Sometimes the busy hustle and bustle of the big city starts to take a toll on you and you begin to imagine what it would be like to spend a few days of relaxing and unwinding while you leave your worries behind. Going on a sweet little vacation will surely do you wonders and one of the best places to visit is the charming, idyllic and laid back State of South Carolina. From historic Charleston to fun-filled water parks in Myrtle Beach, this state has no shortage of incredible places to visit. These are the top 10 attractions in South Carolina that you should not miss.
Known for its rich and colorful history, beautiful and well-preserved architectural structures, distinguished restaurants and well-mannered people, it comes as to no surprise that Charleston was hailed by Travel and Leisure Magazine as America's Friendliest City in the year 2011. The Historic Charleston foundation was born out of the need to preserve and protect the city's unique historical, architectural and cultural character. If you are a culture vulture and you would want to absorb anything and everything that you need to know about the city then book some of their museum and house tours, join the exquisite antique show and make sure to take home a lovely souvenir with you.
With 60 miles of wide, powdery sand beaches, you and your family will spend hours of baking under the sun, building sandcastles by the sea shore, or swimming in its azure blue waters. Myrtle Beach is lined with some of the best resorts and hotels in the state offering you comfort, elegance and functionality. Take part in some of their thrilling water sports, go golfing with your buddies or even go fishing. There are way too many things to do here at Myrtle Beach which is why a visit to South Carolina would not be complete without it in your itinerary.
There’s no shortage of activities at Hilton Head Island. Hilton Head, located in the Lowcountry region of South Carolina, has everything you need for a perfect island retreat. You’ll have your choice between world-class golf, shopping, kayaking, biking, fishing and horseback riding opportunities on a trip to Hilton Head. The island is also home to 12 miles of pristine sandy beaches. Hilton Head has everything you need for a remote getaway whether you’re seeking a vacation rental or an upscale resort. Come for the fun, stay for the beauty.
In 2013, BrookGreen Gardens was named as one of Trip Advisor's Top Ten Public Gardens in the United States. This is a well-deserved award because this non-profit outdoor museum has always been one of the best attractions that South Carolina has to offer. With its majestic oaks, beautiful sculptures, gorgeous greenery and lush landscapes, it has always been a place to restore your energy and spirit. BrookGreen has tours, programs and activities that are suited for different age groups so there is definitely something fun and exciting for you to do here.
Home to the oldest landscaped gardens in the country, Middleton Place has become a hugely popular historic landmark over the years. Spread over sixty five acres, this is a wonderful place to come if you want to explore unique and eye-catching natural beauty. In addition to the stunning gardens, you can also look forward to exploring the House Museum, where you will be able to take in some great displays of furniture, porcelain, rarities, and artwork. You can then move on to pay a visit to the Plantation Stableyards, where you can step back in time and enjoy a living history experience as well as see a range of animals.
Address: 4300 Ashley River Rd, Charleston, SC 29414
Bask in your child's awestruck and delighted expressions as they visit each of the exotic animals that are housed here in one of America's best zoos, the Riverbanks Zoo & Garden. Your kids will enjoy feeding the farm animals at the petting zoo and they will love watching all the fun animal shows. Register ahead of time for their exciting adventure tours that will let you encounter animals up close as well as explore many behind the scenes zoo operations.
Address: 500 Wildlife Parkway,
West Columbia, SC 29169
This Naval and maritime museum located on Charleston harbor is a monument to the many brave soldiers who fought for the country. The main attraction here is the World War II aircraft carrier USS Yorktown. Attracting over 270,000 visitors each year, this is the best place for you to explore, discover and appreciate US history like you never have before.
Address: 40 Patriots Point Rd,
Mt Pleasant, SC 29464
Historic, romantic, stunningly beautiful. Those are just a few words used to describe Magnolia Plantation and Gardens located in Charleston County, South Carolina. Magnolia is the oldest plantation site on the Ashley River and was established by the Drayton family in the 1670s. It’s also the oldest public gardens in America, having first opened its doors to guests in 1870. Many of the gardens beautiful flowers and plants predate Civil War and give a fascinating look into the flora of the time. Magnolia is revered for its gorgeous grounds as much as it is its history. The romantic-style garden features sprawling collections of flowers that are in bloom year-round. Magnolia is worthy of a trip no matter the time of year. You can visit in the spring to see startling azaleas or the winter to see the famed camellias.
Address: 3550 Ashley River Rd,
Charleston, SC 29414
A beautiful coastal preserve, Huntington Beach State Park offers a stunning beach area as well as a host of activities and sights for the whole family to enjoy. Atalaya Castle, which was the home of the Huntingtons, is located here and when you visit you can enjoy a tour of this fascinating home as well as explore a range of exhibitions at the Atalaya Visitor Center. You can also enjoy getting to one with nature, as there are various bird species for those who are interested in wildlife. A favorite amongst kids is the onsite Nature Center, which provides an exciting educational experience with both historic displays and live animals.
History buffs know all about Fort Sumter. But it’s one thing to see this historic national monument, and quite another to experience it. You can talk a walk through the exact location where the first shots were fired in the Civil War on a tour of Fort Sumter National Monument. You can also learn about the events leading up to that fateful morning in 1861 by taking a walking tour of the grounds. Fort Sumter is located in Charleston Harbor and is only accessible via boat. It might require some traveling, but a trip is well worth the trek. Fort Sumter has daily tours and a museum that houses many historic artifacts.