Angel Oak Tree


The Angel Oak Tree is estimated to be in excess of 400-500 years old, stands 66.5 ft (20 m) tall, measures 28 ft (8.5 m) in circumference, and produces shade that covers 17,200 square feet (1,600 m2). From tip to tip Its longest branch distance is 187 ft.  There is considerable debate about the age of the Angel Oak.  Some contend that it is 1,500 years old.  Most believe that the more conservative estimates are more accurate.

It is an absolute must see for anyone visiting Charleston South Carolina. It is on everyone’s top ten list of things to do in Charleston. Despite being located on John’s Island, the Angel Oak has come to symbolize Charleston South Carolina. A large number of people search for “Angel Oak Charleston South Carolina” even thought this tree is on John’s Island. It is a southern live oak located in Angel Oak Park, on Johns Island SC.

For those visiting Kiawah or Seabrook islands, you will drive right past the Angel Oak.

The Angel Oak Tree is thought to be one of the oldest living things in the country. The land where the Angel Oak Tree stands was part of Abraham Waight’s 1717 land grant. The City of Charleston now owns the property. The Angel Oak Park is free and the tree should be added to any visit to Charleston, Kiawah or Seabrook Islands. In fact, if you are going to Kiawah Island or Seabrook Islands, you will likely drive within a few hundred feet of the Angel Oak Tree.

If it is raining, check out What to do do on a rainy day in Charleston, S.C.




SC Aquarium,  Charleston, SC



  1. Mr. David Elliott knows what he is talking about!

  2. David Elliott says:

    You must contact the town of Charleston for special events.

  3. David Elliott says:

    Photographs must be taken during normal office hours

  4. David Elliott says:

    You must observe the normal office hours

  5. Hello, I would love to have a post wedding very simple brunch gathering by the picnic area, it would be on a monday, do you know if they allow catering on site? Is there a limited number of guests allowed?

  6. Hello,

    I would also like to know whether it’s possible to arrive at dawn to photograph the Angel Tree? I will be traveling all the way from Asia so I hope that’s possible.


  7. Cindy Dryden says:

    I will be traveling through South Carolina in late April and again in May. I am traveling with my small dogs and will have no one else with me to watch them. Are dogs allowed in the park on leashes or in a stroller?

  8. jeannie camosy says:

    Can I arrive shortly after dawn to photograph the Angel Tree?

  9. Sarah Hill says:

    Are you opened on Easter Sunday?

  10. You may also contact me by phone at 843-450-1413

  11. I am looking for info on an artist named Ed West who did a drawing of the Angel Oak in 1976. I have the drawing in my possession and am looking for information regarding it. if you have any information on the Artist or drawing please feel free to contact me.

  12. Hoping to visit in about 10 days – how far away is it from Fort Sumter?

  13. Beautiful tree, awful staff. Staff threatened some young children and their parents by telling them the police would be called if they didn’t leave. Our kids sat on the tree at some point so we left because we didn’t want to be threatened next. Plus we were all but kicked out of the little gift shop because it was 4:30.

  14. You can purchase seedlings from the Angel Oak as well as many other historic or famous trees here
    To contact American Forests, call (800) 320-8733 or log on to
    I have purchased several kinds with great success.

  15. Doug Huffman says:

    The source document for one of the 1500 BPA estimates is right here,, and has been changed to ~500 BPA.

    The technology is dendrochronology and involves removing a pencil-diameter piece from the heart of the tree. It is potentially harmful as access for bugs, and not justified for a unique entity with limited scientific value.

  16. Doug Huffman says:

    The local Amerinds were called Settlement Indians by the earliest settlers, but may have been Cusabo.

  17. Brett Worrall says:

    I learned about this tree thru a Facebook post from Vive Media. The post claims the tree is about 1,500 years old. But your site says it’s 400-500 years old. The Wikipedia page for the Quercus virginiana says the Angel Oak tree is “in excess of 700 years old.” Quite some discrepancies here!

    I’m really curious which is the more accurate assessed age of this beauty. Thank you very much.

  18. David Elliott says:

    Adding lights during the holidays could damage the tree and that risk cannot be taken.

  19. David Elliott says:

    Contact the City of Charleston. Their number is 843-724-7327.

  20. David Elliott says:

    Contact the City of Charleston. Their number is 843-724-7327.

  21. David Elliott says:

    NO! They have cameras in the gift shop that allows them to see if anyone attempts to climb or sit on the tree. Absolutely nothing can be attached to the tree.

  22. David Elliott says:

    Great research; however, we cannot tell you which native tribes lived in this area. Good luck with your research.

  23. David Elliott says:

    The oak derives its name from the estate of Justus Angel (an African American slave owner) and his wife, Martha Waight Tucker Angel. Local folklore tells stories of ghosts of former slaves appearing as angels around the tree.

