If you know anything about Boston terriers you know that most aren’t very interested in swimming or even being in the water. Basil is no different. Being a Pacific Northwest dog his only real experience with the ocean is rough waves and ice cold water but he loves the beach. Sand and people are two of Basil’s favorite things so a trip to an Atlantic ocean beach was a must.
Waking up early on a Saturday morning and starting to put together a bag, gathering up all of the “can’t live with-out” things that Basil requires, he lifts his sleepy head from under our down comforter. Thats when the real fun begins. We now have a code red Boston terrier running rampant around our house. After breakfast and a little game of tug-o-rope we hit the road.
Currently we are living just outside Charlotte, North Carolina so the journey will take us about 3 and 1/2 hours. About 20 minutes into the trip I turn around to find the elusive (not!) napping monster.
Finally we reach Charleston, South Carolina which is about 9 miles from our final destination, Folly Beach. Charleston is beautiful and everything you would of hope for in a historic southern city. We get out to walk the narrow streets and soak up the history.
Basil’s Travels PSA… When the weather is hot, like above 70 degrees please, please, please keep your pets cool by staying out of direct sun, keeping water on hand at all times and keep an eye on your pet. Heat stroke is a very real danger for dogs in the summer months. NEVER leave your pet in a hot car, even with the windows down.
For Basil I always keep a dog water bottle as well as a portable water dish handy. We recommend a soft sided bowl. Basil loves his RuffWear Quencher Portable Outdoor Dog Water Bowl. Its great for the car because it doesn’t tip over and its easy to take with you when your out and about.
Charleston is a fairly dog friendly city. A lot of the high end shops along King Street allow well behaved dogs in as well as a few restaurants with outdoor patios. Basil took us to Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. They allow dogs on the patio and even set our table with a icy dog water dish for our little guy. If you do plan on a visit and have your dog with you let me recommend not visiting on a hot day. Although they do have shade and overhead fans it was too hot for us to enjoy our time there and I worried for Basil. We hope to come back maybe in the fall for a more enjoyable time.
After a few hours in Charleston we hit the road again and traveled the short 9 miles to the little surf community of Folly Beach. With a cute main drag with more than a few great spots for a drink and some grub, as well as a lot of the usual surfer shops. After another quick nap Baz was ready to get out of the car again. We had a little time to kill before we were able to hit the beach* so we decided to hit up another great local restaurant. (*At Folly Beach dogs are not allowed on the beach from 10am to 6pm May 1st through September 30th.)
Folly Beach Crab Shack looked like just the place for us. With a large outdoor area shade, overhead fans and misters it made us cool and comfortable. Dog are allowed on the leash in about half their patio. Great drinks and seafood (of course!) and Basil loved the people watching. He even made friends with a lovely older couple that was enjoying themselves on the great patio just like us.
Beach time!! We found that after 6pm, when dogs are allowed on the beach, a lot of people have moved from the beach into town which worked great for us. Parking can be found in public parking lots located right along the beach at almost every public beach access. Parking is $7 a day in all of these public lots. There is also a lot of street parking if you don’t mind a little bit of a walk.
The beach was fantastic! Once Basil’s paws hit the sand he was off and running. Being leashed at the time he took me for a run also. This was the first time all three of us had seen the Atlantic and we were blown away. Beautiful sandy beaches and calm inviting water. We set up our towels and Basils water and ran for the ocean. I was shocked by how warm the water was and I think Basil was too. He loved it! Keeping him leashed for safety and to follow the beach rules he ran and jumped straight into the crashing waves. I now have a water loving Boston terrier! WHO KNEW!?
We spent the rest of the day laying out, running around and enjoying Basil’s new favorite thing… the ocean. Right before it got dark we packed up our things and started back on the road home. If you plan on spending more than one day in this relaxing beach town there are a lot of places to stay in Folly Beach as well as near by Charleston that allow dogs. In Folly Beach there is a large beach front hotel called Tides. We didn’t get the opportunity to stay there but we have heard good things and they do allow dogs with a fee. Their website says there is a $85 flat fee for your pet per stay. If you are staying for more than a couple days that fee is very reasonable. For your trip I would recommend stopping off at the visitors centre in Charleston and picking up a map and some other information to check out more about both of these southern cities.
As for our trip home, sandy Basil slept the whole way. We had an amazing day trip and Basil can’t wait for next time.
Feel free to share any and all travel experiences with us too!
Travel well, Nap well, Live well!
-Abbey & Basil