School is in, but the beaches are still hot. I spent Friday afternoon on the Isle of Palms near Coconut Joe's taking pictures. The beach was lined with sunbathers as far as you could see. The beach houses appeared to be occupied. There were some decent waves breaking offshore for the surfers, and tide was up, so skimboarders were taking advantage of the surf along the shoreline, skimming the waves as they rolled on shore.
Although, Folly beach is the better choice when it comes to surfing, the Isle of Palms offers the beachgoer a lot of sand and a shoreline for swimming, particularly when the tide is up. This day's crowd mainly consisted of older teens and adults soaking in the afternoons hot sun with a few throwing the football around. As I perused the beach for some good photos, I zeroed in on three skimboarders near the pier, Lizzy, Simone, and Matt, who were willing to show me what they could do with their boards. Simone, who appeared to be the more skilled of the three, executed a near perfect 360. Then, upon request from me, the three of them attempted to jump a wave at the same time, of which I was able to get a good shot of the result. Good execution and form by Lizzy and Simone, but it was Matt who stole the show.
Isle of Palms is a seven mile long island with approximately six miles of beach access for residents and visitors throughout the island. Isle of Palms County Park, located at the center of the island as you get off the connector, offers beautiful ocean frontage with lifeguards on duty seasonally along a beachfront designated swimming area. Parasailing and wave runners are available for the more adventurous beach goers to rent. For those who would like to explore the intercoastal waters, kayaks are just the ticket and available for rent at the marina. The IOP Marina is also where you can charter both offshore and inshore fishing trips as well as eco tours of nearby uninhabited islands.
Isle of Palms is also home to the Wild Dunes Resort that occupies 1,500 acres on the northern end of the island and offers residents and visitors two 18 hole Tom Fazio golf courses, 17 har tru tennis courts, and numerous pools. Wild Dunes has many private residences as well as condominiums often rented on the vacation rental market. Other options available are the many colorful beach houses with waterfront views for friends and family to relax in and enjoy the sand and surf.
For entertainment, the Windjammer is a popular hot spot on the beach offering good food and live music with a view. Three suggestions that top the restaurant list are the Boathouse at Breech Inlet where you can enjoy sunset and a drink on its rooftop bar before seafood dinner, Long Island Cafe on IOP, and Poe's Tavern on Sullivan's Island famed for its burgers and casual party atmosphere.