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Congaree National Park lies in central South Carolina, between the towns and cities of Columbia, Orangeburg, and Sumter. The forest was declared a national park in 2003 after a long campaign to preserve one of the last old-growth bottomland hardwood forests left in the United States. This ancient forest covers an area of over 26,000 acres, creating a picturesque and lush landscape of woodland, wetland floodplains. Congaree National Park has been designated a UNESCO biosphere reserve and a wilderness area, a testament to the natural beauty and rarity of the park.
Alongside this idyllic wilderness, Congaree National Park is also home to campsites and offers opportunities for hiking, kayaking, canoeing, and birdwatching. All of this makes it the perfect destination to take an RV rental in North Carolina. Accessing the national park with a rental RV is made easier with Highway 601 running along its far eastern edge. Rent a camper near Congaree National Park, and you too can experience one of the last remaining untouched woodlands in all of North America. Search for an RV in Richland County and begin your Congaree National Park adventure today.
You will be hard-pressed to find a more picturesque fishing location than Cedar Creek in Congaree National Park. The creek and Congaree River cuts and winds its way through the heart of the park, providing a myriad of fishing locations along its banks. The rivers and creeks are home to a wide range of fish species, each one of them offering Congaree National Park campers fantastic sport. Fishermen and women can try their hand at catching largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, and bream. Campers should be reminded that a South Carolina fishing license is needed to fish here, and always be on the lookout for the creek’s alligator population.
Kayaking and canoeing is the most popular activity and by far the best way to explore the vast Congaree National Park. The waterways that flow throughout the forest and wetlands offer miniature highways that take budding adventures on a tour of these ancient forests. Campers can paddle their way through what is known as the ‘Congaree River Blue Trail.’ This fifty-mile trail starts in downtown Columbia and ends in Congaree National Park, and kayaking your way through the National Park section will be the highlight of your trip. Those motorhome camping without their own kayaks should not worry, the national park offers a very reasonable kayak and canoe rental service.
Those who wish to explore this modern Eden on foot will find no end to the number of trails passing through the national park. Hiking routes crisscross all over the thousands of acres of land, each one offering a different perspective of the park, its wildlife, and its natural environment. The ‘Kingsnake Trail’ is an 11 and a half-mile trail that takes hikers along the banks of the Cedar Cree. This is the favorite trail of birdwatchers as the thick vegetation offers the perfect habitat for many birds.
Although RV camping directly within Congaree National Park is not permitted, there are many accommodating campgrounds to be found within a short drive of the park. ‘Edmund RV Park’ just west of Congaree National Park offers RV campers the ideal site for setting up camp. Full 20, 30, 50 amp electric, water, and sewer hookups are provided here. Facilities include flushing toilets, shower block, laundry service, and an RV storage service. Many of the sites are pull-thru, meaning all sizes of rigs are welcome here.
Another campground perfect for visiting Congaree National Park is the ‘Barnyard RV Park.’ Full hookups are also provided here, including electric, water, and sewer. Facilities include a dump station, flushing toilets, showers, free WiFi, and cable TV.
The nearby city and South Carolina capital Columbia is a perfect destination to explore one you have exhausted the forest recreation. The city is full of must-see sights and day trips, perfect for the whole family. Be sure not to pass up an opportunity to visit Colombia’s ‘Riverbanks Zoo and Garden.’ This zoo is the perfect family fun day out and is sure to keep the little ones entertained. Covering 170 acres, the zoo is home to two thousand animals, encompassing a verity of species. The birdhouse is a particularly celebrated and nationally renowned exhibit, and this is one zoo not to miss.
For those with an interest in history, art, science & technology, a visit to the ‘South Carolina State Museum’ is not to be missed. The museum is home to a plethora of exhibits showcasing many subjects over many floors. Visitors can take a guided tour of the vibrant museum, taking in a myriad of information that is both educational yet entertaining. Family with young children will also benefit from a visit here, as the museum is home to ‘storyteller,’ sitting children down an teaching them through the art of storytelling.
Should campers truly wish to provide an immersive yet entertaining experience for their children, a visit to Columbia’s ‘EdVenture Children’s Museum’ is a must. EdVenture is considered the largest children’s museum in all of the southeast United States. Offering a plethora of children’s exhibits, the museum strives to teach the children about a range of subjects through the art of ‘learn through play.’ Parents will be happy in the knowledge that their children are learning, but at the same time having fun.