Stay and Play in Your Own Backyard

Jasmine Amenities PoolSchool may be getting back in session, but the weather is still fine in Columbia! Even as we move into the cooler months of autumn, we’ll have plenty of weekends to filled with fun activities. The best part for residents in one of our many Columbia communities, they don’t have to go far to enjoy getaways. Rather than driving for hours or hopping flights, plan a weekend or fall break escape right in your own backyard.

Columbia, South Carolina has activities for everyone whether you’re a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, a foodie or art lover. Check out this list of escapes to make everyone in your house happy.

History buffs have no shortage of ways to explore days gone by. The South Carolina Governor’s Mansion has been home to more than 30 state leaders and contains silver and china and other relics of South Carolina’s history. Now used to entertain visiting dignitaries, the mansion sits on nine acres and includes two other homes as well. Tours can be booked online. Visit the Hampton-Preston Mansion and Gardens to continue your look back into the state’s history. Built in 1818, the home passed through the hands of many owners and was renovated from the Federal style to a Greek Revival style in 1823. The city is revitalizing the gardens to showcase typical antebellum gardens. For something a little less genteel, visit the South Carolina Military Museum to learn about the military’s long history in the state. Admission and parking are free, and self-guided tours are welcome every day. For a guided tour, check online listings.

The outdoor adventurer and the family full of energetic kids, Columbia provides a great backdrop. You can’t go wrong with a visit to the Riverbanks Zoo and Botanical Garden. Check out Waterfall Junction where little hands can dig for dinos, cool off at the splash pad and use up all that energy. Guests can interact with giraffes, lorikeets and more, or explore different types of gardens for an international gardening tour that never leaves Columbia. Head to Harbison Environmental Education Center and take advantage of 20 miles of roads and trails on more than 2,000 acres. This forest showcases a working sawmill, fire tower and steam loader. The center offers tons of free educational opportunities for children and adults. At Saluda Shoals Park, Columbia residents can boat, kayak or just watch the river from an observation deck. A playground, splashpad and picnic shelters mean this park can be used well into the cooler months, and they offer rentals, training and field trips.

If it’s just too hot or you’re into a more introspective kind of recreation, Columbia has a full spectrum of art and education museums. The Columbia Museum of Arts is not only a fine museum of art but also hosts events throughout the year. We’re also lucky to be close to the South Carolina State Museum. This cool space shows 4D movies that allow the audience to really experience the movie. Not to be overlooked or missed is EdVenture Children’s Museum. With programs for little and big kids alike this is a great space to explore.

Each of these options adds something to residential life in Columbia, a value we recognize at Essex Homes. To learn how you can be close to all the action in Columbia by building a home with Essex, visit us online or call 844-456-2020 today.