Where You’ll Have the Best Charleston, SC, Kayaking Adventures

charleston-sc-kayaking woman in kayak on he water watching sunset

Charleston’s beautiful climate means that you can enjoy outdoor activities at nearly any time of year! There’s no shortage of things to do outside, and one of our favorites is to get out on the water. See the coast from a new perspective when you head out for a Charleston, SC, Kayaking journey! 

We know you’ll find all the fun on the coast! To get ready for the getaway of a lifetime, access our complimentary Destination Guide. In the guide, you will find information on the coolest local spots, attractions, dining, and more in Charleston, South Carolina! 

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The Best Spots for Your Sunset and Sunrise Charleston, SC, Kayaking Excursion

Kayaking on the coast is always a good idea, but paddling out to see the sunrise or set over the water is even better! Grab your kayak, paddle, and life jacket for the adventure of a lifetime on the South Carolina Coast.  

1. Shem Creek

This famous waterway is easily one of the best spots in the area. From sunrise to sunset, you’ll find Shem Creek bustling with kayaks, paddleboards, and shrimp boats. The mouth of the creek is lined with great restaurants, bars, and sometimes even a few dolphins! Kayaking in Shem Creek guarantees the perfect blend of outdoor fun and a lively atmosphere.

2. Isle of Palms

Coastal kayaking is a treat like no other, and what better way to do it than along Isle of Palms? If you’re new to saltwater kayaking, we recommend booking a sunrise or sunset tour with Coastal Expeditions. This tour promises gorgeous sights and an incredible experience in the water. Plus, you’ll be able to choose from different types of kayaks to suit your needs, and you’ll get a few pointers on holding the paddle.   

3 of the Best Places To Get Folly Beach Kayak Rentals 

1. Folly Beach Adventures  

Directions To Folly Beach Adventures  

Folly Beach Adventures has it all! Whether you’re looking for a golf cart for the week or Folly Beach kayak rentals, you can find it here. You can choose to rent their sit-on-top kayaks by the half-day, full-day, or week. If you’re renting one of our waterfront homes, consider renting a kayak for the week, so it’s readily available for a relaxing morning paddle! 

2. Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours 

Directions To Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours 

Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours offers both kayak rentals and tours. They offer a variety of kayak options and everything that goes along with it. Don’t worry about getting life jackets or any prior instruction– they’ll do it all. They will even assist you with the launch in certain circumstances! Or, you can opt to get your kayak delivered to your vacation rental. If you have never been kayaking before or want an experienced guide to show you all the best places to go, consider a tour instead of a rental.  

3. Charleston Outdoor Adventures 

Directions To Charleston Outdoor Adventures 

Charleston Outdoor Adventures is all about getting out on the water. Not only do they have kayak rentals and tours, but they also have boat tours, paddle boarding, and fishing. They’re also right next to the famous Bowen’s Island Restaurant so that you can grab a bite afterward! You can either opt for a marsh tour or rent a kayak to explore the beautiful area on your own terms. There aren’t any other rental locations in this area, so it’s a truly unique experience! 

More Exciting Kayaking Tours in Charleston, SC 

  • Charleston Kayak Company 
  • Sea Kayak Carolina 
  • Nature Adventures

Book Your Getaway Today 

Charleston Oceanfront Villas Sunset

Are you ready to book your stay with Charleston Coast Vacations? Don’t settle for a boring hotel– a vacation rental is the way to go. We have a variety of stunning homes all over the Charleston Coast, including Folly Beach and Isle of Palms. Take a look at our vacation rentals and see for yourself! We’re happy to suggest where to get the best Charleston, SC, kayaking rentals, our favorite restaurants, or anything else that will make your getaway special.

Book your getaway today and get ready to make memories that will last a lifetime.

How to Create the Best Charleston Coast Bucket List

The Pineapple Fountain in Charleston, SC

Are you planning a trip to Charleston, SC? The Holy City has been ranked one of the top travel destinations in the United States by several publications, so it’s no surprise that there are numerous things to do in the area! With so many options, how do you know which activities are the best? We like to say that there are no bad things to do in Charleston, but we certainly have some favorites! Read on to discover 10 activities that you should consider adding to your Charleston Coast bucket list!

