until 1874 when it was purchased by nine former slaves looking for a location to establish a congregation under the auspices of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church. You’ll find it at 25 Boundary St. You’ll also want to visit The Church of the Cross, another historic church consecrated in 1857. Constructed from unfinished heart pine, it was designed by prominent Charleston architect E.B White, whose work includes Market Hall and the French Huguenot Church. It overlooks the May River at 110 Calhoun St.

Bluffton Oyster Company – This family-run operation located at the end of Wharf Street is the last remaining hand-shucking house in South Carolina and sits on land created by oyster shells discarded over a period of 100 years. Opened in 1899 on the banks of the May River, the oyster company sells seafood freshly harvested from local waters. The catch includes shrimp, live blue crab, clams, fish, mussels and, of course, succulent oysters.

Marie McAden
A former staffer with The Miami Herald, Marie moved to SC in 1992. She is passionate about the outdoors, and enjoys exploring the state’s many natural treasures from the Lowcountry to the Upstate.