Agritourism = Agriculture and Tourism
is a combination of what South Carolina does best…agriculture and tourism! Agritourism is the crossroads between agriculture & tourism; when
an agriculturally-based operation opens its doors for the public for Education,
Entertainment or Recreation. Agritourism in South Carolina encompasses
everything from orchards in the Upstate to the tea plantation of the Lowcountry
and everything in between.
Agritourism is not a new concept. In the
late 19th century, city folks visited farm folks to escape the
summer heat in crowded urban communities. The automobile made it easier to travel to
the country in the 1920s. In the 1930s and 40s, country recreation
was a way to get away from the stress of the Great Depression and World War II.During the 1960s and 70s, there was a
general interest in farm-related nostalgia which led to the rise of farm
vacations, dude ranch stays, commercial farm tours, and farm bed and breakfasts
in the 1980s and 90s.Because of the gap between farm and
non-farm families, the demand for a slower-paced farm experience has now become
the catalyst for farm-based recreation - an important business for the farming
Agritourism has become a tool that has
direct economic impact on farms and surrounding communities and fosters a
better understanding between rural and urban communities. Agriculture Works –
Growing the Midlands, Growing South Carolina.
ON FARM: U-picks, Farm tours, Hayrides & corn
mazes, Festivals & events, Hands-on education for kids, Work-on-a-farm
experiences, Overnight stays, Trail rides, Disc golf courses, Events (weddings
& Birthdays), Farm to Table dinners, Tastings, Animal Display / Demonstrations,
On-farm shopping, Bike Trails, Bird Watching, Camp Fires, Cheese Processing,
Christmas Tree / Cut Your Own, Cow / Goat Milking, Military Reenactments, Mud
Run, Pig Race Track, Pottery Making, Pumpkin Patch, Wagon Rides, Vineyard /
Wine Tastings, etc.
OFF FARM: Agriculture Museums, Living history agriculture events, Flower
festivals, Historic carriage rides, Farmers market events, Culinary tours with
local ingredients, Food & wine festivals, etc.
Agritourism is the new tourism trend for
Creative tourism is travel directed toward an interactive
experience. Participants learn about the art/culture, heritage, and special
character of the destination. It provides a connection with those who live and
work there. The creative tourist always participates . . . learns by doing.
Whole Living is the
idea of balancing work with play - a lifestyle geared towards natural health,
personal growth, and well-being.
Buying Local is the
biggest food trend in decades. 86% of consumers believe
availability of local foods in a store greatly influenced where they shopped.
Know Your Food. Customers are more interested in
what they’re eating and where it comes from. They want to know that it’s being grown responsibly. Agritourism allows
the consumer to visit the farm where the food is grown.
is agritourism beneficial to South Carolina agriculture as a whole? Where can folks learn more about South
SC Agritourism farms are listed on the SC Department of Agriculture website with capability to search for
farm by location (County) and/or activity (u-pick, wedding, corn maze etc…) Two avenues to locate agritourism farms agriculture.sc.gov/divisions/agency-services/agritourism/agritourism-farms/ or www.SCfarmfun.org
can folks find agritourism farms?
TODS program approved the first farms for Tourist
Oriented Directional Signage in January 2014. TODS is to promote Agritourism and tourist-related
facilities in rural areas, providing signage from the closest primary route, a
designated SC or US route.