Are you looking for more ideas about what to add to your Charleston bucket list? Request our free Destination Guide for local insight into the best things to do, see, eat, and more while you’re visiting Charleston!

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Top 10 Activities to Add to Your Charleston Coast Bucket List

Historic Charleston City Market

Discover one-of-kind treasures at the Historic Charleston City Market! This open-air market in the heart of downtown Charleston is one of the oldest in the country, which makes the structure itself a landmark. However, it’s what’s inside that really counts! The market is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 a.m., and it features rotating vendors who sell everything from locally famous sweetgrass baskets to handmade jewelry! It’s a great way to take a piece of the Holy City home with you.

Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge

Walking the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge is one of the best things to do in Charleston for free! This cable-stayed bridge is 2.5 miles long and connects downtown Charleston to Mount Pleasant. You can park near Waterfront Park in Mount Pleasant and access the bridge’s sidewalk via a side street. The bridge boasts a steady incline, so it’s good exercise with great views of the Cooper River!

Charleston Tea Plantation

The Charleston Tea Plantation, also known as the Charleston Tea Garden, boasts 127 acres of tea plants. It’s also the only tea garden in the country where visitors can tour the fields. The most popular way to explore the tea garden is with a Trolly Tour. It’s the only cost of visiting the plantation and takes you on a 30-45-minute tour of the property. During the tour, you’ll learn more about the plantation’s history, growing process, and more!

Dock Street Theatre

Are you looking for live entertainment in the Holy City? Look no further than Dock Street Theatre! This historic landmark was the first building to be constructed for the purpose of hosting the performing arts. Since 1736, America’s first theatre has hosted numerous theatrical performances. Be sure to view the shows to see what performances are happening during your visit!

Waterfront Park

Waterfront Park is one of the most iconic sites in Charleston! This 8-acre park beside the Cooper River is a great place for couples, families, and even pets to play outside in downtown Charleston. Relax in one of the wooden porch swings with views of the water or take a photo in front of the famous Pineapple Fountain. Fleet Landing Restaurant & Bar is located next door, so be sure to stop in to try some Lowcountry oysters on the half shell with house-made cocktail sauce!

Fort Sumter

Fort Sumter, an island in the Charleston Harbor, is a must for your first time visiting Charleston, SC! This historic landmark was the site of the first cries of the Civil War. Visitors are welcome to travel to Fort Sumter via a tour boat.

Folly Beach

A trip to the Charleston Coast wouldn’t be complete with a day at the beach! We recommend Folly Beach, as it’s one of the best beaches in South Carolina for families. This beach boasts 6 miles of shoreline and is a great place for surfing, tanning, and all the beach activities in-between! There are also several family-friendly restaurants and bars right off the shore, so it’s easy to spend the entire day there!

Angel Oak

Nature lovers need to see the Angel Oak Tree! Located on Johns Island, this impressive southern live oak tree is several hundred years old and has grown 66.5 feet tall and 28 feet in circumference. You really can’t get a feel for how large it is until you see it in person, so we recommend it to all our guests! While you’re on Johns Island, grab a quick bite to eat at Tattooed Moose, which was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives!

Vendue Rooftop Bar

Get a panoramic view of downtown Charleston at Vendue Rooftop Bar. Rated the No. 1 rooftop bar in the city, this bar is known for its craft cocktails and savory shareables. From spiked cold brews to spicy margaritas, there’s a cocktail creation for your taste buds!

Spot Bill Murray

Tell any native Charlestonian it’s your first time in the city, and they’ll likely reply, “Keep an eye out for Bill Murray!” This famous actor has made his home in Charleston and can be seen blundering around the city.

Book a Rental with Charleston Coast Vacations

A property in Charleston, SC

Add a stay in one of our rentals to your Charleston Coast bucket list! Charleston Coast Vacations offers more than 100 properties along the Atlantic Coast. Search homes on Folly BeachIsle of Palms, and Sullivan’s Island for your trip to the Holy City! Our rentals are also just a short drive away from most of the activities listed above, so it’s easy to check every item off your bucket list!

