Charleston, South Carolina is truly one of the most unique cities in the Southern United States. Charleston has a variety of activities that are not only fun for the whole family, but are also healthy and humane. On your next visit to Charleston, you certainly won’t want to miss some of these fun and sustainable activities!

One of our favorite things about living in Charleston is the weather. It tends to stay fairly warm through most of the year, making it a perfect place to enjoy the great outdoors. In a historic coastal city like Charleston, it is easy to find fun outdoor activities. To experience the natural wildlife and ecosystem we have here in Charleston, consider spending some time out on the water. Paddle boarding and kayaking are excellent ways to see the natural beauty of Charleston up-close without disturbing the environment. Paddle boards and kayaks are available to rent at a variety of locations throughout Charleston. For those more interested in relaxation than adventure, there are many yoga studios and instructors in Charleston (such as Om Outdoors and Serenity Tree Yoga) that offer outdoor classes to the public.

When exploring downtown Charleston, the easiest way to get around is to do as the locals do – walk! There is so much to see in Charleston, and it can be easy to miss important pieces of what the city has to offer if you’re riding in a car or on a trolly. So come outside, take a stroll, and you’ll be amazed by what you’ll see! The Ravenel Bridge is also a great place to enjoy a scenic walk or jog. Charleston even uses this location to host their popular annual bridge run known as the Cooper River Bridge Run. This annual 10K crosses the Ravenel Bridge, and continues through Downtown Charleston, attracting thousands of participants each year!

If walking seems a bit too slow for your fast-paced lifestyle, consider biking instead. Not only is it an environmentally friendly activity, but it is a great way for the whole family to get some exercise while on vacation. Charleston is very accessible to bicyclists, and there are many locations, including Holy Spokes, from which to rent bikes for the day, or by the hour. Downtown Charleston is an architectural gem, and walking or biking ensures that you can take it all in without missing a beat!

While you’re out and about in Charleston, you won’t want to miss out on plenty of delicious restaurants and unique local shops. It may surprise some to know that Charleston actually has an impressive selection of sustainable, vegan restaurants and fair trade shops that you won’t want to miss. For example, Brown Dog Deli, Cru Cafe, Leyla Fine Lebanese Cuisine, Co, and Dellz Uptown are consistently well reviewed and have fantastic vegan and vegetarian options located in downtown Charleston.

For those interested in checking out Charleston’s shopping scene, there are a variety of fair trade retail options as well. Indigo, for example, offers a wide selection of locally made, sustainable, and fair trade products. Ibu Movement is another retail establishment that partners with female artisans from around the world to create authentic, hand-made products.

Preservation Society Gift Shop is also a fantastic place to shop for unique items made by local artisans in Charleston. These are the perfect shops to pick up one-of-a-kind gifts for your family and friends!

Charleston, South Carolina is one of the south’s greatest gems. We have always been proud of our city, and hope that you consider taking part in some or all of these fun yet sustainable activities so that Charleston can continue to delight visitors for generations to come. If you’d like to help us take action for a safer, more humane Charleston, donate today!