Thanksgiving morning guests awoke on the National Geographic Sea Lion rolling with the waves as we made our way in open sea to the mouth of the Edisto River. The Edisto River is named after the historic Edistow people, a Native American sub-tribe of the Cusabo people who inhabited the area. As the tide rose, we cruised our way on in and anchored between Privateer and Ocella Creeks, which we then explored in Zodiacs. Numerous sea and shore birds delighted us with their presence. Wood storks, so majestic, perched upon pines and snowy egrets who glided past to land and feed among the spartina salt marsh grass. Gathered on the shore bank waiting for the tides to recede were American oystercatchers with their bright orange beaks, poised for an easy meal. Between rounds of Zodiac cruising, one of the naturalists gave a presentation on South Carolina Estuaries.
After cruising, guests enjoyed a delicious lunch back on board. Once lunch wrapped up, they were able to do some holiday Black Friday shopping at the global gallery on full display in the lounge. By early afternoon, another presentation was given called Welcome to the Low Country all about South Carolina.
Afternoon activities included some beach walks on Botany Bay Island, currently a wildlife management area. Botany Bay contains the remains of two plantations that grew sea island cotton until 1917. Guests had the choice of long, short, or photography walking opportunities. The densely packed sand made for perfect walking among welks, sea turtle eggs, horseshoe crabs, sea urchins, and oyster shells. The day concluded with a thanksgiving feast for all.