Charleston remains the star attraction of South Carolina, but the Palmetto State has much else to recommend it: the rugged peaks of the Blue Ridge Mountains; the placid lakes of the central Piedmont plateau; and the broad, sandy shores and resort islands of the Lowcountry. The first state to secede from the Union in 1860 wears its history on its sleeve, from the live-oak promenades of Georgetown to the stately mansions of Charleston’s Battery.
Today, South Carolina is a golfer’s paradise, with Myrtle Beach boasting more courses per capita than any other city in the country. The notoriously erratic winds of the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island have sobered thousands of golfers since its opening in 1991.
Many people now journey to Charleston for the food alone. Like New Orleans, Charleston served as a major port, where people from Europe and Africa influenced one another’s cuisines. The Lowcountry recipes that followed made use of readily available ingredients such as shrimp, oysters and rice, combining them in ostensibly simple but immensely satisfying dishes.