11 Things to Do in Shem Creek Near Downtown Charleston, SC

Down in the low country of South Carolina sits some of the most beautiful scenery and classic old cities such as Charleston. Once you cross the Cooper River from Charleston to Mount Pleasant, you will discover a popular dining section on a tiny little boardwalk of Shem Creek.

Shem Creek is not only famous for being near Charleston, but it is one of the most popular dining and drinking districts of Mt. Pleasant, giving you magnificent views of Charleston Harbor and the marshes. You can walk down to the end of the boardwalk and see both Fort Sumter and Fort Pinckney in the distance.

If you are into watching TV, you will find many of the scenes in Righteous Gemstones, an HBO series, were filmed in the Charleston area, especially some places in Shem Creek.

Let’s look at some popular establishments and places you can visit while on vacation if you come to Shem Creek.

Top 6 Restaurants to Visit in Shem Creek

Food has to be on your mind when vacationing in Charleston, South Carolina. There is something for everyone, from the seafood, oysters, and even the famous shrimp and grits. Shem Creek is known for dining; therefore, many of the great establishments found in the Mount Pleasant area can be found on Shem Creek. There are various restaurants to visit that may spark up your taste buds. Here are six of the best restaurants to try out.

Tavern & Table

If you are craving seafood, oysters, cornbread, pimento cheese, and grits, Tavern & Table is one of the best places to visit on Shem Creek. It has rustic-chic decor inside with amazing waterside views on the outside.

The menu is full of locally sourced produce and seafood, giving a modern twist on some of our favorite American cuisines. It is where friends and families can gather for great cocktails, drinks, and homemade food that will bring you back many times.

Vickery’s Bar and Grill

Sitting at the mouth of Shem is Vickery’s Bar and Grill. This restaurant features Cuban-style food with traditional Lowcountry cuisine. You can choose shrimp and grits, fried chicken, and Cuban delicacies.

Take time to enjoy a magnificent dining experience upstairs, or shake those shoes off to enjoy fun in the sand at the beach bar.

If you are looking for a fun night, there is no better place than Vickery’s Bar and Grill. It has live entertainment, great food, and a fun crowd to make a night at this Shem Creek restaurant.

Water’s Edge

Are you looking for a sophisticated seafood experience? Water’s Edge is known for having some of the best seafood in Shem Creek. With the proximity to the boats, the seafood comes in fresh and ready to feed the guests.

Water’s Edge gives a picturesque view of the shimmering waters of Shem Creek and a beautiful sunset to set the mood of the night. There is no bad place to sit, either inside or outside.

Water’s Edge may have a seafood specialty, but do not be fooled. They have great options in pork, beef, and chicken. With Southern Fried Chicken, a Filet Mignon, and Applewood bacon, there are plenty of options on this exquisite menu.

Drinks are also overflowing with craft beers, fancy cocktails, and over 450 wines; you will not be thirsty dining there.

Saltwater Cowboys

The new kid in town is Saltwater Cowboys offering what many Southerners would like: Fried seafood and BBQ. It is making a splash with its BBQ and live entertainment.

With a casual atmosphere, people are made to feel at home. The outside dining option not only offers views but live entertainment as well.

Most people crave seafood when they come to Shem Creek, and Saltwater Cowboys does not miss that. You can choose fried grouper, fried shrimp, and many others from locally sourced food.

BBQ is the food that has made Saltwater Cowboys famous. Their two-meat special of ribs and brisket gives you a taste of what they offer. You can go all in on their Whole Smoker, which offers pork, pork belly, chicken, and turkey smoked slowly on hickory and oak. It makes a mouth-watering BBQ dish that you do not want to miss.

If you want something different, check out Saltwater Cowboys for live entertainment, BBQ, and fantastic views.

Red’s Ice House

Red’s Ice House may look like a dive bar, but it is one of the most popular spots for locals to come, eat, watch sports, and enjoy a laid-back experience. With a fantastic sunset view, locals of all ages, wealth, and cultures come together to enjoy a rustic modern fusion cuisine.

The cuisine consists of local Lowcountry food, food from other regions, and a burger menu that people will enjoy as they watch their favorite sports team enjoying a beer.

