Charleston South Carolina
Charleston South Carolina is a city on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. It has a rich history, including well-preserved architecture and distinguished restaurants. Both Travel and Leisure, and Southern Living magazines also have called Charleston the most polite and hospitable place in America, and voted America's Best City three years in a row. Founded in 1670, it is the oldest and second largest in South Carolina. Major Attractions There is no shortage to what Charleston has to offer in attractions, with history, art, and architecture mingling together as one walks down cobblestone streets. Old gated family cemeteries, Victorian homes, and century-old oak trees are just a few testaments to the charm of Charleston. Here are a few places that many tourists find fascinating: At Fort Sumter National Monument one can see across the harbor to the Waterfront Park and the Battery. It is a famous site where the first shots of the Civil War were fired, and it became the Southern stronghold for most of the Civil War. It is only accessible by water, and so one must take the ferry. At the same time one can visit Fort Moultrie on Sullivan Island. The South Carolina Aquarium takes visitors into the Low Country coastal environment through touch tanks. There is a two-story walled aquarium, and a panoramic view of the Harbor and Ravenel Bridge. Battery Park and White Point Gardens is set against East Bay Street where one can view the famous Battery Mansions to one side and the harbor to the other. Antebellum historic homes line the street, as do century old oak trees. Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum is located across the river from downtown. It is a unique way to see life at sea aboard the ships during World War II and learn about history. Stunning views of Ravenel Bridge and the Charlestown peninsula can also be seen here. Boone Hall plantation is one of America's oldest and most famous living and working plantations in the south and is set on 783 acres. It was established in 1681 and offer tours of the elegant house and workings of the plantation. Folly beach is nicknamed "the edge of America" and is located 10 miles down the coast from downtown Charleston. A daytrip to the beach is a fun excursion for every type of vacationer. It has the best water for sports activities or lounging on the beach. Angel Oak is a massive live oak tree thought to be at least 1500 years old. It's also thought to be the oldest living thing east of the Rocky Mountains, and it is truly beautiful. Shopping Shopping in Charleston can be a fun and unique experience. The best place to go to experiencing shopping is down King Street. There are the shops at Charleston Place, Geo. C. Burlant Company, Berlin's Clothiers, M. Dumas and Sons, the Vault and Haute Hanger, and Hampden Clothing. There is the Charleston Farmers Market held weekly each Saturday. It's close to many restaurants and bars and one can enjoy breakfast or lunch with live music. There are also many gift vendors and local artisans. Established in the 1830s, the Charleston City Market may be the most visited destination in downtown Charleston. Many local shoppers come here and it is open year-round. There are local vendors that sell unique wares and crafts, and there are casual and fine dining opportunities. The Mount Pleasant Town Centre is an open-air mall shopping center that offers upscale shopping away from crowds and busy downtown. Restaurants The food in Charleston is genuinely southern. Gold rice, field peas, okra, and sesame seeds are all used in many dishes. Some of the more popular dishes are shrimp and grits, Hoppin' John's a mixture of rice and peas traditionally, Frogmore stew (shrimp, corncobs, chunks of potatoes, and round sausage. A few top-rated restaurants include Hank's Seafood Restaurant (voted the best seafood restaurant in Charleston for the last 13 years), Pearlz Oyster and Raw Bar, Magnolias, The Macintosh, Peninsula Grill, FIG, and Husk. "America's Best City" aka Charleston, is must-see destination that should be at the top of anyone's list. With its rich history, perfect weather, beaches, and attractions, it is a place that has many visitors returning.