Outdoor Activities

Photo Credit: Brett Flashnick for Columbia Metropolitan Convention & Visitors Bureau

Outdoor Activities

Find time to enjoy the great outdoors during your college days because opportunities abound all around CIU.

Locally, hiking and camping, swimming, boating and other water sports are outdoor activity options. Our campus is not far from beautiful Lake Murray where you can go fishing or experience stand up paddle boarding.

Hikers should definitely explore South Carolina’s state trails. Of course, we have trails on campus, too, for when you want to take a hike from studying or just enjoy nature.  Congaree National Park Walking Trail

Within 20 minutes of campus is Sesquicentennial State Park. There you rent a paddleboat, canoe or kayak and cruise the lake. Not far from downtown you can paddle Columbia’s three rivers. The Columbia area also is home to the only national park in the Palmetto State: Congaree National Park and its unspoiled river bottomlands beauty.

Within the Columbia city limits are paved trails lining the metropolitan riverways and Riverbanks Zoo & Gardens, considered one of the finest of its size in the world.

At the beginning of the fall semester, you’ll have a few weeks to cool off at Palmetto Falls Water Park at Fort Jackson. The park, which closes for the season in September, has two water slides, a splashdown pool and a lazy river.

And if that’s not enough, the Atlantic Ocean and Blue Ridge Mountains are only two to three hours away, depending on your destination. Discover South Carolina and its great outdoors.