Charleston, South Carolina, is a city steeped in history, culture, and southern charm. While the Holy City itself offers a plethora of attractions, there’s a world of adventure waiting in and around the coastal lowcountry, and even the mountains of the South Carolina Upstate. If your visit to Charleston is a month long or longer, why not take some time to explore some of the charming towns that are just a short drive away. There are a variety of day trips you can take, venturing to nearby small towns like Georgetown, Camden, Savannah, Beaufort, and Asheville NC. Each of these destinations offers a unique blend of history, natural beauty, and cultural experiences, making them perfect for a day of exploration.
Drive Time: Approximately 1.5 hours
Things to Do: Stroll Front Street along Georgetown’s historic waterfront, explore the Rice Museum, and enjoy fresh seafood at local restaurants.
History: Located half-way between Myrtle Beach and Charleston, Georgetown boasts a rich maritime history and played a vital role in the rice and indigo trade during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Best Time to Visit: Spring and fall for pleasant weather, but year-round access makes it a great destination anytime.
Drive Time: Approximately 2 hours
Things to Do: Discover historic sites like the Kershaw-Cornwallis House, take a scenic walk along the river, tour the nearly century-old Springdale Race Course, dive into equine history and lore at The Steeplechase Museum, visit a working horse farm or experience the Carolina Cup Steeplechase held every spring.
History: A town with a storied equine heritage, Camden boasts the highest density of horses in all of South Carolina, with a thriving equestrian community. Camden is steeped in Revolutionary War history and served as a major British garrison during the war.
Best Time to Visit: Spring for the Carolina Cup horse race, or anytime to soak in its historic charm.
Drive Time: About 2 hours
Things to Do: Take a leisurely walk in Forsyth Park, explore the historic district, stroll the waterfront along the Savannah River and enjoy the sumptuous Southern cuisine.
History: Savannah is known for its well-preserved antebellum architecture, and it played a significant part in the Civil War.
Best Time to Visit: Spring and early fall when the weather is mild and the city is in full bloom.
Drive Time: Approximately 1.5 hours
Things to Do: Visit historic homes like the Thomas Hepworth House, tour the charming downtown, and explore the waterways of the Port Royale Sound.
History: Overlooking the Beaufort River and the Port Royale Sound, Beaufort is one of the oldest towns in South Carolina and played a role in the Reconstruction Era after the Civil War.
Best Time to Visit: Spring and early summer for comfortable temperatures and lush lowcountry scenery.
Drive Time: Around 4 hours
Things to Do: Explore the Biltmore Estate, hike in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and enjoy the vibrant arts and music scene.
History: Asheville is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains and has a rich Appalachian heritage and a robust music scene. Famously known for its reputation for those seeking an “artsy” lifestyle, the River Arts District and West Asheville are full of restaurants and vibrant street art.
Best Time to Visit: Fall for stunning foliage, but for the hiking enthusiasts Asheville offers something special year-round.
When to go
The best time to embark on these day trips depends on your preferences. Spring and early fall offer mild weather, blooming landscapes, and fewer crowds, making them ideal for outdoor activities and sightseeing. However, each destination has its unique appeal, so you can plan your day trips based on your interests and the local events happening throughout the year.
Where to stay
Whether you’re interested in history, nature, or simply experiencing the warm hospitality of these charming towns, the day trips from Charleston, SC, offer a delightful escape. If you’re considering spending a while in Charleston, SC, there’s no better choice than booking a longterm rental from our luxury portfolio. 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 away from home.