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Congaree National Park

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Days w/

18 mi 29 km of trail 1 Featured Hike

Easy Trails 9 Trails Intermediate Trails 0 Trails Hard Trails 0 Trails

Visitors to Congaree National Park will be astonished by the biodiversity that exists in the park. Home to the largest intact expanse of old growth bottomland hardwood forest remaining in the southeastern United States, the park's rich forests provide scenery and solitude for exploration. The Congaree and Wateree Rivers wind through the park, providing the sediment and nutrients that nourish and rejuvenate this vibrant ecosystem. With over 25 miles of trails and 2.4 miles of boardwalks, there are many ways to explore the park.

To learn more about Congaree National Park, visit www.nps.gov.

Local Info

Visitor Centers:
The Harry Hampton Visitor Center is open daily from 9 am to 5 pm and is closed on all federal holidays. Trail maps and brochures, as well as restroom facilities and water, are available in the visitor center breezeway 24 hours a day.

Visiting Tips

Congaree National Park is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. While the park is open year-round, peak season tends to be in the spring and summer when temperatures are more moderate and insects are not a problem. For more information on current conditions and seasonal information, click here.

Fees & Passes:
Entrance to Congaree National Park is free. The park does not charge for admission, camping, or any ranger-led programs.

Camping & Lodging

Congaree National Park offers two campgrounds for those looking to extend their stay in the park. Camping is tent only, and RV/car camping is not permitted in the park. Reservations are required and can be made online or by calling 1 (877) 444-6777. For more information about camping in the park, click here.

  • Longleaf Campground: 10 tent sites. 4 group sites.
  • Bluff Campground: 6 tent sites.

Backcountry Camping:
Backcountry camping in the park is free, and a permit must be obtained at the Longleaf Campground prior to camping.

There are no lodges, hotels, or cabins located within the park. The nearest overnight accommodations are located in the city of Columbia, which is approximately 20 minutes from the park.

Food & Drink

There are no food services located within the park. Additionally, there are limited dining options available in the town of Gadsden, which is located approximately ten minutes outside the park. If you're willing to travel a little further from the park, there are a wide variety of restaurants available in the nearby town of Columbia.

Outfitters, Tours, & Shuttles

Congaree National Park offers a variety of ranger-led programs that vary by season. All programs, unless otherwise specified, are free and open to the public. To learn more about these ranger-led programs and to see the current events calendar, click here.

Other Activities

Whether you are coming out for a short stroll on the boardwalk or to take a canoe trip down Cedar Creek, Congaree has a variety of ways visitors to explore the park including hiking, camping, fishing, canoeing, and kayaking. Additionally, the area is rich with other historic parks, national battlefields, and national monuments. Visit the park's website for a list of nearby attractions. For those looking for other recreational opportunities in the area, head up the road for some mountain biking at Poinsett State Park.

Maps & Guidebooks

To download a variety of free maps and brochures to help plan your visit, click here.

Featured Hikes in Congaree National Park - 1

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Favorite Wildlife

Boardwalk Loop Trail

2.3 mi 3.8 km • Loop • 76 ft Ascent 23.08 m Ascent

(23) Gadsden, SC

Trails in Congaree National Park - 8

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0.6 mi 1.0 km #1General Greene Tree
Gadsden, SC
0.6 mi 1.0 km Gadsden, SC
3.9 mi 6.2 km #2Oakridge Trail
Gadsden, SC
3.9 mi 6.2 km Gadsden, SC
4.9 mi 8.0 km #3River Trail
Gadsden, SC
4.9 mi 8.0 km Gadsden, SC
1.4 mi 2.2 km #4Sims Trail
Gadsden, SC
1.4 mi 2.2 km Gadsden, SC
2.5 mi 4.1 km #5Weston Lake Loop
Gadsden, SC
2.5 mi 4.1 km Gadsden, SC 10 
3.3 mi 5.3 km #6Kingsnake Trail
Gadsden, SC
3.3 mi 5.3 km Gadsden, SC
1.0 mi 1.6 km #7Bluff Trail
Gadsden, SC
1.0 mi 1.6 km Gadsden, SC
0.3 mi 0.5 km #8Bluff Trail - After Hours Parking Access
Gadsden, SC
0.3 mi 0.5 km Gadsden, SC

Photos of Congaree National Park - 25

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Along the backside of the trail
Jun 14, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
Jan 9, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
Lower boardwalk can be flooded. Check with the ranger or the website before you head out.
Jan 9, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
Portion of the boardwalk lowers down near the ground.
Jan 9, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
Sometimes the boardwalk is not level.  Use caution.
Jan 9, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
Weston Lake Loop Trail - Congaree National Park
Aug 28, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
A Golden Silk Orb Weaver spider that you're likely to see from the Boardwalk Trail.
Jul 30, 2016 near Gadsden, SC
The start of the Boardwalk Trail on a wet fall day.
Mar 13, 2016 near Gadsden, SC

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