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8 COOL Activities in Columbia, SC


Aahhh….. sweet summer. We all love summer. Kids are out of school, the weather is amazing, daylight lasts until nearly 10 pm. (At least here in  Columbia, South Carolina) We’re not rushing from one place to the next, life has slowed down just a little, or so it may seem.

Then it hits….. “MOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m BORED!” But it’s 500 degrees outside and you just can’t bring yourself to go out “there” again.

I don’t blame you.

Thankfully we have quite a few indoor activities to help you stay cool while the kids are having fun. Who knows, you may even be able to slip in a little summertime learning while you’re at it. Shhhhh! Don’t tell the kids.


Columbia, SC South Carolina State Museum

1. The South Carolina State Museum has really changed a good bit over the years. We now have a fabulous Planetarium, a 4-D Theater, a super amazing telescope and traveling exhibits that are sure to keep the learning new and fresh. If you have toddlers, you’ll want to check out the children’s room on the first floor. There’s plenty to see and do here, and with the cafe on the second floor, you can grab a cup of coffee and a quick bite to eat.







McKissick Museum, Columbia South Carolina

2. McKissick Museum is located at the BEAUTIFUL USC Horseshoe. Admission is free and their exhibits are always changing. You could easily make a day of being at the Horseshoe. Bring a lunch to enjoy on the lush green lawn, and when you’re finished, cool off by visiting the museum.








EdVenture Children's Museum, Columbia South Carolina

3. EdVenture Children’s Museum is located in the heart of the Vista, and is the largest children’s museum in the Southeast United States! With Eddie, the butterfly garden (season specific), a fire station and so much more, your little one is guaranteed to have a FUNTASTIC time!  EdVenture also offers camps for children during the summer months and homeschool activities during the school year!









South Carolina Military Museum, Columbia South Carolina

4. South Carolina Military Museum is exactly the place for your military enthusiast! Showcasing the history of South Carolina’s military, you’ll find period artifacts and perhaps gain a better understanding of what the men and women went through during that time. My boys LOVED that we could actually touch a real life tank. (even tho it has been decommissioned for quite some time!) This is one that we will visit again and again. You’ll learn something new each and every time you go!  Oh, and did I mention that admission and parking are FREE?! 






Indoor Skating, Columbia South Carolina5. Roller Skating. I know what you’re thinking… but your kids will certainly LOVE roller skating! There are several skating rinks in the area, and you’re going to want to call to check times. It seems they’re open mostly in the evenings, which I’ve never really understood. Most of the time they have this device that looks like a walker on wheels for the younger ones to use until they get confident in their abilities. I think that’s really awesome! So go ahead and get out your hairspray and those leg warmers tucked in the back of your sock drawer and let’s show these kids how strong our skating game once was!







But wait, there’s more!!!

Bowling, Columbia South Carolina

6. Bowling. No childhood is complete without going bowling! You may not score a strike while bowling, but you’ll certainly strike out if you don’t take your kids! OH! there’s even a program you can register for that will give each registered child TWO FREE games for every day during the summer. There is a parent package you can add on for a fee. No matter if it’s pouring buckets or melting the pavement outside in our famously hot city, you’ll be the coolest cat in town and making fantastic memories with your kids that will last a lifetime!










Richland County Public Library, Columbia South Carolina7. Richland County Public Library’s main branch is more than your average library! There’s a teen section that is complete with a 3D printer, recording studio, gaming stations and more! There’s a children’s area (currently under re-construction) and an events calendar that is unlike any library I’ve seen. You do not need to have a library card to visit the library, but to check out any material or access their wifi, you’ll need to register for a library card of your very own. Free cards are available for residents of Richland County.  Out-of-county residents who are in the military stationed in Columbia, teachers in Richland County schools, owners/directors of child care facilities that are located in Richland County, students attending colleges in Richland County and employees of Richland County Government. You can apply for these special cards in person at any RCPL branch and will need to renew annually. If you are not a resident of Richland County, you can purchase a library card for a fee of $65.




Indoor Activities, Columbia SC

8. Go to the movies! Regal Cinemas offer movies during the summer for $1!   The movies start at 10 am and are shown only on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Both movies play on both days so you’ll be able to choose when works best for your schedule. With these prices, you’ll be able to spring for a box of jujubes and the LARGE popcorn!  OH, and did I mention that a portion of the proceeds goes to the Will Rogers Institute?! You can’t lose with this deal.



So there you have it, my suggestions for staying cool when the summer heat is unbearable. Have a great summer y’all!

You can see my suggestions for 14 Outdoor Activities here.




Local expeditions, Columbia South Carolina

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