Browse a full inventory of our rentals to plan your trip to the Charleston Coast!

4 of the Best Charleston, SC, Golf Courses to Play Soon

Player teeing off at one of the best Charleston, SC, golf courses

If you’re an avid golfer, you’ll be happy to know that Charleston, SC, golf courses are some of the best in the country. From resort-style designer courses lined with palm trees to fairways brimming with rich history, you’ll love teeing off here. Plus, there’s no bad time to play; the Lowcountry’s comfortable year-round weather and stunning scenery provide the perfect setting for a memorable day on the green.

Take a look at our favorite courses below and start planning your golf outing today. For fun things to do between tee times, access our free Destination Guide. We’ve compiled a list of local recommendations for dining, shopping, recreation, and more.

Your Guide to Charleston

Check Out These Golf Courses in Charleston, SC 

Wild Dunes Links & Harbor Courses | Isle of Palms

You can’t go wrong with the courses at Wild Dunes Resort. Both were designed by renowned architect Tom Fazio and provide an exceptional South Carolina golf experience. The Harbor Course is known for its beautiful tidal views and challenging gameplay, while the Links Golf Course is equally stunning with rolling fairways and a finishing hole overlooking the ocean. Warm up at the driving range, chipping area, or putting green before testing your skills on either course.

Where to Stay: Isle of Palms

Charleston National Golf Club | Mount Pleasant

If you’re looking for non-resort golf in CHS, Charleston National is an excellent choice. This championship course was designed by Rees Jones and is considered Charleston’s hidden gem. Experience true Southern charm as seabirds wade in the marsh and live oaks sway in the breeze. In addition to the scenery, golfers can enjoy a state-of-the-art practice facility and recently renovated pub.

Where to Stay: Sullivan’s Island

Patriots Point Links | Mount Pleasant

History and sport come together at Patriots Point Links, a harbor-side golf course just five minutes from Downtown Charleston. Patriots Point Links sits at the foot of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge and offers epic views of the city and Fort Sumter. Watch as ships from all over the world cruise into the port as you shoot your shot. Additional amenities include a driving range, Southern-style clubhouse, and golfer’s grill and patio.

Where to Stay: Sullivan’s Island

Charleston Municipal Golf Course | James Island

Charleston’s City Golf Course (often referred to as “The Muni”) is a favorite of locals and tourists alike. The course opened in 1929 and features a traditional, early 20th century feel with modern upgrades. Experienced players will love the challenging design, and beginners can take advantage of 6 sets of tees to accommodate all playing levels. With something for everyone, it’s no surprise that 60,000 rounds are played here each year!

Where to Stay: Folly Beach

*Note: At the time of this writing, Charleston Municipal Golf Course is closed for renovations and plans to reopen in 2021.

Plan the Best Charleston, SC, Golf Getaway

Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the best golf destinations in the country. Our area is packed with world-class golf courses that boast spectacular views and challenging gameplay. Tee off surrounded by the beautiful flora and fauna of our coastal city. From a salty sea breeze blowing in from the Atlantic Ocean to impressive Palmettos lining the fairways, you won’t be able to get enough of coastal South Carolina’s golf courses. Below is all the information you need to plan the ultimate Charleston, SC, golf getaway!

Your Guide to a Charleston, SC, Golf Getaway

When to Visit

The Lowcountry’s mild, year-round temperatures are part of what makes our area a fantastic golf destination! However, you may still be wondering, “When’s the best time to visit Charleston for a golf getaway?” For mostly dry and cool conditions, we recommend planning your Charleston golf getaway during the fall or spring!

What to Pack

What to pack for your golf getaway varies depending on where you’re traveling from. If you’re driving to Charleston, we recommend bringing your personal set of golf clubs. However, our area’s courses do offer club rentals for a fee. Or, you can purchase a set to take home from the shops listed below!

