8 Best Places To Visit In Charleston (2024)
Charleston was established in 1670 and is the oldest and biggest City in South Carolina. It is inland from the Atlantic on a peninsula between the Ashley and Cooper rivers. The City is not the capital of South Carolina, still, its citizens and the 7.3 million enthusiastic visitors who come here each year see it as the unquestioned center of the state’s history, entertainment, and art. Charleston has a rich history that includes American settlement, the era of slavery and the Civil War, and its current status as a thriving cultural center. As a result, Charleston offers activities for every type of traveler.
8 Best Places To Visit In Charleston
Check out the best places to visit Charleston.
1. Charleston Museum Mile
The Museum Mile is home to downtown Charleston’s most accessible cultural attractions. Visit the museums, parks, historical residences with a national reputation, and more along and nearby a mile-long section of Meeting Street. Participants in Museum Mile benefit from streamlined and targeted access to old Charleston. Choose the sites that interest you and spend as much or as little time as you have. The entry tickets vary from $10 for children to $35 for adults for all the sites. You can also buy a monthly pass and learn about several things by visiting those sites as often as you want in a month.
Aiken-Rhett House Museum, Joseph Manigault House, Heyward-Washington House, Charleston Museum, Gibbes Museum of Art, The Powder Magazine, Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry, Confederate Museum, Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon, Old Slave Mart Museum, Edmondston-Alston House and Nathaniel Russell House Museum are some of the must-visit places that are located on the Charleston Museum Mile.
2. South Carolina Aquarium
The South Carolina Aquarium is situated in South Carolina’s elegant and charming downtown Charleston. The Aquarium was honoured for keeping its collection’s regional focus rather than amassing a sizable living collection of exotic species from all over the world. When it comes to habitats, well-being, and nutrition of the creatures, it is thus among the best in the United States.
It is home to thousands of native South Carolina species. It has received recognition for its work in the state’s science education curriculum, commitment to tackling pressing environmental issues, and efforts to inform the public about the biodiversity of our regional aquatic ecosystems. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums has granted the South Carolina Aquarium accreditation (AZA). With panoramic views of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, the USS Yorktown, and other landmarks, our waterfront location on Charleston Harbor enhances the visitor experience. During your visit, you can take a break on any of the outside terraces to see the wild dolphins and birds roaming the Harbor.
3. Hampton Park
Hampton Park is one of Charleston’s largest parks at 60 acres and is situated on the City’s upper peninsula. Hampton Park is a popular destination for walkers, runners, and cyclists looking for a scenic location to explore outside the lower peninsula. There are many ways to enjoy Hampton Park, and in the middle of it all is a pleasant pond with a fountain where you could occasionally see duck families grazing. A few lovely gardens can be found as you explore the park’s many pathways, making it a delight for aspiring gardeners and horticulturists.
You may walk, run, or ride a bike around Hampton Park’s perimeter on a beautiful route shaded by a canopy of mature trees. It’s easy to get around Hampton Park, and bike rentals are available once you get there. Free parking is also simple to find in the communities surrounding the park. There are park seats and picnic tables around wherever you are while you explore. Many locations surrounding the park have paved pathways, making it simple for people with mobility impairments to get around.
4. King Street
With its Southern charm, King Street has a little something for everybody. It is regarded as the spine of the City connecting Charleston Harbor to uptown due to its mixed-use, three-story brick and stucco buildings and central location through the peninsula. The Design District is in Upper King, the Fashion District is in Middle King, and the Antique District is in Lower King. The City’s trendiest restaurants, sophisticated cocktail scenes, hotels, art galleries, thriving enterprises, and vibrant nightlife can all be found on a revived and thriving King Street today.
It also offers some genuinely outstanding shopping. U.S. News and World Report listed King Street as one of the “Top 10 Shopping Streets” in the nation. Since it has broad, pedestrian-friendly sidewalks, stylish boutiques, antique stores, three-story brick buildings, and a central location, it is easy to understand why King Street is a unique dining and shopping experience.
