If you go
WHERE TO STAY The 1425 Inn 1425 Richland St., Columbia, S.C. 803-252-7225
Eight rooms highlight themes of South Carolina, including the Magnolia, which captures the feel of an old Southern plantation. Rates start at $149.
WHERE TO EAT JD’s Place 7727 Bluff Rd., Gadsden, S.C. 803-353-0061 wapo.st/JDsPlace Minutes from the park, this unassuming Southern-food cafe has excellent fried chicken. Entrees start around $10.
WHAT TO DO Congaree National Park 100 National Park Rd., Hopkins, S.C. 803-776-4396 nps.gov/cong /index.htm
Canoe through primeval forests, watch rare synchronized fireflies or explore 25 miles of hiking trails in one of our least visited national parks. Ranger-guided canoe tours are available three times a week and must be reserved online at recreation.gov. (There is a $1.50 per-person fee.) Each tour is limited to 12 people and fills up fast; you can book a spot on the first day of the month before the tour date. Tours generally run from April to November. In 2017, tours will go on hiatus in mid-June and resume from Labor Day until the weekend before Thanksgiving. There also are first-come, firstserve afternoon canoe tours on Friday, Saturday and Sunday through mid-June. Free.
South Carolina State Museum
301 Gervais St., Columbia, S.C. 803-898-4921 scmuseum.org A sweeping look at the state over time, ranging from dinosaur fossils to Native American pottery to a model of the sunken Confederate Civil War submarine H.L. Hunley. Daily admission costs $8.95 for adults, $7.95 for seniors and $6.95 for children ages 3 to 12.