All the BEST things to do in Folly Beach for an amazing vacation. Folly Beach, South Carolina is an east coast gem in the United States with the ultimate laid-back beach vibes. Folly makes the perfect day trip from Charleston or even a weekend-long trip of it's own. Keep reading for what to do in Folly Beach.
How to Get to Folly Beach
Folly Beach is just 12 miles from the city of Charleston, South Carolina. It's a short drive from downtown Charleston, making it easy to travel between both during your visit. The drive typically takes 20-25 minutes though you can expect traffic on weekends. For this reason, however, I do highly suggest a rental car for your trip.
Charleston International Airport
Closest major cities:
Charleston, South Carolina: 12 miles
Savannah, Georgia: 114 miles
Where to Stay on Folly Beach
Tides Hotel is the most popular hotel in the area and basically the only one. It's smack dab in the center of Folly and within walking distance to nearly everything on this list.
If you are looking for something more luxe or for a larger group, I suggest checking out the many vacation rentals in the area.
Folly Beach, South Carolina Travel Guide
Explore Folly Beach
Of course the #1 must do is to visit Folly Beach to take in the fresh ocean air and enjoy the sunshine. There's really nothing better than grabbing a spot on the sand and spending hours soaking up the sunshine.
Visit Folly Beach County Park
Towards the west side of Folly Beach is the Folly Beach County Park. During the summer months, this park has lifeguards on duty for extra safety. There are also umbrellas and chairs for rent and a snack bar. Plus, picnic tables and grills if you want to cookout.
Walk Folly Beach Pier
Take a walk down the newly updated Folly Beach pier to enjoy the views.
Check Out Morris Island Lighthouse
While exploring Folly Beach you can also check out the Morris Island Lighthouse. Morris Island is also popular to visit via kayaking and boating, with it's beach and shelling opportunities. The best place to see the Morris Island Lighthouse is from the northeast end of Folly Island at the Lighthouse Inlet Heritage Preserve.
Go For A Bike Ride
You can rent bicycles from Cool Breeze Bikes and bike all over Folly and even on the beach with the thick, wide tires on their bikes. The rental includes locks and helmets.
BEACH AND SUNSHINE MUST-HAVES
Mesh Beach Bag
Must-Do at Folly: Eat & Drink Amazing Food
Folly Beach, South Carolina, has a small-town beach feel, but there is a great selection of unique restaurants for whatever you're craving. Plus, plenty of bars where you can grab a drink, relax, and go into vacation mode.
Best restaurants in Folly Beach, SC
Chico Feo is my kind of place. Just steps away from the beach you'll find this funky bar serving up a limited, but delicious menu of tacos and sandwiches. Plus, lots of craft beer options to wash down your meal. If you're lucky they may even have live music during your visit.
Address: 122 E Ashley Ave, Folly Beach, SC 29439
Jack of Cups Saloon
Jack of Cups has a vegetarian-friendly menu that is a favorite amongst locals. When you're tired of the southern dishes and seafood in Charleston, come here for their globally-inspired menu with unique twists. You might be interested in the dill pickle soup, the curry nachos or maybe the pad Thai burger. During Happy Hour from 4-6 pm daily you can get select bites and cocktails for $9 a piece!
Address: 34 Center St, Charleston, SC 29412
Lost Dog Cafe
Lost Dog Cafe is a must when visiting Folly Beach, and yes, dogs are welcome at this breakfast and lunch spot. Pancakes, shrimp and grits, breakfast burritos and more are offered on the menu along with the local favorite, the Folly Benedict.
Address: 106 W Huron Ave, Folly Beach, SC 29439
Lowlife Bar is a casual, laidback beach bar serving up a menu of locally-sourced food with a nice happy hour, fresh ingredient cocktails and more. They offer brunch daily from 10 am - 3 pm with specialty mimosas and an evening menu afterwards until 10 pm. The Old Bay seasoned waffle fries are a must with whatever meal you're having.
Address: 106 East Hudson Avenue, Folly Beach, SC 29439
If you're in need of some sweet refreshment sans alcohol, pop over to the Pineapple Hut. It's a dessert truck serving up dairy-free soft serve. Everyday they offer their pineapple whip (yes, like what Disney has!) in a few variations like a Pineapple Float, Chunky Whip (whip with pineapple chunks) and the whip even served up in a fresh halved Pineapple. They usually have a second flavor option too. You'll find them open daily from 12 - 8:30 pm.
Address: 103 W Erie Ave Folly Beach, SC 29439
Rita's Seaside Grill
Located just steps from the beach, Rita's is serving up American cuisine for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. This is a family friendly spot with a big dog-friendly patio where you can often enjoy live music. They open at 8 am daily which is perfect for early birds wanting to grab a bite after catching the sunrise on the beach.
