Places To Visit In Charleston

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1. Folly Beach

Folly Beach

13 km
from city center
1 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Rated as one of the best beaches in South Carolina, Folly Beach is a barrier island beach frequented by locals as it is located at a short drive from Downtown Charleston. Despite being so popular, Folly Beach, also known as the Edge of America, has retained its small-town charm. It is a great spot for water sports like surfing, boating and kayaking. Besides its waves, which is a favourite among surfers, Folly beach is a great place to spend time with its restaurant scenes, beach bars, skate park and live music.

2. Sullivans Island Beach

Sullivans Island Beach

9 km
from city center
2 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

A favourite among Charleston locals, Sullivan’s Island sports a scenic beach which stretches across the horizon. From here, one can get breathtaking views of Fort Sumter, Charleston’s Battery Row and Morris Island Lighthouse. With natural beauty and very little commercial development, this beach has miles of shoreline to sit back and enjoy the sun and sand. During summers, there are a host of beach activities that one can engage in. The beach has a few short term rentals but no hotels to stay at, so it is better to plan a day.

3. Kiawah Island Beach

Kiawah Island Beach

27 km
from city center
3 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Regarded as one of the most beautiful barrier islands in Southern Charleston, Kiawah Island Beach has over ten miles of flawless coastline which offers pristine views. It is popular not just for its sand, but also for its underwater beauty, with numerous species like Loggerhead sea turtles and Bottlenose dolphins, which can be spotted at times. Kids can enjoy beach recreations like building sandcastles, bike riding, beach seining, beachcombing, and many more. So whether you decide to bask in the sun or enjoy some water sports, this idyllic beach is an absolute must.

4. Bull Island Beach

Bull Island Beach

0 km
from city center
4 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located just a few miles away from Downtown, in Awendaw, South Carolina, Bull Island is one great outdoor spot for birdwatching, Kayaking and trails along the waterfront. Despite being a picturesque beach, people mostly come here for its wide variety of wildlife including alligators, otters, dolphins and flamingos. To spend a day on Bull’s Island beach, take the Garris Landing Ferry and reach this nature's paradise to soak in all the sun and nature’s creation.

5. Edisto Beach

Edisto Beach

49 km
from city center
5 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Edisto beach is a rare find in Charleston, ideal for a beach day with your family or a long camping trip as well. It is a long drive away from Charleston's main parts, but the peace and calm surroundings make it a must-visit family getaway spot. One can enjoy small-town serenity away from the hustle and bustle of the city, at Edisto Beach. Besides being a great spot for sunbathing, it offers a great shelling experience for die-hard collectors. Just head over to Jeremy’s Inlet during low tide and sift through the seashells, fossils as well as shark’s teeth lying ashore.

6. Isle of Palms

Isle of Palms

13 km
from city center
6 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Isle of Palms is the first choice when it comes to a nice family day at the beach. Situated between the Atlantic Ocean and Intracoastal Waterway, this lovely stretch of sand boasts of a host of recreational activities for all ages. There is a marina, golf and tennis court, shark holes for kids, and many more. It is well-equipped for safety, with beachfront lifeguards, and has other amenities like restrooms and shower areas. You can also spot fishers during the wee hours, waiting for their catch of the day.

7. Seabrook Island Beaches

Seabrook Island Beaches

27 km
from city center
7 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Also known as Simmons Island, this is a barrier island located within Charleston County with two serene beaches: the Pelican Beach and North Beach. Both these beaches are wonderful, spanning over seven square miles. The sunsets on Pelican Beach look straight out of a painting and cannot be missed. This beach is appropriate for swimming, floating and building sandcastles. North Beach is mostly known for its vast wildlife, ranging from turtles to dolphins and numerous other exotic birds.

8. Capers Island

Capers Island

80 km
from city center
8 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Caper’s Island has narrow stretches of sand, with palm trees lined all along. With very little development and rich history attached to this beach, it remains secluded from Charleston's other popular beaches. Still, if you are someone who wants to visit a quiet and secluded sandy beach but some great sunset views, then this is the one for you. But do keep in mind that this beach is not commercialised yet, so there is literally nothing on the beach.

Top Hotels In Charleston

9. Charleston Museum

Charleston Museum

1,508 km
from city center
9 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Nestled along the Meeting Street, Charleston Museum is “America’s First Museum” and houses various artefacts depicting colonial and agricultural past of the city. Cultivation tools, sweetgrass baskets, tribal pottery, decorative items, quilts etc. showcases the traditional fringe of Charleston. With two historical houses, The Heyward Washington House and Joseph Manigault House, Charleston Museum leaves no stone unturned to fantasize visitors with its furniture, exhibits and badges.

