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Labor Day Weekend in Charleston: Where to Celebrate the End of Summer


Summer’s end is right around the corner. Which means we’ve only a limited amount of time to enjoy some fun in the sun here in the Holy City. Just kidding! We can enjoy fun in the sun practically year-round here. Though, the summer vibe will soon be ending, so you’d better get your Charleston Labor Day Weekend plans solidified. Here are some ideas to get you started.


Charleston Labor Day Activity #1: Head to the Beach

In case you haven’t noticed, we’re a little obsessed with the beach here in the Holy City. But can you blame us? Charleston is practically surrounded by water, and there are miles of pristine beaches in our fair city. Can’t get enough beach time in Charleston? You could drive up the coast and visit one of the award-winning beaches within a few hours’ drive.

Charleston Labor Day Activity #2: Lowcountry Jazz Festival

Every Labor Day Weekend, the Lowcountry Jazz Festival sets up shop at the Gaillard Center in Charleston. Jazz enthusiasts can enjoy three days of local and nationally recognized jazz musicians.

The jazz festival is just one of the many music and cultural festivals in Charleston each year.


Charleston Labor Day Activity #3: Cookout/BBQ

If you happen to be a local Charlestonian, you could always throw a cookout in your own backyard. But what to do if you’re in town only for the long weekend? There’re a few ways you can get in on the fun too — without crashing a local’s party.


Beach Cookout

Want to grill your own food but don’t have the equipment? Head to Kiawah Beach. There’s plenty of picnic areas, replete with picnic tables and grills. All you need to do is supply the charcoal — and the hot dogs and hamburgers, of course.


BBQ Restaurants

There are tons of restaurants that can grill your food for you in Charleston. The best part is that you don’t even need to lift a spatula. Some of our favorite spots include:


  • Rodney Scott’s BBQ
  • Lewis Barbecue
  • Smoke BBQ
  • Poogan’s Smokehouse
  • Bessinger’s BBQ
  • Melvin’s Barbecue
  • Dukes Barbecue
  • Swig & Swine
  • Sticky Fingers Ribhouse


Hamburgers and Hot Dogs

Nothing marks the end of summer like one final hotdog or hamburger. Or both. If you can’t make it to the beach to enjoy a campfire hotdog on a stick, you can always head to one of these restaurants for the next best thing:


  • Sesame Burgers and Beer
  • HoM Charleston
  • Bohemian Bull
  • Brown Dog Deli
  • Melvin’s Legendary Bar-B-Q

Charleston Labor Day Activity #4: Crab Boil

One of the most Charlestonian ways to celebrate any holiday is with a crab boil or Frogmore stew. While we happen to think a homemade crab boil is the bee’s knees, we also think these restaurants do a great job of recreating a homemade crab boil for a large crowd:


  • Charleston Crab House
  • LoLA
  • Hank’s Seafood Restaurant
  • Hyman’s Seafood
  • Nana’s Seafood & Soul

Charleston Labor Day Activity #5: Boat Ride

One of the best ways to celebrate the end of summer in Charleston is by getting out on the water one last time. Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can do so. From kayaks to cruises to ferries, it’s easy to get in a little time on the harbor here. We recommend the follow Charleston boat rides:


  • Charleston Harbor Tours
  • Nature Adventures kayaking
  • Coastal Expeditions kayaking and paddleboarding
  • Spiritline Cruises harbor tour
  • Schooner Pride harbor tour by sailboat
  • Charleston Water Taxi


Charleston Labor Day Activity #6: Charleston RiverDogs Game

The Charleston RiverDogs play every day Labor Day Weekend! This means you have three opportunities to enjoy some fun in the sun, baseball, hotdogs and beer in the stands. They are a minor league affiliate of the New York Yankees.


Fun fact: Bill Murray is part owner of the RiverDogs (and Director of Fun).

Charleston Labor Day Activity #7: Downtown Charleston Farmers Market

There’s no better way to spend a weekend morning or afternoon than wandering around a farmers market. Held weekly in Marion Square, this market features local producers, vendors and food trucks.

Charleston Labor Day Activity #8: Rooftop Bar or Restaurant

Charleston’s rooftop bars and restaurants are guaranteed to be packed all weekend long, so you’d better make your reservations as soon as possible! From these vantage points, you’ll be able to snag great views of the city, harbor and beaches — all while noshing on some iconic lowcountry food and sipping a glass of wine.


Charleston Labor Day Activity #9: Play a Round of Golf

South Carolina’s climate is so fair that you could easily play golf year-round here (as long as you bundle up a little in February!). Yet, this summertime activity just makes more sense from May through August. Say goodbye to the official golf season by playing a few holes at some of our award-winning courses. Fun fact: the first golf club in America was in Charleston. So, you could say it kind of runs in our family. Some of our favorite courses include:


  • Kiawah Island Ocean Course
  • Daniel Island Club
  • Charleston National Golf Club
  • Wild Dunes Resort
  • Seabrook Island Ocean Winds Golf Course


Charleston Labor Day Activity #10: Charleston Walking Tour

If you’re local, why not discover hidden stories about your city — all while spending a few hours outside? We run tours all weekend long, including our Downtown History Tour and our Alleys and Hidden Passageways Tour. Want to get even more out of your holiday weekend? We can organize a customized private tour for you and your family.


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