This tour captures the excitement of that time in history when South Carolina had seceded from the Union. During your tour, you will visit Fort Sumter, a strategic site due to its location at the entrance of Charleston Harbor. Still inhabited by the Union army, the South demanded that Fort Sumter be vacated; however, the North refused. Finally, on April 12th, 1861, from nearby Fort Johnson, South Carolina troops of the Confederacy fired on the Fort - the start of a two-day bombardment that resulted in the surrender of Fort Sumter by Union troops. It was here that the Civil War began.
Leaving from the pier, it's a short transfer to the marina where you will board your boat and take a 30-minute narrated tour across the Harbor to Fort Sumter. Along the way, you will be afforded the wonderful opportunity of seeing Charleston from the water. Upon arrival at the Fort, you will have approximately 1 hour of free time to explore the Fort at your leisure and visit the museum, all the while absorbing the incredible history that surrounds you. Following your visit, you will re-board your boat and return to Charleston.
Once back in Charleston, you will board a coach for the Historic Charleston City Tour. Charleston is considered the jewel of the southeastern United States and "America's Best-kept Secret." Through economic hardship, fires, earthquakes, and hurricanes, Charleston has exhibited a remarkable resilience. Often called a living museum, history is found literally around every corner of the city.
As you meander through its lovely streets, you will be able to appreciate the city's charm and allure, displayed via its cobblestone streets, varied architectural styles, and world-famous "basket ladies" which are found nowhere else in the United States except in this remarkable town. Journey through Charleston's Historic District, where you'll be immersed in the city's fascinating history, viewing such sites as Hibernian Hall, a National Historic Landmark, as well as the site of the 1860 National Democratic Convention. During the convention, no candidate emerged with a majority vote, leading to the election of Abraham Lincoln as the Republican Party's candidate. Steeped in tradition and rich with pride, you will also pass by The Citadel, the military college of South Carolina. At The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon, you will be able to view one of the three most historically significant buildings in Colonial America. From here, it's on to the nation's oldest museum, The Charleston museum. The museum is where a replica of the CSS Hunley, the world's first successful attack submarine is housed.
As you continue on, enjoy the beauty of Rainbow Row, the oldest row of 18th century structures in Charleston. Your elevated coach allows you to look beyond the privacy hedges meant to conceal Charleston's famed magnificent formal gardens. Before returning to the ship, a stop will be made at White Point Gardens where you will marvel in the magnificence of the Battery Mansions which overlook the Charleston Harbor. It is here that the Ashley and Cooper Rivers converge and according to local lore, meet to form the Atlantic Ocean.
Please note: This tour includes considerable walking over uneven surfaces with stairs to negotiate. The tour is not available to guests who utilize a wheelchair or those guests with mobility concerns. Casual clothing and comfortable, flat walking shoes are suggested. Restrooms are available at Fort Sumter and on the coach. The order of the sites visited or viewed may vary.