Charleston boasts a fascinating history and undeniable Southern charm. It's the heart of the South Carolina lowcountry (the flat area bordering the Atlantic Ocean) and is rich with tradition. Many of the most popular activities, like the carriage ride, Charleston City Market, and Patriots Point, make history come to life for kids. The Waterfront Park along the harbor is a family-friendly place to relax and watch boats come and go. For a welcoming, gentle look at Southern culture, Charleston can't be beat.
Tourist season in Charleston lasts from spring to fall. The lure of summer is swimming at Folly Beach and playing in the fountains at the Waterfront Park, but it is hot, humid, and can be crowded. A more pleasant time to go is spring. The weather is warm but not hot, the humidity is low, and its famous azaleas are in bloom.
April and October both have average high temperatures of 76 degrees, and January has a more than bearable average high temperature of 60. Summer is hot and humid, with an average high of 89. Hurricane season runs from June to November, with peak months of August and September. Get more weather info.
The DASH Trolley is a convenient way to explore the historic district. Buy tickets and pick up route maps at the Visitor Center (375 Meeting St.). For traveling outside the downtown area, bus service is provided by CARTA. It's not as convenient for tourist attractions, so a car or a taxi might be required.
Charleston boasts a full calendar of festivals celebrating food, art, music, and culture. The most well known of them is Spoleto Festival USA, a 17-day festival of the arts that attracts world-class musical performers and artists every spring.
Find helpful tips at CharlestonCVB.com. Once in town, stop at the Visitors Center at 375 Meeting Street.
The Visitor Center offers the Heritage Passport, which provides discounts to many popular attractions.