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  • Charleston
  • Charleston
  • Charleston

​Charleston, South Carolina Holidays​

Think 'Charleston' and you might picture a Flapper girl doing a Twenties dance. But you really have to go much more in the direction of Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with The Wind - because this is a city of beautiful historic buildings and Southern traditions, where grand 18th- and 19th-century town houses stand proudly on cobble-stone streets. Add to that easy access to beaches, plus the whole of South Carolina's stunning Low Country to explore, and what's not to like?

The dazzling Historic District, where the skyline is peppered with church steeples and the gardens are a riot of jasmine and magnolias, is a gorgeous place to wander on Charleston holidays. Or you can clip-clop your way through the streets, peeking through windows into graceful interiors, from a horse-drawn carriage. The view from Battery park, with its famous antebellum mansions to one side and scenic Charleston harbour spreading out on the other, sums up the city's unique appeal nicely.

The pace here is as relaxed as a Southern drawl, and a day at the beach is the perfect way to kick-back. Head to Sullivan's Island Beach with its giant sandbar and tidal pool for great sun bathing and swimming away from the crowds, as well as charming local shops and restaurants. Or if you fancy a bit more action, rent a board and have fun in the surf along Folly Beach, or cast a line from its pier. 

There's history aplenty on Charleston holidays, with the chance to visit plantations, as well as Civil War forts - and you can even explore ships and submarines from World War Two at Patriot's Point Naval & Maritime Museum. Combine all this with the city's famous friendly welcome and perfect Southern manners, and you've got an ideal holiday destination.

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Historic Houses

Charleston Historic HousesOnce you've admired Charleston's magnificent buildings from the outside, you really need to step inside for the full effect. Several are open as museums, and you can explore their splendour year-round. You can see inside others, which are normally off-limits, during special tours led by the Historic Foundation and the Preservation Society every spring and autumn.

The Low Country

The picturesque peninsulas, channels and sea islands of the South Carolina coast below Charleston are well worth exploring. Huntingdon State Park, with its iconic lighthouse, has pristine beaches, marshlands, forests and great wildlife - including loggerhead turtles. St Helena Island is where you can find out about the area's Gullah community - the descendants of West African slaves.

Fort Sumter

Take a ride on a ferry across Charleston Harbour to this fort where the first shots of the American Civil War were fired, spotting dolphins in the water as you go. Learn all about the bloodiest conflict in US history and see beautiful views of the harbour and back to the city.

Shop & Eat

There's some great places to get a dose of retail therapy on Charleston holidays. The newly renovated historic City Market has over one hundred vendors, most of them local, and you can see sweet grass basket weavers in action. King Street is where the big names cluster, while Upper King's Design District has antiques and homeware. Stop for traditional Southern shrimp and grits to refuel.

Boone Hall Plantation

Established in 1681, this plantation is operational to this day. See the splendid drive lined with a canopy of 270-year-old oak trees; tour the magnificent house; wander in the beautiful gardens; and explore the cabins where generations of slaves who toiled on the plantation slept.

Our Top Hotels in Charleston

Holiday Inn Charleston Riverview

Holiday Inn Charleston Riverview


This amazing Charleston, SC hotel's location is perfect for travelers looking for lodging near some of the city's best attractions, restaurants, and shopping.

Find out more about this hotel >>

Charleston Marriott

Charleston Marriott


Experience Southern comfort at the finest hotel in Charleston, SC. This downtown Charleston hotels beautifully redesigned guest rooms and suites are coupled with excellent sophistication.

Find out more about this hotel >>

Belmond Charleston Place Hotel

Belmond Charleston Place Hotel


This luxury hotel blends gentility and old-world charm with a leading-edge spa and innovative cuisine. Renowned as Charleston’s finest accommodations.

Find out more about this hotel >>


Fly Drive Holiday: South Carolina Highlights

Charlotte – Greenville – Columbia – Myrtle Beach – Charleston – Hilton Head Island – Savannah

Our recommended South Carolina fly-drive itinerary highlights the best that this Southern Belle state has to offer. Starting from the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains to the white-sand beaches of the Golden Isles, South Carolina is interspersed with incredible history, cultural heritage, Dixie music, Southern food and renowned hospitality for you to discover along your journey. This is just a suggested itinerary to whet your appetite. You can tailor-make any aspect of your trip to make your dream holiday a reality!
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Fly Drive Holiday: Islands & Beaches of the South

Raleigh/Durham – Cape Hatteras – Myrtle Beach – Charleston – Savannah – Atlanta

This wonderful fly drive suggestion takes you on a southern discovery of the South’s historical cities and dramatic windswept shorelines, ranging from the from the rocky coastline of the Outer Banks, to the hidden islands and the tropical climes of South Carolina and the laidback southern charms of Savannah. This is one fly drive holiday not to be missed!
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Fly Drive Holiday: Scenic Roads of the South

Atlanta – Savannah - Charleston – Asheville – Nashville - Memphis – Little Rock – Springfield – St Louis

Travel from Atlanta to St Louis on this essential Southern itinerary taking in some world famous and some less-famous gems of the coast, mountains, plains and mid-west. Your journey takes you to the grand dames of the South, Savannah and Charleston before heading inland up into the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. From here, you’ll drive through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to country music capital Nashville and blues capital Memphis. Next, it’s across to cosmopolitan state capital Little Rock, where a visit to the replica Oval Office is a must-see at the Clinton Presidential Center. Then travel via Route 66 from Springfield Missouri to St Louis when your journey of discovery ends.
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Historical Charleston Tour  

On this historical Charleston tour, journey back in time as your guide reveals the beauty and charm of one of America's most historic cities. This tour will take you around to some of Charleston’s popular points of interest and discover the city’s pivotal role in American history. You also have the opportunity to upgrade the tour to include a visit to the restored Joseph Manigault House, one of the early 19th plantation homes. From £11 per person.

Charleston Harbour Sightseeing Cruise  

Discover the shoreline landmarks of the oldest and second-largest city in South Carolina aboard a tour boat along Charleston Harbour. Sail past important Civil War sites, including Fort Sumter and Castle Pinckney, stately antebellum homes along the Battery, and an aircraft carrier from World War II. With the wind in your hair, take in the beautiful harbour views, whilst learning about Charleston’s long history. £10 per person.​

You can add tickets for activities to your booking later.

Time Difference:
GMT- 4hours

Closest Airport:
Charleston International Airport (approx. 10 hours, 45 minutes)

Airport Transfer:
A taxi from the airport to downtown will cost about $25-$30 each way.

Getting around:
The centre of Charleston is a pleasant city to explore on foot, if you are staying outside the centre or want visit further afield car hire is available from £21 per day.

Insider Tip:
Spring time in Charleston is a great time to beat the heat and get the most out of this wonderful city. The annual Food and Wine Festival is also held every spring.

You’re going to need an ESTA:
For anyone travelling to the USA, the US authorities have imposed a requirement for passengers travelling under the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP), to register for Electronic Travel Authority. Just fill in the online application form which you can find at You will need to apply for entry via ESTA at least a minimum of 72 hours prior to travel.

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Deposits from £59pp 

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