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1 Jul 2019
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Things to Do

Antebellum homes. Historic forts. Pirate haunts. Beautiful gardens. A busy waterfront. Charleston bursts with history, charm and old-fashioned Southern hospitality. Organized tours in Charleston are the perfect way to acclimate yourself to the city, learn about its culture and history, and even taste some of the delicious cuisine.

Here are some of our favorite ways to see the Holy City.

Tours in Charleston by Sea

Take Charleston Harbor Tours or SpiritLine Cruises for a view of the city from the water. Both feature a range of cruises that take in the Charleston Harbor as well as many of the landmarks that make the city a storyteller’s paradise. On the daily tours, you’ll see Fort Sumter, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired; the USS Yorktown, St. Michael’s Church, which survived the Revolutionary War; and stately mansions and plantations. You’ll also see plenty of wildlife, and passengers have even been known to spot dolphins. Both also offer special dinner cruises and holiday cruises.

Nearby Tours in Charleston by Land

When you visit Charleston, it’s hard to miss the horse-drawn carriages that clip-clop their way along its historic streets. Carriage tours are a relaxing and memorable way to see the sights. Classic Carriage Tours and Palmetto Carriage Works get rave reviews for their seasoned guides. You’ll see the buildings and architecture of this beautiful city, while hearing insightful stories about its role in America’s history and the people who called this place home.

Do you prefer a walking tour of Charleston’s cobblestone streets? For unprecedented access and a thorough knowledge of the city’s history, take a tour with a 7th generation native son, Michael Trouche. Michael operates Charleston Footprints and knows the city inside and out. He can tell you all about the city’s flora and fauna, architecture, and customs. He mixes humor and history in this entertaining two-hour tour.

Charleston Area by Spirit

Bulldog Walking Tours offers an array of spirited ghost tours. Not only do their guides know the city, but a portion of ticket sales also go to preserving its historic sights. They’ve raised more than $2.7 million to restore the Old City Jail, Circular Church’s graveyard, and the Old Exchange. Tours include Spirits of Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston Haunted Jail, a Haunted Pub Crawl, Haunted Yorktown and more. They are spooky, but not really scary. While recent guests didn’t report seeing ghost sightings, that doesn’t mean you won’t get a glimpse of the paranormal.

Tours in Charleston by Food

Savor the flavors of Charleston’s quintessential Southern fare with Charleston Food Tours. Walk, talk and taste your way through 300 years of Low Country history and cuisine. Go behind the scenes of some of the city’s most talked-about restaurants, meet the chefs, and learn about the restaurant’s rich history. These informative Charleston food tours are ideal for both casual fans of the culinary arts and the hardcore foodie.

These are just a few of the ways you can get to know the city. In a city brimming with history and unique sites, it’s not hard to find even more ways to enjoy the Charleston area.