South Carolina is a great place for kids to head off for summer camp as it has immense beautiful outdoor spaces for them to explore all summer long.
From lakeside settings where campers can practice their swim strokes or hop in a canoe to mountainsides where they can learn survival skills on an overnight camping adventure. There are all sorts of opportunities and challenges available in South Carolina.
With a variety of accommodation comfort levels for campers, they can decide if they want to tough it out through the summer or have a more relaxed time away. Each of these summer camps comes with its own mission and approach to your child.
Best South Carolina Summer Camps
1. Camp Chatuga
Camp Chatuga is found in the Blue Ridge Mountains on the Southwest end of South Carolina along the Chattooga Ridge and not far from the Chattooga River.
Children at this summer camp sleep in shared cabins with bunk beds, each of which sleeps up to 8 campers. Some of the cabins offer private bathroom facilities in the same space, while others make use of facilities shared with campers in other cabins. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all served family style and can cater to the needs of any diet.
Camp sessions last from one to four weeks at a time. Campers who attend can expect to enjoy a huge variety of activities, including but not limited to archery, canoeing, disc golf, gardening, and horseback riding.
Camp Chatuga has been operating since 1956, and its mission is to bring campers closer to God. The camp is staffed at a 4:1 staff-to-camper ratio and offers 10 sessions throughout the summer.
2. Camp Canaan
Camp Canaan is located on the small Fewell Island, which is surrounded by the Catawba River at the mouth of Allison Creek. The location is conveniently located about 15 miles from Charlotte.
Kids can enjoy modern cabins with camp facilities that include a pool and sports fields. Each week children enjoy a catered kick-off dinner to start off and then close out with a family cookout at the end of the week.
The camp sessions last for six days and cover day camps and overnight camps. From week to week, Camp Canaan offers both co-ed and all-girls options. Children in each session enjoy a range of activities from boating to tubing and rock climbing, jewelry making, and camp-wide games like Capture the Flag.
Camp Canaan has been running since 2004, and it’s their goal to provide outdoor experiences that encourage campers to grow their faith in and relationship with God.
3. Gravatt Camp
Gravatt Camp is situated right between the cities of Augusta and Columbia. It also sits between the shores of both Lake Henry and Lake Sylvia, so water activities are plentiful here.
There are two types of accommodation options for campers, including screened-in cabins as well as platform tents. Children in all of the accommodation share communal bathrooms and showers. All the meals at camp can always be catered to specific dietary needs or any allergies campers have.
Gravatt Camp offers one or two-week sessions. The ages range from first graders all the way up to rising college freshmen. There are also special offerings of family camp weeks if moms and dads want to join their kids.
The goal at Gravatt Camp is to allow participants to form a stronger faith through building strong communities and promoting environmental stewardship.
YMCA Camp Greenville is located right in the middle of the Mountain Bridge Wilderness area in the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s been in operation since 1912 and expands over 1400 acres of land.
Cabins include all the amenities like electricity, heat, hot water, toilets, and individual showers, while others make use of communal shower facilities on the campgrounds. Food and snacks are offered, and the cooks can accommodate special requests.
Camps are all one week in length and open to students rising into 2nd through 12th grades. If you want to stay beyond one week, stay over days are offered.
Each session offers exciting activities such as kayaking, archery, fort building, and swimming in the lake. A fun family camp lasting 3 days is also offered each year.
5. Camp La Vida
In Winnsboro, Camp La Vida provides all-girls summer camps in South Carolina for grades 1 to 12. Founded in 1983, Camp La Vida is a missions discipleship education camp.
With a total of 12 campers per cabin, your daughter will stay with those in the same grade or around the same age, usually within no more than two years difference. Beds are extra-long bunk beds for all campers to enjoy.
They let girls choose how they want to spend their time at camp. The camps are on the shorter side, from just two to five days each. Camp La Vida also offers special mother-daughter opportunities.
Activities are diverse and include arts and crafts, bible study, swimming, camp-wide talent shows, and pottery making. Each day ends with a prayer being thankful for another awesome day in this world.
6. Camp Voyager
With stunning views of Table Rock Mountain, Camp Voyager is the place to be for an educational summer of STEM learning and skill building.
Camp Voyager offers sleepaway camps for short periods, each running from Sunday through Friday. Children ages 9 to 15 are welcome to attend. Some of their STEM camps are co-ed, while others are boys only, and they maintain an 8:1 instructor-to-student ratio.
Camp Voyager is a Clemson University-affiliated program targeted at younger techies and curious creatives. The summer camp offers unique opportunities for engaged exploration and gaming with things like Nerf games, drone play, Xbox games, and zip lining.
Your child can grow and play with other peers who share similar interests in video games and technology.
Camp Burnt Gin is found on the shores of Burnt Gin Lake, providing plenty of opportunities for water sports and activities under the supervision of lifeguards.
The summer camp is tailored to youth between the ages of 7 and 25 who have special health needs. Therefore, it provides a smaller, more familiar camp experience with just ten cabins, each with bathrooms and increased accessibility.
There are three balanced meals served to campers each day. These are all prepared by a dietician to ensure they are of the highest quality. Daily activities include swimming, crafting activities, paddle boating, and nightly campfires.
Camps last from three to five days, and for each, campers can expect the support of Camp Burnt Gin in its overall mission to help participants improve their self-esteem and maintain a healthy lifestyle even after they go back home.
Camp Old Indian is a scouting camp that offers 4 sessions each summer, where campers can learn outdoor and social skills.
Accommodation is provided to groups in very basic Adirondack lean-tos equipped with sets of bunk beds. Kids spend a week here with scouting groups from all over the surrounding area. Both male and female groups are welcome at Camp Old Indian.
There is ample opportunity for campers to earn their scouting badges from across all the offered disciplines. At this camp, there are activities like canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling, chess, and even astronomy.
Camp Old Indian is dedicated to supporting all of its campers in developing their scouting skills by providing a safe space and consistently engaging programs.
YMCA Camp Thunderbird is a coed summer camp that serves children ages 6-16. Find it along the shores of Lake Wylie only a couple of miles away from Charlotte.
They stand out in that you can enroll children in year-round programs so they can keep making friends and participating in exciting adventures. You can do everything from sailing to ziplining and swimming in their facilities.
Sessions run from Sunday to Saturday, and each week varies in the age and gender it is open to. In addition to residential camps, day sessions are also available. Every week children participate in a huge variety of activities, from canoeing archery to volleyball and even wakeboarding. Kids have loads of options to keep them busy and happy.
Since 1936, YMCA Camp Thunderbird has aimed to support kids as they develop life skills like empathy and embrace their interests and talents.
Summer Camps for states that border South Carolina:
Martin has been in the summer camp industry for 7 years now. He has worked in different roles for camps, including as a marketing director for summer camps in the United States. Martin enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities but likes hiking and kayaking the most. He’s also a huge fan of traveling.