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Explore Boyd Island in Columbia

Boyd Island is located in the confleunce of three rivers, the Broad, Congaree, and Saluda Rivers near downtown Columbia. The island offers spectacular views on the confluence.


Sunrise on Boyd Island. | Photo by COLAtoday

Table of Contents

Tucked away beside Interstate 126 as it flows into Columbia, where the Broad and Saluda Rivers converge to form the Congaree, is the lush, seven-acre Sanctuary at Boyd Island. It’s here where nature, artistic exploration, and conservation commitment converge.

Thanks to a more than $1 million donation by the Darnall W and Susan F. Boyd Foundation and support from the River Alliance, the island now flourishes with a winding trail, benches, picnic tables, a gazebo, and an observation deck that offers the best view of the confluence outside of being in a tube.

Let’s take a quick look on how to get there, what you’ll see, and how it was transformed into a space for the community.


A pathway along the Saluda River leads to Boyd Island. | Photo by COLAtoday

Where the journey begins

First, park at the entrance to the Saluda River Greenway at 650 Candi Ln. From here, you’ll take a left towards downtown Columbia and venture about two miles along the Saluda River. In the future, you’ll be able to take a right and walk all the way to Lake Murray.


The gazebo on Boyd Island was constructed to resemble the rare Rocky Shoals Water Lily. | Photo by COLAtoday

The art of the island

The island is filled with metal sculptures of native plants and animals. Beware, the bobcat on the rock looks so realistic you might jump when you first see it. Most recently, the new gazebo was completed. The large structure with picnic tables underneath was built to resemble the rare Rocky Shoals Spider Lily that blooms from May through mid-June.


The Congaree Riverkeeper hosts several clean-up events throughout the year. | Photo by COLAtoday

Conservation effort

The island houses over 75 plant species showcasing the diverse flora native to the Midlands. Did you know that this is one of the only places in the country that have both white water rapids and hanging Spanish Moss?


Boyd Island is accessible by bridge and is wheelchair and stroller friendly. | Photo by COLAtoday

After years of construction, the island is now fully accessible via a paved pathway and a pedestrian bridge that is friendly for wheelchairs, strollers, and bicycles in addition to pedestrians. Add this jewel of the Saluda to your Soda City list of hidden gems.

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