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Old 03-20-2018, 12:09 PM   #1
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Considering Charleston SC

We have visited Charleston a few times via car. Really enjoy the city and looks like a boaters paradise. Just returned and checked out City Marina for winter live aboard. Coming from Long Island NY. Look at it as great point to travel further south from as well. Any comments, suggestions, etc? Has anyone stayed in Charleston area? Thanks!
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Old 03-20-2018, 01:22 PM   #2
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Wifey B: Coming from Long Island you might find it perfect. Coming from Fort Lauderdale, I'd still find it a bit cold for the winter. However, the simple solution to that is cruise south. Charleston has two months that the highs are in the 50's and lows in the 40's and another two or three months with highs only in the 60's. So, in Charleston, in the winter, you will be running your heat. You also won't see a lot of locals boating in the winter. You'll see a few transients passing through.

Charleston is a great city to live and play in. A lot going on there and great people. Some of the best restaurants anywhere. Lot's of history and attractions. We love our stops there.
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Old 03-20-2018, 02:41 PM   #3
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Charleston is a great place for a live aboard. The City Marina in in my opinion is the best place to enjoy the city. The marina runs a shuttle out to town, West Marine, and Harris Teeter super market. You are also in biking or even walking distance to the Historic District. Lot's of interesting things going on at the marina. The restaurants are some of the best, but you already knew that. I love the city.

Going South on the ICW Beaufort is about 60 miles, Hilton Head Island about 100 miles, and Savannah, GA about 115 miles. All good stops. Going North Georgetown is a good stop.
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Old 03-20-2018, 03:31 PM   #4
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CURRENT!!!! untie your boat...lose control. Seen more boat wrecks at City Marina in a week than in a year elsewhere.

But...love the marina the town, the food, the history. Everything is great except the CURRENT!!!
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Old 03-20-2018, 04:10 PM   #5
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My half dozen or so stops at the city marina and 30 or so runs up and down the Ashley River. I would say the current on average is medium at worst...generally mild.

My very good friend keeps his 42 foot sailboat there, which he harly ever uses, and he doesnt complain about the current to me as when he had his boat at my marina in NJ, he hated the current.

I guess it may be a function of what you compare it with.

Boat wrecking occurs all over, even in placez with no current, so that really isnt a great yardstick.
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Old 03-20-2018, 05:21 PM   #6
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My stepdaughter and her family lived there for several years. Interesting town to visit. Obviously lots of history. Certainly a good stop going North or South on the AICW.

As a winter destination, too far North unless you like staying indoors most of the time.

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Old 03-20-2018, 05:41 PM   #7
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If you are going to liveaboard full time (vs maintaining and commuting from LI) I guess Charleston is fine. We prefer Savannah, in our opinion the cruising options using that as a base are far more varied and beautiful. Since the OP has already done Charleston by land, have you ever spent time in Savannah? Are you committed to being tied to the dock 100% of the time? OTOH, if it is for the winter, why not head on down to FL and the islands?
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:36 PM   #8
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City Marina does have a 3-4 mo "winter special" dockage rate. Otherwise it's only monthly or a 12 month annual.
No it's not south Florida, but certainly not the Northeast. If you also enjoy theatre, Jazz, sports ,University activities, access to medical care then it's hard to beat. Not an airlines hub.
This year was unusually cold ( and snow!)- but it was a tough winter throughout most of the east coast.

PM for questions. We live there.
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:49 PM   #9
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How are marina prices there?
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Old 03-21-2018, 08:03 PM   #10
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City Marina, the Harborage at Ashley ( contiguous with City), Ripley Light are all on the on the Ashley side, and Bristol marina is just up from Ashley but the bridge clearance is only 14 ft as I recall.
All these plus Patriot's point and those on the Cooper all have websites with pricing posted.

Charleston marina at Patriots Point is "rougher" due to the fetch across the harbor. There's a boat taxi across the harbor to the peninsula.

City is $15.50/ft inc utilities for an annual. Monthly pricing on website. At Ashley you can rent from private owner since it's a condo marina. Some rentals managed by marina staff and some by individual owners.

