Georgetown is South Carolina's second largest seaport, handling more than 960,000 tons of material every year.
A river town with a long history, Georgetown is the third oldest city in South Carolina. Nestled where the Waccamaw, Sampit, and Great Pee Dee rivers come together, Georgetown is a great example of a typical South Carolina low country city, dripping with history, rich with historic homes and families, but also firmly looking to the future. Here, people get to know their neighbors -- some they've known for generations -- and have a closeness with nature that's unrivaled anywhere else. The rivers and banks that surround the city provide income and recreational activities for its more than 9,000 residents.
Moving to Georgetown
What used to be primarily an industrial seaport has in recent years become more diversified. You'll still see plenty of ships and barges coming in and out of Georgetown, but you'll also see steel mills. Tourism has also become a big part of the economy here, so if you want to work in a hotel, restaurant, or one of the many plantations that have transformed into beach resorts, you'll be in luck. Give yourself a few months to look for places to rent in Georgetown. You may even want to schedule a trip here just to look at property rentals. You'll find a good amount of apartment homes, but don't rule out the possibility of choosing house rentals, as there are plenty of these as well. When it comes to renting, it's important to have everything ready when you find a place that is perfect. By important, we're referring to paperwork that will help seal the deal such as copies of your ID, rental history, letters of reference and a credit report.
Check out the following areas in Georgetown to get an idea of what the city is like and where in the city you'd like to live in.
Historic District: The city blocks that comprise the original town is today known as the Historic District. Laid out in 1729 by Elisha Screven, the four-by-eight block grid is bordered by Wood, Church, Meeting and Front streets. Stately homes line the streets, and in many places live oaks form canopies over the streets. Front Street runs along Sampit River and is still a bustling commercial street full of shops, museums and restaurants. Many restaurants have great harbor views and some even offer seabreeze dining. If your budget allows (and it'll need to be a big one!), you can look into securing the upstairs of one of the homes facing the boardwalk. Chances are these luxury rentals will be apartments with paid utilities, as well.
Maryville: Just south of the Historic District is another neighborhood popular with renters. You'll find more than one apartment complex along Highway 17, but if you're looking for homes to rent, you can definitely find them here either hugging the coastline, or further back. It all depends on what you value most -- water views or a large yard.
Living in Georgetown
Four of the sprawling rice plantations that sat on this lush marshy land have been grouped within the massive Brookgreen Gardens park. The Lowcountry Zoo and several sculpture gardens make up the more than 9,000 acres of the park. The four plantations the park was built on are Brookgreen, The Oaks, Springfield and Laurel Hill. The zoo and many of the gardens were built on the ruins of the Brookgreen Plantation, which at one time had the dubious distinction of being the plantation with the most slaves -- more than 1,000 -- in the U.S.
Along the coast is Huntington Beach State Park, where residents like to go to enjoy the sandy beaches, kayak, or paddleboard in the relatively calm Atlantic waters. The beaches along the Carolina coast are decidedly warmer and usually calmer than West Coast beaches, so swimming in the ocean is a popular pastime. In the state park you can learn about the indigenous plants and trees by walking along the self-guided nature trail.
In the Historic District, tour the Rice Museum to learn about Georgetown's history. Across from the museum on Front Street is LaFayette Park. The area is gorgeously tended to by the local garden club, and you can enjoy a fragrant and leisurely stroll through the park. Along the waters edge is the Harborwalk, a 1,000-foot long boardwalk that offers a great view of the harbor.