Between Ridgeland, SC and Savannah a natural paradise awaits!
The historic Kings Highway 17 travels through the beautiful SC Lowcountry and these protected treasures. Called “The Oldest Road In America,” it was a roughly 1,300-mile road, laid out from 1650 to 1735 in the American colonies. Built on the order of Charles II of England, his colonial governors built the highway to link Charleston and Boston.
Today, it is a quiet alternative to traveling the busy I-95. The section of the Kings Highway 17 near Bluffton offers a much more than just a route from point A to point B. It is a veritable smorgasbord of natural beauty. So take a tranquil trip on this historic route.
1. Blue Heron Nature Trail
This in-town green space boasts a nature trail that travels around a three-acre pond and through forested wetlands filled with ferns and native plants. The property also includes a butterfly garden, picnic area, outdoor classroom, observation decks, and a Nature Center. Permanent trailside displays help visitors learn more about the native flora and fauna of Jasper County and the Lowcountry. The Blue Heron Nature Trail circles a lake and ventures into forested wetlands.
- 321 Bailey Ln.
2. Sgt. Jasper Park
Sgt. Jasper Park is conveniently located off I-95, at Exit 8. After exiting the interstate, point toward Hilton Head and turn left at the first traffic light. Follow the road around until you bump into the park entrance. Trails are located on both sides of the road. Some trails are wheelchair accessible. This is a great place to get off the interstate and stretch your legs. Or, you can hike the trails or rent kayaks or canoes at Sgt. Jasper Park. Dogs are welcome here, on a leash. A trail map is available in the park office.
- 458 Red Dam Rd.
3. Savannah National Wildlife Refuge
The Savannah National Wildlife Refuge offers a variety of opportunities to explore and enjoy the great outdoors from sunrise to sunset every day. The former rice fields of Savannah National Wildlife Refuge are filled with local wildlife. You can observe and photograph wildlife, fish, or during the season, hunt white-tailed deer. Make the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center your first stop when visiting the refuge. Located on Hwy. 17 between Hardeeville and Savannah, it is open Monday – Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., but closed Sundays and all federal holidays.
- 694 Beech Hill Ln.