Torn between exploring an art museum and enjoying an outdoor adventure? At one unique attraction on the Grand Strand, you and your vacation party won’t have to choose. Located about 45 minutes south of North Beach Plantation and just outside Murrells Inlet, South Carolina, Brookgreen Gardens offers over 9,100 acres of natural beauty, as well as the nation’s largest and most comprehensive collection of American figurative sculpture.
Representing the largest and oldest botanical sculpture garden on the East Coast, Brookgreen Gardens has something for everyone with a perennial display of scenic beauty and an amazing collection of sculptures on display — but that’s not all. Consider all these great reasons to plan a trip to the South Strand for a visit to Brookgreen Gardens:
Botanical Gardens: The floral jewel of South Carolina’s coastal community, Brookgreen Gardens wows its visitors with year-round and seasonal blooms, shrubs and trees, all landscaped (and left alone as needed) to perfection. From foxglove, heliotrope and snapdragons in the spring to daffodils and crocuses in the winter, the property’s array of flora is sure to impress no matter when you visit. Attractions include the Live Oak Allée and its 250-year-old live oak trees, the four wings of the Butterfly Garden, the Palmetto Garden, the Fountain of the Muses Garden and more.
American Sculpture: Primarily displayed outdoors in the stunning garden setting, a collection of statues boosts the aesthetics of the Lowcountry property that was once home to four thriving rice plantations. More sculptures and other artworks including paintings and etchings are on display in three galleries, as well as a visible storage and research facility. In all, the property exhibits over 2,000 works by 425 artists.
Lowcountry History: Brookgreen’s Lowcountry History and Wildlife Preserve allows visitors to step back in time with walking, boat and vehicle tours of the 1800s-era rice fields, a plantation cemetery, a Civil War earthen fort site, a historic rice mill chimney and more. Along the way, lucky guests might catch sight of the property’s wild present-day inhabitants such as alligators, waterfowl and osprey.
Lowcountry Zoo: The on-site zoo boasts a range of native wildlife such as bald eagles, river otters, red foxes, alligators and owls, as well as domesticated animals including miniature horses, goats and chickens. At the aviary, a large, netted park allows an impressive collection of birds to live in their natural habitat. And the Whispering Wings Butterfly Experience features a lush garden filled with tropical plants and hundreds of butterflies, including Monarch, Giant Swallowtail, Painted Lady and American Lady, just to name a few. Lucky guests might even have one of these winged beauties perch on their shoulders or outstretched hands.
For more information about all that Brookgreen Gardens has to offer, visit brookgreen.org. And after taking in the property’s beautiful scenery, head back to your comfortable accommodations at North Beach Plantation to rest up for another day of adventure on the Grand Strand. Book your getaway at The Cottages at North Beach Plantation today!