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What is your ideal day at the beach? A big umbrella and a good book? Boogie boarding and sand castles? Wading in the waves? Whether you are planning a day trip or a weeklong summer stay, the top beaches to visit in Charleston SC include these four easily accessible public beaches, each with its own unique scene and amenities. Locals tend to visit the beach closest to their home (for obvious reasons), which means the beaches often mirror the communities that border them, but no matter where you are staying in Charleston, you’re always just a few minutes from putting your toes in the sand.

Isle of Palms

Aerial view of Isle of Palms SC

Across the intercostal waterway from Mount Pleasant awaits Isle of Palms (lovingly referred to by locals as just “IOP”). Ocean Boulevard is home to a several local beachfront restaurants serving up tasty food with a view. With the Isle of Palms County Park offering convenient parking, beachfront lifeguards, public restrooms and other amenities, IOP is frequented by families of all sizes. And beyond lounging on the sand, you’ll find countless fishermen on the pier just waiting to reel in the catch of the day. Isle of Palms offers a lot for families to do and is one of the most popular beach destinations in Charleston.

Folly Beach

Aerial view of Folly Beach SC and Morris Island Lighthouse

Affectionately known by locals as “funky Folly” for its laid back vibes, Folly Beach offers a classic, casual beach experience. The iconic fishing pier, home to local eatery Pier 101, is the perfect place to take in the panoramic ocean views and look back at the island’s shore. The pier and surrounding beach are part of Folly Beach County Park, which offers amenities including lifeguard supervision, beach patrol, public restrooms, snack bar and equipment rentals (beach chair/umbrella, fishing tackle, etc.). A short way down the beach surfing hotspot ‘The Washout’ draws amateurs and pro’s alike with some of the best surf in the Carolina’s.

Sullivan’s Island

view of CHARLESTON, SC/USA Lighthouse on Sullivan's Island

Though it is the smallest of Charleston’s area beaches, Sullivan’s Island beach is among the most pristine. Less frequented than other area beaches, it’s often uncrowded, ideal for morning walks on the beach, or picnics on the sand with views of the Ravenel Bridge. With nearly a dozen local restaurants right off the beach – from tacos and margaritas at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina or dinner at the eclectic Poe’s Tavern – it’s no wonder Sullivan’s is a favorite for local Charlestonians. The island is also home to Fort Moultrie and the iconic Sullivan’s Island lighthouse (commonly called “Charleston Light”), which has the distinction of being among the country’s most modern lighthouses. Fully operational, it serves not only to guide ships safely to shore but also as a reminder of Charleston’s role as a bustling seaport importing and exporting food, goods, and tourists daily.


Beachwalker Park Kiawah Island

A picturesque drive just south of downtown Charleston, Kiawah Island Beach is a tranquil and serene retreat complete with winding oak trees, marsh views, and coastal landscape. As Kiawah Island is a private, gated community, Beachwalker County Park is one of the best kept local secrets  it’s open to the public, with everything you need from lifeguards to changing rooms, showers, handicap access, and plenty of shade. If you’re heading out for a long walk on the beach, make sure you bring a bag or bucket to collect the many sand dollars you’ll find along the way.


Stay in luxury

Choose your favorite beach, or explore them all and discover a few of Charleston’s treasures and secrets along the way. Don’t forget to pack all the beach bag essentials for your fun day on the sand! Book a stay at any of our luxury vacation homes in the heart of Downtown Charleston or on Folly Beach, Isle of Palms or Sullivan’s Island and be that much closer to having your toes in the sand.  The team at Luxury Simplified Retreats goes above and beyond to offer guests an outstanding experience with beautiful beach rentals and unparalleled concierge services. Browse our Experience Packages to consider making your trip especially unique, then sit back, relax, and leave all of the planning to us.


Vacations are all about RELAXING, with a drink in your hand and your feet in the sand, but that doesn’t mean you can’t also keep up with the healthy lifestyle you maintain while at home. There are plenty of opportunities to eat and stay healthy on vacation in Charleston SC. From running along the beach, to walking the historic streets downtown, and seeing Charleston from top of the Ravenel Bridge, you can get your steps in while exploring the Holy City.

Lace up your shoes and head out for a walk

fitness and walking with tennis shoes Charleston SC

Staying in downtown Charleston? Luxury Simplified Retreats’ luxury vacation rentals are conveniently located within walking distance to local shopping, dining, and entertainment – perfect for reaching your daily steps goal. Whether you’re looking to see Charleston historic sites such as Rainbow Row, the Market, the Battery, White Point Gardens or venturing to Hampton Park to relax or take a walk around the live oaks, Charleston is a completely walk-able city.

