Hunting Island State Park
The lighthouse will be closed for climbing from January 27 through January 29, 2021, for filming. We apologize for the inconvenience.
The historic lighthouse at Hunting Island State Park is the only publicly accessible lighthouse in South Carolina.
For an admission of $2, visitors can climb the 167 steps and walk around the observation deck for a lofty view of the barrier island and surrounding seascape. CHILDREN MUST BE AT LEAST 44" TALL TO CLIMB THE LIGHTHOUSE. Only six visitors may enter the lighthouse at one time, with staggered entrance, to provide a more unique visitor experience and to assist in preserving this historic structure.
READ HERE FOR NEW RESERVATION PROCEDURES:
We are happy to announce that the Hunting Island lighthouse is open with new reservation procedures and limits put into place for social distancing. Please read ALL details:
- Reservation time slots are available from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., daily, in 30 minute increments
- Only 6 people allowed per reservation
- Reservations are 30 minutes long - you must be out of the lighthouse in 30 minutes
- $2 per person and children must be at least 44" tall to climb the lighthouse. Payment must be made when the reservation is made.
- A lighthouse reservation does not include parking and does not guarantee entry to the park. If you make a lighthouse reservation, please plan ahead and get to the park early to ensure entry.-Reservations may be made the same day, at the park, if space is available.
- To make your reservation, please call 843-838-4868 during office hours - 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. M-F, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sa-Su.
- Please book at least 24 hours in advance. Reservations are taken up to three months in advance.
The lighthouse is closed on Christmas Day for climbing. Visitors may find the lighthouse closed during inclement weather due to safety concerns.
The lighthouse was closed for repairs in May 2003 when cracks were discovered in several of its cast-iron steps. In a renovation that spanned more than 18 months, construction crews not only repaired the cracks, but installed steel braces beneath them for reinforcement. Left unpainted, the silver-gray braces stand out in sharp contrast to the black cast-iron stairs. The contrast helps distinguish between the original structure and modern improvements, which protect the lighthouse’s historic integrity.
The original structure was built in 1859 and rebuilt in 1875 after it was destroyed during the Civil War. A unique feature of the lighthouse is that it was constructed of interchangeable cast-iron sections so it could be dismantled should it ever need to be moved. Severe beach erosion made it necessary to relocate the lighthouse 1.3 miles inland in 1889.