City Orientation Walk, Charleston

Charleston is the oldest and the largest city in the U.S. state of South Carolina. Known for its rich history, well-preserved architecture, distinguished restaurants, and mannerly people, Charleston is a popular tourist destination and has received a large number of accolades, including "America's Most Friendly City" and also "The most polite and hospitable city in America". It is also home to some amazing and interesting art galleries, historic houses and museums, astonishing churches and architectural structures. Take the walk below to see some of the most popular and interesting tourist attractions in Charleston.
You can follow this self-guided walking tour to explore the attractions listed below. How it works: download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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City Orientation Walk Map

Guide Name: City Orientation Walk
Guide Location: USA » Charleston (See other walking tours in Charleston)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 20
Tour Duration: 4 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.6 km
Author: Caroline
1
Washington Square Park

1) Washington Square Park (must see)

Located in the heart of the city's historic district, behind the City Hall, Washington Square is a pop of green surrounded by history. It was known as City Hall Park until October 10, 1881, when it was renamed in honor of George Washington. Along the east wall of the park is a monument to Gen. Pierre Beauregard, the Confederate general in charge of the city's defenses in 1862-1864. In the center of the park is a memorial to the Washington Light Infantry. The memorial is made of Carolina gray granite and is a miniature version of the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. The memorial is about forty-two feet high and is inscribed with the names of important military battles. It was unveiled on February 23, 1891. A statue of George Washington himself was eventually installed in the park in 1999.

Washington Square is the oldest public park in the city of Charleston, with some beautiful landscaping to boot. If you take a walking tour of the city, chances are you'll pass through it and it's very close to some of the best bars and restaurants in town. There is plenty of shade and benches to sit, relax and people watch for a bit.

Why You Should Visit:
The trees are amazing and you're going to feel very cozy in the fenced enclosure.
You can enter from three different streets to walk, sit, snap photos, and enjoy Charleston charm.

Tip:
Best time of year to visit is the spring to see the blooming.
Sight description based on wikipedia
2
St. Michael's Church

2) St. Michael's Church (must see)

St. Michael's Church, located at Broad and Meeting Streets, is the oldest surviving religious structure in Charleston, SC. It was built between 1751 and 1761 on the site of the original wooden church built in 1681 by St. Philip's Church, which was damaged in a hurricane in 1710. St. Michael's, part of the Charleston Historic District, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1960 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.

The architect of St. Michael's is unknown but it shows the influence of St. Martin-in-the-Fields in London, England, which was designed in the 1720s by James Gibbs and built by Samuel Cardy. The walls are of brick that was stuccoed over and painted white. The two-story portico facing Broad Street was the first of its size in colonial America and features Tuscan columns. In the north wall is a stained glass window that was donated to the church in 1898. The design of the 6 by 10-foot window is a copy of "Easter Morning" using between 1,800 and 2,000 pieces and was created by Louis Lederlie for Tiffany Studios.

The church houses a clock and change ringing bells dating from colonial times. The tower clock strikes the hours and quarters. The bells are one of four sets in the Charleston area. They were cast in 1764 and recast in 1866, both times in London.

Tip:
Adjacent to the church is St. Michael's Churchyard, the resting place of some famous historical figures, including two signers of the U.S. Constitution. You can wander at your leisure, so be sure to include it as part of your tour.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Thu: 9am–4pm; Fri: 9am–12:30pm; Sunday Worship: 8am, 10:30am, 6pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
3
Charleston County Courthouse

3) Charleston County Courthouse

Charleston County Courthouse is a Neoclassical building in Charleston designed by Irish architect James Hoban. It was a likely model for Hoban's most famous building, The White House and both buildings are modelled after Leinster House, the current seat of the Irish Parliament in Dublin.

