Located at the southern end of South Carolina’s Grand Strand and a leisurely half-hour drive from the seaside resort town of Myrtle Beach, the incredibly charming city of Georgetown is a historic gem waiting for you to discover and explore–and the fall months are a great time to do it.
The crowds are long gone and summer gets a bit of a reprieve here, with average October temps ranging in the mid to upper 70s. And if you’re planning a vacation around Halloween, a haunted tour of historic Georgetown is a must!
Dubbed “Little Charleston,” Georgetown is a giant when it comes to historic attractions. This colonial-era seaport city will instantly charm you with its oak-lined avenues, riverfront shopping and dining, scenic HarborWalk, dozens of majestic antebellum mansions, and rich history.
Travel Back to 1732
As the third-oldest city in South Carolina and its second-largest seaport, Georgetown has seen its fortunes rise, fall and rise again. It was officially founded in 1732 by English settlers from nearby Charleston, but some historians claim that American history started here back in 1526 with the arrival of the Spanish, who founded a short-lived colony in the same location.
Colonial Georgetown thrived as a center for indigo production until the Revolutionary War period, when rice became the cash commodity crop. Large rice plantations were established around Georgetown on its five rivers, where slave labor produced almost half of the entire U.S. rice crop by the mid-19th century. The wealth that was generated built the many stately plantation manor houses that still stand in and around the city, which were largely spared during the Civil War.
Today, Georgetown’s central historic district is incredibly well-preserved. The historic buildings along the scenic waterfront have mostly been converted to restaurants, bars and boutique shops, and are a great place to shop and stop in for a bite.
With such a long and layered history, it’s not surprising that some spirits might have remained behind, haunting around the centuries-old structures that surround the city’s busy harbor.
Have a Close Encounter with Former Georgetown Residents
Stick around on a Friday until sunset and take a haunted, lantern-led tour through the historic district, where the spirits of the past are said to still roam centuries-old streets. Hosted by Ghosts of Georgetown, the tours are led by knowledgeable tour guides dressed in period costume. It’s a fun and engaging way to learn about Georgetown’s long history, as well as the 18th and 19th-century rice planters, sea captains, servants, sailors, slaves, heartbroken brides-to-be and many other colorful characters who lived here over the last 300 years.
For tour information and reservations, call 843.543.5777.