Charleston, South Carolina is a popular vacation destination year-round, especially since the area experiences more than 200 days of sunshine annually. Beyond the warm summers ideal for beach trips, Charleston is also great for winter getaways. When staying at a Charleston vacation rental during the winter, you can look forward to sunny days and mild temperatures that span from November to February.

Enjoy the coastal breezes and the blooming azaleas and dogwoods during the spring. In the fall, soak up the sun and visit attractions without the crowds. Spend your autumn days touring historic landmarks such as Middleton Place and Boone Hall; hop aboard a fishing excursion in the summer; enjoy the holiday lights in the winter; or participate in springtime city-sponsored festivals. Choose the best time to visit Charleston with your family based on your personal preferences, interests, and favorite seasonal activities.

charleston waterfront
Source: Flickr/Ron Cogswell

Charleston in the Summer

A Charleston vacation rental in the summer puts you close to outdoor attractions such as Waterfront Park and The Battery, a stretch of mansions with breathtaking views of Charleston Harbor on the southern tip of the city. Spend your days kayaking with gear from Charleston Outdoor Adventures or take a canoeing trip with a guide from Coastal Expeditions. The warm weather calls you to the cool waters and sandy beaches during the summer.

Summertime is also a great time to tour the White Point Gardens to see Civil War artifacts and memorials. The crowds are a bit heavy in Charleston during the summer, but you can’t resist the outdoor activities that include walking tours of the downtown district sightseeing boat rides with Charleston Harbor Tours. If you’re visiting on or around the Fourth of July holiday, head to the downtown area to see fireworks at dusk. When determining what to pack for a summer trip to this southern city, make room in your suitcase for shorts, tanks, and swimwear since temperatures top 90 degrees in mid-July.

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Charleston in the Fall

Fall offers you and your family scenic views as the leaves start to turn colors. The weather cools off beginning in October to an average of 75 degrees and the city brings out their spooky charm with downtown Charleston ghost tours and haunted houses. Visit the Boone Hall Plantation in the fall and let the kids enjoy the pumpkin patch and corn mazes. Mild temperatures make it ideal to see the historic landmarks of the city, such as the Pineapple Fountain, Marion Square, and Boneyard Beach.

Stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables to prepare at your Charleston vacation rental when spending the morning shopping the local produce at the Charleston City Market or the Market Square. Take in the impressive collection of portraits and historic furniture on display at Middleton Place before touring the grounds of this 18th-century plantation built in 1755. Middleton Place hosts historical re-enactments for the entire family to enjoy before stopping in at the Middleton Place Restaurant for traditional Gullah fare.

Charleston in the Winter

As the holiday season rolls around in Charleston, the streets come alive with the James Island County Park’s Holiday Festival of Lights. Historic Charleston homes, such as the Edmonston-Alston House hosts Christmas events that last from November through the end of December.

The mild temperatures that average around 60 degrees in December allow you to still engage in outdoor exploration. Visit the Magnolia Plantation and Gardens to see a historic mansion, but also explore the grounds that are home to wildlife. See the turtles and gators that habitat the Audubon Swamp Garden or hike and bike the trails. This family-friendly tourist spot also features a petting zoo that is open year round and much less crowded during the winter months.

Charleston in the Spring

Springtime not only brings out the colorful blooms of jasmine, dogwoods, and azaleas, the Charleston area also boasts a unique smell from the flowers that line the multiple plantations. The weather averages 70 to 80 degrees from March through May so you can explore without the humidity of the summer. Join in the annual festivals at the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition that begins in late February. Spring is also the time when Charleston hosts the Wine and Food Festival, Fashion Week, and the Volvo Car Open Tennis Tournament.

Enjoy a run through Waterfront Park on those cool mornings before touring Drayton Hall and Boone Hall for a taste of Charleston’s history. See remnants of the Civil War up close and personal at the Fort Sumter National Monument or see beachfront views and seashells at Sullivan’s Island.

The Best Time to Visit?

The attraction of glistening waters and fun in the sun often brings the most crowds to Charleston during the summer months, and the winters attract snowbirds looking for milder temperatures. Although many Charleston historical sites and fishing and boating charters are open year-round, the best time to visit is undeniably the spring as the flowers start to bloom and the festivals begin to fill the streets with live music, art, and vendors. Venture from your vacation rental to experience the beauty of Charleston with minimal crowds and comfortable temperatures when vacationing in the spring.

 
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