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Explore the Holy City!

Best Things to Do in Charleston, SC

South Carolina’s oldest city, Charleston has a lot to offer in the way of attractions, history, and – this being the East Coast – food. Whether you’re hoping a flight to Charleston International Airport, or just exploring the Eastern seaboard, Chucktown makes for some great memories.

See a historic site.

Dating to 1670, Charleston is simply packed with history. A great place to start is the Charles Towne Landing State Historic Site – covering 664 acres and preserving South Carolina’s first English settlement. There are also nature trails, the Experimental Crop Garden, and more.

Visitors are also encouraged to explore Historic Charleston – a National Historic Landmark District unlike most other places in the country. Other iconic stops include The Battery, Rainbow Row, The Citadel, and the famous Fort Sumter National Monument.

By Brian Stansberry (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Check Out the Charles Town Landing Visitor Center

Go to a museum.

You’ve got a lot to learn during your Charleston visit. Be sure to start with the Charleston Museum – the first museum in the country with an establishment date of 1773.

Other fantastic and fascinating museums in the Charleston area include Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum for you war historians, the Exchange & Provost for you fans of the American Revolution, and the Gibbes Museum of Art for the art lover in your group.

There’s even the Powder Magazine Museum – a gunpowder museum housed in the oldest public structure in the state.

Tour a historic home.

Historic architecture abounds in this town. See for yourself at the 1876 Calhoun Mansion, the Nathaniel Russell House, the Gov. William Aiken House, the Joseph Manigault House, the Magnolia Plantation & Gardens, and so so many more.

Go shopping.

The Market Hall & Sheds – known really as the Historic Charleston City Market or Centre Market – is several attractions all in one. Dating to 1841, it’s a U.S. National Historic Landmark and listing on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, but most importantly, it’s where you can score one of those famous Gullah sweetgrass baskets.

Historic Charleston City Market

Historic Charleston City Market is an Ideal Stop

Take the family.

If you have the family in tow, there are plenty of family-friendly activities in Chucktown. Check out the South Carolina Aquarium, the Charles Towne Landing Animal Forest at the aforementioned Charles Towne Landing, beach on the

Eat something.

All this exploring is sure to make your hungry. Take a break from touring Charleston and grab a seat at one of the many great restaurants in town. If you’re in the mood for seafood and southern fare, you can’t beat spots like Husk Restaurant, Magnolias, Peninsula Grill, Poogan's Porch, and more.

Grab a drink.

End your day on the go with some local crafts at a few breweries in town. Check out Palmetto Brewing Company, Revelry Brewing Co., and Edmund's Oast, or head up to North Charleston for Holy City Brewing or COAST Brewing Company.


Best Western Hotels Along the Way:


Best Western Charleston Inn

1540 Savannah Highway, Charleston SC 29407-7845
Phone: +1 843-571-6100  |  Fax: (843) 766-6261  |  Hotel Details & Reservations »


Best Western Magnolia Inn and Suites

747 Treeland Drive, Ladson SC 29456-3631
Phone: +1 843-553-8888  |  Fax: (843) 553-0887  |  Hotel Details & Reservations »


Best Western Patriots Point

259 McGrath Darby Boulevard, Mount Pleasant SC 29464-2983
Phone: +1 843-971-7070  |  Fax: (843) 971-0270  |  Hotel Details & Reservations »


Best Western Plus Airport Inn & Suites

2470 Prospect Drive, North Charleston SC 29406-4433
Phone: +1 843-574-0911  |  Fax: (843) 574-0186  |  Hotel Details & Reservations »

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More to See in South Carolina

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    Your South Carolina Coast travel guide. Visit local beaches, try hand crafted wines and beer, or explore one of the many wildlife refuges.

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    College sports are alive and well in South Carolina. Check out the host of celebrated teams from the Clemson Tigers to USC Gamecocks.

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  • Universities of SC

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    Check out the fantastic public and private universities in South Carolina, including USC, MUSC, SCSU, C of C, and Clemson.

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