Historic Beaufort, South Carolina, has all the elements necessary for a great array of guided tours. Here is a handful of the best options.
As one of South Carolina’s oldest and prettiest cities, plus it’s defensive importance to the United States on the Atlantic coast, Beaufort has plenty of intriguing stories to tell. The Historic District in particular is packed with antebellum mansions and historical landmarks that tell and important, harrowing story of wealth, struggle and slavery. There are many great tours exploring this storied past in Beaufort. Here are five of the best, based on considerations such as the duration, itinerary, the previous reviews of other guests, and value for money.
Historic Beaufort City Tour by Bus
A great tour of Beaufort for any weather is this 90-minute driving exploration of the National Historic Landmark-designated district. See the huge antebellum mansions and pretty churches of The Bluff and Old Point. Along the way you will hear about recorded history from this region dating back to the early 16th century, learn about the hard times encountered here during the Civil War, and even pass by some locations used in Hollywood films. This tour runs Mon-Sat and uses an air-conditioned bus. From $25 per person.
Beaufort Local History and Film Sites Tour
For a more in-depth look at the side of Beaufort that has been projected globally onto cinema screens, this hour-long van tour is a great shout. The beautiful old pre-war mansions, the oak trees dripping in ghostly Spanish moss, and the general charm of the historic district of Beaufort are inherently filmic. You’ll get to visit the backdrops of scenes from various movies, including Forrest Gump, The Great Santini, The Legend of Bagger Vance and many more. There are various daily departures of this tour. A minimum of two people are required for the tour to run. From $27 per person.
Civil War and Reconstruction Era Walking Tour of Beaufort
Beaufort, South Carolina, being a strategic military zone in former years, became heavily embroiled in the Civil War. This two-hour walking tour unlocks, through what you can see today, the significance of that war, both on the buildings you see and the culture. You’ll learn how the islands nearby were crucial to the Union’s victory and learn how the town was pieced back together in a freer, more just mold during the Reconstruction. From $32 per person.
Pat Conroy Van Tour
One of Beaufort’s most notable residents was the late Pat Conroy. As one of the key authors of Southern literature in the late 20th century, Conroy’s novels gained great acclaim and many were made into movies. Most notably were The Great Santini and The Prince of Tides, both of which received Oscar nominations. This tour is a lovely way to see Beaufort, by looking at it through the eyes of this eminent writer. You’ll visit Conroy’s family home, his grave site, and many of the locales that made their way into his novels. This tour normally runs Fri-Weds, weekly. From $43 per person.
Spirit of Old Beaufort Heritage Tour
The Gullah-Geechee culture of the Lowcountry, and the sea islands beyond Beaufort, is one of the most captivating features of South Carolina. This important tour examines the often-overlooked plight-driven history of African Americans in South Carolina. During the three hours, you’ll get out of the city onto surrounding islands, including Lady’s Island and St. Helena, learning all about plantation life and post-slavery community along the way. This tour departs twice a week, on Weds and Sat at 1:30pm. From $55 per person.