If you are looking for a place to take your next great road trip or vacation, look no further than one of America's best-hidden gems - the Lowcountry. Travel past lush marshes, wide waterways, through majestic old oaks draped in Spanish Moss to charming towns filled with history, culture, nature, and plenty of fun activities for travelers of all ages. Whether you want to relax on a beach, spot wildlife, or learn a bit about the South, there is something for everyone. It's like touching bits of the past while very much staying in the present. I recommend visiting three great cities: Beaufort, Hilton Head, and Charleston, South Carolina.

Beaufort, SC

Travel down the scenic road and stop for a view of the bay preserved by the Beaufort County Land Trust. Oaks and Palmettos hand over shimmering water that's home to its fair share of little creatures and more than a few boats. Or take a walk to the Waterfront Park and the quaint downtown filled with great restaurants, cute shops, and gorgeous galleries. I recommend stopping for an ice-cream at Southern Sweets or for a coffee at Common Ground. For book lovers - don't miss visiting Nevermore books and the Pat Conroy Literary Center. This town is home to several great authors who are often having signings, readings, or events. Also, in Beaufort, there is one of the country's last remaining drive-in movie theaters, Highway-21.

It's a lot of fun.

About 15 minutes away on nearby St. Helena Island is the historic Penn Center. This a museum and education center for African-American and Gullah Geechee history and culture, and a center for social justice. It's incredibly fascinating, and they sometimes have visiting artists who teach free classes.

About 25 minutes away you can Visit a great beach in Hunting Island State Park.

Hilton Head, SC

This small resort island hosts a wide variety of activities for tourists. There are at least eight public access beaches and several more public parks. Try one of the many recreational activities available on the island such as kayaking or jet-skiing. I recommend eating lunch at the Salty Dog Cafe.

Charleston, SC

Founded in 1670, this city is like a living, breathing museum. Try a walking tour of the city and see the beautiful historic architecture. Go down to the Battery and relax at the park and look out at the water. You can tour nearby Ft. Sumter, a Civil War monument. More adventurous travelers can try a ghost tour. There are many, many opportunities to get some shopping done. One popular place is the Old Charleston Market. Vendors sell great local products. If you like seafood, there are definitely places for you here.

About 25 minutes away on Johns Island you can visit The Angel Tree Oak Tree. It is around 400-500 years old, almost 70 ft. tall, and completely beautiful. It is free to visit.

About 30 minutes away, on Wadmalaw Island, you visit the Charleston Tea Plantation, home of Bigelow Tea.

Whatever you decide to do, wherever you decide to go, make sure to have fun while you're there.