Best of the Holy City Recreation and Fitness

05 Jul 2024

Voted on by our readers, these award-winning attractions, top-notch shopping and services have helped make Charleston the #1 Best City in America. Use this guide to discover (or rediscover) what makes Charleston such a great place to live, work and play. We’ve got recommendations from locals for everything from the best antique store and best family-friendly attraction to the best spot to grab a martini. Cheers!

By Sophia Rodriguez, Daria Smith, Denise K. James, Maddie Cleland and Beverly Barfield

Best Fishing & Tackle Shop

Haddrell's Point Tackle

Haddrell's Point Tackle, in Mount Pleasant and West Ashley, is the Lowcountry’s destination for anglers. Specializing in saltwater and freshwater fishing equipment, they cater to both novice and seasoned fishers. With a commitment to quality brands and personalized service, Haddrell's Point Tackle ensures every excursion to Charleston’s waters is equipped for success and enjoyment.

Best Fitness Center

Ethos Athletic Club

Ethos Athletic Club in downtown Charleston provides a holistic approach to fitness and wellness. Personalized training programs and state-of-the-art facilities help them cater to clients and help them achieve their goals. Ethos Athletic Club’s expert trainers offer unrivaled classes and they offer a supportive workout environment where members can thrive physically and mentally.

Best Golf Course

Links at Stono Ferry

The historic Links at Stono Ferry invites golfers to enjoy a memorable round in a tranquil, coastal setting in Hollywood, just outside of Charleston. The semi-private club, known for its challenging course and picturesque views, combines natural beauty with Southern hospitality…and maybe an alligator spotting. The Links at Stono Ferry is the perfect refuge from society’s hustle.

Best Kayak Excursion Company

High Points Kayaking

High Points Kayaking provides unforgettable kayak adventures in Charleston's pristine waterways. Specializing in guided tours and rentals, they cater to all skill levels. With a focus on safety and exploration, High Points Kayaking offers a unique perspective of Charleston's natural beauty, ensuring memorable experiences on the water for every adventurer.

Best Marina

Safe Harbor Charleston City

Safe Harbor Charleston City on Lockwood Drive offers premier, membership-based marina services and personalized concierge services in the heart of Charleston. Their state-of-the-art facilities, including the famous Megadock, accommodate vessels of all sizes. Whether docking for a day or a season, Safe Harbor ensures a seamless experience for boaters exploring Charleston's historic waterfront and beyond.

Best Outdoor Outfitters
Half Moon Outfitters

Half Moon Outfitters is Charleston's go-to destination for outdoor gear and apparel that prioritizes sustainability and adventure. Their high-quality equipment is ideal for hiking, camping and paddling. Half Moon offers expert advice and a wide selection of products to inspire and equip outdoor adventures in Charleston and beyond.

Best Specialty Fitness Studio

CrossFit Wando

CrossFit Wando is dedicated to fostering strength and community, offering personalized coaching and a supportive environment for athletes of all levels. With a focus on functional fitness and camaraderie, CrossFit Wando empowers members to achieve their fitness goals and embrace a healthier lifestyle in a dynamic, encouraging setting.

Best Surf Shop


McKevlins, on Folly Beach, has an extensive selection of surfboards, bodyboards, beachwear and accessories. They cater to surfers and beachgoers, providing quality gear and expert advice, plus live surf cams at the Folly Pier and the Washout. McKevlins embodies the spirit of Folly Beach's vibrant surf culture.

Best Tennis Facility

Charleston Tennis Center

The Charleston Tennis Center, a city-owned facility on James Island, boasts well-maintained courts, comprehensive amenities and professional coaching services for players of all skill levels. The facility holds novice tournaments and offers USTA-rated leagues for both recreational players and competitive athletes. The center's commitment to excellence ensures an exceptional tennis experience within Charleston's vibrant sports community.

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