One of the great appeals of South Carolina’s Lowcountry is the close proximity of its historic cities to its idyllic islands. A prime example of this is the short distance between the vibrant city of Charleston and the tranquil beach haven of Isle of Palms (IOP). So, just how far is Charleston from IOP?
When you’re ready to start planning your trip, request our free Isle of Palms Vacation Guide. This planning tool is filled with local insight into the best places to visit, dine, stay, and more during your trip!
How Far is Charleston from IOP?
The distance between Charleston and Isle of Palms is approximately 12 miles (25 min with no traffic). This relatively short journey makes it easy for visitors and locals alike to transition from exploring the historic charm of Charleston to basking in the sun on Isle of Palms’ pristine beaches. If you’re flying into CHS, the drive from North Charleston is 25 miles (40-50 minutes on average) and is a pretty easy drive across I-526 E and SC-517.
How to Get to IOP from Charleston
The drive from Charleston to Isle of Palms typically takes about 26 minutes, making it a quick and convenient trip. The route takes you along US-17 N and SC-517 E, providing scenic views of the Lowcountry’s marshes and waterways.
Before reaching Isle of Palms, you’ll pass through the growing city of Mount Pleasant. Here, you can make a quick detour to visit the Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum, get a Reuben on rye at Mozzo’s Deli, or take a stroll on the iconic Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.
If you prefer not to drive, there are other ways to get from Charleston to Isle of Palms. One option is to take the IOP Beach Reach Shuttle between Mount Pleasant Town Centre and IOP for free from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The city is also home to a robust Uber/Lyft presence if you prefer to hail a ridesharing service.
Exploring Isle of Palms
Once you reach Isle of Palms, you’ll find plenty to keep you entertained. Known for its beautiful beach, Isle of Palms is a top spot for sunbathing, swimming, and beachcombing. Watersports enthusiasts can enjoy surfing, paddleboarding, and kayaking, while golfers can hit the links at the Wild Dunes Resort.
Beyond the beach, Isle of Palms offers a variety of dining options, ranging from casual beachfront cafes to upscale restaurants serving fresh seafood and Lowcountry cuisine. For wildlife lovers, the island is home to an array of bird species, making it a great location for birdwatching.
Stay on IOP
The short distance from Charleston to Isle of Palms makes it easy to experience the best of both worlds: a bustling historic city and a serene beach getaway. Whether you’re planning a day trip or a longer vacation, this journey offers a unique blend of culture, history, and relaxation that’s sure to create lasting memories.
East Islands Rentals offers an exclusive selection of Isle of Palms rental homes for all styles and budgets. Plus, our homes on the island are within driving distance of all the most popular historic sites in the city and on the islands, so it’s easy to check each item off your itinerary!
Browse a full catalog of our Isle of Palms rental homes to start planning your trip!