Charleston is a city rich in American indigenous history and is a top tourist destination that attracts visitors from all over the world. The Holy City, as it is commonly known, is widely regarded as the custodian of American history, having preserved cultures, architectural designs, works of arts and historic pre-Revolutionary buildings running back to as late as 1773. This is why thousands of tourists visit Charleston to experience what this historic city has to offer. Classic carriage tours are the best way to discover the Holy City in South Carolina.
When visiting this beautiful city, you are better off planning for private carriage tours, so that you can learn Charleston’s history in depth. Charleston is home to many ‘firsts’ in America that have largely influenced American history. The first museum in America, the Charleston Museum, was established in this city in 1773. The city is also home to the first golf club in America, and it is also where the European established their first permanent settlement in 1670 on the Ashley River.
To add to this golden history, the city has several award-winning restaurants and happy hour packages for all customers. Horse-drawn carriage tour rides are the norm in Charleston and several tour companies that offer carriage tours. Though you could tour the city on foot, it does not compare to a ride on a horse carriage. Classic carriage rides are accompanied by one of the talented Charleston tour guides with a vast knowledge of the city which supplements the entertaining carriage tour.
For your first Charleston carriage tour, it is important to know the following
1. The Tour Routes Are Controlled by the City of Charleston
Your private carriage tours will not be determined by your tour company. Instead, the City of Charleston came up with a fair method to determine routes for private carriage tours so that one company does not dominate the best routes. The routes are determined by a random bingo ball set up in a small kiosk where your tour guide makes a stop before embarking on the tour. In a way, it is a bit of luck, as the bingo ball might settle on the best routes more often. However, all routes will expose you to different historic sites in Charleston which are largely important and fascinating. Besides, it is a thrilling and fun way to keep you touring as your next destination might be better than your last.
2. Your Carriage May Be Drawn by a Draft Horse or a Team of Mules
Mules and horses are some of the traditional animals in Charleston and they are used in rotation to draw your carriage. Some tour companies may use horses for your private carriage tours, but some may assemble a team of mules to draw your carriage around the city. Either way, you are guaranteed of safe carriage rides each time you tour the city.
3. You Can Buy Private Carriage Tours Tickets on the Go
Other than on popular weekends, there is no need to purchase advance tickets for your Charleston carriage ride. However, you can book ahead if you want to maximize a discount package offered by a tour company. Additionally, it is advisable to go on your private carriage tours early in the morning before the sun starts to scorch. In particular, the summer, spring and fall, experience high temperatures in the afternoon when the sun is fully out. Take your tour in the morning hours so that you can avoid the uncomfortable sun. The tour guides also rest the animals to keep them healthy.
Your ideal Charleston schedule should include the carriage tour in the morning hours so that in the afternoon you can enjoy the rich food and plenty of beer that the city is famous for. You will also get to make new friends, as Charleston locals are among the friendliest population in North America.