President George Washington visited Charleston on his Southern Tour in May 1791, may have met with Hoban, and summoned the architect to Philadelphia in June 1792. The following month, Hoban was named the winner of the design competition for the presidential mansion in Washington, DC. He later altered his design under Washington's influence. The Courthouse itself is still in use, located in the historic district near the park at Washington Square.
Sight description based on wikipedia
4
Nathaniel Russell House

4) Nathaniel Russell House (must see)

The Nathaniel Russell House is a historic house located in downtown Charleston. It belonged to Nathaniel Russell, a Rhode Island merchant, who spent $80,000 on this Adamesque building before 1809. He and his wife, Sarah Russell, lived in the house during the early 1800s. It was sold to the state in 1955 by the Pelzer family, and today is used by the Historic Charleston Foundation as offices and also for tours.

The house is widely recognized as one of America's most important Neoclassical houses and features three main rooms per floor each of different geometric designs: a front rectangular room, a center oval room, and a square room in the rear. Other rooms of the house include: the turquoise-color first-floor Oval Dining Room; the second-floor Drawing Room, where the women of the house retired to after dinner; and the Withdrawing Room. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1973.

To the south of the house is the garden that was originally laid out in a geometric arrangement with patterned beds of flowers, ornamental shrubs and large orange and grapefruit trees. Today a formal English garden can be found with gravel paths, boxwood hedges and plants favored in the 19th century. In the rear of the house is the two-story slave quarters that housed many of the estimated 18 slaves that were at the Nathaniel Russell House.

Why You Should Visit:
Arguably the 'grande dame' of house museums, with many intricate details to both see and learn about. You'll be able to stroll through the beautiful gardens and nearby old graveyard before or after you visit it.

Tip:
Be sure to get there early, especially for weekend tours. Online tickets do not give a time, and the tours are filled onsite, first come first served.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-5pm
Docent-led tours begin at 10am; last tour: 4pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
5
The Battery / White Point Gardens

5) The Battery / White Point Gardens (must see)

Also known as the White Point Gardens, the Battery is a very famous Charleston landmark. The place began to be used as a public park from 1837 onwards. During the American Civil War, it was a fortified artillery bunker. Named for a Civil War coastal defense artillery battery at the site, it stretches along the lower shores of the Charleston peninsula, bordered by the Ashley and Cooper Rivers, which meet here to form the Charleston Harbor.

The park has several memorials and offers outstanding views of Charleston Harbor and other places of beauty in the city. The large gazebo in the middle of the park is a popular gathering place for locals and tourists. The park and its surrounding gardens, huge trees, grassy areas and walkway along the waterfront offer a romantic backdrop for couples and a pristine place for picnicking, playing ball and just plain relaxing.

As a tourist destination, the Battery also is famous for its stately, mainly antebellum homes. Included among the grand houses are the Louis DeSaussure House (1 East Battery), the Roper House (9 East Battery), the William Ravenel House (13 East Battery), the Edmondston-Alston House (21 East Battery), the Charles Drayton House (25 East Battery), the George Chisolm House (39 East Battery), the Villa Margherita (4 South Battery), the William Washington House (8 South Battery), the Col. John A.S. Ashe House (26 South Battery), the James Spear House (30 South Battery), and the Col. John Ashe House (32 South Battery).

Why You Should Visit:
While walking from the center of town to the Battery, with the water to one side and gorgeous historic homes to the other, there is no shortage of sights to see. The park also offers plenty of seating in the shade to relax.

Tip:
There are hardly any public restrooms here, so be sure to take care of business before going on a stroll ;)

Opening Hours:
24/7, no entry fee
Sight description based on wikipedia
6
Edmondston-Alston House

6) Edmondston-Alston House (must see)