Where to Buy

If you’re looking to expand your golf collection during your trip, visit Edwin Watts Golf or David Ayres’ Lowcountry Custom Golf. These shops located in West Ashley and Mount Pleasant have everything you need for a day on the green. Shop golf balls, clubs, polos, and more!

Start Planning Your Trip with Charleston Coast Vacations 

A property in Charleston, SC

Make one of our rentals your homestead during a Charleston, SC, golf getaway. Charleston Coast Vacations offers high-end homes and villas across the city. When you book with us, it’s easy to find a home near your favorite Charleston golf course!

Browse our properties to start planning your golf vacation! We look forward to hosting you soon!

These Charleston Seafood Restaurants Are Shrimply the Best

a dish at Charleston Seafood Restaurants

You’ve never had seafood like the seafood on the Charleston Coast. Because we are right on the water, we don’t have to ship much of it in! If you go to the right places, much of the menu will come from our own surrounding area. For example, if you visit Shem Creek, you’ll see shrimp boats that still go out every day and bring fresh shrimp back! Make sure you experience this delicacy when you go to these Charleston seafood restaurants.

Start planning your getaway today when you access our complimentary Destination Guide! Inside, you’ll find the best things to do and see. 

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5 of the Best Charleston Seafood Restaurants 

1. 167 Raw

167 Raw is more than just a raw bar. They have some of the best seafood in town! This eatery has a contemporary menu with a few classics thrown in. Start with an assortment from the raw bar, then go for one of their delicious entrees. Favorites include the lobster roll, scallop po boys, and the catch of the day! 

2. Hank’s Seafood Restaurant

Hank’s Seafood Restaurant is a Charleston classic. If you’re looking for white tablecloths and exceptional service, Hank’s is for you. The menu here is a classic take on all of your seafood favorites. You can dine on dishes like crab cakes, roasted fish, pan-seared scallops, and more! If you want classic Charleston dishes like she-crab soup or shrimp and grits, you can find them here as well.

3. Chubby Fish

If you want a unique dining experience unlike anywhere else, head to Chubby Fish. Chubby Fish took Charleston by storm in 2018 with its innovative ideas for seafood. Their goal is to use every part of the fish possible, so you’ll be able to order dishes like fish cheeks! They don’t want to throw anything away, so they promote sustainable seafood. 

4. Rappahannock Oyster Bar 

The second you walk into Rappahannock Oyster Bar, you’ll be greeted by their glass cases filled with fresh fish and raw bar items on ice. It certainly gets you in the mood for seafood! Rappahannock Oyster Bar is one of the best places to get oysters in town, and their menu is the perfect balance of innovation and classics. 

5. Bowens Island Restaurant

Bowens Island Restaurant is a no-frills restaurant that serves up delicious, cost-effective seafood. Most of their seafood is fried and comes out piping hot on a paper plate! If you visit on a summer day, you’ll probably have to wait in a long line, but it’s worth it. Plus, the views of the river are absolutely stunning. 

Book Your Charleston Getaway Today

vacation home

There’s nothing better than waking up to the sound of the surf crashing on the sand in your own private vacation rental. Explore these Charleston seafood restaurants and more when you visit! Treat yourself to ocean views, beach access, and plenty of space when you rent with Charleston Coast Vacations! Our rentals are located all over the Charleston Coast and are a range of sizes, so we are sure we have the perfect one for you. Browse our properties to pick your favorite and book your stay today!

You Need to Visit These 4 Best Charleston Plantations

Magnolia Plantation, one of the best charleston plantations

If walls could talk, they would certainly have a story to tell in Charleston, South Carolina. Our streets are steeped in history, and you can learn all about it during your stay with Charleston Coast Vacations. One of the most popular things to do here is to visit one of the best Charleston plantations in the area. Here are some of our favorites!

Start planning your Charleston getaway today when you access our complimentary Destination Guide. Inside, you’ll find a local list of our favorite things to see and do!

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4 of the Best Charleston Plantations 

1. Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

Directions to Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

You can easily spend the entire day at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. You can go on a plantation house tour here, but the gardens are what really shine. This is the last large-scale, romantic-style garden left in the country. That means that the plants are left to grow as they would in nature without being controlled by any formal gardening. You can spend hours walking through the trails, embarking on their nature tour, learning about history, and even going to their petting zoo!

