Top 10 Things Military Families Love About Moving to Charleston

Charleston, South Carolina waterfront area for military families

There are some areas where military families never want to receive orders. Thankfully, Charleston, South Carolina isn’t one of them! This area is so popular with military families that many Veterans choose to live near Charleston after retirement. Nestled in the heart of the Lowcountry, Charleston beckons with its rich history, Southern charm, and a welcoming community that resonates deeply with those who have served. If you’re moving to Charleston, SC as an active duty or Veteran military family, then keep reading to learn all the things to love about Charleston.

The top 10 things military families love about moving to Charleston

1. Proximity to military bases 

One of the primary draws for military families is Charleston’s proximity to several military installations, including Joint Base Charleston and Naval Weapons Station Charleston. This closeness fosters a sense of camaraderie and connection with fellow service members while providing access to various support services and resources. Joint Base Charleston has a population of more than 90,000 active duty, dependents, contractors, and retirees. If you’re looking for military community in off-base neighborhoods, you will likely find it here. 

2. Amenities on base 

Whether it’s shopping, recreational facilities, or healthcare services, military bases in Charleston offer a plethora of amenities tailored to the needs of service members and their families. From commissaries and exchange stores to fitness centers and childcare facilities, these bases strive to ensure that military families have everything they need within reach. If you’re a Veteran family moving to the area, research to learn what base amenities are still available to you. 

3. Historic charm and vibrant culture 

Charleston’s cobblestone streets, antebellum architecture, and historic landmarks paint a picturesque backdrop that captivates residents and visitors alike. Military families relocating to Charleston often find themselves enchanted by the city’s rich cultural tapestry, which includes art galleries, museums, and vibrant festivals celebrating the region’s heritage. 

4. Beaches and outdoor recreation 

With its proximity to beautiful beaches and abundant outdoor recreation opportunities, Charleston offers military families the perfect playground to unwind and recharge. From sun-soaked days spent lounging on the sands of Folly Beach to kayaking adventures along scenic waterways, there’s no shortage of outdoor adventures waiting to be explored. 

5. Family-friendly attractions 

Charleston caters to families of all ages, offering an array of attractions to delight children and adults alike. There’s the Children’s Museum and the Aquarium, a zoo and a wildlife center, several waterparks, 3 family-friendly beaches, historical trips to Fort Sumter or Patriots Point, and the Charleston waterfront park with the fountain. Military families will find no shortage of family-friendly activities to enjoy together. 

6. Thriving culinary scene 

Charleston’s culinary scene has drawn food enthusiasts from around the country with its diverse dining options. From traditional Lowcountry cuisine to innovative culinary creations, military families moving to Charleston can embark on food tours and restaurant experiences that satisfy every foodie. 

7. Excellent schools and educational opportunities 

For military families with school-age children, Charleston boasts a variety of excellent public and private schools, as well as access to higher education institutions renowned for their academic excellence. From top-rated elementary schools to prestigious universities, Charleston provides numerous educational opportunities to support the growth and development of military children. If you choose to buy a home off base, be sure to research the school districts first and choose the one that works for your family.

8. Supportive military and Veteran community 

Charleston’s close-knit military and Veteran community offers a support system like no other, providing a sense of belonging and camaraderie that transcends military service. Whether it’s through local Veterans’ organizations, support groups, or community events, military families in Charleston find comfort in knowing they are surrounded by others who understand their unique experiences and challenges. 

9. World-class healthcare facilities 

Charleston is home to quality healthcare facilities, including the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center, which provides comprehensive healthcare services to Veterans in the region. With state-of-the-art medical facilities and specialized care tailored to the needs of military veterans, Charleston ensures service members and their families receive the highest quality healthcare services available. 

10. Quality of life and Southern hospitality 

Above all, military families love Charleston for its exceptional quality of life and genuine Southern hospitality. Charleston welcomes military families with open arms, offering a place to call home that is as comforting as it is captivating. 

Charleston, South Carolina, is the perfect destination for military families seeking a place to settle down after retirement. From its proximity to military bases and abundant amenities to its historic charm, outdoor recreation opportunities, and supportive community, Charleston embodies the perfect blend of tradition, culture, and modernity. For Veterans embarking on the next chapter of their lives, Charleston offers a haven where memories are made, friendships are forged, and dreams are realized. 

Want to get great financial resources for military and Veteran families? Check out The Edge, powered by GoVA. You’ll find smart, interactive tools to help you learn about budgeting, saving for a home, planning for retirement, or paying down debt. Service members, Veterans, and military spouses join free at

Join Our Newsletter

Sign up for the GoVA Newsletter and get information directly in your inbox!

About Our Partnership with TowneBank Mortgage

At GoVA, we’re proud to partner with a lender that delivers peace of mind to those who have served and continue to serve our county. Together, GoVA and TowneBank Mortgage are committed to helping our military service members achieve their dreams of homeownership, as well as providing them with valuable resources along the way. As experienced lenders, TowneBank Mortgage understands the need for a quick and easy mortgage process, especially during life’s transitional moments. Headquartered in Norfolk, just miles from the world’s largest naval base, TowneBank Mortgage has had the honor of helping thousands of military families through their VA loan offerings. Their team is knowledgeable about VA products and the local market, and in-house operations allow them to respond to questions and concerns in a timely manner. Together, we can get you to closing in 30 days or less. Trust TowneBank Mortgage and GoVA loans to get you home.

Click the button below
to begin your application.