Folks think of Charleston as a small town, and that’s true if you’re just looking at the numbers. But when you consider history, culture, food, and charm, this city punches like a giant. You’ve heard of the eats scene, no doubt—the city’s biggest draw these days, and one that routinely exceeds the hype. Not only can you get world-class barbecue, seafood, and regional Lowcountry classics; you can get them done extraordinarily well in both traditional and modern interpretations. And in extraordinary settings. Everywhere you look, the city has a gorgeous mansion or cobblestone street to explore—the most elegant version of Southern charm, juxtaposed with contemporary art and snappy street fashion. The city's roots may be its rich Southern history, but Charleston stands fully in the now.
Plan Your Charleston Trip
- 147 King St., Charleston, South Carolina 29401Read full reviewFull of authentic Charleston souvenirs.
- 360 Meeting St., Charleston, South Carolina 29403Read full reviewA relaxing stroll through Charleston history
- Charleston, South CarolinaRead full reviewOne of Charleston's most family-friendly beaches
- 135 Meeting Street, Charleston, South Carolina 29401Read full reviewTells a Charleston story.
- 3030 Cypress Gardens Road, Moncks Corner, South Carolina 29461Read full reviewWildly picturesque and well-managed, you'll recognize it from films such as The Notebook.
- 4719 N. Highway 17, Awendaw, South Carolina 29429Read full reviewWhere the record for bald eagle sightings in a single day is forty! If you don't spot at least a dozen, you're doing something wrong.
- Charleston, South Carolina 29492Read full reviewThough it's pretty quiet in the off-season, Sullivan’s Island—once home to Edgar Allan Poe—is a hive of activity come spring and summer.
- Charleston, South Carolina 29429Read full reviewYou'll feel as though you're totally adrift on Bulls Island, as opposed to just a few miles off the coast of prim Charleston.
- Charleston, South Carolina 29429Read full reviewThis undeveloped barrier island is one of the most dramatic spots along the entirety of the South Carolina coast.
- Seabrook Island, South Carolina 29455Read full reviewWhat this residential beach lacks in amenities, it makes up for in soft sand and relative silence.
- 1 14th Avenue, Isle of Palms, Charleston, South Carolina 29451Read full reviewWith its seven miles of crystalline shores and close seaside community, Isle of Palms is one of the area's most family-friendly beaches.
- 8377 State Cabin Rd, Edisto Island, South Carolina 29438Read full reviewEdisto Beach's beach's four-and-a-half miles of mostly untouched coastline make it an absolute must.
- Arctic Ave, Folly Beach, South Carolina 29439Read full reviewFolly is an easy beach to visit and to love, with enough natural beauty to justify the drive and plenty of amenities.
- 1 Pinckney St., Charleston, South Carolina 29401Read full reviewEven locals enjoy a ride now and again.
- 80 Broad St., Charleston, South Carolina 29401Read full reviewFor a balanced introduction to Charleston, from grand houses to former slave quarters.
Produced by Condé Nast Traveler for Explore Charleston | From the architectural details at Wentworth Mansion to the golf course at Kiawah Resort and the delicious food at Charleston Place—follow along as we explore the history, hospitality, and uniqueness of Charleston through the places that portray it best—its hotels.
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