The Edmondston-Alston House is one of the grandest and oldest historic houses in Charleston, SC. Located at 21 East Battery, the three-story house was built between 1820 and 1828 and has a panoramic view of Charleston Harbor and the High Battery, the city's well-known waterfront promenade. Made of brick and stucco-faced, the house is mostly surrounded by a wrought-iron railing fence which is built on top of a three-foot brick wall. It has wide piazzas or porches on the south side. The north entrance leads to a large hall. The staircase at the entrance leads to the two drawing rooms on the second floor. The small rooms behind them served as withdrawing spaces, one for men and the other for women. The house has an open floor plan of two large rooms on each floor with smaller adjacent areas. The second floor has 14-foot-high ceilings with large window and door openings for good air flow circulation during the hot summer months. Included at this level is a room of books for library use and reading. The interior walls and ceilings are finished in ornamental plaster. The property originally contained a kitchen and servants' quarters, horse stables and facilities for carriages. The English Regency style, Greek Revival house, built on the foundation ruins of Fort Mechanic that occupied this location in the late 18th century, was constructed by shipping merchant Charles Edmondston, a Scottish immigrant who purchased the low sandy lot in 1817. The soggy land was unfit for residential construction until a sea wall was built by city officials in 1820. Edmondston wasted no time in building his showplace.

Why You Should Visit:
This house is made special by the fact 90-95% of the décor and fixtures are authentic. It has been so well maintained that little restoration has been needed.
The guided tour is definitely worth taking and the price is reasonable for the perspective it offers on what life was like in Charleston back in the day.

Opening Hours / Guided Tours:
Tue-Sat: 10am-4:30pm; Sun, Mon: 1pm-4:30pm
7
Rainbow Row

7) Rainbow Row (must see)

Rainbow Row is the name for a series of 13 colorful historic houses in Charleston. A popular tourist attraction and one of the most photographed parts of the city, it represents the longest cluster of Georgian row houses in the United States.

Rainbow Row – a name coined after the pastel colors that the houses were painted as they were restored in the 1930s and 1940s – is located north of Tradd St. and south of Elliot St. on East Bay Street. Common myths include variants on the reasons for the paint colors. According to some tales, the houses were painted in the various colors such that the intoxicated sailors coming in from port could remember which houses they were to bunk in. In other versions, the colors of the buildings date from their use as stores; the colors were used so that owners could tell illiterate slaves which building to go to for shopping. Each house has an interesting story to tell about its origin, its inhabitants and its renovation.

Why You Should Visit:
From fires to flooding to hurricanes to the Civil War and so on, these homes have somehow remained intact and still stand.

Tip:
If you look closely, you can see where renovations have been done to keep the standing, including earthquake rods that run through the structure.
Check out this row as you're walking toward Waterfront Park – it's a must stop photo op!
Sight description based on wikipedia
8
Old Slave Mart

8) Old Slave Mart (must see)

The Old Slave Mart is a building located at 6 Chalmers Street in Charleston, SC that once housed an antebellum slave auction gallery. Constructed in 1859, the building is believed to be the last extant slave auction facility in South Carolina. In 1975, the Old Slave Mart was added to the National Register of Historic Places for its role in Charleston's African-American history. Today, the building houses the Old Slave Mart Museum.

The Old Slave Mart was originally part of a slave market known as Ryan's Slave Mart, which covered a large enclosed lot between Chalmers and Queen streets. The market was established in 1856 by Charleston City Councilman Thomas Ryan after a citywide ban on public slave auctions made private facilities necessary. Slave auctions were held at the site until approximately 1863; in 1865, the Union Army occupied Charleston and closed Ryan's Mart. The Old Slave Mart Museum has operated on and off since 1938.

Why You Should Visit:
Highly informative museum, with extremely knowledgeable staff that's more than capable of responding to questions that the various exhibits will undoubtedly raise in your mind.
Exhibits are related to both the transcontinental slave trade and the domestic slave trade, with numerous large storyboards along with personal stories from slaves.

Tip:
Consider buying a ticket here in conjunction with the Old Exchange, as you get a discount when purchasing multiple tickets.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9am-5pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
9
Waterfront Park

9) Waterfront Park (must see)

Waterfront Park is an eight-acre (5 ha) park along approximately one-half mile of the Cooper River in Charleston. The park received the 2007 Landmark Award from the American Society of Landscape Architects and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This award "recognizes a distinguished landscape architecture project completed between 15 and 50 years ago that retains its original design integrity and contributes significantly to the public realm of the community in which it is located."

