Charlestonians  often refer to their town as “The Holy City”  with good reason.  The peninsula juts out into the harbor shredding the horizon with numerous steeples reaching towards the heavens.  Beautiful, old, and cracked churches are scattered throughout the peninsula and surrounding islands.  Throughout the day, one can hear the bells of St. Michaels calling out the hour.  Many natives still pride themselves on the virtuousness and grace of the city…..but, let’s face the facts; Charleston is a port city and, traditionally, port cities symbolize a place for wayward souls to gather for a cool drink.  Charleston is for travelers seeking adventure or something lost and port cities offer countless delights, as well as a great cultural diversity.  Charleston excels at both!

One in thirteen homes were tippling houses or taverns at the time of the Revolution.  John C. Calhoun described Charleston as a “seething pit of intemperance and debauchery”.  And,  John C. Fremont, founder of the Bear Flag Republic (California) was kicked out of the College of Charleston for late night carousing.  Stories abound of prohibition era speakeasies.  Today, there is a little bit of something for everyone.  Charleston the Manual guides you through the city’s nightlife starting with the market area.  Take to heart one rule in all of this revelry:  In this city, do not drink and drive.  It is beyond expensive if you get caught.  It costs approximately twenty dollars to get to even the farthest night spot from downtown.  An alternate mode of transportation can be a lot of fun. Rickshaws. Trolly buses. Uber. And most everything is walkable on the Peninsula.

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Sunset Summer

 After Dark Fun Rooftops

At one point in Charlestons recent history The wonderful local architect and bon vivant  Neil Stevenson, seemed to be designing and building every new rooftop establishment in Charleston. There are a few newish places but the standards are there. And with the summer weather the late afternoon and sunset make them perfect places to enjoy. The rooftop of the Vendue Inn and the rooftop of the Market Pavilion Hotel have the best views of Charleston Harbor and Stars on King Street can be a vibrant rooftop bar. Another standard fun watering hole is above the restaurant XX and it also has a small rooftop bar that can be fun.

HOLY CITY NIGHTLIFE

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