Skeleton trees on Boneyard Beach, Bulls Island, South Carolina.

© Jesse Weber/Shutterstock

Bulls Island

Top choice in Lowcountry

Part of Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge, this pristine barrier island offers a haunting 'boneyard beach' (pines and myrtles poke out of the sand, having been stripped of their leaves by the salty air), great shelling, gator sightings and hiking trails. One trail leads to a pile of oyster shells stacked long ago by Native Americans.

The ferry captains' main role is transport, but they're often knowledgeable guides as well.

Depending on the time of year, the island can be buggy.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Lowcountry attractions

1. Center for Birds of Prey

3.19 MILES

Make friends with owls, hawks, falcons, kites, vultures and eagles at this 152-acre conservation area, and watch them soar overhead during flying…

2. Boone Hall Plantation

11.18 MILES

Just 11 miles from downtown Charleston on Hwy 17N, Boone Hall Plantation is famous for its magical Avenue of Oaks, planted by Thomas Boone in 1743. Boone…

3. Fort Moultrie

17.07 MILES

This layered fort encapsulates the history of US coastal defense spanning nearly 200 years and four wars. Aspects of the fort have been restored to help…

5. Guardians of Charleston Harbor

18.09 MILES

The first shots of the Civil War rang out at Fort Sumter, on a pentagon-shaped island in the harbor. A Confederate stronghold, this fort was shelled to…

6. South Carolina Aquarium

18.66 MILES

A showcase of South Carolina's wildlife, with creatures hailing from the mountain forest, piedmont, salt marsh, coastal and undersea habitats. Although…

7. Aiken-Rhett House

19.09 MILES

The only surviving urban town-house complex, this 1820 abode gives a fascinating glimpse into antebellum life on a 45-minute self-guided audio tour. The…

8. Waterfront Park

19.17 MILES

A lovely, eight-acre park on the Cooper River, notable for its landscape architecture and eye-catching, pineapple-shaped fountain. During summer it's a…