Best time to go to Charleston, SC

Christmas Events in Charleston 2020

A magical season full of events and activities


Last updated: by Olga Valchyshen
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Disclaimer: Due to COVID-19 concerns, many events might be canceled, postponed, or changed into limited versions, sometimes at very short notice. Please check with event organizers directly for the latest updates (view the "External Resources" section below).

The historical Charleston with its festive carriage rides on cobblestone streets looks especially cozy when adorned with twinkling Christmas lights. Take a stroll through the beautiful French Quarter, The Battery promenade, Waterfront Park, and Charleston Harbor to marvel at holiday decorations. Stop by the magnificent 64-ft Charleston Christmas tree in Marion Square, which is decorated with thousands of lights. Charleston is also famous for its holiday parades, jazz concerts, holiday shows, and other events that make Christmas in the city so special.

Holiday Parade of Boats (December 12, 2020)

Holiday Parade Of Boats is one of the highlights of the holiday season in Charleston. The festive procession of dozens of boats of all sizes decorated with twinkling lights passes through the Charleston Harbor. The best area to view the parade is Charleston's waterfront. Holiday Parade of Boats starts at about 5 pm on the Cooper River, near the Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park. The boats pass under the Ravenel Bridge, then turn towards downtown Charleston, before turning again and ending their route on the Ashley River at about 7:30 p.m.

Holiday Parade at Magnolia (December 5, 2020)

Get your dose of Christmas spirit at Magnolia Plantation & Gardens, where the Christmas Parade features many dance groups, bands, floats, and more. The parade's route starts at the Children's Garden and goes down the iconic Oak Alley. Visitors can bring their own chairs and blankets and get a hot beverage from the Peacock Cafe. After the parade, there's a meet and greet with Santa in the Children's Garden and a free concert.

German Christmas Markt (November 27–28, 2020)

There is no better place to shop for Christmas presents than the outdoor German-inspired Christmas Markt at River Oaks Charleston. Enjoy authentic German holiday snacks and drinks at the Biergarten, listen to live music while relaxing on the lawn, and have a glass of Glühwein by a large bonfire. The market operates from 2 to 9 pm one weekend only.

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