The park is composed of distinct sections. At the northern entrance, at the foot of Vendue Range (a street in Charleston), a large fountain was built which anchors the end of the park. From the fountain, Vendue Wharf is a wide, wooden pier which extends into the Cooper River and offers sheltered swings. The largest portion of the park, between Vendue Range to the north and Exchange St. to the south, is itself made of two distinct sections. Running along Concord St. and Prioleau St. for approximately one-quarter mile is a dense canopy of oak trees and many benches. Parallel the shady urban park and immediately adjacent to the riverfront is an open lawn landscaped with palmetto trees. The 1,200-foot palmetto lined esplanade follows the natural water line ensuring public access to the water’s edge. In the middle of the grassy lawn is the Pineapple Fountain, a large fountain shaped like a pineapple located immediately in front of the City Gallery.

Why You Should Visit:
Beautiful, grassy spots to picnic, spectacular unobstructed views of Charleston Harbor, Ravenel Bridge, Patriots Point and Fort Sumter, a large fountain, a dense canopy of oak trees and many benches to engage in the art of people-watching.

Tip:
They have giant bench swings under a covered boardwalk along the dock area, where you may swing and watch the boats come in and go out.
Sunrise and sunset are amazing almost every day. You may even see dolphins here.
Sight description based on wikipedia
10
French Huguenot Church

10) French Huguenot Church (must see)

Built in 1844 and designed by architect Edward Brickell White, the French Huguenot Church is the oldest Gothic Revival church in South Carolina and has been designated a National Historic Landmark. The congregation it serves traces its origins to the 1680s and is the only independent Huguenot church in the United States.

As Protestants in predominantly-Catholic France, Huguenots faced persecution throughout the 16th and 17th centuries. Following the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685, many Huguenots fled France for various parts of the world, including Charleston. The early congregation of Charleston's Huguenot Church included many of these refugees, and their descendants continued to play a role in the church's affairs for many decades. The church was originally affiliated with the Calvinist Reformed Church of France, and its doctrine still retains elements of Calvinist doctrine. The church's services still follow 18th-century French liturgy but are conducted in English, although since 1950, an annual service has been conducted in French to celebrate the spring.

Why You Should Visit:
Docents are usually on duty to provide a short tour and oral history at your request. The tour is as much about the surprising Huguenot influences in early America as it is about the church itself.
The old organ, the gothic ceiling, the external buttresses are all worth a good look. There is no admission or tour charge but they are glad to take donations for the preservation of the building.

Church Tours (Spring & Fall):
Mon-Thu: 10am-4pm; Fri: 10am-1pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
11
Dock Street Theatre

11) Dock Street Theatre (must see)

Situated in the historic French Quarter neighborhood of downtown Charleston, the Dock Street Theatre was the first building in America designed for use as a theater. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1973 and reopened for the third time on March 18, 2010, after a three-year, $19 million renovation by the City of Charleston. This extensive full-scale renovation brought the historic theatre into the 21st century with state-of-the-art lighting and sound, modern heating and air conditioning, and new restrooms and seating. In addition, the theatre was made seismically secure and fully handicapped accessible. Extensive sound-proofing was added to ensure that outside noises no longer intruded on performances inside.

Now owned and managed by the City of Charleston, The Historic Dock Street Theatre (soon to enter its fourth century as the heart of Charleston's artistic life) is home to many of the City's finest cultural institutions including Spoleto Festival USA. Charleston Stage, which became the resident professional theatre at the Dock Street Theatre in 1978, produces over 120 performances each season and plays to more than 40,000 patrons annually.

Why You Should Visit:
Just walking around the area is worth the trip (pure Charleston!), but this actually is a charming, snug (seats about 500), warm (lots of woodwork) and overall remarkably comfortable theatre, with acoustics that are easy on the ears.

Tip:
Be sure to tour the entire theater (free to look) because the interior is quite spectacular!
Great spot for a bathroom break if you are exploring historical Charleston on foot.