10. Gibbes Museum of Art

Gibbes Museum of Art

0 km
from city center
10 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Gibbes Museum of Art is a colourful exhibition with an extensive collection of decorative arts, sculpture, paintings depicting the Charleston Renaissance sprawled over Meeting Street of the city. Take a walk through Charleston history with 10,000 massive portraits, miniatures and contemporary art by local artists connecting artistic past and vibrant modern art scene.

11. Old Slave Mart

Old Slave Mart

0 km
from city center
11 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Once a part of Ryan’s Mart, Old Slave Mart is a complex with old brick enclosed yard, morgue, slave jail located on the Chalmers to Queen Streets. Old Slave Mart is a must visit museum to explore African art, slave trade illustrations, artifacts and Charleston historic timeline.

12. Karpeles Manuscript Museum

Karpeles Manuscript Museum

2 km
from city center
12 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Karpeles Manuscript Museum is a perfect destination for avid readers as it can take you down to the time of millions of manuscripts and hand written documents about religion, science, political history and art. From constitutional documents to historical coin collection, museum houses “World’s largest private collection of historic manuscripts” making it a reading heaven.

13. American LaFrance Fire Museum

American LaFrance Fire Museum

13 km
from city center
13 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

American LaFrance Fire Museum is entirely dedicated to the fire fighting trucks and apparatus stored at the proximity of Interstate 26, to North Charleston making it the nation’s largest fire museum. Exploring shiny engines, horse drawn fire wagons, and fire fighter’s ladder along with interactive exhibits which challenge you to lift 100 pounds fire fighter’s equipment makes the museum more fun.

14. Nathaniel Russell House Museum

Nathaniel Russell House Museum

0 km
from city center
14 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Erected in 1808, Nathaniel Russell House Museum embraces the “neoclassical dwellings” for paying the homage to Nathaniel Russell, Charleston trader. It enjoys the status of National Historic landmark as it shows a glimpse of the elite merchants of the early Federal period.

15. Confederate Museum

Confederate Museum

4 km
from city center
15 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Reviving Greek-style architecture since 1899, Confederate Museum is located in Historic Downtown District. A reference library, exhibits with swords, flags, uniforms and war artifacts are ensemble in the premises giving a taste of antiquarian relics. There is an open-air market for a shopping spree where one can find antiques, produce, restaurants etc.

16. Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon

Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon

0 km
from city center
16 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon is the most historical building in South Carolina which talks about patriots and constitutional ratification during colonial era. Built in Georgian architecture, the building focuses on the colonial Charleston and American Revolution with its structure and décor.

17. Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

2 km
from city center
17 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry is a recreational museum for unlimited learning and adventure of children though educational exhibits, miniature art pieces, and interactive video features. Be it basic science, environment or art, children can spark their imaginations in the play area and media room of the museum.

18. Postal Museum

Postal Museum

0 km
from city center
18 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Small yet interesting museum in Charleston, Postal Museum equips with mannequins, postal museums, stamps, antique furniture etc. in a carved wood building. Apart from its historical postal memorabilia, Postal Museum is famous for its beautiful décor of brass and silver.

19. South Carolina Aquarium

South Carolina Aquarium

2 km
from city center
19 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Celebrating marine life in South Carolina, the South Carolina Museum is a one-stop destination for all the visitors who want to explore about the aquatic flora and fauna including alligators, otters, rattlesnakes, river otters etc. Sea turtles, puffer fish, herons, hermit crab, sea urchins, stingrays along with its interactive great ocean tank make the museum more exciting.

20. Heyward Washington House

Heyward Washington House

0 km
from city center
20 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Established in 1772, Heyward Washington House is a Georgian style double house which captures the colonial era of America excellently. It houses finest historical furniture, kitchen equipment, formal gardens in the beautiful architectural mansion makes up this museum even more informative.

21. Robert Lange Studios

Robert Lange Studios

0 km
from city center
21 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Robert Lange Studios is a vintage art gallery with brick walled interiors which features various paintings by visual artists of the city. Sprawled over 6000 square feet, the building houses different paintings and sculptures together with music, crafts, home décor, and modern photography.

22. The Best Friend Train Museum

The Best Friend Train Museum

2 km
from city center
22 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Originally built in 1820, Best Friend Train was converted into a museum with four sections, stand up locomotive engine, wood burning car, and wooden passenger cars in . The museum is decorated with wall posters, paintings and train miniatures from the 1820 era making it interesting for kids.

