During the 45 minute tour, you will:
- Experience 15-20 blocks of Charleston's historic downtown commercial district
- See haunted public buildings, churches & graveyards.
- Learn about Charleston's haunted history, folklore, & legends.
Some of the haunted places you may see include:
- The Haunted Dungeon in the bottom of the Old Exchange Building
- Poogan's Porch (one of our most famous haunted buildings)
- St. Phillips' graveyard, and many other interesting locations
See the FAQs tab above to learn about the Palmetto Guarantee!
Want to see Downtown Charleston during the daytime?
- Ghost Carriage Tour & Day Tour Combo: The Palmetto Carriage Works Day Tour explores the Residential District, another area of downtown Charleston. Select the combo ticket when purchasing your Ghost Carriage Tour to receive both tours for a reduced price!
- ----------------------QUESTIONS ABOUT THE CARRIAGE TOUR----------------------
- Do I have to buy my tickets in advance?
- Advance purchase is available and highly recommended. To maximize your chances of getting the day and time you prefer, please buy your tickets well in advance. Advance tickets can only be purchased online or over the phone using a Visa, Mastercard or American Express.
- What happens if it rains?
- Unless we consider conditions to be dangerous, we give tours in the rain. Keep in mind that this is an outdoor activity and the carriages are covered, but when it rains you will get wet. Please dress appropriately!
- What is the Palmetto Guarantee?
- If, for any reason, after you've taken the carriage tour you are not satisfied with your Palmetto experience, your fare will be cheerfully refunded. That's the Palmetto Guarantee!
- When does the Ghost Carriage Tour run?
- In general, the first tour is at 7 pm and the last one is around 9pm. Please check the specific schedule listed above for to see available tour times.
- Will I see a ghost on tour?
- We do not guarantee or expect to have a ghost sighting on our tour.
- How is the tour route chosen and what are the possible routes I will take?
- The Ghost Carriage Tour is only given in the evening, which means it will follow the commercial district route that the city has put in place for after-hour tours. Therefore, this tour will not include the residential district, as this area is restricted from touring after 5pm. You will, however, still be touring within the historic district. If you are interested in also seeing the residential district during the daytime, consider purchasing a combo ticket. A combo ticket allows you to attend both the Ghost Carriage Tour and the Day Carriage Tour which tours the residential district for one low price! See full details in the FAQs below.
- How do I book the Palmetto Carriage Works Ghost Tour and Day Carriage Tour combo?
- Guests who wish to take the Palmetto Carriage Works Ghost Carriage Tour and the Day Tour can receive both tours at one reduced price! The Day Carriage Tour explores another area of Charleston, the Residential District, during the daytime. To book both tours at one low price, select the combo ticket when purchasing your tickets for the Ghost Carriage Tour. Doing so will guarantee your spot on the Ghost Carriage Tour for the date and time you selected. You are then able to walk-up to the Day Carriage Tour whenever you wish. Palmetto Carriage Works runs Day Tours everyday from 9 am to 5 pm. Carriages leave about every 20 minutes. However, boarding is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Therefore, it is important to arrive by 3:30 pm on the day you wish to take the day tour.
- If I purchase the Carriage Ghost Tour & Day Tour Combo, do I have to attend both tours on the same day?
- No. If you select the combo ticket when booking your Ghost Carriage Tour, there are no restrictions as to when you can attend the Day Tour. You can do it the same day as your Ghost Tour or several days earlier or later. You will select the date and time you wish to attend the Ghost Carriage Tour from the list above and this will guarantee your space on the Ghost Carriage Tour you select. You are then able to attend the Day Carriage Tour any day you wish. Palmetto Carriage Works runs Day Carriage Tours from 9 am - 5 pm everyday. Carriages run about every 20 minutes. However, boarding is on a first-come, first-serve basis, so please arrive by 3:30 pm on the day you wish to take your tour.
- What about young children, can they come?