Box Office Hours:
Mon-Fri: 1–5pm (open Sat 1:00pm–curtain only on performance days; the Box Office will also open 1hr before each performance)
Sight description based on wikipedia
12
St. Philip's Church

12) St. Philip's Church (must see)

St. Philip's Episcopal Church is a historic Episcopal church in the French Quarter neighborhood of Charleston. Its National Historic Landmark description states: "Built in 1836 (spire completed in 1850), this stuccoed brick church features an imposing tower designed in the Wren-Gibbs tradition. Three Tuscan pedimented porticoes contribute to this design to make a building of the highest quality and sophistication."

Established in 1681, St. Philip's is the oldest religious congregation in South Carolina. The first St. Philip's Church, a wooden building, was built between 1680 and 1681 at the corner of Broad and Meeting streets on the present day site of St. Michael's Episcopal Church. It was damaged in a hurricane in 1710 and a new St. Phillip's Church was begun a few blocks away on Church Street. After being delayed it was finished in 1723. It burned to the ground in 1835. Work on the present church was begun that same year and completed the next. St. Philip's is still an active parish in the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina.

Why You Should Visit:
One of South Carolina's most photographed buildings! The well-maintained graveyard surrounding the church is also a must when walking through the neighborhood.

Tip:
Be sure to stop across the street at the French Huguenot Church. They are historically affiliated; both have amazing histories and architecture!

Opening Hours:
Mon, Tue, Thu: 8:30am-4:30pm; Wed: 8:30am-4:30pm / 5:30-7pm; Fri: 8:30am-1pm; Sun: 8:15am-12pm
Free admission
Sight description based on wikipedia
13
Gibbes Museum of Art

13) Gibbes Museum of Art (must see)

Established in 1905, the amazing Gibbes houses a premier collection of over 10,000 works of fine art, principally American works, many with a connection to Charleston or the South. They also have a special annual exhibition.

After closing for an extensive two-year, $13.5 million renovations, the museum reopened to the public in 2016. In renovating the museum, the development teams took inspiration from the original blueprints discovered in the City of Charleston archives in 2008 to return the building to its 1905 Beaux Arts style layout. The renovation of the first floor features a creative education center that engages the public through classrooms, artist studios, lecture and event spaces, a café and a museum store. The rear reception area opens to the garden, part of Charleston’s historic Gateway Walk founded by the Garden Club of Charleston. Serving as a creative gathering place for the community, the entire ground floor of the museum is admission-free.

The newly expanded and renovated galleries on the 2nd and 3rd floors provide a 30% increase in gallery space to showcase more than 600 works of art from the permanent collection. State-of-the-art storage facilities feature a closely connected research room to provide ample space for scholars to more easily access and study works from the collection. Observation windows offer visitors a behind-the-scenes view of the work of curators and conservators. The Gibbes’ renowned collection of more than 300 miniature portraits are housed in innovative display cases and open storage cabinetry to allow an up-close view for visitors.

Why You Should Visit:
To enjoy a charming "stroll" through art, while experiencing some surprising/unfamiliar artworks and learning something new.

Tip:
Catch one of the many rotating exhibitions here when you're in town – you'll be in for a treat. They also have guided tours and often host lectures, concerts, and other fun events.

Opening Hours:
Mon, Tue, Thu-Sat: 10am-5pm; Wed: 10am-8pm; Sun: 1-5pm

One-Hour Public Tours (free with paid admission):
Tue, Fri: 12:30pm, Wed: 6pm, Thu, Fri & Second Sundays: 2:30pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
14
Circular Congregational Church

14) Circular Congregational Church (must see)

The Circular Congregational Church is a historic church in Charleston used by a congregation established in 1681. Its parish house, the Parish House of the Circular Congregational Church, is a highly significant Greek Revival architectural work by Robert Mills and is recognized as a U.S. National Historic Landmark.

