A magnet for visitors to the southeast, this compact city is a favorite for its charm, cuisine, historic neighborhoods, world-class museums and pretty green spaces.
Create a customized visit to Downtown Columbia, centered on Main Street in South Carolina’s enticing capital city. Watch an indie film at the Nickelodeon Theatre or view art by Monet. Eat local fare at the weekly Soda City Market or tour nearly 40 properties on the National Register of Historic Places. Enjoy shopping, an art walk showcasing the murals of Downtown or a free tour of the historic South Carolina State House.
For art, start with the Columbia Museum of Art, a renovated space showcasing its collection thematically. Browse pieces by topic, time period or culture. Numerous galleries offer stunning collections related to spirituality, identity, heroism and more. The highly regarded museum features impressive Renaissance and Baroque art, as well as an excellent American art collection. Continue your art education outside with a street art tour. Favorites pieces include Middle of Nowhere, Tunnelvision and World’s Largest Fire Hydrant.
Walk to the South Carolina State House, a work of art in its own right. This copper-topped architectural gem, which took more than 50 years to build and features native blue granite, is one of the state’s top attractions. See the Revolutionary Generals Monument, the Palmetto Regiment Monument to the Mexican-American-Mexican War and the African-American History Monument. Stroll through the exterior gardens and tour the inner corridors. Outside, look for six stars along the exterior marking spots where Union artillery hit the building during the Civil War.
The Downtown/Main Street District encompasses 36 blocks, surrounded by Gervais, Elmwood, Assembly and Marion streets. Use the complimentary shuttle and COMET public transit system servicing the district. Pay for parking in a public garage or on the street. Look for a City Center Ambassador, wearing a yellow shirt and stationed throughout Downtown, to direct you to wherever you’re trying to go. See how art, music, cuisine and heritage define the Downtown Columbia experience.