5. Folly Beach County Park
Folly Beach County Park is located on the west end of Folly Island, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Folly River. The shoreline in Folly Beach County Park is 2,500 feet long. The park also offers 200 feet of river access for people who would rather spend their time on the river. You can cross the boardwalk and head south. The crowds start to thin out, making it a perfect spot to enjoy the beach cozily with your partner or family. The park offers a snack bar, chair and umbrella rentals, and lifeguards on duty throughout the summer. Public restrooms, grills, and picnic tables are available in the park. Pets are permitted at specific day hours, but they should be leashed. The park charges a per-vehicle parking fee rather than an entrance fee. Be aware that parking spaces might become few during the busiest summer and the beach congested.
6. Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist overcame many obstacles to become what it is today, just like other Churches. At the intersection of Broad and Leg are (formerly known as Friend), Bishop John England, the first Bishop of Charleston, bought a block of land in 1821. By 1854, the first cathedral had been entirely built, but the Great Charleston Fire of 1861 destroyed the building. The pressing need for a new cathedral prompted the start of fundraising, and the current Cathedral of St. John the Baptist’s cornerstone was placed in January 1890.
This Gothic-style Church in Charleston features brownstone exteriors and interiors with mesmerizing marble altars, substantial stained-glass windows, engraved bells, and carved wood benches. The Cathedral of St. John Church updates its followers with their weekly and monthly schedules on its website, taking into account the volume of activities. The Church also hosts Cathedral choir sessions, mindful classes on climate change and environmental sustainability, conversations for young adults on timely topics of interest, family planning for a better societal framework, and spiritual programes.
7. Rainbow Row
Rainbow is the name given to the row of ancient homes in pastel colours found on East Bay Street, just next to the Battery. It is one of Charleston’s most famous locations. You may visit here at any time and see couples having their photos taken for weddings or engagements, as well as a crowd of tourists trying to capture the gorgeous houses in a picture. Despite being stunning, the row of colourful Georgian homes draws tourists for reasons other than beauty. These unique dwellings have their own fascinating stories, just like most of the City’s historic structures do.
At the southernmost point, Number 79-81, a two-part structure, marks the beginning of Rainbow Row. It is the most contemporary building on Rainbow Row, constructed in the middle of the 19th century. The Deas-Tunno House, a stunning blue four-story home, is located at number 89. Due to its modest side garden and huge outbuildings, formerly used as slave quarters and a storehouse, it stands apart from the other houses on Rainbow Row. Othniel Beale bought number 97 and later erected the homes at 99–101 on East Bay Street. Buildings 99 through 101 are connected by a party wall, a roof, and many aesthetic features. The home at 107 Rainbow Row is the last one. It is difficult to determine the house’s original layout due to the numerous renovations that have been made to it.
8. Whirlin’ Waters Adventure Waterpark
Whirlin’ Waters Adventure Waterpark residing the notable in North Charleston Wannamaker County Park is known to proffer seasonal, island-style water play on more than 15 acres and is gallons of fun for all ages. It is one of the best places to visit with family and friends. You can spend an entire day having fun in the pool or riding on adventurous rides and slides. However, the popular areas and slides of the water park is as follows:
The six-lane racer slide, sprays, and ten interactive activities for kids are all located in the Otter Bay kiddie pool area.
Two slides that rise 65 feet in the air, packed with breathless plunges, twists, near-vertical climbs, and turns! You would need at least a height of 48. The weight limit for the pink slide is 150–550 pounds, and the blue slide is 150–500 pounds. There must be two to four riders per raft, and no single riders are allowed.
The Big Kahuna
There are various wave varieties in the 27,000-square-foot Big Kahuna wave pool. Ride the tides at the deeper end or splash around in the shallow region.
With a fantastic cuisine scene that includes classic favourites and innovative newcomers, a prime location by the ocean and close to lovely beaches, and a wealth of things to see and do, Charleston is a vacationer’s dream. So pack your bags and head to Charleston with your close ones.