Day Trips Nearby Florence 

Florence, South Carolina is really close to a lot of major cities, like Columbia (our capital), Myrtle Beach, Charlotte and Charleston.

Columbia Events 

Only 1 hour from Florence!


Upcoming Columbia Events:

Sept 19 - 22, 2019 (4 days) - Columbia's 33rd Annual Greek Festival. Free and great for the whole family! FREE ADMISSION to Columbia's Greek Festival!
Authentic Greek Food, Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral Tours, Vendors, Activities! Greek Dancers, and more! For your pet's safety, please leave them at home.. Address: 1931 Sumter St., Columbia, SC 29201 


About Columbia:
As the capital of South Carolina, Columbia has a cozy downtown area and is a great college town for the young. Only 1 hour and 15 minutes from Florence, this is a great day trip to take to seek out wonderful restaurants and visit kid-friendly museums. 

Suggested Family-Friendly Activities in Columbia, SC
  • Edventure Children's Museum It's a very large museum made just for kids! This is no ordinary Children's museum. It is amazing with seasonal special events throughout the year. If you get an annual membership from Edventure, it covers this main Columbia location, the smaller Hartsville location and the smaller Myrtle Beach location too. Admission for children under 2 is always free. (http://www.edventure.org)

  • Riverbanks Zoo & Garden (also known as 'Columbia Zoo') With seasonal events like Boo at the Zoo and Lights before Christmas, family visits here at Riverbanks Zoo are special. Now with a waterpark open, seeing the animals and attending special events here are even more special! The animals all look very happy and well taken care of. Waterpark in the gardens is free with zoo tickets. Free entry for babies under 2 years old.(https://www.riverbanks.org) 

  • Dine in downtown Columbia - With many great Southern restaurants like Blue Marlin in downtown or a unique ethnic restaurant like Menkoi Ramen house, treat your family's tastebuds to many options the capital offers. 

  • Attend a major fair or festival. Check the calendar for major fairs and festivals throughout the year. The biggest fair is the South Carolina State Fair that takes place in Columbia every year in October.

  • Shopping at Columbiana Centre They have a lot of stores that Florence doesn't have and also an indoor playground that is free for little kids to play near the JCPenney department store. Portraits at the JCPenney Portraits center inside the department store here are professional and affordable. After a photo session, let the kids release some energy at the kid's playground inside the mall and then do a little shopping. Address: 100 Columbiana Cir, Columbia, SC 29212

 

Myrtle Beach Events

Only 1.5 hours from Florence!

Upcoming Myrtle Beach Events:

June 11 - Sept 2, 2019 (every night) - Hot Summer Nights from 8pm - 11pm at Plyler Park. Time to bring the entire family together and spend the night with stage performances and pick a pearl, tie-dye your own t-shirt, caricature artist and 2 bounce houses. Hosted by The Myrtle Beach Boardwalk
Address: 1100 N Ocean Blvd, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina 29577



About Myrtle Beach:
Myrtle Beach has dozens and dozens of amazing seafood buffets! As one of the most famous beaches on the East Coast, Florence is lucky that it is only an hour and 15 minute drive. During the most busiest seasons, it can get very crowded and traffic can be jam packed. I recommend going when the spring breakers and the college kids are just returning back to school from summer break, while the weather is still nice and warm. If you like the big commotions, do come during their high seasons! 


Suggested Family-Friendly Activities in Myrtle Beach, SC
  • Myrtle Beach boardwalk Right along the beach, many shops and restaurants you can peek into while continuing on your stroll! They also have a big ferris wheel that you can't miss! 

  • Go to Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach. About a couple miles from the boardwalk, this shopping center is more than a regular shopping center. It has rides and never-ending shops and restaurants! You can also have the kids feed their fishes along their bridges over water. They often shoot fireworks in the evenings there during the summer months! Check out the Broadway at the Beach fireworks schedule. 

  • Ripley's Aquarium Located at the Broadway at the Beach, this aquarium is great for the family. They have special seasonal events year round. Every Veteran's Day, they always give free admission to active and retired military with proof of military ID and discounts to their family members. Babies under 2 years old always gets free admission. Address: 

  • Play mini-golf! There are so many mini golf courses in Myrtle Beach and some are free at resorts that have them on their property! Make sure to check out what kind of amenities the hotel you're staying at has.

