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South Carolina



With tons of historical and military significance, Charleston, South Carolina, offers a look at the Old South and a chance to escape the modern world. Known as one of America's most mannerly cities, Charleston's distinguished demeanor has made it a top tourist destination. History buffs will have plenty to explore in Charleston. The Museum Mile includes the Charleston Museum (the first museum in America) and the Old Slave Mart Museum, which details the city's role in a major chapter of African American history. Visitors can also explore the state's oldest public building, a Revolutionary War powder magazine. Charleston offers some of the most important military sites in America, from the Revolutionary War's Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon to a memorial for pirate Stede Bonnet, who was hanged here. White Point Gardens offers views of the famous Fort Sumter, an important Civil War stronghold. The Citadel, founded in 1842, is another landmark, and its museum portrays the history of its famous Corps of Cadets. Although the city's historical significance attracts many visitors, others come to simply relax and recharge. With more than 15 local golf courses and five area beaches, Charleston can be the perfect place to leave the fast pace of modern life behind. Guests can indulge in local spas, or unwind beneath the ample shade of the 1,400-years-old Angel Oak. Charleston International Airport serves more than 900,000 passengers each year, so visitors shouldn't have any difficulty finding flights to Charleston.

When To Go

With historic and resort communities, Charleston can be an ideal vacation spot anytime of year. The most popular time to visit the city is in the spring, when the weather is comfortable, flowers are blooming, and festivals are frequent. Summers can be humid, with high temperatures and a chance of rain. The beach communities, however, peak in the summer, when visitors rush to the shore for sunbathing and water activities. Autumn can be a pleasant time to visit, with slightly cooler temperatures. In the winter, the city is the least crowded, prices are lower, and the weather is cool and mild.

high season: March to May
low season: November to February
shoulder season: June to October

Weather Information

Charleston benefits from a temperate climate throughout its four seasons. Spring brings warm weather, with average high temperatures jumping from 66 degrees in March to 80 degrees in May. Temperatures are directly affected by the city's close proximity to the ocean, and are typically a few degrees cooler on the coast than inland. The months of June through September see the highest humidity and the greatest amount of rain. Hurricane season runs from June through November. July is the hottest month of the year, with temperatures averaging 89 degrees, but the heat rarely reaches above 100 degrees. Things cool down in the fall, with average high temperatures dropping from 83 degrees in September to 68 degrees in November. Winters stay fairly mild, with average highs leveling off to around 59 degrees.

Crowd Information

Weekends in the high season tend to be the busiest times to visit, but spring events are also popular. Festivals attract crowds, including the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition in February; the Cooper River Bridge Run and the Lowcountry Cajun Festival in March; the Historic Charleston Foundation's Festival of Houses and Gardens and the Flowertown Festival in March and April; and the Family Circle Cup in April.

Closure Information

Hotels, shops, and attractions remain open year-round.

When to Save

The low season can be the least expensive time to visit, when airlines and hotels reduce their prices and offer package deals. The most expensive time to visit is over a high-season weekend. Airfare and hotel discounts are available for midweek visits, especially for stays in the spring or fall.

Information provided by the Charleston Area Convention and Visitor Bureau