Geography of South Carolina

Earthquakes (below the magnitude of 3 FEMA) are common in South Carolina, averaging to about 10-15 per year.

South Carolina is located in the Deep South of the United States. It shares its borders with Georgia to the south, North Carolina to the north, and Atlantic Ocean to the east. The coastline of the state has many salt marshes and estuaries and has a huge number of Carolina bays. This area is also prone to earthquakes. The state also has many Sandhills regions, mostly located west of the coastal plain.

South Carolina can be divided into three geographic regions:
  • Atlantic Coastal Plain: This region stretches from the Atlantic Ocean to the west of the state. It covers more than 50% of the state. The topography varies from region to region. The Outer Coastal Plain is flat and is home to many rivers, while the Inner Coastal Plain comprises rolling hills. The central region of Atlantic Coastal Plain is forested and is called the Pine Barrens.

  • Piedmont: Piedmont lies to the northwest of Atlantic Coastal Plains. The topography of this region is characterized by hills and stony clay soils. There are few areas suitable for farming. It also has a fall line from where rivers drop to the plains.

  • Blue Ridge: It is located in the northwestern corner of the state. The region is rugged and is home to the highest point in the state, Sassafras Mountain.

Geographical Facts About South Carolina

Area 32,007 square miles
Land Area 30,111 square miles
Water Area 1,896 square miles
Highest point Sassafras Mountain at 3,56o feet above sea level.
Lowest point Sea level, Atlantic Ocean
Highest temperature 111 degrees Fahrenheit
Lowest temperature -19 degrees Fahrenheit
Geographic Center Located in Richland County, 13 miles SE of Columbia

Climate of South Carolina

The climate in South Carolina is humid subtropical climate. The temperature varies from region to region, depending upon the elevation of the areas and its distance from the sea. The day time temperature varies from an average of 86-93 degrees. The minimum average temperature is around 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainfall occurs across the state in abundance, with March being the wettest month. Tropical cyclones are a common phenomenon in this region. The state averages around 50 days of thunderstorm in a year. The interior of the state receives more snow than the areas along the coastal region.


Mount Sassafras is the highest point in South Carolina. Brown's Mountain, Joes Mountain, Henry's Knob, and Nanny Mountain are some of the notable mountains in the state.


There are many important lakes in South Carolina. Some of them are: Lake Marion, Lake Strom Thurmond, Lake Hartwell, Lake Murray, Lake Greenwood, and Lake Wylie.


Major rivers in South Carolina are Edisto River, Pee Dee River, Santee River, and Savannah River.

Last Updated on: August 18th, 2017