Welcome to Charleston
As the oldest and second-largest city in South Carolina, Charleston is brimming with antebellum architecture and cobblestone streets waiting to be explored. The Holy City was founded as Charles Towne in honor of King Charles II of England in 1670. This historic place is known for its Southern charm - it was voted one of the "World's Friendliest Cities" by CNN in 2013 and "The Most Polite and Hospitable City in America" by Southern Living magazine in 2012. Roughly 370,000 people call Charleston home, and the weather is almost as warm as the inhabitants. In the winter, temperatures average in the low 50s and during the summer, highs reach the 90s.
Charleston is no doubt a walking town. As such, the city is rather easy to navigate. Pack comfortable shoes and be careful if you choose to wear heels in the cobblestone streets. What's more, Charleston has free shuttle buses that cover three routes and run frequently. You can hop on the King Street/Market Street shuttle to get your bearings in the city. Offering a unique perspective of the city, the water taxi service runs between the aquarium area and Patriot's Point. Visitors who use rental cars might consider checking out the plantations outside the city (organized tours can be arranged too for those without rental vehicles.