Magnolia Plantation and Gardens is at 3550 Ashley River Rd. (SR 61). This 500-acre estate was acquired in 1676 by the Drayton family, whose heirs still own and manage it. The informal 60-acre garden, one of America's oldest, dates from around 1680 and contains 900 varieties of camellias, 250 types of azaleas and hundreds of other flowering species that provide year-round color while complementing the natural beauty of the surroundings.
There is an orientation theater, and the grounds include a petting zoo; a pasture with miniature horses; a horticultural maze; bicycle and nature trails; and biblical, herb and tropical gardens. For an additional fee visitors can take the 45-minute From Slavery to Freedom tour featuring restored slave cabins reflecting different eras throughout the plantation's history, from slavery to the Civil Rights Movement; the cabins contain related artifacts. Boat and train tours, plantation house tours and self-guiding tours of Audubon Swamp Garden also are available for additional fees.
Guided tours are available. Pet friendly (call for restrictions/fees.). Picnicking is permitted. Food is available. Time: Allow 2 hours minimum.
Grounds daily 8 a.m.-dusk. Last admission is at 5:30, mid-Feb. to mid-Nov.; at 4:30, rest of year. House tours depart on the hour 9-5; last tour begins at 4. From Slavery to Freedom tour departs at 10:30, 11:30, 1, 2, 3 and 4.
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