Frequently Asked Questions

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Do we need advance reservations?
Yes! All of our programs and activities at Middleton Place require reservations. We recommend at least 48 hours in advance to secure availability. We can usually accommodate same day requests, but can not guarantee availability without reservation. We will certainly do our very best to get you on the water without an advance reservation, but can not guarantee availability, as we try to  keep our trips small.  check current schedule or make a reservation.
Where do the activities depart from
Our programs at Middleton Place depart from the Lodge building at the Inn at Middleton Place. Take the Middleton Inn entrance to the property, follow down drive until you reach the gate at the registration building. They can direct you to parking for the Lodge. 4290 Ashley River rd. Charleston, SC 29414. However, we do have trips that depart from other locations as well, so please be sure to note where your activity meeting location is. Your confirmation email will have this information.
Will we have to pay an entrance fee to participate in the Kayak tours?
No entrance fee is required to access our site, however participation in our programs does not give you access to the Middleton Place Gardens. If you are interested in visiting the Gardens or other areas of the property, you may find additional information at Guests at the Middleton Inn will receive passes to visit the garden.
Do we need experience to kayak?
No! We can tailor our tours to any skill level. If you are new to kayaking and not sure what to expect, our stable tandem (2 person) kayaks are just the thing. For more seasoned paddlers, we have you covered too! Just let us know if you have any special concerns or agendas, and we can create a program to suite your needs.
How can I make a reservation?
You may make a reservation or get answers to your other questions by giving us a call at 843-628-2879. Please understand that we are a small company, and try to spend as much time on the water as possible. If you don’t reach someone please leave us a message, and know that your message will be received quickly and returned promptly. You may also book through our online calendar by clicking the green book now button on any of the activity pages. This method will allow you to secure your date and spaces immediately. You will receive a confirmation email with your booking details, and have the option of indicating if you would like one of our staff members to contact you to answer further questions about your reservation.
How large a group can you accommodate?
If you can get them to us, we can get them on the water! Rest assured, our regularly scheduled tours are kept to small group sizes to maintain the quality of experience, but for private groups we can design a program that fits your schedule and size
What types of boats do you use?
At Middleton Place we have both Tandem and Single Kayaks available. Our Tandems are super stable hybrid kayaks with one large open cockpit for both paddlers. The tandems are large enough to be comfortable for almost anyone, but small enough to navigate in some of the smaller creeks. Our single Kayaks are closed cockpit touring kayaks made by Wilderness Systems. We have a variety of models to fit different paddlers and abilities. We do have some sit on top models available for those who prefer that style, but we are sure to have a high performing boat suitable to your skill level.
Do I have to go on a guided tour?
Nope. We also offer kayak rentals for those wanting to explore on their own. Lots of places in Charleston rent Kayaks, but none have the solitude you will find on the Upper Ashley. Check out our Kayak Rental Page for more info.
What does the Cost Include?
All tour prices include kayak, PFD’s, Paddles, safety gear, dry bag(s), tax, and guide. Rentals have additional state and local taxes. Gratuity is optional and appreciated if you find your guide provided exceptional service.
What the deal with weather?
We keep a keen eye on the weather, and weather forecast, although many years of being in this industry have taught us not to put much stock into the accuracy of the forecast. Most trips are rain or shine, provided we are just dealing with some scattered rain, and not total washout of downpours. Heavy persistent rain, strong winds, and severe thunderstorms, would all result in cancellation of the activity by Charleston Kayak Company. In the case in which we cancel the trip due to weather, you will be given options to reschedule (when possible for both parties) or receive a refund of any deposits made. We are not out to get anyone, but we do have to run a business, and if we cancelled overtime the weather forecasters said rain, we would never get on the water! Don’t hesitate to ask if you have further questions.
Do we need Bug-spray?
The vast majority of our outings take place within tidal areas, and therefore mosquitoes are not an issue while on the water. Occasionally there can be a few on land around launch sites, but rarely are they particularly bothersome at the places we operate. On super calm days  in the spring, the gnats (or “no-seeums” as we call them) can have there moments, but again, its fairly rare for them to be an issue. We always encourage you to bring bug spray if you are particularly sensitive or well liked by biting insects, but chances are you won’t ever even pull it out. Even our Blackwater Cypress swamp trip is almost completely devoid of mosquitoes, but you will have to take the tour to find out why!