This Walking Trail In South Carolina Will Take You Through 3 Hauntingly Beautiful Graveyards

A fun adventure through secret gardens!

A walking trail. Right: An eerie graveyard garden.

A walking trail. Right: An eerie graveyard garden.

Charleston not only has beautiful beaches, but the city itself holds so much history. You can go on a walking adventure through many of its old churchyards and secret gardens to get a true Southern experience.

The Gateway Walk in Charleston, South Carolina will make you feel like you've stepped into a scene out of The Secret Garden.

This area was created and designed by The Garden Club of Charleston in 1930, which still takes care of it today. There's actually a map of the entire walk you can print out on their website so you can explore every inch of it.

The walk begins at a church where you'll pass hundreds of old, vine-covered graves that are hauntingly beautiful.

Visitors will then head to St. John's Lutheran Church where you'll see a churchyard with a big gate.

This path will lead you to the Unitarian Church where you'll see the many gravestones around the churchyard. The entire yard is a garden filled with flowers and greenery that’s bloomed over the years.

You'll then be led to King Street and the Charleston Library where the next garden will be. This garden was created by the Gibbes Museum of Art so it's more symmetrically pleasing to the eye.

Taking the path across Meeting Street to the Circular Congregational Church you'll be met with yet another graveyard where the oldest marked grave is from 1695.

The last and final garden and graveyard you'll encounter is St. Philip's Graveyard. John C. Calhoun and Charles Pinckney are both buried here.

Charleston is filled with history and on this walk, you'll get only a smidge of it. This is also an easy way to explore the city and get some fresh air.

The Gateway Walk

Price: Free

Address: 5 Clifford St., Charleston, SC

Why You Need To Go: This extensive adventure will take you through multiple blooming gardens and graveyards.

This article has been updated since it was originally published on April 14, 2020.

Before you get going, check out our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

Laurie Bergeron
Associate Director, Content Development
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