South of the Border

We went here so you don’t have to!

Just in time for Halloween is a post about one of the creepiest (but not in a good way) roadside attractions you could choose on the East Coast of the United States. If you have ever driven the stretch of I-95 from Georgia through North Carolina, then you have witnessed the string of billboards advertising Pedro’s favorite stop: South of the Border.

We decided to give this roadside attraction a try on our camping trip home in June. SOB (as they refer to themselves) consists of a gas station, hotel, campground, restaurants and multiple tacky tourist gift shops lining both sides of the road. There are also supposedly attractions, but we’ll get to that in a minute. It is located in Hamer, South Carolina just “south” of the border from North Carolina.

The campground had decent reviews and is okay for a quick one night stop. The lawn is well manicured and the sites are nice pull throughs. There was no one there when we arrived, yet it was surprisingly full by the time we went to bed. Then everyone was gone the next morning before we finished breakfast. I feel like they all knew something we didn’t…

We decided to stop here and set up camp early in order to experience the excitement of SOB. We planned to take in the attractions and then have dinner, but first was the shopping. SOB has five stores: one for fireworks, one for beach wear, one for motorcycles and everything else was all about Pedro – and drinking. All the stores were open and appeared to be options to stop and walk around with hours long into the evening.

So after first taking in the tacky tourist stores along one side of the road and collecting our obligatory souvenirs, it was off to the attractions at Pedroland Park! (closed). Okay, how about we check out the Reptile Lagoon? (closed). The Sombrero Tower? (closed). Well at least we have the Sombrero Restaurant to look forward to for some Mexican food! (closed).

We finally ended up at the Peddler Steak House eating overpriced steaks with a handful of other hungry travelers. Afterwards, we decided to explore the rest of the buildings of SOB – and that’s when we found it – behind the restaurant and the abandoned motel (closed). The perfect park for your Halloween scares. All we were missing was Pennywise and a red balloon. Ethan will demonstrate:

The Clown Swing…
(We had to dare him to go do this.)

So there you have it, the very anti-climatic South of the Border. If you want to experience it for yourself (or check out the work of one amazing website developer) here’s the link: Otherwise, enjoy the signs and keep on driving, folks. Keep on driving…

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