Where to Hideout during a Charleston Rainstorm

Have a plan for when the rain comes.
Have a plan for when the rain comes. ShaggyPaul
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A Charleston rainstorm in the summer is very inconsistent and can happen at a very inconvenient time. The rain also floods our city streets to a point where visitors might think a tsunami has hit the peninsula, but that’s a completely different story. The surprise thunderstorms you’ve probably experienced more than once if you live here can sneak up on you, and even worse, interrupt a perfectly awesome beach day.

Fortunately, for the most part these storms disappear as fast as they arrive, so having a favorite place to hang out for a little while and weather the storm with a cold beer is crucial. Below are a couple of bail-out options for Folly Beach and Sullivan’s Island that are good to have in your back pocket, just in case the rains come.

Where to Take Cover on Folly

Logan Waddell

First of all, Folly is a long beach. The farther down the beach from the center of town you go, the longer it’s going to take you to walk somewhere, so just keep that in mind. If you’re at the Washout, you might as well bring a lunch and a boardgame to hang out under the surf shack on the side of the road. Otherwise you’ll wait in traffic trying to leave the beach and get back to town as the sun comes back out. If you’re closer to Folly Road, hit up Rita’s for some margaritas under the covered porch, or The Which Doctor for a sammy and a beer that will melt away those rainy-day blues.

You can walk straight to both of these places if you see some storm clouds headed your way, wait out the rain, then hit the beach for some glassy waves after the bad weather has passed.

Where to Take Cover on Sullivan’s Island

Sullivan's Island bars and restaurants often nice options when storm clouds roll in.
Sullivan's Island bars and restaurants often nice options when storm clouds roll in. Jack Joynson

Much like Folly, Sullivan’s Island bars and restaurants are all centrally located within the business district of the island, so if you set up far down the beach, you’ve got a longer walk to take cover during a storm. Get to the beach early, find a parking spot close to the center of town, and you’ll be golden.

When the rains come, head to Poe’s for a burger and a huge selection of local beer on tap, Home Team Bar-B-Q for the same thing, or Dunleavy’s Pub for good, old-fashioned pub grub and cheap beer (don’t knock Dunleavy’s until you try it. It looks like a dumpy Irish bar from the outside, but we all know those are the most fun places to drink). All of these places have covered seating areas where you can relax and enjoy a frosty beverage while you listen to the rain fall.

Never Leave The Beach

Don’t feel like packing everything up because of a little rain? Easy, bring a dry bag large enough to store all of your important gear, books, electronics, what have you. Take along your beach umbrella to sit under while it pours, or just hang out in the ocean as it storms to avoid the cold rain.

Even better if you’ve got your surfboard or SUP with you, just go play in the water until the rain stops. After all, a little rain never hurt anyone. If anything, it cools down those blistering hot beach days, and turns them into regular hot beach days.

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