The church was a Pantheon-type building 88 feet (27 m) in diameter with seven great doors and 26 windows. On its main floor and in the gallery it was said to accommodate 2,000 worshipers! The first major domed building in North America, it was described by one observer in 1818 as "the most extraordinary building in the United States."

On December 11, 1861, a great fire started near the Cooper River. During the night, a "hurricane of fire" swept all the way across the city, leaving in its wake the ruins of Old Circular. However, the church managed to raise the eyebrows of the establishment once again. The present Romanesque style, quite modern in 1890, was inspired by Henry Hobart Richardson and designed by Stephenson and Greene of New York City. The building combines two powerful forms: the circle (the exterior plan), reminiscent of the former church and universal symbol of eternity and wholeness, and the Greek Cross (the interior plan), the Christian symbol of death and resurrection.

Why You Should Visit:
Definitely a one-of-a-kind sanctuary, easy to walk to from local downtown lodging.

Tip:
This is an excellent venue for various musical events throughout the year, so check out their website for events!
Make sure to also stroll through the historic graveyard located next to the church.
Sight description based on wikipedia
15
Historic City Market

15) Historic City Market (must see)

One of the most visited spots in Charleston, the old City Market has a history stretching back to over 200 years, and, besides being a very popular shopping place for tourists and locals alike, it is also a very interesting architectural structure. The main building was established in 1841 and it resembles a Greek temple. The market stretches for four city blocks from it, through a continuous series of one-story market sheds, the last of which terminates at East Bay Street. Vendors sell souvenirs and other items ranging from jewelry to Gullah sweetgrass baskets and the food options are great. Since 1899, the City Market has housed Charleston's Confederate Museum.

Why You Should Visit:
To sift from booth to booth and discover some real local crafting!
Lots of things to see and do; the sights are beautiful and the water is, too.

Tip:
Make sure to check out the Night Markets on weekends.
Bring your credit cards and plenty of cash – and ask for a deal if you pay cash.

Opening Hours:
Sun-Thu: 9:30am-6pm; Fri, Sat: 9:30am-10:30pm
16
Citadel Square Baptist Church

16) Citadel Square Baptist Church

Citadel Square Baptist Church was the fourth Baptist church built in Charleston, South Carolina. The church began as an outgrowth of the First Baptist Church when, in 1854, a dozen members sought permission to establish a new church for the upper peninsula. The new church was to have been known as the Fourth Baptist Church but, when an existing Baptist church closed, leaving only three Baptist churches, the name was changed to Citadel Square Baptist Church. The name refers to the church's location on upper Meeting St., immediately across from Marion Square,which at the time was the location of the Citadel. The Charleston architectural firm Jones & Lee designed the building and construction of the church at 328 Meeting St. began in June 1855. The new building was opened on November 23, 1856. A hurricane in 1885 blew over the original steeple and a year later, the 1886 Charleston earthquake damaged the tower. The tower was repaired and a steeple designed by the Boston, Massachusetts architect Edward Silloway was installed. Following Hurricane Hugo, which blew the steeple off of the church, it was rebuilt at 210 feet, shorter than the steeple of St. Matthew's across Marion Square; the choice was to avoid a race for the tallest steeple. In April 1951, an educational building was added to the campus. The church was the first in Charleston to televise its services, doing so for more than 40 years until ending the practice in 1998. Seven churches have been created under the auspices of Citadel Square Baptist Church including the Emma Abbott Memorial Chapel.
Sight description based on wikipedia
17
Charleston Music Hall

17) Charleston Music Hall

Charleston Music Hall is a great place to enjoy a really amazing concert or performance. The Charleston Music Hall has outstanding sound and light equipment, and a huge stage. It hosts, through the year, many performances by famous and not so famous artists. It is also a very beautiful Gothic Revival style building.
18
Charleston Museum

18) Charleston Museum (must see)

Founded in 1773 and commonly regarded as “America’s First Museum”, the Charleston Museum is located in the city's Downtown Historic District. The main museum's exhibits include natural history and local history displays as well as decorative arts, including silver. One display features objects from the museum's origins in the late 18th century. The museum also owns and operates two historic house museums: Heyward-Washington House – a late 18th-century period home of Thomas Heyward, Jr., Revolutionary patriot and signer of the Declaration of Independence; and the Joseph Manigault House – a Federal-style home decorated with American, English and French furnishing of the early 19th century.

