Kiawah Island, South Carolina



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Kiawah Island, SC
Fast Facts

These are little tidbits of information about Kiawah Island. Want to sound like a native? Show your friends and family that you know more about an exquisite island on the coast of South Carolina than they do? Then read on...

Pronunciation
KEE-a-wah (Kiawah)
Location
21 miles south of historic Charleston ... on the South Carolina coast.
Size
10,000 acres, of which the permanent open space is a key element contributing to the Island's ambiance ... over 10 miles in length ... 1.5 miles at the widest point.
Beach
over 10 miles along the Atlantic Ocean with a width at low tide approaching 100 yards ... bordered by protective sand dunes.
Marshes, Lagoons
about 45 miles (72.4 kilometers) of high-land edge overlooking lagoons, marsh, fresh water estuaries and the Kiawah River, which connects with the Stono River and the Intracoastal Waterway ... all together 65 ponds or lagoons on the Island.
Vegetation
a maritime forest dominated by oaks, palmetto, and pines ... hickories, sweetgum, and magnolia in the subcanopy ... redbay, sassfras, wax myrtle and yaupon holly in the lower understory ... sea oats along the dune areas.
Wildlife
18 species of mammals including whitetail deer, raccoon, opossum and squirrel ... more than 30 species of reptiles and amphibians including alligators and sea turtles ...
SPECIAL NOTE: Kiawah's effort to protect the Atlantic Loggerhead Sea Turtle received national acclaim in 1981 when the Izaak Walton League honored Kiawah's program with a National Conservation award ... Kiawah's environmental protection efforts also include the Kiawah Island Wildlife Committee whose purpose is to enhance and protect Kiawah's wildlife and fish species and to promote education, understanding and enjoyment of the natural environment on Kiawah.
Birds
more than 190 species of birds including the Brown Pelican, Wood Ibis, osprey, duck, sea gulls, terns, herons, hawks and egrets.
Climate
spring and summer midday temperatures in the 80s and sometimes 90s ... fall temperatures in the 80s, 70s, and 60s ... winter temperatures in the 60s, 50s, sometimes 40s and occasionally 30s.
History
named for the Kiawah Indians who inhabited the Island up to the 1600's ... deeded to George Raynor in 1699 by the Lords Proprietors ... has changed hands only four times since then ... the prominent Vanderhorst family of Charleston kept the Island for 180 years before selling it to C.C. Royal of Aiken in 1950 for hunting and fishing ... the Kiawah Island Company Ltd. bought the Island from the Royal family in 1974 ... Kiawah Resort Associates bought the Island in 1988 and is Kiawah's developer.
Residential
homes and homesites in private neighborhoods and behind the second security checkpoint in Vanderhorst Plantation, the Island's largest private residential area ... home designs must be approved by the Kiawah Island Architectural Review Board prior to construction ... lot sizes range from about one-quarter acre to over one acre.
Property Owners
over 3,300 properties owned ... owners from 46 states and 21 foreign countries ... nearly 400 families make Kiawah their year-round home.
Dining
everything from gourmet to casual outdoor dining ... total of five restaurants: West Beach - you may choose from Sundancer's, The Jasmine Porch, Sweetgrass Café ... East Beach - Heron Park Grille, The Indigo House Seafood Restaurant, and a Food Court at Town Center.
Shopping
Kiawah logo items, clothing, jewelry, home furnishings, sports equipment and apparel, gifts, cards, photographic supplies and services, books, toys and personal items are available at The Straw Market shops ... sporting apparel and equipment are also available at the golf and tennis pro shops ... groceries, gasoline, and some health and hardware items at the General Store located just outside the Main Gate ... the Ship's Store at the Inn offers souvenirs, gifts and personal items ... additional shopping facilities on nearby Johns Island.
Swimming
ocean swimming popular April through October ... eightyish degree water common in May ... a property owners-only pool in the West Beach Village ... the Turtle Point pool is located in East Beach Village adjacent to the Turtle Point pro shop ... an eight lane, 25-meter pool is part of the Night Heron Park recreation complex. A daily or weekly charge may apply.
Other Activities
summer Youth Recreation Program for ages 4 through 17 (supervised by trained counselors), bicycling on more than 30 miles of paved bicycle trails, sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, fresh and saltwater fishing, crabbing, shrimping, hiking, strolling or jogging, deep sea fishing, tours of historic Charleston, or just simply relaxing ... the Kiawah Kollege program, open to all ages, conducts salt marsh and beach participative tours led by naturalists ... annual events such as the Kiawah Island Marathon, outdoor concerts by the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Summer Festivals in the Night Heron Park and traditional holiday activities.
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