23. South Carolina Historical Society Museum

South Carolina Historical Society Museum

3 km
from city center
23 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

South Carolina Historical Society Museum is an architectural museum which equips various interactive exhibits about places and historical movements of Charleston revolution. With 6 interactive galleries, museum is a historical landmark capturing the beauty and style of South Carolina in its sculptures, paintings and miniatures.

24. City of Charleston Municipal Golf Course

City of Charleston Municipal Golf Course

664 km
from city center
24 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Locally referred to as the ‘Muni’, City of Charleston’s Municipal Golf Course was founded in 1929 in James Island by the Stono River. The 18-holer course stands on 120 acres of land donated to the City Council by C. Bissell Jenkins. Golfer-friendly with 6-sets of tees, the ‘Muni’ is where many South Carolina residents swing their first golf club.

25. Shadowmoss Golf And Country Club

Shadowmoss  Golf And Country Club

6,097 km
from city center
25 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located in Dunvegan Drive, Shadowmoss Golf Club was established in 1970 following the architecture of Russell F. Breeden. Sprawling over 6,700 yards, the course features 133-score slopes, 72 pars, and 18 holes.

26. Patriots Point Links

Patriots Point Links

3 km
from city center
26 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located right on the edge of Charleston Harbor in Mount Pleasant, Patriots Point Links is one of the most scenic golf courses in the entire world. Built in 1979 and designed by Willard Byrd, the 18-holer boasts of 126-score slopes and a year-round golf season.

27. Beresford Creek at Daniel Island Club

Beresford Creek at Daniel Island Club

10 km
from city center
27 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located inside the luxurious country club setting of Daniel Island Club, Beresford Creek is a par 72 course featuring distinctive marshes, creeks, and waterways. Designed by Tom Fazio and opened in 2000, the course boasts of intelligently designed slopes with a score of 134 to pose challenge to the most veteran golfers.

28. Crowfield Golf Club

Crowfield Golf Club

1,716 km
from city center
28 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Architected by Bob Spence in 1989, Crowfield Golf Club is an excellent golf course for amateurs and veterans alike. With a year-round golf season, the course features a stunning slope rating of 139 on challenging dunes of Bermuda grass.

29. Wrenwoods Golf Course

Wrenwoods Golf Course

3,621 km
from city center
29 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Situated inside Joint Base Charleston, the 18-holer Wrenwoods Golf Course was designed by George W. Cobb in 1966-67. Standing on the Air Base in North Charleston, it largely caters to individuals associated with U.S. Armed Forces and their guests. The course has a 9-acre practice range as well.

30. Redbank Golf Course

Redbank Golf Course

743 km
from city center
30 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located on the Naval Weapons Station in Goose Creek, Redbank Golf Course is the second golf course located at Joint Base Charleston. Opened in 1953, the sprawling Bermuda grass greens of the course is idea for beginners, seniors, and family groups of golfers. If you are lucky, you might spot wildlife like turkey, fox, deer, and even alligators on the course.

31. Country Club of Charleston

Country Club of Charleston

1,054 km
from city center
31 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Founded in 1900, Country Club of Charleston is a prestigious location where only guests and members are allowed to play. Located just 10-15 minutes from downtown Charleston along the James Island marshes, the historic course is designed by architect Seth Raynor. Every year, the course hosts The Azalea tournament and has occasionally hosted Amateur Championships as well.

32. Charleston National Golf Club

Charleston National Golf Club

142 km
from city center
32 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Designed by renowned architect Rees Jones in 1987, Charleston National Golf Club is open to the public all year round. The hidden gem of the Charleston golfing circuit, the 18-holer course boasts a slope rating of 129.

33. RiverTowne Country Club

RiverTowne Country Club

15 km
from city center
33 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located off Highway 41 in Mount Pleasant, RiverTowne Country Club has the only Arnold Palmer golf course in Charleston. Standing by pristine marshlands of the Wando River and Horlbeck Creek, the course is semi-public in nature, offering rate entry as well as premium memberships year-round.

34. The Harbor Course at Wild Dunes

The Harbor Course at  Wild Dunes

1,234 km
from city center
34 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located by the Intracoastal Waterway on Isle of Palms, Harbor Course in Wild Dunes helps one hone all aspects of their game. Designed by the renowned Tom Fazio, the course is known for its beautiful aesthetics and especially the utilization of water.

