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About Charleston

Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the South's most charming cities. Settled in the 17th century, Charleston's historic district is both beautiful and well preserved. When you first arrive in Charleston, take a walk along the waterfront promenade known as The Battery, where you can enjoy gorgeous views of the city's historic mansions and the Charleston Harbor. Charleston has strong ties to its past and it is an excellent destination for anyone with an interest in American history. Within the city, as well as the greater region, there are an incredible number of historic landmarks as well as historic homes and plantations. By visiting these sights, you can get a glimpse into the splendor and elegance of the antebellum South.

Today, Charleston is an artsy city with tons of resident artists and over 100 galleries. It is also a culinary capital in the South, boasting numerous restaurants that offer a new take on Southern classics, as well as incredibly fresh seafood from the South Carolina coast. Throughout town, you'll also find plenty of casual Southern eateries and French bakeries as well as a wonderful farmer's market. For vacationers, Charleston offers plenty of opportunities to relax too. In and around town, explore the day spas, tennis clubs, and golf courses. If you are interested in exploring the surrounding region, some of South Carolina's most famous beaches are only a short drive away.

Here are a few suggestions of things to do in Charleston:

  • Charleston Museum: Learn more about the history of Charleston and the American South in this interesting museum, one of the oldest in the country.
  • Fort Sumter: The Civil War began with the battle at Fort Sumter in the Charleston Harbor, now a visitor museum.
  • Nathaniel Russell House: The neo-classical townhouse of a former Charleston merchant is now a museum, furnished with period antiques and lavish interiors.
  • Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens: Tour the mansion of one of the country's oldest yet still functioning plantations.
  • Middleton Place: Just north of Charleston, this former plantation house is a sight to behold, beautifully restored, decorated with antiques, and surrounded by manicured gardens.
  • Old Slave Mart Museum: Learn about the Southern slave trade at the site of a former auction house in downtown Charleston.
  • Ed Grimball's Walking Tour of Historic Charleston: Absorb all of Charleston's rich local history while taking this two-hour tour that leads guests through the city. Learn about the city's role in the Civil War, the great earthquake of 1886, and the secrets of Charleston that only a true local could know.
  • Drayton Hall: Spend a day at America's oldest plantation house, which dates back to 1738. The house is open to the public for tours and leaves guests feeling as if they have been transported back in time.
  • The Heyward-Washington House: Built in 1772, this home played host to a handful of famous figures in history, including George Washington and Thomas Heyward Jr., one of the original signers of the Declaration of Independence.
  • Charleston Water Park: This public space overlooks the coast and is a great spot for picnics and simply relaxing.
  • South Carolina Aquarium: This family-friendly museum provides a wealth of marine life for all to enjoy. Visitors can view an Atlantic stingray at the Touch Tank, tour the Sea Turtle Hospital, and more.

Plan your next trip to Charleston with a vacation rental in the city's beautiful downtown district. Here, you can stay in a home with years of history or a chic condo in the heart of the city. For a taste of the Old South, seek out a spacious villa outside the city center in South Carolina's green countryside.