Fort Sumter Visitor & Education Center Tours

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Fort Sumter is an iconic name in US history, for it was here that Confederates fired the first shots of the Civil War in 1861. The fort was reduced to rubble by shelling over the ensuing years of war.

The Fort Sumter Visitor & Education Center is located at the ferry terminal for trips out to Fort Sumter. It’s well worth taking some time to learn more about the Civil War and the role Fort Sumter played, before catching your ferry to the fort.

Rangers can answer questions, and visual displays put the history into context.

Practical Info

Ferries to Fort Sumter depart from the Fort Sumter Visitor Education Center in downtown Charleston, next to the aquarium. Ferries that can handle RVs depart from Patriots Point in Mount Pleasant. The ferry trip takes 30 minutes one way.

Fort Sumter is 4 miles (6.5 km) southeast of Charleston on Sullivan’s Island in Charleston Harbor.

Address: Liberty Square, Charleston SC 29401, USA
Hours: Open daily 8:30am - 5pm. Closed Dec 25 and Jan 1
Admission: Free
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Charleston Harbor Sightseeing Cruise

The "Holy City" skyline is on full display with this scenic Charleston Harbor Sightseeing Cruise. Sail past notable American landmarks, such as Fort Sumter, the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown, The Battery, the Ravenel Bridge, Castle Pinckney and other sites from the past and present. You will hear enthralling tales of the city’s colorful past as well as scintillating facts about her most-interesting former citizens. Sit back and relax while a Licensed Charleston City Guide shares stories from Charleston’s historical sights, including some listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Great photo opportunities and a fresh sea breeze round out this pleasant and informative Charleston Harbor Sightseeing Cruise.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
$25.00 USD
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
$25.00 USD

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