It’s possible it’s the cobblestone streets. Or the pleasant locals. Or the outstanding meals, charming inns, and infinite h2o sights. Regardless of what the rationale, our viewers continue on to be completely charmed by Charleston, South Carolina. In simple fact, it was just voted the best smaller metropolis in the United States in our 2022 Readers’ Preference Awards.
Now in its 35th year, our once-a-year Readers’ Choice Awards carries on to seize the journey ordeals our audience like greatest, from motels and airlines to cruises and islands. The quantities prove what we previously knew: Enthusiasm for travel has never been higher, as demonstrated by the virtually quarter of a million of you who filled out this year’s survey. The best metropolitan areas in the environment (significant and compact) are a testament to the remaining ability of perennial favorites, via thick and thin—with some newcomers to look at.
Charleston is no stranger to accolades. Our viewers named it the ideal smaller metropolis for an extraordinary 10 consecutive several years right up until it was edged out by Aspen in 2021—not astonishing, with most travelers looking for out huge open spaces in the course of the pandemic. But the Holy Town took again its crown this 12 months, and all the things feels comparatively regular after yet again.
Even though there are evidently numerous factors to like this Southern town, you definitely just cannot talk about the desired destination without the need of instantly contacting out its eating scene. “Excellent restaurants” and “delicious food” ended up described in innumerable survey responses, with particular attention compensated to seafood, sweet tea, and hearty breakfasts.
The metropolis excels at Southern delicacies, of course, but really do not slumber on Charleston’s extra varied eating options. Be guaranteed to test the escargot at Maison, the tender agnolotti and veal scallopini at Wild Olive, the gazpacho at Malagón Mercado y Tapería, and the fried smelt with garlic skordalia sauce at Stella’s. We would not dare inform you to skip the Southern classics, however: If you’re fortunate sufficient to find an vacant parking place at The Glass Onion, crack any mild visitors guidelines to get it. The shrimp po’boys, fried grouper cheeks, and lemon meringue pie are the things of legends.
Luckily for us for any calorie counters out there, Charleston also boasts an particularly walkable downtown location and a myriad of outside actions. You can hop onboard 1 of the renowned horse-drawn carriages (“carriage rides both day and evening are a have to,” writes one particular reader), or take a self-guided strolling tour past Waterfront Park, the are living oaks at White Point Gardens, Legare’s attractive residences, and additional.
There are a lot of good seashores to choose from in the spring and summer, with “water as heat as a bathtub,” but we’re certain supporters of the stretches of sand on Sullivan’s Island. These shorelines are wide ample to in good shape the crowds, have light waves, and are surrounded by organic strolling paths via lush vegetation. Get out on the h2o with a kayaking tour—one of Charleston’s trademark outdoor activities—and you could even location a pair of surfacing dolphins or an elusive summer manatee.