After walking around the downtown and working up an appetite, you’re surely going to want to head somewhere for lunch.  Healthy eaters will appreciate the farm-to-table feel of Five Loaves Cafe, where they use locally-sourced ingredients to cook up classic cafe favorites. Walk off those calories on your way over to Affordabike where you can rent a bike and spend a few hours cruising around town. Bikes are a great way to see Charleston’s scenic, downtown neighborhoods including South of Broad, and the French Quarter.

Nearby Westside staple, Dellz Uptown, serves up fresh, flavorful vegan and vegetarian fare. From pizzas to wraps and salads, even the meat-eater in your life will walk away satisfied.

Grab a yoga mat and head to the beach

woman doing yoga at sunrise on Folly Beach SC


Folly Beach is a great place to get in some rest and relaxation. It’s also a great place to take a morning stroll on the beach and see the sun come up over the Atlantic Ocean. The beach is also the perfect place for yoga, sports, running, and biking – and when you’re ready to get wet, jump into the ocean for surfing, swimming, parasailing, paddle boarding or kayaking. You can get all of the equipment for your favorite beach activity at Folly Beach Adventures.

When you’re ready to take a break from the beach you can enjoy a nice stroll to a local favorite, the Lost Dog Cafe. You’re four-legged friend is invited too!  At “The Dog” brunch lovers will find breakfast served all day seven days a week, alongside an afternoon lunch menu.  This iconic Folly Beach fav is the perfect place to start your day!

Stay in Luxury

Planning a vacation to Charleston or Folly Beach and staying at one of our luxury getaways?  Let our Retreat Concierge handle all the details so all you have to focus on is the FUN!  From booking your bike rental, planning a paddle board dolphin tour with a local guide or even scheduling a soothing massage after a day of outdoor fun, our Concierge team can do all the planning.

So … what are you waiting for?

Charleston and the surrounding suburbs have experienced a surge of growth within the last few years both in population and industry. Rental properties are in high demand for this very reason. Newcomers often need time to explore their new environment and get the lay of the land before they buy. Others need somewhere to nest while they are renovating or building a new home in many of the areas resort-like planned communities. Moving is a monumental task and trying to figure out where and what to rent while you’re in transition only adds to the stress. Having recently moved here myself, I understand the lure of Charleston first hand and I’ve got some great insights on why a long term rental vs an apartment is the way to go.

And, as a destination for snow birds looking for a long term rental in a sunny destination, Charleston tops the list.  While Charleston, is famous for its historical architecture and seafood cuisine, there are also museums, art galleries, four golf courses and a multitude of parks to enjoy. Typically for the area, the average October-March temperature here is 58 °F but you can count on a lot of days that are unseasonably warm and filled with sunshine.  While other destinations in the South have been popular with snow birds for years, Charleston has steadily gained as a popular getaway for those seeking to spend a few months away from the snow and cold back home.  Oftentimes, a winter away from home means traveling with your pets and if that’s the case, you’ll definitely want to look for long term rentals that are pet friendly.  In today’s hospitality industry, finding a luxurious longterm rental that treats your dog(s) like a part of the family is easier than ever.

So what’s the big draw and why have so many people been flocking to Charleston over the past few years? The answer is simple, it’s an amazing place to vacation and live! Say hello to  beautiful weather, a historic downtown, picturesque views of water, bridges and brightly colored row homes with southern front porches, and that’s just the outside. Every building you step into from restaurants, to hotels and shops, are oozing with stylish interiors and unique decor. Now let’s talk about food! If you love to eat, you will be in heaven for sure! There is so much good food from BBQ to seafood, authentic southern cuisine and dessert shops. Whether you’re grabbing a quick lunch or enjoying a night of fine dining, you will never lack for options. From a commuting standpoint, getting into the Charleston is a breeze compared to NYC, Philly and other major cities. Other perks of working and living in this quaint city is that nothing is very far away. Need to catch a flight? The airport is about 25 minutes away. Need to run home on your lunch break? Most of the Charleston suburbs are about 10 to 20 minutes away with traffic!  Need a breather and some fresh air? A walk on the beach at lunch is actually an option.

Pair all that goodness with lower home prices and real estate taxes and you’ve got a pretty good formula for a life changing relocation.  Having been born and raised in Jersey, I was enchanted by Charleston’s southern charm, cobblestone streets and local beaches.  It was love at first sight and didn’t take long before we were packing up the family and setting up shop in Lowcountry. Having lived here for a little under a year, I can assure you it does not disappoint!  Now that you’re daydreaming about saying goodbye to winter or just being closer to the sea, here’s our take on making the transition from your current home to your next one.  And why trying a long-term rental for your winter getaway to Charleston makes a whole lot of sense.


