Folly Beach has become an increasingly popular vacation destination, and with good reason. Located just south of Charleston, it offers beautiful beaches, lighthouses, and wildlife. One of my favorite things to do on Folly Beach is rent Jet Skis, so I wanted to make this guide so anyone can get on the water and have the same enjoyment I do when I visit.
Can you rent jet skis on Folly beach?
Yes! Jet ski rentals are one of the most popular activities in Folly Beach, and there are many options depending on your experience level and appetite for adventure. Depending on your preference you can have a guided tour, riding by the Morris Island Lighthouse, or for speed seekers, hit the open ocean and jump the waves. There are plenty of ways to personalize your experience, and below I will give my thoughts on the best rental options and hopefully give you an idea of which provider will be best for you.
Not surprisingly, the Charleston area has many Jet Ski outfitters, but some are not easy to get to from Folly Beach. This is extremely important to keep in mind as you are searching for the best option. Because of this, my article will focus on the options located specifically on Folly Beach so that you are familiar with the options closest to you.
Where can you rent jet skis on folly beach?
The best places to rent jet skis on Folly beach are at Dolphin Watersports and Sun & Ski Beach Services. Both these providers have reliable jet skis available for a reasonable price.
Coupons: None at the moment
Location: Folly River Boat Ramp (Next to Folly Beach Rd Bridge)
$150/ski (1.5hr rental)
$350/ski (10a-2:30p rental)
$600/ski (10a-5:30p rental)
Contact info: email@example.com
Who this would be great for: Great for anyone looking for a tour guide. Perfect for sightseeing the landmarks, lighthouses, and wildlife.
Review: Dolphin Watersports offers Jet Ski rentals that you can pick up from the folly river Boat Ramp. When I rented from them, a guide was required to tag along on the journey, and I believe that is still the case.
The guide ended up being a highlight of the trip and was an awesome resource for sightseeing, finding dolphins, and getting to the Morris Island Lighthouse. If you want a more “self-guided” tour, they allow that option, but the guide will stay close by to ensure you can get back. We ended up staying close to our guide the whole time, but for thrill seekers trying to race in the open ocean, you will have that option as well.
Things to know:
They provide you with the life jacket and fuel. You should meet at the launch area 15 minutes before reservation to go over the rental rules and procedures. During that time you will go over all operational rules, review local riding rules, and get fitted for your life jacket. A few important rules to note:
- No beaching jet skis on Folly Beach
- No switching out riders
- Stay at least 100 feet away from other boats and docks
- Don’t get too close to other Jet Skis
- The driver will need a valid driver license
- At least one person must take a phone with them
If you want to listen to some music while you ride, you should check out my jet ski speakers review article.
Sun & Ski Beach Services
Coupons: None at the moment
Location: At the beachfront of the Tides Hotel (1 Center St)
Price: $150/ski (1.5hr rental)
Contact info: 843-588-0033
Who this would be great for: Great for anyone looking for an easy rental experience that allows you to get out quickly to the open water.
Review: If you walk along the beach to the front of the Tides Hotel, you will easily see the Sun & Ski beach stand. In addition to Jet Skis, they offer beach supplies such as chairs and umbrellas, paddleboards, surfboards, and more.
They don’t have a reservation system online so I would highly recommend contacting them beforehand to check on availability and to confirm the pricing. If you are staying at the Tides Hotel, the reception should be able to help you book and this would probably be your easiest option.
A tour guide was not required on our trip so it was a nice opportunity to explore on our own. Depending on how rough the water is, you may even be able to get to Fort Sumter.
After you book a reservation, the fun part begins. Below I have listed some of the best adventures you can have Jet Skiing around Folly Island. They include:
- Jet Skiing to Morris Island Lighthouse
- Eco-tours and dolphin watching
- Folly Beach Pier
- Fort Sumter (only on days that are not choppy)
Can you Jet Ski to Morris Island Lighthouse?
Absolutely, and this was one of the highlights of our trip. Jet skis are an awesome way to get an up close view of the legendary Lighthouse which was built just after the Civil War. It stands as the tallest lighthouse in South Carolina and one of the oldest, built in 1876.
When initially constructed, the lighthouse was actually on a larger island. Unfortunately, jetties built in 1889, caused the immediate erosion of the island. Once almost 1,200 feet from the shoreline, the lighthouse now stands as a stand alone structure right on the waters edge.
Is the Morris Island Lighthouse in use?
No, in 1962 the Morris Island Lighthouse was decommissioned as the deterioration of the shoreline made it not practical for operation.
When Jet Skiing around the Lighthouse be mindful of sandbars. The area you are above once used to house structures and other monuments before the tides took over! Be very careful not to go to shallow areas so as to not accidentally beach your jet ski.
Getting to the Morris Island Lighthouse is fairly straightforward. It is towards the Northern point of Folly Beach, and given its height, quite the easy landmark to spot!
Where is the cheapest place to rent jet skis on Folly beach?
From my experience, the cheapest place to rent from is Dolphin Watersports. Their full review is above, but I highly recommend this outfitter.