Upcountry South Carolina — Savor the Seasons

03/16/2015  | 

A land of rugged mountains, scenic lakes, rushing whitewater rapids, majestic waterfalls, quaint small towns, and intriguing history — South Carolina’s Upcountry is a favorite outdoor adventure and family vacation destination. Spring brings blooming Daffodils, Azaleas and Dogwood Trees and warm days. Summer means it’s time to hit the water — our freshwater lakes tempt boaters, swimmers, anglers and paddlers. 

With nearly 150 waterfalls in the area, a hike on a warm day is the perfect destination. Fall begins a wonderful, colorful display throughout the region when the leaves change from green to orange, red and yellow. During the winter, enjoy hiking the numerous Upcountry trails with unobscured views during the day, followed by nights around the fireplace in a cozy, mountain cabin.

Here are a few suggestions for some spots in the “Don’t miss” category when you visit the Upcountry.

Raft, Camp and Vacation

The number one item on Southern Living Magazine’s “Top 40 Things every Southerner should do” is to raft the National Wild and Scenic Chattooga River. Enjoy guided whitewater rafting and float trips on the premier whitewater rafting river in the Eastern U.S. with Wildwater Rafting in Long Creek. While you’re there, try another one of their adventures and fly through the trees and over a lake on a canopy tour!

If you would rather admire rushing water instead of “riding” it, you are in the right place. South Carolina’s Upcountry features some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the Southeast, including the highest series of waterfalls in the Eastern United States. Visit www.SouthCarolinaWaterfalls.com to find out more about the area’s waterfalls.

If flat water is more your speed, then you can’t do any better than Lake Jocassee, said to be “one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in the nation.” Devils Fork State Park is located along the southwestern shore of Lake Jocassee. This park provides outdoor recreation amid the beauty of the Blue Ridge at the Jocassee Gorges. The park features lakefront camping, hiking, picnicking and vacationing in the park’s contemporary mountain villas.

Another great stop while you’re in the Upcountry is Keowee-Toxaway State Park. This 1,000-acre park features outstanding rock outcroppings and wonderful views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. A large rental cabin in a wooded area features an upper deck porch overlooking Lake Keowee and a private floating courtesy dock. Other facilities include picnic areas with shelters, a campground, lake fishing and trails.

Stop to visit the overlook at Caesars Head State Park which has long been known as one of the best views in South Carolina. It is stunning as you stand atop the outcropping and gaze at the Blue Ridge escarpment and Piedmont with the mountains of North Carolina and Georgia as a backdrop.

Are you an angler? Bring your gear. You can fish for rainbow and brown trout, redeye and largemouth bass, bluegill, catfish and more on the Chattooga, Chauga or Middle Saluda Rivers and also on Lakes Jocassee, Keowee and Hartwell.

So, whether your idea of a vacation is high adventure or just relaxing and taking a peaceful walk along a waterfall trail, the Upcountry has something for you.

Start planning your next visit to the Upcountry at www.UpcountrySC.com or call 800-849-4766 for a free Upcountry Visitors Guide.
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