While historic downtown Charleston, SC is known for is it’s amazing architecture, history, and southern charm, the surrounding towns are definitely worth a visit as well. One very popular and charming town is Mount Pleasant, SC.
From a residential perspective, Mount Pleasant is commonly considered one of the best places to live in Charleston County, and even is on multiple “best of” lists for the entire state. Low crime, great schools, and beautiful surroundings make this a place many people want to call home. Tourists would be wise not to skip this quaint suburban community; however, because there are many things to do for residents and visitors alike. If anything, the trip to Mount Pleasant is worth the drive just so you can drive over the iconic Arthur Ravanel (Cooper River) bridge!
If you are unfamiliar with the Mount Pleasant area, then use the guide below to help you plan your day trip.
Visit Mount Pleasant Waterfront Park
As you cross the Cooper River bridge, you may not realize your driving over your first stop. Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park is a beautiful (and free!) place to visit. If you have children with you, there is an awesome playground that is styled to look like the bridge above. A large grassy lawn invites visitors to throw a ball, have a picnic, or just set out a blanket and enjoy the surrounding views.
Grab a Coffee or Smoothie
A gift shop/cafe is located at the park near the playground. You can get coffee, smoothies, and snacks and enjoy your treats at outdoor tables with a waterfront view. Or, peruse the small gift shop for fun local inspired decor, touristy jewelry, an fun gadgets for the kids.
View the Bridge from Below
Another really unique aspect of this park is the location. The park is located directly beneath the Arthur Ravenel Jr. (Cooper River) bridge.
Walk along the Pier
After passing by the playground, field, fountains, and gift shop, the park ends with a 1,250 foot pier that stretches along the Charleston harbor. Take your time and enjoy the swings and benches while watching the boats go by, and be on the lookout for coastal birds and even dolphins!
Tour Patriots Point Maritime & Naval Museum
If you are looking for an extremely popular tourist attraction in Mount Pleasant, then Patriots Point is it. This should definitely be on your list if you are into military history, ships, or aircraft.
The most obvious attraction is the USS Yorktown, which is a WWII aircraft carrier that you can tour. Patriots Point also includes a museum, a Cold War Memorial, National Historic Landmark ships, and the only Vietnam Experience Exhibit in the U.S. Finally, the Congressional Medal of Honor Society and the official Medal of Honor Museum are on site.
One tip if you are planning to visit: this museum is frequently on Groupon so be on the lookout for deals.
Explore the Historic District
Many people may not know this, but Mount Pleasant also has it’s very own historic district called the old village. Though it is not very large, it is a lovely stroll full of pretty architecture, Charleston style home, and some cute shops.
Experience and Old Fashioned Pharmacy and Soda Fountain
Pitt Street Pharmacy is one of the staples in the old village district. The pharmacy was opened in 1937 and has everything from old fashioned candies, toys, local foods, and random drug store goods. Even better, it has a full service old fashioned soda fountain inside where you can get everything from cheeseburgers to milkshakes!
Finish the Evening at Shem Creek
A trip to Mount Pleasant would not be complete without visiting the Shem Creek area. Whether you go for lunch, dinner, or just a walk along the boardwalk, this is one of my personal favorite places to go in Mount Pleasant. You can even take a water taxi from here to Patriots Point or to downtown Charleston. You can click here for a 1 page brochure of the area.
Take a Stroll along the Boardwalk
Shem Creek Park is home to a 2,200 foot scenic boardwalk through the marsh. There is a free gravel parking lot and restrooms on site.
Have Dinner and Drinks
The Shem Creek area is mostly known for it’s dining and nightlife with beautiful views. There are a mulitude of options to choose from, and seafood lovers will definitely not be disappointed! Popular restaurants include Vickery’s, Waters Edge, and Red’s Ice House.
As you can see, there are plenty of things to do in Mount Pleasant!
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