With a history that traces all the way back to 1670, Charleston is one of the most treasured gems of the South. Its colonial roots are reflected in its architecture, layout and historical buildings, all of which give the city its distinct personality. National travel magazines have named Charleston the No.1 U.S. city, and it's often cited as one of the friendliest destinations in the United States.
Living in Charleston
From antebellum mansions to modern shopping centers, Charleston offers something for everyone. Its a quaint, old-world charm extends from the waterfront to the downtown district. The city is known for its rich dining scene, featuring old-fashioned, Southern-style dishes. There are also a number of major golf courses in Charleston, and pleasant spring, summer and fall weather provide plenty of opportunity to play a round of golf.
Charleston is also a highly walkable city. Expect to see locals and tourists alike strolling through historical neighborhoods, the city's large shopping areas and waterfront paths. Public green spaces provide lots of room to walk, jog, bike or enjoy a picnic. There are many historic points of interest in Charleston, as well as a number of museums, sports venues and a thriving music scene.
Working in Charleston
If you're planning to look for a job in Charleston, you'll find opportunities across different industries. One of the city's largest industries is tourism, fueled by its many historical landmarks, arts and culture and special events. The many hotels, inns, and bed and breakfasts in Charleston provide a number of hospitality-based jobs, and there are also many jobs in the city's restaurants and retail shops.
Another important industry in Charleston is commercial shipping, supported by two large shipping terminals owned by the South Carolina Ports Authority. Charleston's seaport is among the largest in North America, supplying a steady flow of jobs for locals.
In recent years, Charleston has become the home of a growing information technology industry. The Charleston Digital Corridor has fueled this growth, propelling the city to a ranking as one of the strongest economies in the country.
Charleston County School District serves Charleston-area schools. There are public elementary schools, middle schools and high schools as well as charter schools throughout the city, or you can enroll your child at one of Charleston's many private schools.
You'll find many options for higher education in Charleston, including the College of Charleston, The Citadel and the Medical University of South Carolina.
Resources for Moving to Charleston
Here's some handy information to make your move to Charleston as simple as possible:
Utilities: South Carolina Electric & Gas and Charleston Water are the city's primary utilities providers.
Garbage and Recycling: The city provides disposal bins for trash, which is collected on a weekly basis. You can also put yard waste out for collection once per week.
Transportation: CARTA operates a number of public transportation routes in and around Charleston.
Each of Charleston's neighborhoods offers unique appeal and a different culture. From historic Ansonborough to the hip, affordable Eastside, there are many options to consider. Because Charleston is a large city and a highly desirable place to live, home prices are well above the national average. However, the housing market is extremely large, so you have a full range of home styles, sizes and price points to make the process easier.