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Top Charleston, SC Family Activities

Charleston sc family activities main street

Charleston is a very clean and inviting city that is filled with row after row of colorful, perfectly kept houses. Add to that a hefty dose of Southern charm and you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to the 18th Century. Charleston, South Carolina is a super welcoming place for families. From speedboat adventures to the Carolina Aquarium to the beach, there are plenty of things to do in Charleston with family, and the city makes for a beautiful vacation.

Looking for Charleston, SC family activities? Here are some of our favorite Charleston family attractions:

  1. Speed Boat Adventures
  2. Charleston beaches and parks
  3. South Carolina Aquarium
  4. Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum
  5. Magnolia Plantation and Gardens
  6. The Spirits of Magnolia Cemetery Ghost Tour
  7. Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park


1) Speed Boat Adventures


Charleston family activities speed boat

This tour is a must do activity & fantastic way to experience Charleston! You and your family will see so many sights from the water on this thrilling tour! Enjoy views of the Battery, USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier, Arthur Ravenel Jr Bridge, the downtown Charleston skyline, Waterfront Park, South Carolina Aquarium, the cruise ship terminal and all the wildlife that call Charleston Harbor home. The guide will teach you everything you need to know to safely drive the super fun mini speedboat.  No experience necessary. He then leads the way from the guide boat & points out historical sites and wildlife over a walkie talkie. We saw lots of dolphins along the way! The Charleston Harbor Tour is a unique addition to your list of Charleston, SC family activities.


2) Check Out Charleston’s Beaches and Parks

Charleston family attractions isle of palms beach

Every inch of Charleston is meant to impress, but their beaches and parks are something you can’t miss! Choose Isle of Palms Beach or Folly Beach and you won’t be disappointed. The park amenities include boardwalks and accessibility ramps, lifeguards, beach chair and umbrella rentals, dressing area, ice cream, drinks, snacks, playgrounds, restrooms, sand volleyball courts, picnic areas and grills, and outdoor showers. Soak up some sun and enjoy restaurants and shopping within walking distance at either beach.


3) South Carolina Aquarium 

Charleston sc family activities aquarium

Charleston Harbor is home to the South Carolina Aquarium that your kids won’t want to miss. It has more than ten thousand animals and plants. This hard-to-beat addition to your list of Charleston family activities includes the Great Ocean Tank which is the deepest tank in North America! The whole family will also be able to enjoy the Touch Tank, where everyone can touch horseshoe crabs and Atlantic stingrays!


4) Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum


things to do in Charleston with family uss yorktown

The Patriots Point Naval Museum will give you a hands-on history lesson! There is so much to see and do. Walk aboard the USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier, USS Laffey Destroyer, and the USS Clamagore Submarine. There is also an impressive Vietnam Experience Exhibit and a Medal of Honor Museum.  This is where honor, pride, and adventure unite. 


5) Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

charleston sc family activities magnolia plantations

The Zoo and Nature Center at the Magnolia Plantations Garden offers opportunities for your children to encounter a variety of animals including white tailed deer! The animals are happy to be pet and fed! These gardens are truly breathtaking and have some of the world-famous romantic style gardens of the 19th century! 


6) The Spirits of Magnolia Cemetery Ghost Tour

things to do in charleston with family magnolia cemetery

Gain exclusive access to Charleston’s most hauntingly beautiful Victorian burial grounds. Originally a 1790’s rice plantation, Magnolia Cemetery was founded in 1849 on the banks of the Cooper River in Downtown Charleston. Home to 35,000 permanent residents, including authors and poets, artists, Confederate and Union soldiers, prominent politicians, bootleggers, prostitutes, and socialites. Among the many storied citizens who reside here; the eight-man Hunley crew who were recovered with the vessel in 2000 from Charleston harbor.


7) Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park

charleston sc family activities adventure park

This thrilling adventure park offers a selection of outdoor activities and adventure courses for kids of all ages and abilities. If you are looking for family activities in Charleston, this is a must-do adventure for everyone! From exploring your limits and pushing your boundaries, to challenging your capabilities to their utmost, they have an experience for the whole family. 

Charleston, South Carolina is a favorite destination for many due to its family friendly nature. Life here is a little bit slower and a bit sweeter, offering numerous Charleston family activities and lifelong memories of their vacation.