5 Historic Places to Visit in Charleston, SC


The city of Charleston, South Carolina is steeped in Southern charm and rich in history. Along with the stately mansions spread throughout the Battery, scenic waterfront views, and extraordinary restaurant scene the city has a wealth of historic places to visit and sights to see.

Here are the top five must-visit sites for a history lesson in the Holy City.

 Angel Oak Tree

 /><figcaption><em>Angel Oak Tree is thought to be one of the oldest trees in America.</em></figcaption></figure>
<p>Believed to be one of the oldest trees in America, the moss-draped Angel Oak Tree, located on John’s Island is estimated to be between 400 and 500 years old. Some extreme estimates even date it as old as 1,500 years.</p>
<p>It’s quite the sight to see with the tree’s canopy stretching to almost 20,000 square feet. After checking out the massive tree visitors can enjoy a packed lunch at the park’s picnic area. Angle Oak Tree Park is free to visit and open seven days a week.</p>
<h3>Magnolia Plantation & Gardens</h3>
<div class=
 /><figcaption><em>The gardens and the main building of Magnolia Plantation are some of the most iconic spots in Charleston.</em></figcaption></figure>
<p>Meander through the majestic gardens of Charleston’s most visited plantation at <a href=Magnolia Plantation & Gardens. Originally founded in 1676, Magnolia Plantation is the oldest public tourist site in South Carolina’s Lowcountry. It’s also the oldest public garden in the U.S.

Several tours are available on the property, including a tour of the gardens, house, and rice field. Magnolia Plantation & Gardens is open 365 days a year. General admission tickets for adults are $20.

Fort Sumter

 /><figcaption><em>Historic Fort Sumter is a great option for any fan of American history. (Image via Shutterstock.com)</em></figcaption></figure>
<p>See where the first shots of the American Civil War were fired in 1861 by visiting the <a href=Fort Sumter National Monument located in the middle of the Charleston Harbor only a few miles from land. Once there, visitors will have an hour to explore the monument, museum, and peruse the Fort Sumter Eastern National book store.

Tours are self-guided, however, National Park rangers are on site to share stories about the battle and answer any questions about the fort’s history. Tickets for adults are $23 and there are several tours that run daily with ferries departing from both Liberty Square in downtown Charleston as well as Patriot’s Point in Mount Pleasant. 

Drayton Hall Plantation

 /><figcaption><em>Drayton Hall remains as one of the most historic plantations in the Lowcountry. (image via Shutterstock)</em></figcaption></figure>
<p>This historic plantation has miraculously survived two wars, several fires, hurricanes, and even an earthquake. Built in 1738, the <a href=Drayton Hall Plantation house is the oldest preserved plantation house that is open to the public. The estate’s vast collections include several historical artifacts, fine-art pieces, and diaries from the 18th and 19th centuries.

Tickets are $32 for adults and the plantation is open seven days a week with guided house tours offered hourly. Tours typically last around 45 minutes. After a tour guests can explore the grounds which back up to the Ashley River and boasts two walking trails.

Middleton Place

 /><figcaption><em>Middleton Place and its gardens have some of the oldest, and most scenic landscaping in the country. (Image via Shutterstock)</em></figcaption></figure>
<p>A little over 15 miles from downtown Charleston sits <a href=Middleton Place, which was originally built along the Ashley River in 1755 as a rice plantation. The property spans 110 acres and features 65 acres of some of the oldest landscaped gardens in the country that were designed to mimic 17th century French gardens with sculpted terraces, parterres, and reflection pools.

Today, guests can tour the grounds and house, plus, learn about what life was like in the Lowcountry during the 18th century through reenactments. There’s also a luxury inn, on-site restaurant, garden market, and museum on the property. Middleton Place is open daily and tickets are $29 for adults.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
Details here.

Share this post:

We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

Call us to speak with a customer service representative.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting [email protected] Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The Best Places to Snowbird in 2021

We’ve gathered 25 of the best places for snowbirds, including cities in Florida, Arizona, California, Texas, South Carolina, and Nevada. For each entry, we’ve also provided a list of recommended 55+ communities in the area. If you’re ready to find your own winter retreat this season, here are some of the best places to consider.

A group of older adults socialize within their 55+ community.

Top 10 FAQs About Living in 55+ Communities

We’re here to answer all of your questions about joining a mature living community, so you can feel empowered in your decision. This is the next great adventure of your life, and we’re firm believers in leaving the stress out. Check out these top 10 FAQs about living in 55+ communities.

A senior couple takes a hike in a low-humidity state they chose for their retirement.

Retirement: What Are the Top 5 States With the Lowest Humidity?

There are many factors in deciding where to retire, and the weather can be one of them. Luckily, many of the states with nice weather also offer additional benefits for people over 60 and have several exciting active adult communities. Here are the four best states for a low-humidity retirement.

Lake view during autumn at dusk of Table Rock Mountain in Pickens, South Carolina.

5 Reasons To Consider a South Carolina Retirement

What does South Carolina have to offer active adults? A selection of over 80 active adult communities is just the beginning. These five reasons to consider a South Carolina retirement just might convince you that this southern coastal state has everything you’re looking for in a 55+ community.

The Best Places to Retire in South Carolina

South Carolina is known for having some of the best golf courses in the country, but that’s not all it has to offer active adults. The state has a rich history and culture, a wide selection of entertainment and recreation, and miles of beaches and coastal living.

North Carolina vs. South Carolina

The Carolinas are a power couple when it comes to maintaining an active lifestyle in an amazing climate, but they’re separated by more than just a border. A side-by-side comparison of the two can quickly show which is better for you when it comes to your interests and needs.

Exterior view of a model home at Del Webb Carolina Gardens, Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina on a sunny day.

55+ Communities With New Homes for Sale Near Raleigh

If you’re in the market for a new construction home in Raleigh, North Carolina there are plenty of options to consider. We’ve put together a list to help you start your search for the perfect neighborhood with new homes.

About 55places

We’re changing the way people 55 and older are searching for their perfect next place. With a national network of hand-selected real estate experts, plus comprehensive information, unbiased content, and on-the-go insight about thousands of communities across the country, we’re a trusted resource paving the way from here to home. Whether you’re interested in a low-maintenance single-level residence, an active lifestyle or age-qualified community, an intimate enclave, or anything in between, we can help you make your next move the best one yet.

Scroll to Top