2. Boone Hall Plantation

Directions to Boone Hall Plantation

Boone Hall Plantation is a Lowcountry staple. You’ve probably seen it without knowing– many movies and TV shows have been filmed here, one of the most popular being The Notebook. Located in Mount Pleasant, it is very convenient to visit! You can tour their slave cabins, plantation home, and grounds. This plantation also hosts many special events that you won’t want to miss such as January’s famous Lowcountry Oyster Festival

3. Middleton Place Plantation

Directions to Middleton Place Plantation

Middleton Place Plantation was once home to Arthur Middleton, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Situated perfectly on the Ashley River, this plantation has some stunning views. They offer multiple tours here including the Beyond the Fields Tour that focuses on the lives of the slaves that lived here. 

4. Drayton Hall

Directions to Drayton Hall

Drayton Hall is special because it is both the country’s earliest example of Palladian architecture and the oldest preserved plantation house in American still open to the public. Instead of being remodeled like many of the other old homes in the area, it has been continuously kept up and restored. It is truly like stepping back in time!

Book Your Charleston Coast Vacation Today

vacation home

Are you ready to experience all that Charleston has to offer? From these best Charleston plantations to an incredible culinary scene, you’ll never run out of things to do here. Start planning your getaway with Charleston Coast Vacations. Our rental properties are located all over the coast, so we’re sure we have the right one for you! Browse our rentals to pick your favorite, then book your getaway. We can’t wait to host you!

Everything You Need to Know About Folly Beach Fishing

Folly Beach Fishing

There’s something relaxing and magical about being out on the open water, fishing pole in hand. When you stay on the Charleston Coast, you have some of the best fishing in the South at your fingertips. It’s time to grab your pole and tackle box– here is everything you need to know about Folly Beach fishing

Are you thinking about planning a trip to the Charleston Coast? Take a look at our complimentary Destination Guide for a list of things to do and see in the area. It makes the planning process a breeze! 

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3 of the Best Places to Fish on Folly Beach

The Folly Beach Fishing Pier

Editor’s Note: As of 2020, the Folly Beach Pier may be under construction during the time of your visit. The pier will be open during some of the construction, but there is a chance it will be closed during your visit. 

The Folly Beach Fishing Pier is arguably the most popular spot to go fishing on Folly Beach. Locals and visitors have been coming to the iconic pier since 1995 and have fond memories of casting a line from the many fishing stations. It’s such a popular attraction that they even hold fishing tournaments here!

Shore Fishing 

What’s better than sticking your toes in the sand as you sit back, relax, and wait for a fish to bite? Shore fishing is one of our favorite options for Folly Beach fishing. One of the best spots to cast a line is the Morris Island Lighthouse Trail. Not only is it beautiful, but it’s also a local secret known for great fish! The water between Morris Island and Folly Beach forms a sort of funnel that fish are forced to swim through. 

Folly Beach Fishing Charters

One of the main benefits of a fishing charter is that you get to be out on the water! There’s something special about feeling the sea breeze and being out on the ocean. Plus, going with a charter means that they provide you with all the gear you’ll need. Here are some of the most popular Folly Beach fishing charters: 

Book Your Getaway Today

view from condo

Are you ready for your Charleston getaway? Enjoy Folly Beach fishing and more when you book your stay with Charleston Coast Vacations! We offer stunning vacation rentals all over the Charleston Coast, including Folly Beach. Whether you’re looking for an ocean view condo or a large home on the beach, we have one for you! Browse our properties to start planning the vacation of a lifetime.

All Bats Are Off at the Charleston RiverDogs Game!

young fan watching charleston riverdogs game

Take me out to the ball game, take me out with the crowd! Get your peanuts and Cracker Jacks at a Charleston RiverDogs game this summer. Catching a baseball game is fun for the whole family, and there are fun events held at the stadium throughout the season. The kids might even get a photo with Charlie T. RiverDog, our beloved mascot! 

