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14 December . 2021

Holiday Traditions, Southern Style in Charleston

We may not have a white Christmas in Charleston, but there are endless fun things to do that will make your South Carolina days merry this season - and build traditions you can enjoy for years to come. Below, some fun to take in as you wind down the year in southern tradition.

Explore All Over Again
Has it been a while since you saw the sights of downtown and the historic district? It all looks different lit up and decorated for the holidays!

Take a walking tour to see grand homes in all their decorated splendor or enjoy a carriage ride to get a tour of the area in style. The decorations on homes, stores, churches, and parks are worth a visit, no matter how recently you’ve been there. Many of the museums and houses in the areas also have special holiday offerings, like a candlelight tour at the Nathaniel Russell House or Drayton Hall.

You can find unique gifts and decorations for the holidays at shops and markets all season long. Visit the Holiday Market in Marion Square and the shops along downtown streets and put gifts under the tree for the foodie, traveler, fashionista or book lover in your life.

Enjoy the Classics
Everything that Charleston is well-known for takes a festive turn during the holidays. Pop into your favorite local restaurant or bar to check out special food and drink treats, see what’s playing at the Historic Dock Street Theater and enjoy live music through The Sound of Charleston.

Historic and area hotels offer packages during the holidays that make a great near-to-home getaway. Enjoy the best of Charleston just steps away from a cozy room and add-ons like local wine and snacks or event passes.

Venture Out
Find local activities to look forward to each year! Ever done a Polar Plunge? Ring in the new year with a dip in the Atlantic on January 1. If you’d rather stay a bit warmer, visit the popular Holiday Festival of Lights or the Festival of Trees at the Charleston Visitor Center.

The Lowcountry’s location creates a perfect backdrop for the annual Holiday Parade of Boats. Stay in the aquatic holiday spirit with a visit to the South Carolina Aquarium, which allows visitors to hang out with sea life and enjoy live entertainment on some evenings.

Don’t forget to take pictures while you’re out and about—they’ll make great holiday cards for next year!

Create Your Own
At the end of the day, traditions are what you make of them! Mixing in your own at-home favorites make memories that last a lifetime. Whether it be watching favorite holiday movies, making cookies, doing crafts, or just decorating a tree, find what your family enjoys the most and hang on to those traditions.

Find more Christmas traditions in Charleston, courtesy of Explore Charleston or Visit Historic Charleston. ‘Tis the season!

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