First Timers to Town

Three of Charleston’s can’t-miss at­trac­tions for those who haven’t been here yet.

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Con­structed in 1829, Fort Sumter was fired upon with the first of­fi­cial shots of the Civil War. The well-pre­served is­land fort ru­ins are ac­ces­si­ble only by boat, with departures from the Fort Sumter Visi­tor Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter. The two-hour tours in­clude a ferry ride: Keep an eye out for dol­phins while cross­ing the har­bor. $19. 340 Con­cord St., 843.883.3123


Rain­bow Row, Charleston’s most iconic stretch of real es­tate, dates back to the 1700s. But it didn’t gain its name un­til 1931, when Judge Lionel Legge and his wife pur­chased a stretch of homes on then-de­pressed East Bay Street and painted them pas­tel pink. As oth­ers pur­chased the sur­round­ing homes, they painted them in equally vi­brant Colo­nial Caribbean col­ors. The 13 houses run from 83 to 107 East Bay Street be­tween Tradd and El­liot streets.


Oc­cu­pied by the same fam­ily for 142 years, this house was built in 1820. Owned by the His­toric Charleston Foun­da­tion, this mu­seum is con­sid­ered the best-pre­served com­plex of an­te­bel­lum struc­tures in the city. $12. 48 El­iz­a­beth St., 843.723.1623

Rain­bow Row

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