Here are 17 things you can see and do absolutely free the next time you head to Charleston. The Spoleto Festival is front and center May 28 through June 13, and the Piccolo Spoleto runs concurrently. Whether you go for the arts and entertainment both offer – or are heading to Charleston to relax for other reasons – work these suggestions into your travel plans, and you may have a good time… for less.


1. The College of Charleston, established in 1770, is a major university whose more than 12,000 students attend classes at the downtown campus, in the George Street area. Take a 75-minute walking tour of campus with a student tour guide. You’ll learn about life there, as well as the history behind some of the buildings – including Randolph Hall, the oldest continually used public building in the nation. During the school year, tours are at 9:30 and 1:30 p.m. weekdays, plus an occasional Saturday. Reservations are recommended. Now through mid-August, tours are offered only at 9:30 a.m. weekdays; 843-953-5670;