Middleton Place is an 18th century rice plantation and National Historic Landmark comprising 65 acres of America’s oldest landscaped Gardens, the Middleton Place House Museum and the Plantation Stableyards. The Gardens reflect the elegant symmetry of 17th century European design. Sculpted terraces, parterres, and reflection pools inhabited by swans are highlights of their intricate design. Rare camellias bloom in the winter, while vibrant azaleas blanket the hillside above the Rice Mill Pond in the spring. Guided tours of the Middleton Place House Museum, built in 1755 as a gentlemen’s guest wing, interpret the Middleton family’s vital role in American history. In the Plantation Stableyards, craftspeople including a blacksmith, potter, carpenter and weaver, recreate the activities of a self-sustaining Low Country plantation. While visiting Middleton Place, be sure to experience an African American Focus Tour and Carriage Tour. The full-service Restaurant presents Low Country specialties for both lunch and dinner. Find distinctive local and regional items at the Museum Shop and Garden Market & Nursery. Hours of Operation: Daily 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. MIDDLETON PLACE 4300 Ashley River Road Charleston, SC 29414 843-556-6020 or 800-782-3608, www.middletonplace.org
Magnolia Plantation & Gardens
Experience the history, beauty, enchantment and alluring fragrance of America’s last large-scale romantic-style garden where nature controls the garden’s design. Established in the 1670s, Magnolia is the ancestral home of the Drayton family. As the oldest plantation site on the Ashley River, Magnolia has earned the distinction as the oldest public garden in the United States. The Rev. John Grimké Drayton expanded the gardens in 1840s, opening them three decades later to steamboat passengers. As a result, Magnolia also enjoys being Charleston’s first tourist destination. Today, Magnolia carries on that tradition with 60 acres of gardens that bloom year-round. Renowned internationally, Magnolia’s historic camellia collection blooms in the winter and vibrant azaleas splash color in the spring. Open 365 days a year 8 am to 5:30 pm. Tour a pre-Revolutionary War plantation house. See local plants and fauna on a nature boat and nature train tours. Learn about the African-American contributions to Magnolia and Lowcountry South Carolina on an award-winning “Slavery to Freedom” cabin tour. Groups are welcome. Specially designed youth programs are available. Primitive campground open to organized groups. Leashed pets permitted. Garden admission $20; guided house, train, boat and cabins tours and an unguided Audubon Swamp tour additional. Magnolia Plantation and Garden3550 Ashley River RoadCharleston, S.C. 29407 843-571-1266 www.magnoliaplantation.com
Circa 1738, Drayton Hall is the oldest unrestored plantation house in America still open to the public and the nation’s earliest example of fully executed Palladian architecture. After seven generations, the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, and numerous hurricanes and earthquakes, the main house remains in nearly original condition. Never modernized with electric lighting, plumbing, or central heating or air conditioning, the main house is unfurnished, allowing the beauty of the architectural details to become the focus for visitors. The entire site—including the historic grounds with its ancient live oaks, broad vistas, vanished structures, and rare period features—serves as a testimony to America’s heritage. Admission includes daily tours, programs, and activities, including a professionally guided house tour on the half hour. Drayton Hall is a National Historic Landmark and a National Trust Historic Site. 3380 Ashley River Road, Charleston, SC 29414. 843-769-2600. Please check the website for the latest information on programs and promotions, admission fees, and events like the annual Spirituals Concerts, and more. www.draytonhall.org
Boone Hall Plantation & Gardens
Recognized as the #1 plantation in the Charleston area by USA TODAY 10BEST - Boone Hall Plantation is also touted as "a must see stop on any trip to Charleston, S.C." by NBC Daytime. Start by walking down the Avenue Of Oaks, one of the most spectacular entrances anywhere in the world. See why Boone Hall is "America's Most Photographed Plantation." Our gardens bloom all year round, but in the spring and summer are a showcase of color. "Exploring The Gullah Culture" is the only live presentation of its kind in the Lowcountry and a visitor favorite. Visit the critically acclaimed Black History In America exhibit on display in 9 original slave cabins, tour the plantation home, ride aboard a guided coach tour across the entire 738 acres, and more. Come enjoy the setting in which many television shows and movies have been filmed. For questions or inquiries please call 843-884-4371 Monday-Friday 9am-5pm. 1235 Long Point Rd, Mt Pleasant, SC 29464 www.boonehallplantation.com
Historic King Street Shopping
King Street is Charleston at her best! She has developed into three distinctive areas: the Upper King Street Design and Dining District, Mid-King Street Fashion District and the Lower King Street Antiques District. On the whole you will find many fun and interesting shop that include antiques, art galleries, chocolate and confections, book stores, cosmetics, home décor and lighting, gifts, jewelry, and women's, men's and children’s fashions. Each shop has its own sense of style and flavor, and each one uniquely Charleston.