Start planning your getaway to the Charleston Coast today when you access our complimentary Destination Guide! Inside, you’ll find a list of our favorite things to do and see in the area. 

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About the Charleston RiverDogs 

The Charleston RiverDogs are a minor league baseball team that plays in the Class Single-A South Atlantic League. Fun fact: they are an affiliate of the famous New York Yankees! The RiverDogs play their season at their home stadium, Joseph P. Riley Jr. Park. 

Catching a Game

A RiverDogs game is fun for the whole family! Even if there are members of the family that don’t necessarily enjoy baseball, the RiverDogs are always entertaining. There is always great food and drinks, and the announcer keeps the crowd engaged. Who knows– you might even catch a foul ball! 

Local tip: On Friday home games, the stadium has fireworks! This is usually the most popular night for families to go. If you’re over the age of 21, you might consider going on a Thursday for Dollar Beer Night. 

Getting Tickets

Joseph P. Riley Jr. Park seats 6,000 people, so the games are rarely completely sold out. This means that you can either plan on going to a game in advance, or wait last-minute and go if you’re looking for something to do! Getting tickets is easy. All you need to do is head to the Tickets & Promotions section of their website and purchase them online! 

What Do I Eat at a Charleston RiverDogs Game?

If you ask a local what to eat at a RiverDogs game, the answer will almost always be boiled peanuts. This Southern staple flows freely at these games, but there’s so much more than that! While you have typical baseball cuisine available, other options are surprisingly innovative. Beer Shakes are popular for the adults, and the concession stand that goes by the name of Dog World pumps out specialty hot dogs slathered in every topping imaginable! 

Book Your Charleston Getaway Today

Pick your dates to visit the Lowcountry, book your stay with Charleston Coast Vacations, and purchase your Charleston RiverDogs tickets! Browse our properties to start planning your getaway. We offer a variety of gorgeous homes and condos in the Charleston area. Whether you’re looking for a beachfront rental on Folly Beach or a quiet condo on Isle of Palms, we have something for you! 

Imagine sipping a glass of wine on your private patio as you watch the kids play outside in the sand. Think of all the family activities you can do in the Lowcountry! From catching a baseball game to educational museums, you’ll never run out of things to do. Book your getaway today– you’re sure to make memories that will last a lifetime.

3 of the Best Places to Get Folly Beach Kayak Rentals

Folly Beach Kayak Rentals

Charleston’s beautiful climate means that you can enjoy outdoor activities at nearly any time of year! There’s no shortage of things to do outside, and one of our favorites is to get out on the water. See the coast from a new perspective when you get one of these Folly Beach kayak rentals! Don’t worry about lugging your kayak from home to use during your vacation– we have plenty of options here. 

Start planning your Charleston Coast getaway when you access our complimentary Destination Guide! Inside, you’ll find our favorite things to do and see in the area. 

Get the Destination Guide

3 of the Best Places to Get Folly Beach Kayak Rentals

1. Folly Beach Adventures 

Directions to Folly Beach Adventures 

Folly Beach Adventures has it all! Whether you’re looking for a golf cart for the week or Folly Beach kayak rentals, you can find it here. You can choose to rent their sit-on-top kayaks by the half-day, full-day, or week. If you’re renting one of our waterfront homes, consider renting a kayak for the week so it’s readily available for a relaxing morning paddle!

2. Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours

Directions to Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours

Flipper Finders Boat & Sea Kayak Tours offers both kayak rentals and tours. They offer a variety of kayak options and everything that goes along with it. Don’t worry about getting life jackets or any prior instruction– they’ll do it all. They will even help with launch assistance in certain circumstances! Or, you can opt to get your kayak delivered to your vacation rental. If you have never been kayaking before or want an experienced guide to show you all the best places to go, consider a tour instead of a rental. 

3. Charleston Outdoor Adventures

Directions to Charleston Outdoor Adventures

Charleston Outdoor Adventures is all about getting out on the water. Not only do they have kayak rentals and tours, but they also have boat tours, paddle boarding, and fishing. They’re also right next to the famous Bowen’s Island Restaurant, so you can grab a bite afterward! You can either opt for a marsh tour or rent your own kayak to explore the beautiful area on your own terms. There aren’t any other rental locations in this area, so it’s truly a unique experience!

