Junior Naturalist Program

junior naturalist program at kiawah The Jr. Naturalist program is a fun, hands-on approach to exploring nature. Each individual class can be taken on its own. If you take all five classes participants can become an official Kiawah Island Nature Program Jr. Naturalist, and receive a free Rite in the Rain Notebook. Each session will target a different area of nature, and give each child a better appreciation of our native species. All five classes are available throughout the week in the Summer and Spring, and by request in the Fall and Winter.


  • $25 per session
  • Marsh Ecology $40
  • Children must be 7 – 12 years old
  • 24-hour cancellation policy applies, 2 child minimum required.
  • Each session is approximately 1 1/2 hours long
  • Parents must be present to sign kids in and out, before and after the trip
Animal Care Junior Naturalist: Animal Care

If you’ve ever wanted to get behind the scenes of the Heron Park Nature Center and meet our resident animals face to face, this tour is for you! Learn what these animals need to survive in the wild and how our naturalists meet their needs here at the nature center. We’ll prepare and offer their food and make sure they have a healthy living environment.

Marsh Ecology Junior Naturalist: Marsh Ecology The salt marsh behind the island is packed with wildlife rarely seen and waiting to be discovered. We will meet at Mingo Point Outpost where we will head to our dock and get some hands-on experience with fascinating, strange animals that inhabit the salt marsh. Next we will board our motorboat and head out for some on-the-water exploration. From sea squirts, to sponges, and even some oysters, these creatures are sure to keep everyone wanting to see more. And no trip to the marsh is complete without checking our very own crab pots.
Going Native Junior Naturalist: Going Native Step back in time and experience life on Kiawah Island as the Native Americans once did. Use your senses to observe nature and learn the importance of using every part of the environment. In this class, you will discover the local environment using techniques of the Native Americans while learning their traditions and cultures. Naturalists will guide you on an island hike then conclude with a project using natural materials.  
Pond Discoveries Junior Naturalist: Pond Discoveries Alligators aren’t the only thing living in our ponds. Sometimes the coolest stuff is what cannot be seen at first glance. There is a whole new world in our ponds that rarely gets seen, and this is your chance to get a close-up view. Naturalists will lead the kids to a pond where they will take their very own water sample, create a slide, and see what creatures can be seen under our microscope!  
What's That Water? Backyard Birds Calling all fledgling birders! Have you ever wondered what types of feathered friends are flying around you? Who is the red one? What about the ones on the beach? In this class, you will explore various habitats to learn about the most common birds on Kiawah. Equipped with a pair of binoculars and a bird-bingo board game, you’re sure to be a junior birder in no time!

Teen Outdoor Adventures

Participants 13 – 17 years old. Adults must be present to sign kids in and out, before and after the trip. All Nature Tours have a 24-hour cancellation policy. Call the Nature Center for a complete schedule and to make your reservation: 843.768.6001

paddleboarding-sm Teen Paddleboarding SUP!? Take the plunge and become a part of the fastest growing water sport on the East Coast. Hand stands, balancing tricks and team paddling are just a few of the fun activities to do on paddleboards while enjoying the view of the salt marsh. Ages 13-17 only.

teen-kayaking Teen Kayaking Time for the kids to get out and have an adventure of their own. After some quick tips, it’s time to jump in your own boat and have some fun on the water. From races in the river to some fun in the mud, you’re sure to make some new friends while on this trip! This trip is done in single kayaks. $55/person. $50 for KIGR guests and KICA members. Tour time is dependent on the tide, call for schedule, 843.768.6001.