Downtown Carriage Tour
Catch a carriage tour to really learn about Charleston's history, Colonial style. Hear hundreds of years of history set against the sound of hoofbeats. The carriage tour guides are some of the best in Charleston for rich storytelling and a cracking a joke or two.
South Carolina Aquarium
At the South Carolina Aquarium overlooking the Charleston Harbor, connect with more than 5,000 amazing animals and learn how you can protect them. Come face-to-face with sick and injured sea turtles in rehabilitation at our newest addition, Zucker Family Sea Turtle Recovery, and follow their journeys from rescue to rehab to release. Visit our two touch tanks for a hands-on experience with stingrays, sharks, horseshoe crabs, sea stars and urchins. Learn fascinating details about the natural world at daily dive shows and animal encounters. Discover the wonder of water, wildlife and wild places at the South Carolina Aquarium. 100 Aquarium Wharf, Charleston, SC 29401 www.scaquarium.org
The Battery & White Point Gardens
Located in the heart of Charleston’s historic district, this prominent landmark provides a spectacular view of Fort Sumter and Charleston Harbor, where the Ashley and Cooper rivers empty into the Atlantic Ocean. It was first used as a public garden in 1837. With the outbreak of the Civil War, it became a fortification for the city. Visitors today also find an impressive display of historic mortars and cannons from the Civil War used to shell as well as defend the city. At the corner of Murray and East Bay there is a Confederate monument. In the early 1720s, the infamous "gentleman" pirate Stede Bonnet was hanged here with about 50 others like him. Townspeople filled the gallows area and jeered as the outlaw was brought to his rightful end. Bonnet was buried in the nearby marsh. His epitaph has been memorialized and stands today in the park.
From ghosts to history and pubs to kitchens, our daily or nightly walking tours of Charleston offer something for everyone. Bulldog Tours has exclusive access to Charleston’s Old City Jail, Provost Dungeon, and Charleston’s oldest graveyard. The food tours are the perfect way to walk, talk and eat your way through Charleston. Plus, go behind the scenes of some of Charleston’s top restaurants, meeting the most talented chefs and tour their kitchens. During the Haunted Pub Tour, hear our favorite ghost stories while enjoying libations at the city’s finest bars and taverns.
One of the peninsula's most visited parks, Waterfront Park opened in 1990 and offers fantastic views of the Charleston Harbor. Gardens, fountains, walking paths and plenty of park benches are availble on the property. The park is open daily.
Charleston City Market
One of the nation's oldest public markets and the cultural heart of Charleston. We are home to more than 300 vibrant entrepreneurs, and we are open every day of the year except December 25th. No matter what time of day or season you plan to visit, there is something to see, do, taste, and take home as a souvenir from the Charleston City Market!
Charleston's 84th House & Garden Tour
The Garden Club of Charleston presents Springtime in Charleston 2019, our 84th Annual House & Garden Tour. This event showcases some of the most beautiful and historic private homes and gardens in Charleston, many of which have never before been on tour. The weekend begins on Thursday, March 28th, with our Preview Party, where guests will mingle with members of our garden club, as well as other tour attendees, enjoy delicious hors d'oeuvres, beverages, a floral arranging demonstration, and a silent auction at historic Hibernian Hall, 101 Meeting Street. The tours take place on Friday, March 29th and Saturday, March 30th.
