Need travel help? Call (843) 633 1338     

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

The White Bridge at Magnolia Plantation
The White Bridge at Magnolia Plantation All photos © Audra L. Gibson

The Appeal of Magnolia Plantation

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens is a favorite of many Charleston locals, including quite a few Charleston tour guides, for good reason. It is a delight for history and nature lovers alike. It is the oldest public gardens site in America and the oldest tourist site in the Lowcountry, opening to visitors in 1870. It has a rich history having witnessed and survived the American Revolution, the Civil War, and beyond. It's richness of history may only be surpassed by the natural free-flowing beauty of this place. Award winning gardens, excellent bird watching, a unique Audubon Swamp, historic house tour, zoo and nature center are only some of its highlights.


Plantation General Admission

Adults (ages 13 and over) $20
Children (ages 6-12) $10
Young Children (under 6) Free of Charge

*Adult pricing is before Traveling Ink discount. Click here for coupon. 

General Admission to Magnolia Plantation includes the Historic Gardens, Zoo, the Conservatory, Orientation Theater, and old African American Cabin, as well as the gift shop and Peacok Cafe. You may want to allow an hour or more to enjoy the maze and the gardens which are extensive. The zoo will give visitors an introduction to Lowcountry animals and includes some local rescues such as white-tailed deer and foxes. The zoo also includes goats and a variety of other animals and birds including beautiful peacocks. The Orientation Theater will give guests an overview of the plantation's rich history and runs continuously during the plantation's operating hours.

Magnolia Plantation Discount - Coupon for Traveling Ink Guests

Traveling Ink guests are eligible for a special discount on general admission. Click here for your coupon for Magnolia Plantation and Gardens.


An alligator slides through one of the ponds at Magnolia Plantation. © 2013 Audra L. Gibson. All Rights Reserved.
An alligator slides through one of the ponds at Magnolia Plantation.



Additional Tours

Guests can also enjoy additional aspects of the plantation including tours of the historic home and other tours which give more access and insight to different parts of the plantation. Offerings include the following:

Plantation House Tour • $8 per guest (children under 6 are free).

A 30 minute guided tour giving a history of plantation life and Drayton family ownership.

Nature Train • $8 per guest (children under 6 are free).

A 45 minute tram tour of the plantation's diverse landscapes, lakes, woodlands, marshes, and rivers with a guided description of plantation history and wildlife.

Nature Boat • $8 per guest (children under 6 are free).

A 45 minute boat ride that explores the plantation's expansive rice fields and marsh land. This tour offers excellent wildlife viewing opportunities including guest appearances by local alligators.

Slavery to Freedom • $8 per guest (children under 6 are free).

A 45 minute tour that discusses Magnolia's unique row of slave cabins that were occupied well into the 20th century and have been carefully preserved and restored. Each cabin reflects a different period of the African-American experience at Magnolia, from slavery to Reconstruction on through the 1920s and the Civil Rights era.

Audubon Swamp Garden • $8 per guest (children under 6 are free).

A black water cypress and tupelo swamp home to turtles, herons, egrets, bald eagles, otters, and alligators. Once a freshwater reservoir used for rice cultivation, the 60 acres is traversed by boardwalks and bridges enabling guests to enjoy the variety of local mammals, birds, and reptiles. Guests should allow at least an hour to explore the swamp on this self-guided walk. 


Magnolia Egret 0276 845x311
Egrets in the Audubon Swamp at Magnolia work on nest building.



Need Transportation and Discounted Tickets to Magnolia Plantation?

Guests who do not have transportation available and need more than just a coupon are encouraged to purchase round-trip transportation and entrance into the plantation for one low price. Transportation leaves daily from the Charleston Visitor's Bureau bus pick-up area downtown at 10:30am and returns guests from their trip to Magnolia 4.5 hrs later at 3:00pm. Ticket price includes round-trip transportation out to the Charleston plantation in a climate controlled vehicle, general admission fee, house tour admission, and Nature Train admission fee. Ticket price does not include lunch, but guests are encouraged to bring money (cash or credit) to purchase lunch or snacks from Magnolia's Peacock Cafe. Purchase transportation and ticketing by clicking below.

Purchase Ticket and Transportation to Magnolia Plantation with our coupon code.
Make use of our Magnolia Plantation coupon code at checkout: travelingink10

Magnolia Plantation Address

Address: 3550 Ashley River Road, Charleston, SC 29414

Phone: (843) 571-1266

Plantation Hours

This Charleston plantation is open 365 days a year including major holidays. From November through February, the plantation is open from 9:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. with ticket sales ending at 4:00 p.m. The first week of March through October, operating hours extend from 8:00 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.


Sometimes the grass really does seem greener on the other side.


Things you May Want To Bring

Comfortable shoes, a camera, bug repellent during warmer afternoons, and sunscreen or hat for those with sensitive skin.

source: Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

Last modified on Monday, 05 February 2018 18:50

1 comment

  • Susie

    When my family came to visit me in Charleston Magnolia plantation came with the highest recommendation from the locals. We thoroughly enjoyed hearing about the rich history of plantation life not to mention the beautiful grounds.

    posted by Susie Wednesday, 17 April 2013 12:57 Comment Link

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

back to top

*Traveling Ink cares about the safety of our guests and affiliate partners. While the site will attempt to provide up to date, accurate information, please understand that Covid 19 may cause last minute cancellations or alternative service offerings. We trust our affilate partners to make good safety decisions for guests and team members and stand behind their efforts to make wise choices. Traveling Ink is a Charleston travel and event planning expert, not an infectious disease expert. So, when in doubt, consult the CDC, World Health Organization, or your trusted physician for advisement. Stay safe out there.

Client Testimonials

  • A Charleston resident suggested a Traveling Ink concierge might be able to help me. It didn’t take long for me to realize that this was one of the best pieces of advice I could have received. My friends thought I was an organizational wizard even though I kept telling them it was Traveling Ink, not me.

    ~ Nicky H.
  • We so enjoyed our time in Charleston. Thank you for all your insight! I am recommending your services to everyone I know who is traveling to Charleston!

    ~Kathryn C.
  • Traveling Ink planned the three full days we would have in Charleston, how we would get from one place to another, places to eat, and what the costs would be. To add to the challenge, we had to change the day of one of the main attractions because rain had been predicted. They handled all the changes with out missing a step.

    ~ Harriett H.
  • These Charleston pros do a phenomenal job in any setting. Audra was our point person and is a pleasure to work with. She is laid back and can work with any request.

    ~ Nicole P.