Voted #1 Best U.S. City by Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards (2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011) and Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards (2015, 2014, 2013). Discover why Charleston is the one destination you absolutely, positively must visit.
The peninsula is a preservationist’s muse, and the area’s chronology is evident everywhere. The cobblestone streets – polished by more than 300 years of history – are a burnished roadmap through time, while Carolopolis Award plaques, copper lanterns and hitching posts hint at a bygone era. Ornate plasterwork, period antiques, paneled ballrooms and formal gardens illustrate the grandeur of colonial wealth, a bygone era expertly preserved at every turn.
Daily life is accompanied by a gentle harmony of church bells, rustling palmetto fronds, and lyrical sea island accents. Church steeples – not skyscrapers – dot the skyline and a tangible connection to the past permeates the community. While the setting is undeniably historic, a palpable vitality courses across the peninsula. Early city planners laid out a grid of easily navigable streets, and Charleston’s intimate urban environment invites discovery. Take a walk and see for yourself the splendor, soul, and spirit that define modern Charleston.
Charleston. “The Holy City”, is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities in the U.S. as well as being one of its top tourist attractions. Located on the coast of South Carolina this city of many prominent churches was founded in 1670. Until the mid 1800’s it was one of the 10 largest cities in North America. Today the city has a population of just over 112,000, with 600,000 people living in the Charleston Metropolitan Statistical Area. College of Charleston and The Citadel are just two of the institutions of higher education that are located here.
Charleston’s popularity as a tourist destination is based on its long and colorful history as well as its streets lined with majestic and Spanish moss draped live oaks. Historic pastel-colored homes look out over the waterfront. The city is also an important port, boasting the second largest container seaport on the East Coast. Find out what baby boomers are moving to Charleston, SC’s “Low Country“.
Eat: “I want shrimp and hominy when I’m in Charleston, at whatever place doesn’t call hominy grits,” Colbert declares with the emphatic authority of his Colbert Report persona. He gets that or the catch of the day at Hominy Grill ($$). Another pick? “Husk ($$$) has fantastic fried chicken skin and a watermelon salad that’s really delicious. I like that everything there is focused on being from south of the Mason-Dixon Line.”
Shop: King Street is the de facto center of retail and antiques stores. “In the past, it had no chains,” Colbert says. One of the oldest merchants, George C. Birlant & Co., has carried 18th-century furniture and silver since 1922.
Do: Colbert spent most of his salad days outside. “We’d go swimming off Sullivan’s Island. Afterward, we’d walk in to local bars with any kind of fake ID—a piece of paper that just about announced you were 18—and they’d serve you a beer.”
Come for a visit, stay for a lifetime…
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