72nd Annual Festival of Houses and Gardens
There’s no lovelier time in Charleston than spring – and no better way to experience the city’s charm than by attending the Festival of Houses and Gardens. Step inside the private houses and gardens of some of the city’s most stunning properties, learn about Charleston’s distinctive architecture and history and celebrate our unique culture. Different events daily - visit the website for schedule of events and to purchase tickets.
03/13/2019 - 04/18/2019 For more information, please visit www.historiccharleston.org/blog/events/category/festival-houses-gardens/
Angel Oak Tree
The Angel Oak Tree is estimated to be in excess of 400-500 years old, stands 66.5 ft (20 m) tall, measures 28 ft (8.5 m) in circumference, and produces shade that covers 17,200 square feet (1,600 m2). From tip to tip Its longest branch distance is 187 ft. There is considerable debate about the age of the Angel Oak. Some contend that it is 1,500 years old. Most believe that the more conservative estimates are more accurate.It is an absolute must-see for anyone visiting Charleston South Carolina. It is on everyone’s top ten list of things to do in Charleston. Despite being located on John’s Island, the Angel Oak has come to symbolize Charleston South Carolina. A large number of people search for “Angel Oak Charleston South Carolina” even though this tree is on John’s Island. It is a southern live oak located in Angel Oak Park, on Johns Island SC.
Charleston Bluegrass Festival
Awendaw Green and the Sewee Outpost present the 2018 Charleston Bluegrass Festival March 30 and 31 in Awendaw, SC. It will be a showcase of some of our favorite local and regional Bluegrass bands and introduce a few new ones you will love. It will be a family friendly Lowcountry camping event featuring two side by side stages of regional and local bluegrass and almost bluegrass and a Saturday Hungry Monk Music Stage featuring Fire Ant Fiddle Contest for all ages, Fire Ant Band Contest and Hungry Monk Band Scramble open to everyone!
Volvo Car Open Tennis Tournament
The Volvo Car Open, the largest women’s-only tennis tournament in North America, will host its 47th event March 30 - April 7, 2019 on Daniel Island in Charleston, South Carolina. The highly anticipated competition features the best in women’s professional tennis, welcoming more than 100 of the top tennis players in the world to the Lowcountry. The nine-day tournament showcases a singles draw of 56 players, a qualifying draw of 32 players and a doubles draw of 16 players. In addition, the event boasts an average attendance of 90,000.
Described in many reviews as a ‘must-see’, the Charleston Museum is a small but powerful natural history museum featuring exhibits that highlight the city’s long and complex history. When purchasing tickets, you can ‘choose your own museum adventure’ by selecting between 1-3 sites. This is a great way for people of all ages to learn about the area’s regional history.
Ravenel Bridge, Memorial Waterfront Park & Mount Pleasant Pier
Ravenel Bridge is one of the most iconic sites in Charleston… and best of all, it’s free to visit! You are can walk across the bridge and enjoy fantastic views of Charleston and the harbor from above.
Part of the Memorial Waterfront Park complex, the 1250-foot long Mount Pleasant Pier stretches out into Charleston Harbor under the foot of the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge. The pier’s foundation was created from pared-down pilings from the old Silas N. Pearman Bridge.
One end of the pier features an 8,100-square-foot covered pavilion for hosting dances and other events. Visitors can enjoy beautiful views of the bridge and harbor from the pier’s bench swings and shade structures.
USS Yorktown and Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum
Located on Charleston Harbor at the base of the Ravenel Bridge, Patriots Point is the home of the USS Yorktown and the Maritime Museum.Having served as an important carrier from World War II through the 1960s, the USS Yorktown now sits as the centerpiece of the museum and invites visitors to enjoy a ‘hands-on history lesson.’This site is especially popular with families and school groups as there are lots of interactive exhibits and educational opportunities.
Isle of Palms
Dress Parade at the Citadel
Watch the cadets from the Citadel parade on select Fridays throughout the year. The precision drill movements and military parade are always a highlight for families visiting and these events are free and open to the public.
On March 30, 2019 at 10am there will be a special event, the Corps Day Jeep Review and Awards Parade which commemorates the arrival of the first cadets on campus in March 1843. There are events open to the public throughout the day.