Uh-oh, the offspring are getting restless. They’re bored with the beach and have already seen a plantation and a historic site.
Don’t let their whining ruin your Charleston visit. Transport the brood to one of these kid-friendly venues and reinvigorate them with hours of fun.
South Carolina Aquarium – More than 5,000 animals from the ocean to the mountains beckon. From the touch tank to the Big Tank to the Sea Turtle Care Center, the SC Aquarium offers the whole family an opportunity to learn, play and marvel, and each child will enjoy the visit on their own level. $30 for adults; $23 for children; kids under 3 are free. Save money with harbor tour combo package.
Frankie’s Fun Park – Keep the kids diverted for hours on the bumper boats, go-karts, rock wall, batting cages, rides, trampolines, miniature golf and arcade games. Entertainment for children of all ages. Beware that pricing is a la carte, so each activity hikes your tab and can easily top $30/kid.
Wild Blue Ropes – Help the kids channel their inner Tarzan with 72 features as much as 35 feet off the ground. There’s also an Explorer’s Gateway for kids aged 4-9 that’s closer to earth and easier to navigate. Prices are $19 for the smaller kids and $45 for the full package and can keep the clan busy for 2-3 hours. Reservations are highly recommended. (That’s Wild Blue Ropes pictured up top.)
Whirlin’ Waters at Wannamaker Park – Whisk the toddlers off to Otter Bay kiddie pool and the Lily Pad Lagoon and send off the older kids (including dad) to the Tubular Twister, the Big Kahuna Wave Pool and the Big Splash Tree House (pictured here.) Reasonable admission and food prices that will keep the family busy for hours on a hot summer day. Weekdays are significantly less crowded.
Splash Zone Waterpark at James Island County Park – a sedate version of Whirlin’ Waters. Better for small children.
Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry – an interactive space for kids to touch, manipulate and climb on all the elements – and learn in the process. Don’t let the name fool you: this is a funhouse where children learn by doing. Recommended for small children. $10 for SC residents and $12 for out-of-staters.
Carolina Ice Palace – Are the kids melting in the Charleston heat? Bring ‘em inside for a few hundred turns around the rink. It’s a great way for them to blow off steam before the next meal. Seven bucks includes the skate rental for a four-hour day session or a shorter evening skate.
Have a blast and don’t forget to be a kid yourself!