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Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

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Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

We are coming to SC for the first time the week of April 13th and staying in Myrtle Beach. We plan to drive one day, midweek, to tour Charleston. I see there are special Festival of Home and Gardens tours running that week, as well as many other guided tours that run all year round. My question is, are the festival tours worth the extra money? The Charlotte St. one is $50/pp. This is a big price difference over the regular walking tours that go for around $20.

Also, do the carriage tours cover the same areas as the walking tours? They are similar in price, so I wondering why you would walk if you could ride, unless of course the walking tours include more sections of historic Charleston.

Thanks for your time.

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1. Re: Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

On a carriage tour there are 3 different routes, you will not know which one you get until you are on the carriage and leave. The city controls this to keep carriage traffic down.

Walking tours are by far the most in depth of information and history, different tours take different routes, talk to the guide.

Home tours are not history tours at all. They are a chance to get a glimpse into a few rooms of some of the historic homes. I would not suggest this for your group.

A single day will barely scratch the surface of what Charleston offers.

Charleston, South...
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2. Re: Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

You won't be in town long enough to make the House Tour festival a good idea. Those tours concentrate on one neighborhood in depth, and last 3 hours. They're great for going inside privately-owned historic houses and some people plan vacations around them (who needs Southern Living magazine when you can experience it up close).

The best thing about carriage tours is the elevated height - you really do see more from up there. Carriages can't guarantee where they'll take you until you've bought your ticket. Your best bet might be to hop on a carriage as soon as you get to town, then give yourself a walking tour of areas you didn't see. Meeting Street, Legare Street, Orange Street, East Battery/East Bay, and the alleys that connect them are not to miss.

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3. Re: Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

I think it's apples and oranges. We've visited Charleston several times, but have yet to do one of the walking/history tours. I guess it isn't quite as appealing to me (considering doing one on our upcoming trip though). If you want to get an overview, this would be the way to go. As you noted, these tours aren't as pricy.

But, the chance to see how the other half lives... fascinating!. We've done the Glorious Gardens tour and one of the house/street tours. You can always do a walking tour, but the Festival of Houses and Gardens is only available for one month.

I just bought tickets for an afternoon of Glorious Gardens in April, and am really looking forward to it.

4. Re: Festival of Home and Gardens tours vs. walking tours ?

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