Thursday, April 1, 2010

Cypress Gardens In Berkeley County, SC-Nature And A Movie

When I moved to the Summerville area of South Carolina and first heard the name Cypress Gardens mentioned as a place to visit, Florida automatically came to mind. Little did I know, at the time, there was a Cypress Gardens right here in the surrounding area of Charleston. So, I checked it out. No glass bottom boats will you find there and if you are also thinking the Florida connection, I have come to learn the Cypress Gardens of Florida is now closed, but the Cypress Gardens of South Carolina, is alive and doing great.

Spring is an ideal time to visit Cypress Gardens with its beautiful azaleas in bloom along with a host of other wildflowers common to the area. Birds and butterflies too numerous to mention in a blog also begin to make their presense known as the weather begins to warm in the month of March and continuing on into April when the azaleas are at their peek and the dogwoods abundant with color. Every month from there on out will bring its own steady procession of plants in bloom and new arrivals of the bird kingdom as well as butterflies and a host of other wildlife, including the earth-shaking bellowings of the territorial, breeding alligator in June.

Cypress Gardens is composed of approximately 80 acres of open swamp filled with bald cypress and water tupelo trees and 3.5 miles of beautiful nature trails for you to explore. Flat-bottom boats that hold 4-6 people are provided for your use to be paddled along a marked route through the shallow swamp. You can listen to a guide tell about the swamps history and its aquatic residents. A large greenhouse called the Butterfly House filled with flowering plants, live butterflies, birds, a pond, an arthropod exhibit, and an observation beehive is located on sight along with the Swamparium, an aquarium/reptile center, with tanks and terrariums featuring fish, amphibians, and reptiles (including venomous snakes) native to the swamp and nearby waterways. As you leisurely walk the trails you will find interpretive and plant identification signs all along their route widing around the black water swamp.

Cypress Gardens has been featured in numerous national magazines. It has hosted over 16 major movies and television series. While taking the guided tour through the swamp I learned various swamp scenes in the movie, "The Patriot", were filmed there. Other notable movies were "North and South", "Cold Mountain", and "The Notebook". On the humerous side, who would have thought "Swamp Thing" was also filmed in its swamp. Go figure. Engage yourself in a challenge. Visit Cypress Gardens and then rent the movies out to see if you can identify those particular scenes.

Beautiful Cypress Gardens in Berkeley County, South Carolina is worth your time and be sure to bring your camera. Check upcoming events, admission, and directions. Located at 3030 Cypress Gardens Rd., Moncks Corner, SC 29461. Phone: 843-553-0515.-Vacation Rick Travel

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