Book Your Getaway Today

Are you ready to book your stay with Charleston Coast Vacations? Don’t settle for a boring hotel– a vacation rental is the way to go. We have a variety of stunning homes all over the Charleston Coast, including Folly Beach. Take a look at our vacation rentals and see for yourself! We’re happy to suggest where to get the best Folly Beach kayak rentals, our favorite restaurants, or anything else that will make your getaway special. Book your getaway today and get ready to make memories that will last a lifetime. 

What You Need to Know for Your First Time Visiting Charleston, SC

downtown during first time visiting Charleston, SC

Is it your first time visiting Charleston, SC? Welcome to the Holy City! You picked a great place to vacation. From beautiful beaches to an incredible history, the Charleston Coast is a very special place. We have activities that are fun for all ages, and many families and groups come back year after year. Here’s what you need to know if it’s your first time visiting!

Get help planning your vacation when you use our complimentary Vacation Guide! Inside, you’ll find a list of our favorite things to do and see in the area. It’s perfect for your first time visiting Charleston, SC, and is mobile-friendly so you can pull it up on your phone. 

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Must-Dos During Your First Time Visiting Charleston, SC

Hit the Beach

Our South Carolina beaches bring thousands of visitors to the coast every year. Whether you’re a surfer or want to teach your kids how to build their first sandcastle, the Charleston Coast is the perfect place to vacation. 

When you rent a property with Charleston Coast Vacations, you’ll be close to the beach! Of course, we recommend an oceanfront home if you’re planning on spending most of your time at the shore. Our beaches are expansive, clean, and fun for the whole family. Many of our vacation rentals come with credit for beach gear, too!

Try Our Local Cuisine

Charleston has become known as a culinary mecca. From fresh seafood to luxurious steakhouses, we have it all! You’ll have to try some Charleston staples while you’re here such as she-crab soup, shrimp and grits, oysters, and collard greens. Here are some of our favorite restaurants downtown. If you’re craving something specific, just ask us and we will give you a recommendation! 

Visit Shem Creek

Waterfront dining is a must during your first time visiting Charleston, SC, and there’s no better place to do so than at Shem Creek. The restaurants and bars line the water, and you can even see dolphins while you dine from time to time. After you eat, head to the walkway that stretches out over the water to see more views! You’ll even learn a little about our local wildlife as you read the plaques along the way. 

Walk Through the Historic Charleston City Market

The Historic Charleston City Market is a must-see if it’s your first time visiting Charleston, SC. Local vendors set up in an open-air market every day to sell their wares. You’ll find everything from Southern cookbooks and spices to handmade trinkets. It’s a great place to pick up a souvenir or a gift for someone back home! 

Go on a Plantation Tour

The plantations in the Charleston area are steeped in history. Many of them survived the Civil War, and you can tour them today! Learn all about the families and slaves that lived there when you take a guided tour. Many of them, like Magnolia Plantation, have stunning gardens you can stroll through. You’ll definitely want to bring your camera along! If you’re a fan of The Notebook, Boone Hall Plantation is a must-see. Many of the iconic scenes were filmed here. 

Take a Tour Downtown 

With its cobblestone streets and colorful homes, Downtown Charleston is stunning. However, you’ll never know how much history it holds until you take a tour! You’ll be amazed by some of the things that have happened here, and your tour guide will tell you all about it. There are many walking tours you can choose from, and we are happy to recommend our favorites! If you’re looking for a spook, you can even take a ghost tour

Go Shopping on King Street

Shop ‘til you drop! King Street is one of the best places to go shopping in the Lowcountry. Here, you’ll find everything from designer labels to local boutiques. It’s the perfect place to pick out a new outfit or find a unique gift for someone back home! Plus, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes along the street to keep you occupied for hours. 

