Experience the intimate charm and elegance found only beyond Charleston’s private garden gates and historic thresholds during Historic Charleston Foundation’s 70th Annual Spring Festival of Houses & Gardens.

Set amid the historic ambience of the city’s Old & Historic District, this series of award-winning tours showcases Charleston’s distinctive architecture, history, gardens and culture. These tours provide a rare opportunity for guests to go inside the private houses and gardens of some of America’s most beautiful historic residences, dating to the 18th century.

Charleston has been renowned for three centuries as “a city set in a garden.” The Festival is set during the peak of the city’s blooming season, and tours feature seven to ten properties each day in one of eleven neighborhoods, dating from the American colonial period, through the antebellum and Victorian eras, to early 20th century. Beautiful architecture and lush gardens are woven throughout the historic neighborhoods of Charleston, which has consistently been named among the ten most courteous and friendly cities in America.

Exciting special events are planned throughout the Festival. Running through April 20, the Food for Thought Luncheons feature an educational talk, light lunch, and a brief guided walk or experience that relates to the day’s topic. Topics range from “Churches, Synagogues & Graveyards,” to “Doing the Charleston: the City’s Journey to Jazz,” and many more fascinating talks by local historians and experts.

Special musical concerts are one of the most popular special events. On April 6, “Plantation Singers Celebration,” will be presented at Circular Congregational Church; and the final concert, a classical music lover’s delight, “Music in the Garden,” will be held at Nathanial Russell House Museum on April 21.

Experience Lowcountry charm with Live Like a Local events. From “Mimosas at Middleton” to “Harbor of History Boat Cruises” to “Legacy of African Americans in Charleston Tours,” these fun events will give you a true taste of Charleston life.

For more information about these and all of the exciting events planned for Spring Festival of Houses and Gardens, call 843-722-3405 or visit www.historiccharleston.org.