Character, southern charm, endless sources of entertainment, culture, and quirks.

The history of Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the longest and most diverse of any community in the United States, spanning hundreds of years of physical settlement beginning in 1670 through modern times. Charleston was the leading city in the South from the colonial era to the Civil War. The city grew wealthy through the export of rice and, later, sea island cotton and it was the base for many wealthy merchants and landowners.

The devastation of the Civil War and the ruin of the Charleston's hinterland lost the city its regional dominance. However, it remained the center of the South Carolina economy, while in politics the upstate politicians routinely attacked its aristocratic and undemocratic tone. Beginning during World War II, Charleston became a major naval base. In recent decades, tourism and service industries have led the economy to a new level of prosperity.

There are endless ways to explore Charleston. Whether you're looking to immerse yourself in a rich coastal culture, hop on a tour, splash in the waves or find your bliss in a spa oasis, you'll find what you are looking for here in Charleston.   With so many sights to see, so much rich history to uncover and an endless supply of local haunts to discover, it can be hard to choose where to start.