Visiting the Charleston Area
Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum
At Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum, tour the USS Yorktown, USS Clamagore, Medal of Honor Museum, Cold War Submarine Memorial and the only Vietnam Support Base Camp in the U.S. It's history you can touch.
Fort Sumter Tours
Stops at Fort Sumter National Monument, where the Civil War began. Cruise to the island fort while you enjoy breathtaking views of Charleston and her Harbor. Depart from the Visitor Education Facility at Liberty Square downtown and from Patriots Point in Mt. Pleasant.
Magnolia Plantation & Its Gardens
Open 365 days a year 8am-5:30pm; call for Nov.-Feb. hours. This 17th century estate, acquired in 1676 by the Drayton family, features America's oldest gardens (c.1680), which bloom year-round. Pre-Revolutionary War plantation house, Biblical garden, antebellum cabin, nature train, nature boat, wildlife observation tower, gift shop and more. Leashed pets welcome. $15, guided tours (House tour, train tour and Boat tour) are additional cost.
Boone Hall Plantation
A must see! NBC Daytime Television. Boone Hall reflects Southern heritage spanning 300 years on one magnificent still working plantation. House tours, gardens, slave cabins, plantation coach tours, live performances in season, cafe, plus one of the world's longest oak-lined avenues.
Admission for Gardens & Stableyards: $25/Adults, $10/Children 6-13. Carefully preserved 18th century plantation and National Historic Landmark; 65 acres of America's oldest landscaped Gardens. House Museum tours highlight family collections and the role of the Middleton's in American history. Craftspeople in the Stableyards recreate the activities of a self-sustaining Lowcountry plantation. Closed Christmas Day.
South Carolina Aquarium
Fun, wonder and education come together for the whole family in one amazing experience when you visit the South Carolina Aquarium. Participate in our interactive exhibits and programs, and marvel at loggerhead turtles, stingrays, sharks, otters, moray eels, alligators and much more.
This beautiful home on Charleston's High Battery affords a glimpse of early 19th century elegance, style and comfort. Built in 1825, the house contains Alston family furniture, silver, books and paintings. Three piazzas offer incredible views of Charleston Harbor. In 1861, General Beauregard watched the bombardment of Ft. Sumter here.
Built in 1772, Charleston's Revolutionary War House was the town-home of Thomas Heyward, Jr., Revolutionary patriot and signer of the Declaration of Independence. Located in the original walled portion of the city, the house features magnificent Charleston-made furniture and a formal 18th century garden. Adults $10; children $5. Combination tickets available.
Gibbes Museum of Art
Experience Charleston's history through art! Come face to face with stories of the South Carolina Lowcountry as seen through painting, miniature portraiture, sculpture, photographs and more at Charleston's signature art museum. Complimentary cell phone tour (using your own phone) is offered with paid admission.
Nathaniel Russell House
Visit the grand Federal townhouse of Charleston merchant Nathaniel Russell, completed in 1808. The gracefully restored interior boasts elaborate ornamentation and a magnificent free-flying staircase. Set amid spacious gardens and furnished with period antiques, the house evokes the gracious lifestyle of the city's elite. $10.
The expansive Aiken-Rhett House (c. 1818) stands as the city's most intact antebellum urban complex. Historic interiors have been conserved and stabilized, having survived virtually unaltered since 1858. Many family objects are still found in the rooms for which they were purchased. $10. MC, V, D.
Daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve/Day and New Year's Day. More than a house, activities include hourly tours and daily programs, a self-directed "Voices" Landscape Tour on DVD, self-guided river and marsh walks, A Sacred Place: The African-American Cemetery, and an artisan-inspired museum shop.
Joseph Manigault House
Charleston's Huguenot House was built in 1803 and is a premier example of Adam-style, or Federal, architecture. The garden Gate Temple and outstanding collection of American, English and French furnishings of the period capture the lifestyle of a wealthy, rice-planting family. Adults $10; children $5. Combination tickets available.
The Charleston Museum
America's first museum showcases a variety of fascinating artifacts that tell the story of Lowcountry cultural and natural history. Visitors will be transported back through time, viewing objects from ancient fossils and an enormous whale skeleton to elegant costumes and Civil War artifacts.
Open daily 9am - 5pm. Owned and operated by the City of Charleston Department of Parks. The Angel Oak is a Live Oak tree, estimated to be 1,400 years old. Live oaks are not particularly tall, but have wide spreading canopies. Only in the very oldest of specimens do you find massive limbs resting on the ground, as do the limbs of the Angel Oak. It stands 65ft. high and provides a 17,000 square foot area of shade. No admission charge.
Audubon Center at Francis Beidler Forest
The 15,000-acre sanctuary for plant and animal life is located in Four Holes Swamp and contains the largest remaining virgin stand of bald cypress and tupelo trees in the world. A mile-and-3 quarters boardwalk begins at the Visitor's Center and sweeps past portions of majestic swamp, where ancient trees, migrating birds, and colorful wildflowers can be quietly oberserved. 35 miles NW of Charleston, Exit 187-SC 187 off I-26. Open 9:00 am-5:00 pm, Tues.-Sun. Closed Mondays, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year's Eve, and New Year's Day. Adults/$8.00, 6-18 years/$4.00, Children under 6/free. Audubon members/$7.
Avery Research Center for African-American History and Culture
Reading room and archives open 10am-5pm M-F and 12-5pmon Saturdays. Walk-in tours open Mon-Sat 12-5pm. Group tours by appointment. (1990 Carolopolis Award). Beautifully restored facility, site of former Avery School built in 1865. Research Center's purpose is to document, preserve, and make public the unique historical and cultural heritage of South Carolina Lowcountry African-Americans. Tour of building includes exhibits and archives.
Battery Park/Whitepoint Gardens
The Battery, which includes a park known as White Point Gardens, is a landmark promenade in Charleston. Stretching along the shores of the Charleston peninsula and bordered by the Ashley and Cooper Rivers. Fort Sumter is visible from the Cooper River side and the point, as is Castle Pinckney, the World War II aircraft carrier USS Yorktown, Fort Moultrie, and Sullivan's Island.