  • Dunes Village Resort (resort with indoor waterpark!) Dunes Village Resort has the only indoor waterpark in Myrtle Beach and it is free to use their water park if you are a hotel guest there. Their rates are reasonable for all the amenities you get and the little ones can enjoy the 1 feet deep kiddie pools. They also have fun waterslides for bigger kids and adults, an outdoor playground and resort events for the whole family. The view from their restaurant is spectacular. Dunes Village Resort is usually sold out during the popular summer months.

  • Play at the beach, of course! With famous warm waters during the warm season, Myrtle Beach is a great place to let your kids dip their feet in. Relax on the beach with some sandwiches and soak in the sun! 

 

Charlotte, NC & Charleston, SC  

Just 2 hours from Florence! 

We'd sometimes fly out of Charlotte or Charleston to fly to another major city, versus flying from Florence's small airport because we would find cheaper rates and the amount of travel time (including layovers) seems to be about the same, if not faster. We are lucky that both of these major airports are only 2 hours and a half away from Florence. 

Charlotte, NC 

With Carowinds theme park, a lot of events year round and so many different types of restaurants, it's a very family-friendly town. Take a taste of a big city but only 2 hours drive away.

Suggested Family-Friendly Activities in Charlotte, NC 
  • Discovery Place, Charlotte's Children's Museum This is the best children's museum in the Carolinas! With a lot of fun science and interactive activities, it's fun for both kids and adults. It's multi-story with an aquarium area as well. Always free for kids under 2. Address: 301 N Tryon St, Charlotte, NC 28202

  • Great Wolf Lodge Concord. Famous for their indoor waterparks, the Great Wolf Lodge was made to cater towards kids. They have really expensive rates but their amenities are very good with kid's themed hotel rooms and many resort activities. See pictures and info on Great Wolf Lodge Concord.

  • Watch the Carolina Panther's play at the Bank of America Stadium in downtown Charlotte during the football season. If your kids are big enough to enjoy a game of football, this is a really special treat for them. 

  • NASCAR Hall of Fame Address: 400 E M.L.K. Jr Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28202

  • Super G International Market located at 7323 East Independence Boulevard, Charlotte, NC 28227. They sell all sorts of ingredients from around the world and you can spice up your kitchen with all healthy foods that they have to offer. They also have a bakery and a Korean restaurant inside. Check out Honey Buns; they sell very unique and fresh Asian pastries! 

  • Carowinds Theme Park  There are more rides for kids who are 48 inches in height and above because they have very limited rides for a 36 inch tall toddler and you can't even ride any if they're shorter than that. However, they do have a Snoopy area with a playground that the little kids can play at! Get the Carowinds preschool free pass for preschool aged 3 -5 years old! Sign this up online. You won't have to pay for your 3-5 year olds if you sign up for the online preschool pass. Their large waterpark area is open in the summer time and included in your admission! Babies who are 2 and under get admitted for free!

  • Sea Life Aquarium Charlotte - Owned by the same group that owns LEGOLAND, this aquarium has a lot of amazing sea creatures every year. All kids of all ages can enjoy this. Babies age 2 years old and under come for free! Address: 8111 Concord Mills Boulevard, Concord, NC 28027


Charleston, SC 

Charleston is a much more sophisticated destination and we only go there on super special occasions to spend the night because hotel stays can be pricey. Take a sailing trip while you're there. It's the quintessential thing to do to really understand the coastal element and beauty of Charleston from the perspective of looking at the historic place from the ocean.

Suggested Family-Friendly activities in Charleston, SC 
  • Children's Museum of the Lowcountry - It is $2 cheaper for SC residents and free for 12 months and younger. (http://explorecml.org)

  • Patriots Point - Take a tour on the boats and aircrafts that the military used in wartime. (http://www.patriotspoint.org)

  • Folly Beach Fishing Pier - It is the second longest pier on the East Coast and has spectacular views. 

  • North Charleston Wannamaker County Park - Play on the playground or pedal on boats. They also have a seasonal waterpark with admission for $1.  (http://www.ccprc.com)

  • South Carolina Aquarium - Children 2 and under are free. (http://www.scaquarium.org)