Mount Pleasant, SC is just across the river from Downtown Charleston and offers over one thousand hotel rooms at rates hundreds of dollars a night less than downtown. Many of our hotels offer pools and other on site amenities downtown hotels cannot. You can stay in Mount Pleasant, saving thousands of dollars on your vacation and use public transit to connect with the free DASH bus system downtown which can take you to visitor’s destinations throughout the city as well as our medical complex, which also draws travelers.
Canadian Visitors talk about taking Transit to Downtown
You can now use Google Maps to plan transit trips on the CARTA system and Bus Tracker to find out when your bus will arrive at your stop. Learn how to ride smart and connected here.
Hotel Clusters in Mount Pleasant
There are two major hotel clusters in Mount Pleasant served by Public Transit. The Ravenel Gateway District is closest to Charleston and features 10 hotels. Each is within east walking distance of at least one bus stop and line. The trip to the Visitor’s Center and Downtown Charleston from this location takes about 20 minutes. You’ll find Mt. Pleasant Waterfront Memorial Park, Patriot’s Point, The Cenibar Movie Theater, restaurants and shopping here. The sidewalk network has been upgraded recently. Better stops are in the planning phase. Two bus routes connect this area to Charleston, the Mount Pleasant 40 and the Coleman Blvd. 41. Monday to Saturday, there are three buses running into the City every hour. Service is once an hour on Sunday. There are six bus stops in this area with seating at the stops on Wingo Way, Houston Northcutt and at McGarth Darby and Coleman Blvd. Visitors staying at the Hotels on Wingo way will prefer the #41 bus, which stops right there.
You’ll also find three hotels near Mount Pleasant Towne Centre, near the Isle of Palms Connector, These are popular because in addition to having CARTA 40 service to downtown Charleston, it is a five minute car drive to the beach. Town Centre offers over fifty stores and shops, restaurants at all price levels and a major multiplex cinema. Bus service to the beach ended February 2013, but the beach islands are still served by the Tel-A-Ride transportation service for the disabled. Some pepole want to restore service to the beach on a seasonal basis, so check for updates. It’s about a thirty minute trip from the Town Centre area to downtown Charleston. Transit Directions from Mount Pleasant Towne Centre to Charleston Visitors Center.
As of June 2015, no public transit bus service runs to any Charleston area beach. Our Beach Access page updates with your best options to get do and from the beach using transit to reduce the amount of driving and the status of our effort to get the Buses back to our Beaches.
Historic Charleston is a wonderful place, but it was designed long before the automobile. Parking garages tend to be be small and cramped. It it can take some time to find one and park your car. The streets are congested with traffic and stressful for visitors to drive. You have to hunt for parking everywhere and wait in line to leave the places you’ve parked a lot of the time. You can spend half the day managing your car downtown. The city is one of the finest walking environments in the United States and the DASH Bus system puts free bus service and stops nearby nearly everywhere. You never have to go back to your car to shuttle it from one parking garage to another, punctuated by a wait in congested traffic.
Camping & Transit
Mount Pleasant also has the area’s only RV campground that is within walkable distance of a public bus line reaching the city, the Mount Pleasant KOA. You don’t want to take your RV camper downtown, ever. There are also cabins and sites for tents. People staying at the KOA campground use transit to reach Charleston frequently. The KOA campground is on the #40 Mount Pleasant Bus Line. Transit Directions Mount Pleasant KOA to Charleston.
Two other hotels in Mount Pleasant have transit service running to Charleston. The Shem Creek Inn is within walkable distance of the CARTA 41 Route. Transit directions from Shem Creek in to Charleston
We also have a Courtyard Marriot on Highway 17 on the 40 Mount Pleasant Bus Line. Transit Directions from Courtyard Marriott to Charleston.
Mount Pleasant has just completed a massive road construction project which destroyed many of our bus stops. Despite promises to the contrary, bus stops were not constructed when the new roads were completed, though a vastly improved sidewalk system was. We’ve been able to get benches to nearly all the stops visitors are likely to use and shelters at some stops are in the planning stage. However, we think you’ll find the huge savings in time and money still make parking pleasantly and playing downtown worthwhile. Even with the occasional Cab trip for late night events downtown after Transit service ends, the savings are still huge.
Airport, Grayhound & Amtrak
You can ride transit from and To the Airport with huge savings on the new NASH Express. It connects downtown Charleston, The North Charleston Colosseum Tangier area and the Airport with faster service for a $3 fare. You can also reach Mount Pleasant from the Charleston International Airport and Grayhound using the Dorchester #11 Bus. You can take the Rivers Ave. 10 Bus from the Amtrak Station. These routes will connect with the #40 and #41 buses near the Charleston Visitors Center allowing you to continue your trip to Mount Pleasant. See our bus to the airport page for detailed options to Connect from your plane to East Cooper.
If you are still confused after reading this website, you can call CARTA customer service for assistance. If that doesn’t work, please contact Hungryneck Straphangers.