- Yes, children of all ages are welcome; however, all children between the ages of 4-11 are required to have a ticket. For children under the age of 4, they may ride in the lap of an adult for free and a "Lap Child Extra" must be reserved. Should you wish for children under the age of 4 to have their own seat, you may purchase a Child ticket for them. Note that there is a city-imposed limit of 4 free lap children per carriage - should those spots be taken, all remaining children must have a Child ticket purchased for them.
- Where should I park?
- We have free parking for our ghost tours available after 6:00 pm. The parking lot is located on the corner of Anson and Pickney Street, just steps away from the Big Red Barn. Please note that parking can be tight and we encourage people to carpool.
- Are there public restrooms available?
- Yes, we have 2 restrooms in our barn. There will be no opportunity to stop to use the restroom during the 45 minute tour.
- Is getting into the carriage difficult?
- Getting into the carriage can sometimes be difficult, so we've solved that problem for you with our loading dock! You climb 3 steps or walk up a ramp to a platform that's level with the carriage. Rather than climbing up, all you have to do is step in! We are equipped to handle any handicapped needs you might have.
- What if I'm in a wheelchair?
- We cannot get your wheelchair on the carriage, but we can get you right next to the front seat and offer expert assistance in helping you to your seat.
- Is my group alone on the carriage? How many people fit in one carriage?
- Each carriage is capable of carrying up to 16 seated passengers and 4 lap children. During a group tour, you will sit with other passengers, however, groups are seated together on the carriage.
- What if we have a large group?
- If your group is larger than 16 people, your group will be split up onto more than one carriage. If there are empty seats on the carriage, they will be filled with other guests. If you'd prefer a private tour for your group, please see the FAQ below about custom tours.
- How long will I have to wait to board a carriage when I arrive?
- The time for which you purchased your tickets is the time your tour will leave. We ask that you check in 15 minutes before your tour at the Red Barn. After checking in, you will have the opportunity to purchase any snacks or drinks to take on the tour. You may also wait in our barn, which is covered from the sun and rain and has large cooling fans during the summer months. There, you can interact with our animals, use the restroom, and relax in our seating area before your tour begins. If you choose not to wait in the barn, you may also explore nearby areas of the city, such as the City Market, until your departure time. All of our ghost tours will be boarding a few steps away from the Red Barn on Anson Street.
- Are cameras or video taping allowed?
- Absolutely! Bring along your camera or video camera to capture Charleston's most haunted sites!
- Where does the carriage ride end?
- Your carriage tour will end at the Red Barn.
- Can I bring food and drinks aboard the carriage?
- You may bring food and drink on the carriage. We have a shop in the barn where drinks and snacks are available for purchase with credit cards or cash. Alcohol is not allowed on the carriage.
- Can I bring personal items with me onto the carriage? How much room is there?
- Items such as purses, backpacks, or small shopping bags will fit on the floor beneath your seat or in your lap. Larger items, such as umbrellas, wheelchairs, crutches, scooters, bikes, or strollers will not fit on the carriage. We have ample storage space in the barn to leave these larger items during the tour. However, please note this is not a secured storage location, so it's best not to leave valuables here.
- Will I get off the carriage at any point during the tour?
- No. While, your tour guide will tell you stories of Charleston's haunting past and take you by some of Charleston's most haunted sites, you will not get off the carriage at any point during the 45 minute tour.
- Can I bring a pet with me on the carriage?
- Service animals and small, well behaved pets are able to sit on the floor of the carriage. Pets must remain leashed and under the control of their owners at all times.
- Is the ride safe?
- Yes! Carriage tours are a safe way to enjoy the city at a slower pace than by bus or car. Our animals are trained to work in a city environment and are comfortable working here.
- What kind of animals do you use?
- We use mule teams on our larger carriages used for public tours and single mules or horses on our smaller carriages (which are used for private tours).
- Why do you use mules?
- Mules are the best animals for pulling carriages in Charleston. After over 25 years of use, we believe that mules work better in the heat than horses. The mule has long been the beast of burden of choice in the American South - from 18th century plantations to the streets of 21st century urban America, this adaptable hybrid has proven its worth for over 5,000 years!
