In the years since that first house went up, there has been some development, but not a lot. The island's 1500 year-round residents do their best to keep it as natural as possible for all the wildlife that calls it home. There are no schools, hospitals, or churches on the island. The residents of Kiawah Island must be big golf fans, as currently, there are seven golf courses (some public, some private) on the island for golfers to enjoy.
As you might imagine in a place with no schools, hospitals, or churches, there are also very limited hotel options. Visitors to the island tend to stay in nearby Charleston, South Carolina, close to route 30, the main route onto the island. Charleston is a charming historic city known for its unique architecture and some of the finest southern food available south of the Mason-Dixon line.
When is the best time to visit Kiawah Island, SC?
Kiawah Island is a beautiful place and you get the opportunity to see the wildlife and experience the serenity of its undisturbed wilderness year round. The island's Arts and Cultural Events Council holds events from September to June, with the majority of festivals being held January through March.
The island is home to many types of wildlife, including bobcat, alligators, and over 200 species of birds. You can view the fauna at viewing stations along the 30 miles of paved pathways that wind through the island. The wildlife can be seen all year round, but most sightings happen March through November.
Hotel rates are steady throughout the year with a slight dip in rates in January and a slight rise in June. There are plenty of deals available and hotel types to choose from, just off the island in Charleston.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Kiawah Island, SC:
Kiawah Island, SC: Prices by Star Rating Class
Below we've posted 3 graphs illustrating avg. rate patterns by star rating class in Kiawah Island, SC. Browse these line graphs to evaluate the cheapest time to book in Kiawah Island for upcoming travels.
What are the best luxury hotels in Kiawah Island, South Carolina?
4 Star Average Prices: $194.33
In any big city, you will find beautiful hotel options and Charleston, South Carolina, is no different. The city's historic charm comes out in many of the high-end options available in the area, and access to Kiawah Island is easy.
The Francis Marion Hotel is in a historic downtown building with a warm luxurious feel. This 1924 era hotel was named after revolutionary war hero Francis “the swamp fox” Marion, who was famous for eluding the British by hiding in the swamps around Charleston. The hotel's rich history seeps through its crystal chandeliers and fine wood finishing.
In addition to the historic details you will find throughout the hotel, there are modern touches as well, including heavenly pillowtop mattresses, flat-screen HD televisions, and Bluetooth alarm clocks. An on-site spa is available for those in need of a massage or facial. The on-site restaurant, aptly named “The Swamp Fox”, provides delightful southern cuisine, and the concierge is there to meet any other needs you may have. Suites are available, including the 1550 square foot Mark Clark Presidential Suite.
The Charleston Kiawah Island/Andell Inn is a beautiful hotel situated right over the Kiawah River from Charleston and is one of the few venues offering accommodations on the island. This luxury boutique hotel has very helpful staff, and the building is nestled among the salt marshes of the island. This resort offers a free hot breakfast to all its guests and has a poolside bar, suites with full kitchens, and a 24-hour fitness center.
Where are the most affordable hotels near Kiawah Island, SC?
3 Star Average Prices: $139.58
Just because you are staying in a large city, doesn't mean you have to pay a large price. There are plenty of affordable hotel options if you're interested in visiting Kiawah Island.
The Sleep Inn Charleston is a great low-cost hotel option in the area. The island is an easy seven-mile drive from the hotel, and is close to restaurants and the Citadel Mall. Reviewers rave about the clean, comfortable rooms and the friendly staff. The hotel offers free Wi-Fi, continental breakfast, and a 24-hour business center for all guests. Even your four-legged friends are welcome at this friendly affordable hotel.
The LaQuinta Inn & Suites Charleston is another good value option. It is a little more than nine miles from Kiawah Island, but still close enough to be enjoying the island life in about 15 minutes. If you would like to explore downtown Charleston, there is a local shuttle available to get you there. Other amenities offered by the LaQuinta include free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, and a 24-hour fitness center.
This hotel is close to the Charleston City Marina and the historic downtown area of Charleston. For dining options, there is a restaurant on site, or you can walk to one of the many eateries in the area.