Our kids are inundated with tech gadgets, gaming devices, and a constant stream of stimulation, day in and day out! Why not skip the bustling boardwalks lined with amusement, arcades and kid-centric attractions and spend your family vacation immersed in nature on Kiawah Island?!
Kiawah Island is a secluded barrier island and luxury resort community only 25 miles from Charleston, SC. Arriving on Kiawah Island is like stepping back in time to the days we knew as kids! Miles of beaches and bike trails without the crowds, nature activities and grubby hands, family picnics under the stars, and a slower pace of life to unwind, relax and spend quality time with family.
Great news for parents! The island is small (only 10 miles long x 1.5 miles wide) and the top things to do with your kids on Kiawah Island are merely a bike ride or short walk away from wherever you choose to stay!
1. Kick Off With a Classic Beach Day
Kiawah Island boasts 10 miles of beautiful beaches ranked among the best in the world! There are no noisy carnival games or oceanfront arcades – just miles of uncrowded and wide natural beaches with gorgeous white sands, rolling dunes, and gentle waves for a classic beach day with the kids. Kiawah Island’s Beachwalker Park is lifeguarded for safe swimming during season with beach gear rentals, rest rooms, a snack bar, outdoor showers, and all you need for a family beach day.
Spend the day playing in the sun, sand and surf, beachcombing for treasures, building sandcastles, and switching to island time on Kiawah’s family-friendly beaches. You can watch the sunrise and sunset from the beach on Kiawah Island too, perfect for early beach walks, family bike rides, or sunset picnics with the kids.
2. Bike the Kiawah Island Trails
Kiawah Island has tons of trails (30+ miles) connecting the island and you can ride your bike everywhere! Touring the island on two wheels is a fun way to get outdoors, burn off energy, bond as a family, take in the scenery, and hunt for wildlife on the trails and in the scenic marshes and lagoons along the way.
Surfscooter have been in the Kiawah bike rental business since 1981 and offer a wide range of bike sizes for every age, chariots and baby seats for little ones, and tag-a-long rentals to ride tandem – with a 5% discount for Kiawah Exclusive guests. We hope to see you and the kids on the trails soon!
3. Plan Nature Activities at Night Heron Park
Whether you’re traveling with a tenacious toddler or a fearless teen, Night Heron Park will satisfy their need for adventure. Night Heron Park lies in the heart of Kiawah Island and offers activities for all ages, unique Lowcountry tours, a calendar full of family-friendly events, and lessons for literally everything!
The kids get to learn about local wildlife at the Heron Park Nature Center, take an art class at the Turtles Nest Art Studio, bike the shaded nature trails, play basketball, disc-golf, and archery, and take their pick of unique ways to experience Kiawah island! Night Heron Park has an activity to match every family’s level of adventure.
4. Take the Kids Fishing & Crabbing
Most kids love to chase little critters, catch crabs, and feel the thrill of a fish on the end of their line. Fishing and crabbing are aged old traditions in the Lowcountry, and Kiawah Island is full of coastal lagoons, ponds, rivers, tidal creeks and estuaries teeming with fish and tasty Atlantic blue crab.
Plan a family adventure of your own at the Bass Pond Fishing Dock or crabbing dock at Blue Heron Pond or experience the best of the coastal Lowcountry on a family-friendly fishing charter or crabbing excursion on the Kiawah River. The chances are you’ll be returning home with a fresh catch for a fish BBQ or classic Lowcountry Boil.
5. Sign Up For The BEST Kids Camp Ever!
You’ll feel no guilt dropping the kids off at kids camp on Kiawah Island, in fact they’ll be asking to return! Kiawah Island’s unique kids programs are simply outstanding with Kamp Kiawah (ages 3-7), Camp Xtreme (ages 8-15), and a seasonal Adventure Camp (ages 8-15) with morning, afternoon, or full day programs and super fun counselors.
Situated in Night Heron Park, the kids get to explore local wildlife, go scavenger hunting, play sports and team building games, paddleboard the waterways or learn to surf! If a night of romance is on the vacation itinerary, sign the kids up for Kid’s Night Out (ages 5-12) and make a reservation for an evening of wine tasting and fine dining on Kiawah Island.
6. Get the Kids Gaming
No, we’re not talking about online gaming! Kiawah Island Golf Resort is one of the top golfing destinations and tennis resorts in the world with first-class facilities and professional instruction programs for the whole family to get in the game! Kiawah Island’s famous Ocean Course is ranked one of the toughest golf courses in the US, perhaps too tough for little golfers, but perfect for dad to play while the kids are at camp. Osprey Point, Cougar Point, Turtle Point and Oak Point Golf Course all offer family tee times or sign up for golf instruction with a PGA-certified pro at the Tommy Cuthbert Golf Learning Center.
If you’d rather reconnect on the courts, the Roy Barth Tennis Center has award-winning tennis clinics, fun parent-child doubles round robins, and fantastic fast-paced pickleball programs for the whole family to play together.
7. Hang out at Freshfields Village
Freshfields Village is the hub of the Kiawah Island community and a fun place for the whole family to shop, dine, and hangout! Create your own scented candles at the Palmetto Scent Studio, sip old-fashioned soda floats at Vincent’s Soda Fountain, browse the farmers market for unique souvenirs, and check out cool classic cars at the monthly Cars & Coffee.
Freshfields Village hosts endless family-friendly events throughout the year with Shag Night on the Docks in spring, live music on the Village Green in summer, Sidewalk Saturdays, and classic Lowcountry festivals. It’s the perfect destination for a family outing and you can ride the Kiawah Island bike path all the way to Freshfields!
8. Reserve a Spot at the Mingo Point Oyster Roast
The Mingo Point Oyster Roast is the island’s longest running event and a unique Lowcountry experience to share with the kids. The famous Lowcountry cookout takes place on the banks of the Kiawah River with a feast of fresh seafood and oysters, BBQ specialties, a Lowcountry Boil and loads of laid-back island-style family fun! There’s arts, crafts, reptile shows, plenty of space for the kids to roam free, live music and dancing, and the best sunsets on Kiawah Island!
9. Take a Scenic Day Trip to Charleston
On Kiawah Island you’ll immediately feel worlds away, yet you’re only 25 miles from historic Charleston, the #1 City in the USA! A trip to Charleston with kids will entertain, educate and spark their imagination at every turn. Take a tour of charming Charleston in a classic horse-drawn carriage or aboard a pirate ship, catch the ferry for a history lesson at Fort Sumter, play with the critters in the touch tanks at the South Carolina Aquarium, and spark their imaginations on a self-guided tour of the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry. Charleston is packed with kid-friendly activities and attractions, and bucket-list experiences for your whole tribe.
10. Make Memories with Kiawah Exclusives
At Kiawah Exclusives we know that many of your vacation memories are made in the comfort and privacy of home and our exclusive collection of Kiawah Island rentals are perfectly appointed for memory making moments. Whether you’re looking to stay in a luxury oceanfront home with a pool, a family golf villa on the award-winning fairways, or steps from the kid-friendly action in Night Heron Park, you’ll find the best family vacation rentals, service with a smile, and family memories of a lifetime with Kiawah Exclusives.