- If the animals are sweating, is that bad?
- No, that's actually good! Sweating is the animal's way of cooling itself. We add a Vitamin E supplement to the animals' feed to promote sweating and also add electrolytes to their feed to replace necessary elements lost through sweating. Additionally, you'll notice plenty of fans around the barn, including a misting fan that sprays a fine mist over the animals to keep them cool.
- Does it ever get too hot for the animals to work?
- Yes. When the temperature reaches 98 degrees or the heat index reaches 125 degrees, we stop our carriage tours. Each animal has its temperature checked after every tour, and if an animal's temperature ever exceeds 103 degrees it is pulled from service. Charleston is the only city in the world where the animals' temperatures are individually monitored.
- What other animals are in the barn?
- The barn is also home to chickens, goats, a miniature horse, and a miniature donkey. Our miniature animals go the the farm for some rest and relaxation on a rotational basis. Feel free to interact with our animals as you wait for your tour to depart.
- Are gift certificates available for the carriage tours?
- Yes, gift certificates are available for purchase and are the perfect present for a birthday, honeymoon, anniversary, special getaway package or any other occasion. To purchase a gift certificate please click on the "Gift Certificates: Purchase" link in the box above.
- Can I do a custom tour for a group?
- Groups can choose to board the carriage at our Red Barn or arrangements can be made to pick you up at your hotel. We also specialize in group transportation and can take you to your restaurant of choice and give you a tour along the way. Whatever your group needs may be, we can fashion a carriage experience to fit them. Please click on the "Contact Palmetto" link to inquire further.
- Non-refundable, cannot be rescheduled.
- Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded and cannot be rescheduled because your space is being guaranteed at the event.
- Tours take place rain or shine and may be delayed in extreme heat.
- These tours run regardless of weather conditions. In the rare case where we are forced to cancel the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule to another time (subject to availability). Also note for the safety of the animals, tours may be delayed during extremely hot temperatures to allow animals additional rest time or suspended if the temperature or heat index reaches an unsafe level.
- Tickets are for your departure time.
- The time for which you have selected to purchase tickets is the time we ask that you be ready to board your carriage. It is important to check-in 15 minutes prior to your departure time.
- All children are required to have tickets or extras.
- Children between 4 and 11 must have a Child ticket and will receive a seat. Children under the age of 4 may sit in the lap of a paying adult for free, but need a Lap Child extra. Only four free lap children are allowed on each carriage - if these spots are taken, all remaining children must have a Child ticket purchased. To reserve a seat for a child under 4, you must purchase a Child ticket.
- Restrictions for optional Palmetto Carriage Works Ghost Carriage Tour & Day Carriage Tour combo
- If you have selected a combo ticket, you may attend the Day Tour the same day as your Ghost Carriage Tour or on a different day. Your space is guaranteed on the Ghost Carriage Tour you have selected, but admittance to the Day Tour is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Our Day Tours run everyday from 9 am-5 pm several times an hour. We suggest arriving by 3:30 pm the day you choose to attend.
In addition to the knowledgeable and professional employees, the animals at Palmetto Carriage Works are specifically trained and well equipped to handle carriage tours in the city. With over 40 horses and mules, Palmetto Carriage Works takes pride in its excellent animal care record. Animals receive ample pasture time throughout the year in addition to working downtown. Our farrier has over 35 years experience shoeing animals and examines them once a week, and animals are seen by a veterinarian twice a year for regular checkups.
The popularity of the tour has grown out of the Red Barn. The quality and longevity of the staff, the remarkable record of animal care, and the thousands of satisfied customers all stand testament to an outstanding product; a product that we stand behind 100% - providing customers with the greatest carriage experience in the city.
"After we tried every carriage company in town, Palmetto stood out for its guides' wit and historic accuracy."
-Southern Living Magazine
"Not the automatic monologue you might expect, but the serious historical commentary he clearly felt his city deserved."
-London Daily Telegraph