  24. David Elliott says:

    Acorns, not seeds, can be picked up in the Fall. The exact time varies each year.

  25. We visited Angel Tree today, and it was awesome! Can you tell me how it got the name “Angel Tree”?

  26. Hey I am doing this school essay about WE ALL NEED TREES and one of the topics I chosed was What is my favorite tree. So I took this tree quiz to find out and it was a Angel Oak tree. So I was wondering is there any way y’all can send me a Angel Oak seed. I would really appreciate it if y’all kind people please send me a seed.

  27. I’m interested in the ancient history surrounding the great tree.

    For example, which native tribe, if any, lived on the island before the invaders?

    Although I’m from England, I feel compelled to research the period of history when that arduous acorn first saw life.

    Thank you

  28. Samantha Tate says:

    Stephanie Bragg I am just guessing, but I would say NO you cannot climb or put a hammock on the tree. Common, show a little respect.

  29. Stephanie Bragg says:

    Is it possible to climb or strap a hammock to the tree or is it preserved by the state?

  30. Wendy Damron says:

    What is the best time of year to see the tree? Will there be any leaves on it in February?

  31. Tequila Williams says:

    15 or 20 years ago I found and picture of the angel oak on the internet that had a vision of an angel among the branches but can’t find it again. Can anyone help? Would love for my husband to see it.

  32. Latisha jackson says:

    I’d like to elope, no guest just my fiance and I. Do you still have to obtain a permit, how can I go about reserving a day?

  33. Hey, I was wondering if it was possible to get married under the Angel Oak Tree?

  34. Hey, I was wondering if it is allowed to have weddings under the Angel Oak Tree?

  35. Courtney Godsey: contact the City of Charleston. Their number is 843-724-7327.

  36. Dear David,
    We are interested in filming a brief segment (1-2 minutes) for our show ,Two Moms and a Car, on Saturday or Sunday afternoon the 23 or 24th of January. If you could let me know who I should get in contact with in order to get permission that would be most appreciated. We would like to have an “expert” speak briefly about the tree if possible. We are a very small crew ( 4-5 ladies) with hand held equipment. We strive to be as unobtrusive as possible and blend in as normal tourists. I look forward to hearing from you.

  37. I think the tree would be beautiful with the glitter lights shinning onto the tree during the holidays.

  38. Hello! Are dogs allowed to walk around the area on leash? Thank you!

  39. David Elliott says:

    Belated congratulations on our 21st B-day

  40. David Elliott says:

    There is always traffic on pretty days. Pick a day during the winter months for less traffic. You should definitely avoid holiday weekends.

  41. What is the tourist traffic like during the winter months? Is there a particular time of year that the tree isn’t crowded with people, but quiet? Id like to propose there, but I’d prefer to do it at a quiet time of year/day.

  42. My daughter Camille is celebrating her 21st birthday today and visiting this beautiful old tree! Enjoy the energy! I love you! Mom

  43. Hi just wondering if y’all take pictures there, I would love to have mine and my husband’s pictures done there!!! And if so how much is it? Thank u

  44. Megan, I will be visiting the tree tomorrow. If there are any acorns, I will grab a bunch and send some to you.

  45. I just wanted to say thank you for the information of who to contact about holding a wedding ceremony there! I would love to make this beautiful piece of history a part of my big day.

  46. David Elliott says:

    No damage to the tree.

  47. I am also a big fan of the angle oak. Please post ASAP the current condition of the tree following the recent hurricane flooding. Thanks, concerned in Ohio.

  48. David Elliott says:

    During the month of September the acorns start falling. Visitors are free to pick them up; however, they are not for sale in the gift shop.

    There are local nurseries that sell live oak trees.

  49. Hello, my husband and I visited park this past summer. Of course, it was one of our favorite parts of our trip. He expressed great intrest in buying some acorns from the tree itself, but we learned they weren’t sold in the gift shop any more. Is there any way I could purchase a couple? We live in Tennessee so we can’t really just take a weekend trip down during the fall to pick them up, so could they be mailed? He would think this is the best Christmas present ever to own such an awesome piece of history. Thank you.

  50. Ricky Duval says:

    Haven’t been there in a long time. Hoping to take our girls there at some point in the future. Just curious — have all of the rains and flooding done any damage there, or did you guys survive it OK?

  51. David Elliott says:

    Thank you for your question and CONGRATULATIONS! Weddings are allowed. You will need to contact the City of Charleston for a permit. Their number is 843-724-7327. There is no structure there to support a weeding; however, I would direct your question to the City of Charleston for more details.

  52. Rebekah Ivie says:

    I was looking for more information on having a wedding at the angel oak tree. My wedding is May 13, 2017 and I was hoping to have it there or close by it so we will have the beautiful tree in our wedding photos. Any and all information is very grateful. Thank you.

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