Why You Should Visit:
To get a nice overview of South Carolina history, starting with the Native Americans, Wars, Slavery in the Lowcountry to after the Civil War. Plus, there's a wildlife/dinosaur and an antebellum clothing exhibit.

Tip:
If planning to tour the Heyward-Washington and/or Manigault House (both are fascinating), you can get a discount on a combined ticket with your museum admission.

Opening Hours:
[Museum] Mon–Sat: 9am–5pm; Sun: 12–5pm
[Heyward-Washington House & Joseph Manigault House] Mon-Sat: 10am–5pm (last tour at 4:30pm); Sun: 12–5pm (last tour at 4:30 pm)
Sight description based on wikipedia
19
Children's Museum of the Lowcountry

19) Children's Museum of the Lowcountry (must see)

Opened in 2003, the Children's Museum of the Lowcountry is one of the most attractive places for children and families in Charleston. The museum is just what is needed for children in the age group 3 to 12 years. Separated into theme rooms, the children can enjoy so many activities under one roof. There are lots of amazing exhibitions, hands-on activities, classes, and many other interesting things to do. Among these: art room, castle room, grocery store, pirate ship, water play, while outside they have even more activities – from giant Legos to a fire truck! There also is an infant area for younger visitors.

Tip:
The place thins out after about 1pm, so if you like less energy and your schedule fits try the afternoon.

Opening Hours:
Tue-Sat: 9am-5pm; Sun: 12-5pm
20
King Street

20) King Street

King Street is the main shopping area in Charleston, very popular not only with tourists, but with locals as well. It is 16 blocks of all kinds of shops. Here, you can find a lot of antique stores, fashionable boutiques selling clothes, books and many other interesting collectors' items. It is also a very interesting and beautiful architectural area.

Walking Tours in Charleston, South Carolina

Create Your Own Walk in Charleston

Create Your Own Walk in Charleston

Creating your own self-guided walk in Charleston is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Charleston Art and Culture Walk

Charleston Art and Culture Walk

Charleston was founded in 1670 and is a great tourist destination that offers you some of the most amazing, old and interesting tourist attractions. There is some great art and culture to be visited and enjoyed. Take the following tour to see it all.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.6 km
Charleston Downtown Architecture Walk

Charleston Downtown Architecture Walk

Charleston is a very beautiful city, with a rich history, famous for its southern hospitality. Those who like architecture will find some marvelous buildings, structures, churches, mansions and other outstanding sights here. Take the tour below to see some of the most beautiful Downtown architecture.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.0 km
Charleston Downtown Art Galleries Walk

Charleston Downtown Art Galleries Walk

Charleston is a very beautiful, southern city, with a rich history and very friendly people. It is also home to some amazing and interesting art galleries and museums. Take the following driving tour and discover Charleston's most appreciated art galleries.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 km
Charleston Harleston Village Churches Tour

Charleston Harleston Village Churches Tour

Charleston is very famous for its number of churches, as well as for being very open and tolerating different kinds of religious faiths. Charleston is the only city in the USA to have an independent Huguenot church. Here is a tour that will take you through Charleston’s Harleston Village churches.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 km
Charleston Downtown Churches Tour

Charleston Downtown Churches Tour

Charleston is also sometimes called the Holy City. That is because of the large number of churches in the city. The city has many outstanding and fascinating religious structures. Take the following walk to see the most popular churches in Downtown Charleston.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.4 km
Charleston Children's Entertainment Tour

Charleston Children's Entertainment Tour

Charleston is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Southern USA and it has many tourist attractions that can be enjoyed by the entire family. Take the tour below to discover some of the best locations for some fun with your children and the family!

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 km