The Francis Beidler Forest (336 Sanctuary Rd., Harleyville, 843/462-2150, www.sc.audubon.org , Tues.–Fri. 9 a.m.–5 p.m., $7 adults, $3.50 ages 6–18, 5 and under free ) is jointly owned by the Nature Conservancy and the Audubon Society to conserve this rare and special 15,000-acre habitat in the blackwater Four Holes Swamp.
An 1,800-acre section of the forest contains some of the largest and most ancient old-growth stands of bald cypress and tupelo trees in the world, with some trees well over 1,000 years old. Explore this section on a two-mile boardwalk.
To get to Francis Beidler Forest from Charleston , take I-26 west out of town to exit 187. Make a left onto Highway 27 south to Highway 78, where you’ll turn right. Veer right on Highway 178 and then take a right on Francis Beidler Forest Road. To get to the visitors center, veer right onto Mims Road after a few miles.