35. Dunes West Golf and River Club

Dunes West Golf and River Club

501 km
from city center
35 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Overlooking the Wagner Creek of Mount Pleasant, Dunes West Golf and River Club is a premium golf course of South Carolina Low Country. Designed by Arthur Hills in 1991, the 72-par, 18-holer Championship course sits amid a stunning setting of oaks, palms, and Bermuda grass-covered slopes.

36. Yeaman’s Hall Club

Yeaman’s Hall Club

297 km
from city center
36 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Initially designed by Seth Raynor in 1925 along Goose Creek in South Carolina on a land that was a 17th century plantation. Later it was renovated by Tom Doak and saved from obsolescence. The course was built with a vision to restore all the traditional features of a golf course.

37. Turtle Point Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Turtle Point Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort

5,967 km
from city center
37 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Of the five courses, the Ocean Course is Kiawah Island Golf Resort’s most famous one because of its architecture and vista. Designed by Pete and Alice Dye in 1991, the course is designed with Paspalum grass with a stunning view of the Atlantic Ocean shoreline.

38. The Links at Wild Dunes

The Links at Wild Dunes

1,455 km
from city center
38 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

The first-ever golf course designed by the renowned Tom Fazio, the Links Course is one of the two at Wild Dunes Island Resort. The beautiful 18-holer, 70-par course by the shores of Atlantic features lush dunes lined by palms on the sides – not just a challenging playing field but an aesthetic one as well.

39. Hampton Park

Hampton Park

4 km
from city center
39 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

The Hampton Park in Charleston is a historical park, located just north of Charleston’s Downtown with more than 70 acres of lush greenery, a pond, a walking trail and a fountain. Named after General Wade Hampton, this park is a favourite among localities because of the facilities it offers for all ages. Kids have access to a large playground, a baseball and basketball court, health enthusiasts can walk and run around in the jogger’s trail and sunbathers can enjoy a cosy picnic under the sun as this park also offers picnic tables and free Wifi. Home to numerous events throughout the year like weddings, parties and frisbee games, this park offers well-equipped restrooms, on-site parking and houses many interesting species of flora and fauna.

40. Allan Park

Allan Park

3 km
from city center
40 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Allan Park, tucked away in Downtown and located in close proximity to Hampton Park, is a hidden gem. With beautiful fountains and a plethora of flora, this park has become popular among localities in recent times. It has benches and lots of space for kids to run around. It also houses several events like concerts and parties.

41. Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park

Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park

17 km
from city center
41 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfrom Park is a nautical themed waterfront park is located at the base of Arthur Ravenel Bridge and offers spectacular views of Cooper river. The pier has a large lawn area available for picnics and other recreational activities. There are several trails that lead to the East Coast Greenway for every health enthusiast.

42. Marion Square

Marion Square

932 km
from city center
42 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Named in the Honour of Francis Marion, Marion Square is a 6.5 acre green space in Charleston, ideal for hosting picnics, sunbathing, walking and enjoying a good game of frisbee. There are several historical monuments housed within this park. It is home to a seasonal farmer’s market, where you can get fresh and organic produce including local fruits and vegetables. Not just markets, it also hosts the annual Charleston Fashion Week, Piccolo Spoleto festival and a lot more. Christmas is a very special time in Charleston, and this park has its own christmas tree, where you can take pictures as well!

43. Joe Riley Waterfront Park

Joe Riley Waterfront Park

185 km
from city center
43 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Riley Waterfront Park is an old - fashioned park, which was established in 1990, but rose to popularity in recent years and is now one of the peninsula’s most visited parks. Spread over 12 acres of land, the park features old fashioned benches, landscaped gardens, giant sized swings, picturesque plazas, walkway paths, fountains and spectacular views of the waterfront. It is an ideal spot for picnics, sunbathing, walking and biking. There is also access to free wifi all across the park.

44. Brittlebank Park

Brittlebank Park

693 km
from city center
44 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Brittlebank Park is one of the most scenic parks in Charleston, because of its close proximity to downtown waterfront, overlooking the Ashley River. This park is spread over an area of 10 acres and has ample area for kids to play, dedicated pathways for walking, jogging or cycling, piers for fishing, an area dedicated to pets and a lot more. This park also makes for a great spot for boating and kayaking as well. During summer time in Charleston, this park houses a lot of local festivals like Charleston Beer Garden, music concerts and a lot more.

