Founded in 1670, Charleston, South Carolina is a beautiful, historic city with a ton to offer. This mid-sized coastal town has a population of about 142,848 according to the 2017 census estimate. The city has a bustling economy based on tourism, shipping, and a growing IT industry. The Charleston port is the 4th largest on the East Coast. More than 4.5 million tourist visit the city annually. In 2013 Charleston was ranked as the ninth-best performing economy in the US. From fine dining in one of the oldest historic districts in the country, to ghost tours in dank cellars, to relaxing picnics on the beach, Charleston can provide entertainment for the whole family. Here are five reasons you should consider it for your next place to call home.
1. The History
Being one of the older cities on the eastern seaboard (The first English settlers arrived in Virginia in 1607 and Philadelphia was founded in 1682 just to give you some perspective), it has an impressive historic district with architecture you don’t find in many U.S. cities. Charleston was the site of the first battle of the American Civil War in 1861 and the place where the first warship was ever sunken by a submarine when the Hunley successfully torpedoed the Union ship the U.S.S. Housatonic. After the civil war, lacking resources, the devastated south had little alternative but to repair its damaged buildings rather than replace them. This has led to one of the cities greatest current assets, a well preserved historic district like few others in the U.S.
Charleston is known for its theater and music scene and was named as one of the country’s top 10 cities for theater by “Travel + Leisure”. The city hosts a number of festivals and events throughout the year including the world renowned Spoleto Festival USA. This is a 17 day festival held in late spring every year that was started in Charleston by Pulitzer Prize winning composer Gian Carlo Menotti who picked the city as an ideal location to hold the festival. Charleston was named a top 25 art destination by AmericanStyle magazine and is home to a number of museums.
Shrimp and grits. Enough said, but if you’re interested in other culinary delights, Charleston has a rich downtown with a number of fine dining and fantastic budget options. As a top tourist destination, Charleston offers plenty of options for places to eat. The city offers an interesting mix of cuisine as its rich history, diverse population, and proximity to the sea are expressed in the variety of food available.
With a humid subtropical climate, Charleston experiences mild winters with little snow. So you can leave your snow shovel behind if you’re moving to this beautiful city from the north. Fall is relatively warm into late November. On the other hand, summers are hot and humid, but this brings me to the next point.
South Carolina is home to a number of famous vacation spots. Folly Beach is just outside the city, but there are a few very popular options within a few hours drive of Charleston as well. Myrtle Beach to the north is a popular vacation destination. To the south you have Hilton Head Island.
All this only scratches the surface. This vibrant city has a lot more to be explored, and if you make this your new home you’ll have lots of time to get to know the intricacies of this beautiful city. Come be a part of the growth of this area and help it continue to thrive as a center of art, culture, and commerce as it has for hundreds of years.