South Carolina Guide

 South Carolina, also known as The Palmetto State, is one of the largest hubs of tourism in the country and especially the Southeastern United States. With popular destinations like Myrtle Beach and Charleston, millions of people a year travel across the state from the Northern US or Canada. The long, wide beaches, temperate climate, and friendly hospitality are just a few of the reasons so many people travel to South Carolina. The state is also a popular tourist destination for Civil War enthusiasts, history buffs, foodies, and anyone who enjoys water sports.

 

FAST FACTS ABOUT SOUTH CAROLINA

Currency – $USD

Electricity – 110V – Type A & Type B Standard Plugs

Time Zone – Eastern Time Zone (GMT -5 hrs)

Popular Tourism Seasons – The most popular tourism season is June-August, however the shoulder seasons of May and September-October are also popular because of the warmer temperate climate along the coast.

 

GETTING THERE & GETTING AROUND

Primary Airports – Columbia (CAE), Greenville (GSP), Myrtle Beach (MYR), and Charleston (CHS)

Primary Train Stations – On the Silver Service/Palmetto Route: Charleston (CHS), Florence (FLO), and Columbia (CLB). On the Crescent Route: Greenville (GRV) and Spartanburg (SPB)

Major Highways – Interstates 95, 85, 77, 26 and 20 pass through the state. Highway 17 is a four-lane divided highway traveling north/south across the coast, connecting all coastal destinations.

Best Transportation – The best way to get around South Carolina is by car along the many interstates and four-lane divided highways. Flying into any of the major airports is easy with many daily flights from popular destinations and tourism hubs across the country. Traveling to Columbia and Charleston by train is a rising trend, but mostly only supported by work commuters and personal travel rather than tourism.

 

SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES

Visit the Grand Strand – South Carolina’s premiere vacation destination is so much more than just a 60-mile stretch of beautiful beaches. Here you’ll find state parks, eco tours, small towns to explore, great local shopping, and lots of local places to eat.

Charleston – Charleston really has a lot to offer: world-class restaurants, local shops, history, and beautiful scenery. But don’t forget to branch out a little and also explore Mount Pleasant, Sullivan’s Island, Isle of Palms, Folly Beach, and Edisto Beach.

Beaufort & the Sea Islands – Try a vacation on the beautiful Sea Islands for something a little more laid back, but still exciting. Visit Hunting Island State Park, the most-visited park in the state. Then explore some local shops and restaurants.

 

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CHOOSE YOUR REGION

The Grand Strand

The Grand Strand is a magical 90-mile stretch of beach from Little River at the North Carolina border to Georgetown. Along this stretch of beach you’ll find places like North Myrtle Beach, the Apache Family Campground, Myrtle Beach State Park and Huntington Beach State Park, Garden City Beach, Murrells Inlet, and Pawleys Island. Just a few miles inland you’ll find the charming small college town of Conway.

But the heart of The Grand Strand is Myrtle Beach. Family attractions like the Family Kingdom Amusement Park, several piers for fishing and scenic views, lots of local eating options, and plenty of shopping make Myrtle Beach a vibrant and exciting tourist destination.

Charleston – Low Country

Consistently known as one of the friendliest and most popular tourist destinations in the world, Charleston is steeped with a rich cultural history that blends well in the modern age of tourism that has swept across the city. With lots of places to enjoy history, ways to get out on the water, fantastic places to eat, and amazing places to visit, Charleston has a little bit of it all to keep anyone satisfied during a vacation. Nearby towns of Mt. Pleasant, Sullivan’s Island, and Folly Beach add to the general travel experience.

Hidden attractions like Wonders Way on the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge and the Angel Oak Tree make Charleston an unforgettable place to visit.

Beaufort & the Sea Islands – Low Country

The Sea Islands of South Carolina are a collection of small, peaceful islands surrounding Beaufort. Places like Saint Helena Island and Port Royal give visitors lots of places to eat, sleep, and play while enjoying the area. South Carolina’s most visited state park, Hunting Island State Park, is also the only place in the state visitors can climb a lighthouse.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY MAP

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BLOG POSTS MAP

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RECENT POSTS

Here are a few of the most recent blog posts about South Carolina. Click here to view all posts about the state.

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6 Reasons Why You Need to Visit the South Carolina Mountain Lakes

If you only think of beaches and Charleston when South Carolina comes to mind then you don’t know about one of the most beautiful regions of the entire state. Nestled along the foothills of the Appalachians the South Carolina Mountain Lakes region is exactly that: mountains and lakes. In between those mountains and lakes is […]

The Macro World of Magnolia Plantation & Gardens in Charleston

I did something extremely crazy. I spent an entire day at one of the most popular plantations in Charleston with nothing but a a telephoto macro lens shooting close up photos of anything I could find. I skipped past the sweeping landscapes, the Long White Bridge, and waved at the alligators. I resisted the urge […]

5 Free Things to Do in Charleston

Charleston is a town filled to the brim with great dining, local shopping, and centuries-old history. It doesn’t have to be an expensive getaway, but the lodging, food, and entertainment can add up fast. So who doesn’t like a few free things to do?

An Unforgettable Evening at the Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

I have a confession to make: I had never been to a dinner theater show before. I’m not really sure why because I’ve certainly come across them during all my travels. But I had always some other place, usually a local place, to have dinner. This past Friday night I decided it was time to […]

The Powder Magazine: Touring South Carolina’s Oldest Public Building

It was hard to believe I was standing inside the oldest building in South Carolina. The nice wooden floors, protective beige stucco, and interactive displays made it seem more like a modern museum. Then again the seamless blend of centuries old history with modern life is one of the most popular themes in Charleston, South […]

An Evening at Magnolia Plantation & Gardens in Charleston

From my comfortable seat on the Nature Train I could see beautiful blooming flowers in the gardens one moment and twelve foot long alligators in a moss-covered pond the next. The open air trolley ride was certainly the highlight of my visit to Magnolia Plantation & Gardens, but it wasn’t the only memorable moment. A […]