It is one of only a handful of U.S. towns that has had its entire downtown designated an historic district by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Filled with mansions built by the wealthy plantation owners before the Civil War, Beaufort was one of the only Southern towns chosen to be occupied by Union troops, rather than destroyed. More than 50 historic structures have been identified in Beaufort, including many lovely private homes that have been beautifully restored and are now available to view via professionally-guided walking, bus, or horse-drawn carriage tours. Special spring and fall events offer locals and visitors the opportunity to tour several private homes and gardens.
Art galleries, antique shops, and modern boutiques dot the entire downtown and uptown walking districts, along with fine dining restaurants and quick eateries. The moderate climate allows for enjoyable outdoor meals and/or park enjoyment almost year-round.