Buying? Building? Not Sure?

When making a big move, it takes time to get acquainted with a new place and weigh all of the pros and cons of each town and neighborhood. If you buy right off the bat, you may find that you don’t love where you live or realize another area is a better fit. Renting gives you the flexibility to explore and experience different places without being locked in with a mortgage. Charleston has quite a few surrounding towns that are amazing and amazingly different. It takes time to get your bearings and find the perfect place to put down roots. When it comes to renting, a long term rental home may be the perfect solution.  It has many obvious advantages as opposed to renting in an apartment complex, and here are just a few:

6 Reasons A Long Term Home Rental Is Better Than Renting An Apartment


Looking for a long term rental downtown?  Based on the type of long term rental experience you’d like to have in Charleston, there are a lot of good options downtown, from urban and chic, to historic and charming. With its six distinctive neighborhoods, there are great options for long term rentals all around the historic downtown peninsula.  Charleston’s compact size means its highly walkable, and no matter where you choose to book a longer stay, you will be within walking distance to to shopping and dining destinations like  Halls ChophouseVirginia’s on KingKudu Coffee & Craft Beer, The Ordinary, FIG, Husk, and more!



While there is nothing like a longterm stay in the heart of historic downtown Charleston, there are plenty of travelers and snow birds whose winter travel plans include sun, surf and long walks on the beach.  If that’s you, you’ll definitely want to explore longterm rentals avialable in one of Charleston’s popular island beach communities of Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island or Folly Beach.




If you’re considering spending a while in Charleston, SC, there’s no better choice than Luxury Simplified Retreats. As you settle in to explore our charming city, you can rest assured that we’ll be there every step of the way to ensure every need is met. Whether you choose to stay on Folly Beach by the water or in the heart of downtown Charleston, you’ll have everything you need to make your space feel like home. Browse our long-term vacation rentals to find your ideal home. Then, book your stay with us today. The Lowcountry awaits!

It’s that time of year, marked by the turning of the leaves and the smell of “pumpkin spice everything” wafting through the air. Autumn in Charleston SC brings with it a new wave of events and festivities. Alongside the traditional pumpkin patches and haunted house are annual celebrations unique to Charleston. We’ve put together a list of the top events that you won’t want to miss – mark your calendars for these upcoming events in Charleston SC!

MOJA Arts Festival  

September 29 through October 9, 2022

A celebration of African-American and Caribbean arts, returns to Charleston from its virtual format instigated during COVID-19. Selected as the Southeastern Tourism Society’s Top 20 Events for many years, this celebration of art and music and promises an exciting lineup of visual arts, jazz music, dance, gospel, R&B music, storytelling, and much more!

Fall Tour of Homes

October 5 – October 29, 2022

A celebration of architecture, history and gardens, this beloved event takes you inside some of Charleston’s most iconic historic homes and intricate gardens. Each year, for one month only, the Preservation Society of Charleston invites you to get up close and personal with some of Charleston’s oldest and most exquisite homes. Step inside private homes and gardens, ordinarily closed to the public, and walk through history.

Charleston Gallery Association Art Walk

First Friday of the Month;  September – November 2022 

As the weather cools in the fall, these First Friday Artwalks are popular with both locals and tourists as a way to visit over 40 local art galleries, located throughout Charleston’s historic French Quarter and South of Broad neighborhoods, enjoy refreshments and mingle with artists and art enthusiasts alike during this FREE event! Get your free, printable map HERE for this self-guided evening of art-filled fun.

Charleston Beer Fest 

October 22, 2022

Charleston Beer Fest is back and expanding to be bigger and better this year with more breweries, more music, bigger acts, more food and more games and activities! Head to Riverfront Park in North Charleston for the best beer festival in the Lowcountry – all for a great cause! Come out for a full day of craft beer, music, food, crafts, beer games and fun!Beer festival at Riverfront Park, North Charleston, with regional craft beers, games, live entertainment and food.

The Boone Hall Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch 

September 30 – October 30 2022

The Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch has grown to be one of the largest fall festivals in the state. Now in its 26th year, this event has become an autumn tradition that brings people of all ages together for a day of good old-fashioned fun on the farm.

There’s simply no place quite like Charleston SC in the fall and there are PLENTY more events than just these 5 … The Coastal Carolina Fair is a local favorite held from October 22 to November 6, 2022 where you can ride ferris wheels, roller coasters, eat funnel cakes or turkey legs, and win prizes all night long!

If you’re planning to visit the Holy City for these upcoming events, or any of the many seasonal festivities, our luxury vacation rentals are located just a short distance from each of these fall events and in some of the most historic neighborhoods on the downtown Charleston peninsula or on Folly Beach.