Visit the Spot Where the Civil War Began

We told you Charleston has history! Fort Sumter played a huge part in the Civil War– it is actually where the Civil War began. The Confederate army opened fire on Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861. They were able to hold the fort for just 34 hours. Learn all about the battle and its historical significance when you take a tour! Fort Sumter Tours are an excellent option, but we are happy to recommend others to you. 

See a 500-Year-Old Oak Tree

Visiting the Angel Oak is an awe-inspiring experience. This massive oak tree is estimated to be about 500 years old, although no one knows for sure. Some even think it’s more than 1,500 years old! The tree stands 66.5 feet tall, measures 28 feet in circumference, and produces shade that covers 17,200 square feet.

Dine on Sullivan’s Island

Sullivan’s Island is known for its beach vibes, and you’ll love visiting the main strip for a bite to eat and a drink (or two). Middle Street is the main drag on the island, and it’s always bustling with people. If you’re looking for good food and good vibes, you can’t go wrong! Here are some of our favorite Sullivan’s Island restaurants

Book Your First Charleston Vacation Today! 

Whether it’s your first time visiting Charleston, SC, of your tenth time, your accommodations matter. Don’t settle for a drab hotel– get a vacation rental with Charleston Coast Vacations. Fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves when you get a beachfront home! Your family and friends will love having their own rooms, and having a kitchen to visit in makes a huge difference. You’ll love the memories you make as you sit around the dinner table together. Browse our vacation rentals to start planning your stay today. Don’t be afraid to reach out– we’re here to help you have the vacation of a lifetime! 

3 of the Best Beaches in South Carolina for Families

isle of palms is one of the best beaches in South Carolina for families

Do you remember your first time visiting the beach? The expansive ocean ahead seems infinite, and there’s no feeling like having soft sand beneath your toes. Taking your family on a beach vacation will ensure you make memories that will last a lifetime. But first, you need to choose which beach or beaches you are going to visit! Here are the best beaches in South Carolina for families.

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3 of the Best Beaches in South Carolina for Families

1. Isle of Palms Beach

Directions to Isle of Palms Beach Parking

Isle of Palms Beach, also known as the Isle of Palms County Park, is the beach you will most likely visit if you stay on Isle of Palms. This beach is one of the most popular in the area, and for good reason. Enjoy walking out on the boardwalk, watch your kids play on the community playground, play volleyball on the sand court, and of course, utilize the beautiful beach. Lifeguards and beach rentals are present during the summer season, and there is usually an ice cream truck waiting with a sweet treat! 

Local tip: If you’re staying in a vacation rental within walking distance to the beach, you won’t have to pay for parking at all. Almost every avenue corresponds with a beach access point, and you can walk right onto the beach from any of them. 

2. Folly Beach

Directions to Folly Beach County Park

If you’re staying on Folly Beach, heading to Folly Beach County Park will be most convenient for you! Situated between the Atlantic Ocean and the Folly River, this beautiful beach has visitors every day out of the year. Lifeguards are on duty seasonally, and there is a snack bar during the summer months. Parking costs can vary anywhere from $5 to $10 depending on the season, but we recommend getting an $85 Gold Pass if it’s worth your while for unlimited entry.

3. Sullivan’s Island 

Sullivan’s Island is the local’s beach. This island neighbors Isle of Palms, so it’s very easy to get to. This beach has beautiful views of the Charleston Harbor, and it is common to watch a massive barge float by from time to time. The beach spans just 3.3 miles, but there’s plenty of room. We recommend this beach for families with older children, and you’ll definitely want to visit one of the island’s restaurants after your fun in the sun. 

However, parking can be a challenge. There is no set parking lot, so you will have to abide by the parking signs on the side of the road and make sure that all four wheels are off the pavement. Beach access is clearly marked, so once you park, you should have no problem getting on the beach! 

Book Your Family Beach Getaway Today

tabby house

Now that you know the best beaches in South Carolina for families, it’s time to book your getaway. All of these beaches are near our homes at Charleston Coast Vacations. Vacation rentals are the perfect way to make memories– your kids will love waking up to the sound of crashing waves, and you’ll love enjoying your morning coffee with ocean views. Browse our vacation rentals and book your stay today!