45. James Island County Park

James Island County Park

6,069 km
from city center
45 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

James Island County park is spread across an area of 643 acres and is a source of fun all round the year. Here, you get access to picnic spots, seasonal spray fountains, volleyball courts, horseshoe pits, an 18 hole disc golf course, bike rental services for biking along the trails, and various other challenging activities. One highlight of this park is the 50 foot climbing wall, which is a great activity to get that adrenaline pumping. There is a crabbing dock and you can also try your hand at fishing in the ocean. With open meadows and camping grounds , it also provides fully - services modern vacation cabins.

46. Palmetto Island County Park

Palmetto Island County Park

45 km
from city center
46 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Palmetto Island County Park, spread across a whopping 943 acre land, this park is located just a short drive away from Charleston Downtown and sits on the Horlbeck creek. It is ideal for big groups and families, to host picnics, or just spend a day sunbathing. It has a dedicated picnic area with bbq grills. At Palmetto Island park, you can go fishing and then grill them on the bbq tops! Other than a picnic area, there are trails for hiking or biking and an observation deck for mesmerising ocean views as well. For kids, there is a splash pad, which is open from May to September and a 50 foot observation tower with a play area.

47. Gadsdenboro Park

Gadsdenboro Park

693 km
from city center
47 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Gadsdenboro park is a vast open space with various amenities like a nautical themes play area, walking trails, games area , a bocce court and water fountains. Formerly, Concord Park, this park is located close to the Charleston Maritime Center, and hence the nautical themed park for kids. They have well equipped restrooms and free wifi as well.

48. Folly Beach County Park

Folly Beach County Park

13 km
from city center
48 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located on the west end of Folly Island, Folly beach County park offers access to over 2500 feet of ocean frontage. with amenities like picnic tables, boardwalks, outdoor showers, dressing rooms, snack bars and a lot more. Lifeguards are always on duty here so you have nothing to worry about. Chairs, umbrellas, surfboards and boogie boards are all available for rent on the beach.

49. West Ashley Park

West Ashley Park

14 km
from city center
49 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Spread over an area of 260 acres, West Ashley Park is one of Charleston’s largest parks, with four soccer fields, two basketball courts,two youth softball fields, two huge playgrounds, a golf course and plenty of area to run around. It also offers scenic views of the ocean, where one can go fishing as well.

50. Charles Towne Landing Park

Charles Towne Landing Park

6 km
from city center
50 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Charles Towne Landing Park was established to preserve the historical colonial settlement in Carolina, in a simple old-fashioned way. It houses a 17th century replica of sail ships and other historical sites. Spread across an area of over 600 acres, this park also contains a zoo,walking and biking trails and many ongoing archaeological sites. This park makes for a great outing for all those who are interested in history as they can access self guided tours to know all about the park.

51. White Point Garden

White Point Garden

3 km
from city center
51 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Located in Charleston Downtown, White Point Garden is a must-see. Bordered by Cooper and Ashley Rivers, this park gives visitors access to spectacular views of Fort Sumter and the Charleston river. It has large open spaces with old oak trees and an impressive display of history including monuments, statues and cannons. This park is great for enjoying an afternoon picnic under the shade of an old oak.

52. Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church

Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church

0 km
from city center
52 out of 77
places to visit in Charleston

Also known as Mother Emanuel Church, this church in Charleston is the oldest African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in the Southern United States. The church throws light on the struggle of the Blacks back in the day. It was established as a result of the revolt where blacks fought for their right to worship which was denied in churches controlled by the Whites. It is the first independent black denomination church in the United States. With a capacity of 2500 people, it is one of the largest black churches in Charleston. The Mother Emanuel Church is built on the lines of Gothic architecture and has a sense of serenity in its personality. Owing to COVID-19 pandemic, the church is not open to the public. Yet, it conducts live streaming through social media accounts and apps.

FAQs on Charleston

How can I commute within Charleston?

The best way to get the complete essence of Charleston is to get around on foot. For faraway spots, you have the options of taking a taxi, bus or trolley. Trolleys are totally free to use; and while taxis can be booked on reasonable rates, buying a 1 or 3 day bus pass would let you hit all the major attractions in a bus. You can also rent a car and drive on your own, if you're okay with paying a lot of bucks for parking.
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What are the top hotels in Charleston?

There are 275 Hotels in Charleston which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Charleston are Live Oaks River House, Waterway, Celtic Carriage House, KING ST DISTRICT - Walk Everywhere!, KING STREET- Historic Renovation w/ Parking+Bikes!, Fiddlers Marsh. You can see all the hotels in Charleston here
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