Charleston Living at it's Finest
Travelers worldwide come to Charleston to soak in the outdoor, food and spirit, southern culture. Year round events showcase the best the city has to offer and brings together locals and tourists alike. Find yourself shucking oysters on a brisk winter weekend, taking in up and coming worldwide and local fashion trends, or achieve your goal of climbing the Cooper River Bridge during the annual bridge run. Charleston lures you in with unique celebrations and forces you to extend your time in the Holy City with the indigenous charm.
LOWCOUNTRY OYSTER FESTIVAL – January
Held every January, the world’s largest oyster festival serves up some 80,000 pounds of oysters on the grounds of Boone Hall Plantation in Mount Pleasant. For those leery of the succulent bivalves, the food court provides a variety of other bites as well as beer and wine.
SOUTHEASTERN WILDLIFE EXPO – February
This three-day celebration of wildlife takes place in downtown Charleston, and most venues are walking distance from The Quarters on Vendue. It is held in mid-February every year, so be sure to bring your Valentine!
CHARLESTON FASHION WEEK – March
Showcased in March in historic Marion Square, Charleston Fashion Week features up-and-coming designers and models while raising funds for area charitable and philanthropic organizations.
WINE + FOOD FESTIVAL – March
Early March every year is dedicated to celebrating Charleston’s food culture, rich in tradition and James Beard Award winning chefs. This five-day festival is a tasty treat for would-be chefs, wine aficionados, and food enthusiasts.
COOPER RIVER BRIDGE RUN – March / April
This annual spring event brings world-class runners to Charleston to compete for a $10,000 prize in a 10K race. With the starting line in Mount Pleasant, runners traverse the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge and cross the finish line in downtown Charleston.
FESTIVAL OF HOUSES AND GARDENS – March / April
A tradition for more than half a century, historic Charleston’s house and garden tour is the perfect way to see the city’s architecture and gardens. Southern hospitality is a reality when homeowners open their doors to guests who tour some of the country’s most beautiful historic homes, many several hundred years old.
FAMILY CIRCLE CUP – April
A premier WTA event is the Family Circle Cup, held in April on nearby Daniel Island. Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, Venus Williams, and Serena Williams are just a few of the athletes who have competed in one of the biggest events in women’s tennis.
DIG SOUTH – April / May
In late April/early May, Charleston becomes Silicon Valley for a five-day festival for techies. DIG SOUTH is a conference for all things tech and tech-related, with presenters, industry showcases, and the opportunity for start-ups to tout their innovations.
GRADUATIONS – May
With several colleges and universities located in Charleston, commencement is a big weekend for graduates and their families. Most ceremonies are held in May, and some have December exercises as well.
SPOLETO FESTIVAL – May / June
For 17 days in spring, Charleston comes alive with the performing arts ‐ opera, theater, dance, chamber music, symphony, choral music, and jazz. The stages are set in the city’s historic theaters, churches, and outdoor venues for the more than 150 performances in this internationally known event.
TASTE OF CHARLESTON – September
Historic Boone Hall Plantation in Mount Pleasant is home to the Lowcountry’s culinary event of the year, The Southern Living Taste of Charleston. For three days, nibblers can enjoy delectable samplings from more than 50 Charleston restaurants. Other highlights include beer tasting, live music, a waiters’ race, and children’s events.
MOJA ARTS FESTIVAL – September / October
In early fall, Charleston welcomes its popular multidisciplinary festival that celebrates African-American and Caribbean arts. MOJA Arts Festival showcases a rich variety of visual arts, dance, gospel, jazz, poetry, rhythm & blues, storytelling, theater, children’s activities, crafts, and food in a myriad of downtown venues.
HOLIDAY FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS - November / December
In November and December, young and old delight in the more than 700 displays and 2 million lights in the Holiday Festival of Lights at James Island County Park. Recognized around the world, the festival was featured as the only U.S. event in Moscow’s Festival of Festivals and has been named to “top” lists by several organizations nationwide.