Although many visitors choose to explore Daufuskie on golf carts, biking this little island may be more appealing to some. Touring the island by bike is feasible, and maybe even enjoyable, when the biker is prepared.
It is a good idea to do some research prior to touring Daufuskie by bike. Although Daufuskie is small, the island’s restaurants, galleries, historic spots, and various points of interest are spread out. There is no “downtown” area on Daufuskie. Be ready for miles of exploring by bike. You most likely want more than just a few hours on the island, so consider staying for the day.
In addition to the distance between visiting locations, about half of the roads on the island are dirt. Well let’s be honest, sand. And if you have ever biked through the soft sand, you will understand the difficulty in riding around on Daufuskie. It is best to come a day or two after a rain when sandy roads are a bit more condensed. We warn you, too much rain will turn the sandy roads into mush. Also making it impossible to navigate.
Our recommendation? Plan ahead. Decide where you want to explore. Map out a route. If you want to visit places on dirt roads, come after a rain has packed down the roads. Otherwise, you may end up doing more walking than riding. If it has been dry, then look into exploring places on the island with paved roads.
Check out the map to the left. All accessible paved roads on the island are marked in gray. Be ready. Even paved roads over here can be a rough ride. If you want to grab a bite to eat, Marshside Mama’s is right off Haig Point Road, which is paved. If you want to picnic on the beach, you can ride through Melrose to Avenue of Oaks for beach access. Or, you can ride down Oakridge to Beach Road. Beach Road is a dirt road, so you’ll have about a half mile walk or ride to get to the beach.
Haig Point Road has a couple of stops along your way down island. The Billie Burn Historic Museum is accessible via Old Haig Point Road, which is paved up to the Museum. You can also enjoy a walking tour of the Community Farm as you bike. Daufuskie Island Rum Company is also off Haig Point Road. Although you are looking at a short ride down a gravel path to get to the distillery, the gravel usually stays packed down enough for a bike ride. And the reward is sweet.
If the roads aren’t too soft, there are a number of places you can visit that are just a short ride from a paved road. The Lighthouse Museum is about 100 feet down Beach Road, which is dirt. If you would like to visit Wine and Woodworks, Freeport Marina with Old Daufuskie Crab Company, or the Marsh Tacky Society, you are looking at a quarter mile ride on a dirt road.
In order to get to Lucy Bell’s Café, you will need to ride about a half mile down the dirt road Benjies Point. About a quarter mile down from there are two of our local artisans, Iron Fish Gallery and Silver Dew Pottery. Don’t worry; both ship items so you don’t have to balance your newfound art as you bike.
If you want to visit Maryfields School, where Pat Conroy taught, be ready for almost a mile ride on dirt roads. However, if it has rained recently the stop is worth the ride. Located at the school is Daufuskie Blues, natural indigo dyers, and School Grounds Coffee. You will also pass by First Union African Baptist Church; this 1884 church is definitely worth a glance.
Renting bikes is an option once you arrive to Daufuskie Island. Give Sports Addiction a call to reserve a beach cruiser for the day. Otherwise, Daufuskie Island Ferry will bring your bike over free of charge. We recommend bikes with thick tires for better grip and an easier ride on our rough roads.
If you want to bike Daufuskie, come prepared. Plan a route and bring some snacks and drinks. Give yourself the entire day to ride around the island and explore.
Bike Daufuskie. Tour Daufuskie. Enjoy Daufuskie.