You will have Po’Boys, she-crab soup, burgers, pasta, shrimp plate, and many more of your favorites from the Low country.

If you are looking for a laid-back beachside restaurant, then Red’s Ice House is the place to visit.

Shem Creek Crab House

If you are looking for a fantastic place for seafood, you will not find a better place than the Shem Creek Crab House. It has everything from a Low Country boil, crab legs, fried shrimp, fresh oysters, and much more.

It is a haven for those seafood lovers. If you need your seafood fix, the Shem Creek Crab House has everything you desire in classic southern fried seafood and many choices.

Afterward, you can sit on the deck and enjoy a Charleston sunset or even have your meal, taking in the beautiful marshes and creek views. Shem Creek Crab House is the place to be for all you seafood lovers.

5 Interesting Places to Visit Near Shem Creek

Here are a few options to check out for those looking for other things to do near Shem Creek.

Visit Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum

Adults and kids of all ages come to Patriots Point for one big attraction: the USS Yorktown, the giant U.S. Aircraft carrier sitting at Patriots Point. The size of these ships is indescribable. They are the size of a small town, and you can visit and see how the men worked, lived, slept, and fought in WWII. The flight deck alone could be the sole reason to visit this ship.

If you get bored with the USS Yorktown, then go on and visit USS Laffey (a destroyer) and the USS Clamagore (a submarine). These ships will be smaller than the aircraft carrier, so that it will take a shorter amount of time.

If you finish Patriots Point, you can buy ferry tickets to check out Fort Sumter. It can be a fun-filled day of learning about history and the military and enjoying the surrounding areas of Shem Creek.

Walk the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge

Have you seen the giant white bridge with massive cables that cross over the Cooper River? That is the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge. It was built in 2006 to replace the older bridge, and with much more improvements, it has allowed pedestrians to walk, cycle, and run on the sides of the bridge.

Every year, they have a great run on the bridge called the Cooper River Run. It is a 10-kilometer run (6.2 miles) that has 10s of thousands of participants from all over to participate. It is easily accessible from the Shem Creek area and is a great place to walk and cycle.

If you need something to do, you can take a walk or run over the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.

See Fort Sumter

Fort Sumter is most famous for being the first shot of the American Civil War. It is a fort sitting on an island in the middle of Charleston Harbor. It is technically not in Shem Creek, but you can take a ferry from Patriots Point to go and take a look at this historical fort.

If you are looking for more history, Fort Sumter is the place to go.

Rent Kayaks or Paddle Boards

In Shem Creek, Coastal Expeditions allow kayak and SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard rentals to happen. That means it can be a fun day full of paddling down the creek to see the marsh, view Mount Pleasant, and hopefully spot a dolphin or two.

That is right, dolphins like to swim down the creek now and then, and you will have fun spotting them as you adventure down the creek.

Take a Walk Down Shem Creek Boardwalk

Most people go to Shem Creek for dining, but one overlooked gem is the Shem Creek Park and Boardwalk. The boardwalk is a long stretch that starts at Shem Creek and stretches over the marshland to a parking lot.

It is a great place to walk along and see the beautiful marshland of the Lowcountry. At the parking lot, there will be spots to put your car, but it can often be overcrowded with those that parked for the dining options of Shem Creek.

If you want to see some marshes and more of the low country, take a short walk down the Shem Creek Boardwalk.

Visit Shem Creek for Lowcountry Hospitality

Visiting South Carolina has many options from the upstate with Greenville down to the Lowcountry in Charleston. If you are down in the Lowcountry looking for good eats and some different things to enjoy, visit Shem Creek. It is full of Southern food, seafood, views, and some activities to enjoy during the day.

Shem Creek may be smaller than Charleston, Hilton Head Island, or even Savannah, but it is a lovely area in Mount Pleasant where you can escape the big town of Charleston and enjoy Lowcountry cuisine.

This article originally appeared on Savoteur. Featured Image Credit: [@digidream/DepositPhotos]

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
11 Things to Do in Shem Creek Near Downtown Charleston, SC
Steve Cummings

Steve Cummings is the founder of the personal finance blog The Frugal Expat. As a traveler and expat, he has learned a lot about how to save money, live frugally, and invest for the future. His mission is to help people in saving, investing, and reaching financial independence.