Things to Do in Charleston

a walkway next to the water in front of a row of houses

Charleston South Carolina Attractions

Known as the cultural capital of the South, the beauty of our city has often graced Hollywood screens in movies like The Notebook. A stroll through historic downtown Charleston takes you through the City Market and Museum Mile. Discover time-honored monuments like the Heyward-Washington House, the Gibbes Museum of Art, and the Confederate Museum. Nothing says romance like a carriage ride through scenic Waterfront Park. Soak up some sun on Folly Beach and Sullivan's Island, or venture just off the Charleston Peninsula to some of the regions oldest plantation homes.

Charleston City Market

0.2 miles | Phone: 843-937-0920

This 200-year-old City Market spans four blocks and is home to an array of vendors who sell food, art & crafts, souvenirs, and more.

The Battery

0.7 miles

A Civil War coastal defense post, The Battery stretches along the lower shores of the Charleston peninsula and is bordered by the Ashley and Cooper Rivers.

Palmetto Carriage

0.5 miles | Phone: 843-723-8145

A true step back in time as sightseers ride behind horses in old-fashioned carriages while receiving a narrated history lesson.

Historic King Street Shopping

1.5 miles

This historic street is home to the city's trendiest restaurants, a budding cocktail scene, art galleries, flourishing businesses, and a lively nightlife.

Waterfront Park (Charleston Parks Conservancy)

0.5 miles

A scenic and romantic park that's popular with runners, bikers, birdwatchers, and lovers who enjoy a beautiful waterfront rest stop.

Fort Sumter Tours

1.2 miles | Phone: 843-722-2628

A key piece of American history, you can spend an hour at this National Monument with the only tour that actually stops at Fort Sumter.

BullDog Tours

0.4 miles | Phone: 843-722-8687

Embark on walking tours, history tours, food, and ghost tours of enchanting graveyards and cobblestone streets that lead to the hidden gardens of antebellum mansions.

Aiken-Rhett House

1.1 miles | Phone: 843-723-1159

Today, this historical home is an advocate for all communities, parks, historic buildings, and the memories that are a part of Charleston’s history.

Gibbes Museum of Art

315 feet | Phone: 843-722-2706

A beautifully designed Beaux Arts-style museum with a nice cafe and gift shop. See portraits and landscapes dating back to the 1700s.

Nathaniel Russell House Museum

0.3 miles | Phone: 843-723-1623

Built by the wealthy shipping merchant, Nathaniel Russell in 1808, this historic house is recognized as one of America's most important Neoclassical homes.

The Charleston Museum

0.9 miles | Phone: 843-722-2996 ext. 264

Founded in 1773, America's first museum is highly regarded for its collection of historic artifacts, natural history, decorative arts, and two historic Charleston houses.

Old Slave Mart Museum

0.2 miles | Phone: 843-958-6467

A somber and educational experience, this museum is dedicated to slaves, slave art, and the history of the slave trade in Charleston.

Heyward-Washington House

0.3 miles | Phone: 843-722-0354

Featuring antique wooden furniture and other exquisite pieces, visitors can tour this 18th-century Georgian-style home that belonged to a signer of the Declaration of Independence.

Children's Museum of the Lowcountry

1.0 miles | Phone: 843-853-8962

Creative and educational fun for all and children under ten get to participate in hands-on exhibits, parties, camps, yoga, and dance classes.

Confederate Museum

0.2 miles | Phone: 843-723-1541

Designed in the copy of the Temple of the Wingless Victory, this Greek Revival landmark offers Civil War history tours by women's group docents.

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

12.5 miles | Phone: 843-571-1266

This beautiful plantation dates to pre-Revolutionary War times. Take a train or boat tour through this lush garden with its own petting zoo.

Middleton Place

16 miles | Phone: 843-556-6020

Located directly across the Ashley River, this plantation preserves the work and contributions of the Middleton family as well as enslaved Africans and African Americans.

Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens

12 miles | Phone: 843-884-4371

Known for its moss-draped 3/4-mile Avenue of Oaks & original slave cabins, this 1681 working plantation tells the story of agriculture in antebellum Charleston.

Lowndes Grove Plantation

3.5 miles | Phone: 843-853-1810

With a stunning view of the docks, this riverside plantation, built in the late 1700s, now hosts weddings and other elegant events.

The Charleston Tea Plantation

21.5 miles | Phone: 843-559-0383

Take a tour of this picturesque tea plantation with its own gift shop. The quality of organic and natural teas grown in the Charleston soil is unmatched.

Drayton Hall

12 miles | Phone: 843-769-2600

This antebellum plantation is rested on tranquil grounds and is vital to our understanding of early American history. A true example of historic preservation.

Folly Beach

11.6 miles

One of Charleston, South Carolina's popular beaches is a barrier island featuring picnic areas and a pier stretching more than 1,000 feet into the ocean.

Sullivan's Island

9.9 miles

Famously known for Fort Moultrie, the setting of Edgar Allan Poe's The Gold-Bug, Sullivan's Island is a part of Charleston's quaint metropolitan area.

Isle of Palms

17.9 miles

Sea turtles nest on this slender barrier island backed by condos and eateries. An oceanfront park also features a beach, picnic areas, and a playground.

Kiawah Island

26.4 miles

This barrier island consists primarily of private beach and is home to beautifully manicured golf courses and numerous other attractions.

Seabrook Island

23.7 miles

Seabrook Island is now home to two championship golf courses, an equestrian center offering trail and beach rides, oceanfront dining venues, and more.

Winter

December:
Holiday Festival of Lights
Holiday Parade of Boats

January:
Charleston Restaurant Week
Charleston Jazz Festival

February:
Folly Gras
Carolina Challenge Cup

Spring

March:
Charleston Wine + Food Festival
Festival of Houses and Gardens

April:
Cooper River Bridge Run
Lowcountry Cajun Festival

May:
North Charleston Arts Fest
Spoleto Festival

Summer

June:
Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival
Charleston Rum Festival

July:
Patriots Point Fourth of July Fireworks Blast

August:
ArtWalk

Fall

September:
Taste of Charleston Festival
MOJA Arts Festival

October:
Charleston Oktoberfest
Follypalooza

November:
Coastal Carolina Fair
Charleston to Charleston Literary Festival