Fall is a great time to explore the South! Families of all interests will find so much to experience in Charleston, South Carolina. Each year, Charleston is consistently rated amongst the country’s top travel destinations. Here, you’ll discover scenic beaches, a historic downtown, plantations and many other attractions, beautiful park lands and much more!
The History and Attractions
Charleston is renowned for its history. Founded in 1670, this colonial port city brings in tourists from around the globe interested in learning about its past and enjoying its architecture, award-winning restaurants, quality shopping, parks and more. Must-sees downtown include Battery and Waterfront parks, the market, Marion Square, King Street, Rainbow Row, and perhaps a historic home or two. While you are here, don’t forget to tour sites such as Fort Sumter, Charles Towne Landing, Battery Park, Patriot’s Point in Mount Pleasant, and many of the area’s historic plantations.
Families will delight in attractions such as the South Carolina Aquarium, the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry, catching a local game with the Stingrays hockey, the Charleston Battery soccer or The Riverdogs baseball teams, and three area waterparks (open May through Labor Day). Not to mention, Charleston has long been renowned for its culinary treasures. Hundreds of area restaurants offer up some of the South’s best dishes, like shrimp and grits, she-crab soup, Lowcountry boil, and steamed oysters.
Beautiful Scenery and Exciting Recreation
Palmetto trees, sparkling waters, bright green marsh grasses, colorful sunsets, pristine parklands – the Charleston area offers a feast for the eyes. Outside of popular historic downtown, you will find spacious beaches and beautiful parks, perfect for enjoying the area’s lovely fall weather through a stroll or a picnic. Take a walk on the Ravenel Bridge, overlooking Charleston Harbor, and then stop in to discover the Mount Pleasant Waterfront Park and Pier. Be sure to take in the area’s islands, including Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island, Folly Beach and James Island for beautiful waterside charm. Stop off at area parks, including James Island County Park, Brittlebank Park, Hampton Park, Mount Pleasant Palmetto Islands County Park, North Charleston Wannamaker County Park and historic Caw Caw Nature and Interpretive Center in Ravenel.
Charleston boasts some of the most beautiful beaches on the East Coast, including Kiawah Beachwalker Park, which has been twice rated as one of the nation’s top 10 beaches. Along with Folly Beach County Park and Isle of Palms County Park, Kiawah Beachwalker is one of three scenic and convenient public beach parks run by the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission.
Plus, don’t miss out on the area’s world class recreational opportunities, including tennis, paddle sports, golf, boating, surfing, water sports, and much more. Adventure-seekers can scale the Climbing Wall at James Island County Park or take one of the park’s stand up paddleboarding classes. Is fishing your thing? Charleston is the place to be. Charter a boat for deep sea fishing, go crabbing at an area dock, or cast your line off the scenic Folly Beach Fishing Pier or the Mount Pleasant Pier for some laid-back saltwater fishing!
A Full Year of Festivals and Events
Charleston is also famous for offering festivals and events year-round. In the spring, enjoy the Spoleto arts festival, the Food and Wine Festival, the Lowcountry Oyster Festival, the Lowcountry Cajun Festival, the Cooper River Bridge Run, the Flowertown Festival, the Blessing of the Fleet, the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition, music festivals and others. This fall and winter, don’t miss the 22nd Annual Holiday Festival of Lights. From Nov. 11 through Jan. 1, James Island County Park is transformed into a winter wonderland as part of this holiday tradition. Visitors drive a three-mile tour of over 600 light displays, plus enjoy activities like marshmallow roasting, live music, visits with Santa, and much more. For more information on the Holiday Festival of Lights, visit www.holidayfestivaloflights.com.
Plan your Stay Today
Charleston is packed with accommodations of all kinds, ranging from bed and breakfasts and waterside cabins to RV and primitive camping on James Island. For more information on all there is to do in Charleston, South Carolina, including accommodations, visit the Charleston Convention and Visitors’ Bureau website, www.explorecharleston.com.