When you’re planning your vacation to America’s most historic city, there’s plenty of things to see and do in Charleston without spending a dime. You’ll want to save your hard-earned money anyway, for experiencing some of Charleston’s top eateries and local boutiques. Here are some free must-do activities to add to your itinerary:
2nd Sunday on King Street
Once a month, King Street, Charleston’s most popular street, closes to traffic and welcomes visitors to stroll and socialize. On the designated Sunday afternoon, restaurants set up tables in the road for dining al fresco, shops host sidewalk sales, and pets are welcome too. Even if you want to save your cash, it’s a great chance to explore one of Charleston’s most famous places.
Charleston is home to beautiful architecture and scenery. Taking a stroll through The Battery, one of downtown Charleston’s best landmarks, is a must whether it’s your first visit or your hundredth. This area is where you’ll find Charleston’s famous southern mansions, wrought iron gates, and beautiful gardens. The walk will lead you down to White Point Gardens, or Battery Park, so you can finish your stroll along the seawall. You’ll catch views of the Ashley and Cooper Rivers joining together to meet up with the Atlantic Ocean in the distance.
The City Gallery
Charleston’s Waterfront Park is home to The City Gallery. Owned by the City of Charleston and operated by the Office of Cultural Affairs, the gallery displays the finest contemporary art from local, regional, national, and international artists. It’s free to explore for residents and visitors alike, and Charleston’s famous Pineapple Fountain is right outside for a family photo op or two.
The Angel Oak Tree
Estimated to be more than 400-500 years old, The Angel Oak Tree looms large on nearby John’s Island and deserves a stop during your trip to the Lowcountry. The southern live oak has come to symbolize Charleston sightseeing and is a must-see for many who visit the area. It’s thought to be one of the oldest living things in the country. We recommend packing up a picnic lunch and enjoying a quiet respite under the shade of this mighty oak.
Pitt Street Bridge
Once a trolley bridge connecting Mount Pleasant to Sullivan’s Island, this greenway is now a beautiful recreation area. At the end of the historic Pitt Street Bridge, visitors will find the Pickett Bridge Recreation Area surrounded by expansive stretches of marsh with fantastic views of Charleston Harbor, Fort Sumter and the Ravenel Bridge. It attracts joggers, dog walkers, cyclists, anglers, kayakers and those just looking for a scenic spot to catch the sunset.
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