Drive just a few miles outside of Charleston, Greenville, Columbia or Myrtle Beach and South Carolina's true rural and agricultural nature can be seen in the vegetable and boiled peanut stands that line the little two-lane highways and the hundreds of farms dotting the back roads.
So much delicious South Carolina produce comes from those farms, from rare heirloom watermelons to an overflowing abundance of tomatoes. But there's even more to South Carolina agriculture than just the fresh, local food that makes the state famous for its cuisine. There's history, science, and lots and lots of fun to be found, too.
If you've ever wanted to turn down one of those long gravel driveways and explore the farms we often only see from a distance, then you're in luck. South Carolina's
Agritourism Passport Program is just the thing. The program encourages visitors to get off the interstates and out of their cars to explore the state's agriculture. The farms on the passport have been specially chosen for their unique experiences for visitors. Pick up a passport at any of the 44 farms, and then collect a stamp at each farm you visit.
Here are just a few of our favorites:
Chattooga Belle Farm in the far Upstate is, well, possibly just about the most beautiful farm you will ever see, anywhere. Ever. No exaggeration. And, if the views are not enough, you can pick your own apples and peaches.
Happy Cow Creamery lets visitors tour the farm and meet the cows who give the milk to make all the delicious treats for sale in the farm store.
Split Creek Farm is a goat farm. Now, have you ever seen any of the funny, adorable goat videos on the internet? If not, stop right now and go look one up. And then you'll understand the draw of Split Creek. Now you can see the goats' antics in real life, and load up on fresh fudge and feta made from goat milk before you head home.
At Cottle Strawberry Farm, just outside of Columbia, kids can pick their own perfect, warm, juicy strawberries right from the field.
McLeod Farms in McBee offers not just fresh peaches, but an amazing corn maze and pumpkin chunking in the fall.