Get away for a day on Daufuskie

Island Time

Just a couple miles across Calibogue Sound from Harbour Town lies Daufuskie Island, a small, largely undeveloped barrier island begging to be explored. As the weather cools in October, it’s the perfect time for a day trip to the island.

A 45-minute ferry ride up the Intracoastal Waterway whisks visitors back in time when, depositing them on Daufuskie — accessible only by boat — and a world away from from the trappings of modern-day life.

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Heritage Trail

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TAKE A STROLL THROUGH BLUFFTON’S HISTORY

Bluffton is the last remaining example of a Lowcountry antebellum planters summer colony. And since cultural tourism is a growing trend and studies show those who are interested in history spend more money on their vacations than traditional tourists, local leaders are happy to woo them.

But it wouldn’t hurt locals to learn about where they live, either.

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Daufuskie Island: Travel Back in Time

Without a bridge to the mainland, freed slaves and their descendants have shaped Daufuskie Island since the end of the Civil War. Their strong and unique Gullah culture was deeply influenced by their African heritage and remained largely isolated until the 1970s. The island had no electricity or telephone service until the 1950s, and oysters and cotton drove the economy — though today, tourism has become the most important source of income.

But Daufuskie’s history starts long before Africans and Europeans arrived. The word “Daufuskie” comes from the language of Muscogee Indians and means “sharp feather,” describing the island’s distinctive shape. Artifacts and piles of ancient oyster shells left over from that time date back more than 9,000 years.

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BLUFFTON - HEART OF THE LOWCOUNTRY

blufftonBluffton began as a native american enclave where tribes would fish and collect oysters, trading them along the May River. Later, it became a retreat for wealthy cotton, indigo and rice plantation owners who enjoyed the river breezes from the town’s bluff. Hence its name, Bluffton. That life revolving around gentle breezes continues today, earning the town the designation of “one of the last true Southern coastal villages.”

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Average Temperatures

  Low High Ocean
Jan–March 44 64 58
April–June 63 81 75
July–Sept 72 87 82
Oct–Dec 51 70 63