Address: 2 Center St, Folly Beach, SC 29439
Taco Boy's Folly Beach location is massive with several floors, a huge bar area, patios and rooftop dining. With the tall trees surrounding the space you feel like you're dining in a tropical treehouse. They have a wide variety of freshly made tacos on the menu so there's something for everyone, plus the queso was delicious. We topped ours with some of the hot sauce at the table for an extra bite. And you can't go wrong with any of their frozen margaritas on a hot day.
Address: 106 E Ashley Ave, Folly Beach, SC 29439
More Folly Beach Fun
Grab any item you might need from Bert's Market
I adore Bert's Market. This place is like an institution of Folly Beach. It's a grocery store, deli and grill that is open 24/7 walking distance from the beach. You can find any groceries, household or personal care items you may need along with a big selection of wine and beer.
Plus, they also sell some freshly made food like salads, wraps, subs, paninis, even sushi and chili dogs. The place is a total vibe and worth popping in to grab whatever you might need like extra sunscreen or beach snacks.
Address: 202 E Ashley Ave, Folly Beach, SC 29439
Enjoy the Folly Beach Nightlife with a Drink
- Sand Dollar Social Club for major dive bar vibes and live music on weekends
- Snapper Jacks for the rooftop and frozen drinks
- Try Loggerhead's Beach Grill for the spacious patio
Grab coffee from Dead Low Coffee Co.
Dead Low Coffee Co. looks like an unassuming food truck as it's located in a parking lot, but don't underestimate just how good the coffee is. It's the perfect spot to grab an iced latte after watching the sunrise on Folly Beach.
Paddleboard or Kayak Tour
Get out in the harbor with a paddleboarding or kayaking tour. Charleston SUP Safaris has morning, afternoon and sunset tours so you can definitely fit them into your schedule. Plus, they often spot dolphins on their tours through Folly River along with other local wildlife.
Go for a more extreme sport and give surfing a try! Shaka Surf School in Folly Beach offers group and private lessons as well as full-on camp sessions to really immerse yourself into the sport.
If you're into fishing, then you definitely want to go out with Tall Tide Fishing Adventures. They have inshore fishing charters as well as ocean fishing trips. They even offer shorter family-focused fishing trips that are 2.5 hours vs. 4 hours. Whether you're a seasoned fisherman or novice, they can plan an exciting trip for you.
Spot Dolphins on a Boat Tour
Flipper Finders takes you through creeks and marshes behind Folly Beach to discover the many wild Atlantic bottlenose dolphins that live there year-round.
You'll learn about local history, the ecosystem and dolphins while the captain ensures the tour is safe and respectful of the local wildlife. Flipper Finders offers tours throughout different times of the day as well as kayak tours too
Explore the local shops
Stroll along Center Street and beyond to check out the local shops in Folly. You can find great beach gear, pick up some souvenirs and get an early start on holiday shopping.
Search for Shark Teeth on the beach
Folly Beach is one of the best places to find shark teeth, specifically near the Morris Island Lighthouse. You can find shark's teeth, starfish and sand dollars coming in from the Atlantic ocean. Early in the morning is the best time for hunting shark's teeth and the Folly Beach site has a great guide for finding shark teeth on Folly with even more tips.
FAQs about Folly Beach
How do I spend a day at Folly Beach?
I suggest starting the day with coffee from Dead Low Coffee Co. then getting out on the water with a surfing class, kayak or boating tour. Grab lunch and snacks from Bert's Market before relaxing on the beach for a few hours while you also search for shark's teeth on Folly Beach. For dinner stop at Taco Boy, then grab drinks at Chico Feo and Lowlife Bar.
Are there cheap things to do in Folly Beach?
Absolutely! Folly Beach is quite affordable. For free and cheap activities, spend the day on the beach, walk along the sand to see Morris Island Lighthouse, search for shark's teeth. Get a cheap bite from Bert's Market where hot dogs are just .79 cents a piece!
Can you drink alcohol at Folly Beach?
Alcohol is not permitted at Folly Beach. However, there are many great bars close by for a drink like Chico Feo and Lowlife Bar.
Things to do in Folly Beach for Bachelorette Party?
Try a Bachelorette party boat cruise with Flipper Finders - they'll take you out on Charleston marshes with a stereo system for your tunes and coolers for your drinks.
This post was all about the must-do's in Folly Beach, SC for an amazing trip. From exciting dolphin tours and stunning views on the beach, to amazing fresh food and laidback vibes, Folly Beach should be your next vacation destination!
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