City and Bristol are same management.
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Old 03-21-2018, 09:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Wifey B: Coming from Long Island you might find it perfect. Coming from Fort Lauderdale, I'd still find it a bit cold for the winter. However, the simple solution to that is cruise south. Charleston has two months that the highs are in the 50's and lows in the 40's and another two or three months with highs only in the 60's. So, in Charleston, in the winter, you will be running your heat. You also won't see a lot of locals boating in the winter. You'll see a few transients passing through.



Charleston is a great city to live and play in. A lot going on there and great people. Some of the best restaurants anywhere. Lot's of history and attractions. We love our stops there.


Thanks for the tips about the weather. Your right, that being northeast boaters, high temps are not necessary. Our last long term cruise took us up to down east Maine to Nova Scotia from June to August. Nights were cool, around the mid 50s to 60s, but we liked it.

We will have to consider using December and January as a combination travel south option.

Thanks! Dave
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Old 03-21-2018, 09:20 PM   #12
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Charleston is a great place for a live aboard. The City Marina in in my opinion is the best place to enjoy the city. The marina runs a shuttle out to town, West Marine, and Harris Teeter super market. You are also in biking or even walking distance to the Historic District. Lot's of interesting things going on at the marina. The restaurants are some of the best, but you already knew that. I love the city.



Going South on the ICW Beaufort is about 60 miles, Hilton Head Island about 100 miles, and Savannah, GA about 115 miles. All good stops. Going North Georgetown is a good stop.


We met with the staff at City Marina and were impressed. They showed us where the winter transients area. I liked the bow to stern arrangement.

Thanks! Dave
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Old 03-23-2018, 06:11 AM   #13
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We just spent twp months at Ashley, next door to (just upriver from) the City Marina. Decent marina, with town shuttle, etc. WiFi currently sucks, ranging from useless to frustrating to works occasionally.

(Marina staff says 1) they think it's caused by people streaming, and 2) they're experimenting with a fix at another marina they manage. FWIW, I doubt anybody in their right mind would be even trying streaming there, and besides the problem wasn't connectivity from boat to gateway, but rather gateway to Internet. Their routers usually just crap out every few minutes.)

Anyway, we had decent weather, compared to home; not so warm all the time, compared to FL. I think perhaps colder spells than usual given the extremely cold snap that happened in the Carolinas from mid-December through most of January.

We had some no-see-um issues a couple times; I learned I must be pretty good bait.

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Old 03-23-2018, 07:59 AM   #14
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CURRENT!!!! untie your boat...lose control. Seen more boat wrecks at City Marina in a week than in a year elsewhere.

But...love the marina the town, the food, the history. Everything is great except the CURRENT!!!
Big second on this. I'm a good boat handler (30,000 + nautical miles) but I'll never forget seeing the "U" bracket of a slip finger piling miss my hull by 2" as I gunned the engine. It would have punched right through the hull at the speed we were going sideways.
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Old 04-01-2018, 06:27 AM   #15
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Pretty sure Ashley prohibits liveaboard longer than 10 days.
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Old 04-01-2018, 06:39 AM   #16
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Pretty sure Ashley prohibits liveaboard longer than 10 days.

No, it was a 3-month limit. And I think maybe that only applied to transients, not slip owners or their tenants.

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Old 04-01-2018, 02:51 PM   #17
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No, it was a 3-month limit. And I think maybe that only applied to transients, not slip owners or their tenants.

-Chris
No dog in this but I'm reading paragraph 42 here and this is the latest I find; 1/1/2016.

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Old 04-01-2018, 09:30 PM   #18
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Well, lets post exactly what the rules are:

42. LIVE-ABOARD MORATORIUM: Effective 1/1/16 a moratorium is placed on our live-aboard program and no NEW live-aboards will be allowed at the Harborage at Ashley Marina. All existing live-aboards will be allowed to remain effective 1/1/2016, provided all Marina Rules and regulations are being followed.

All slips that are occupied by a live-aboard effective 1/1/16 must be reported to marina staff using the Live-Aboard Declaration Form. Failure to identify a current live-aboard to marina staff and/or the failure to comply with the 1/1/16 moratorium will result in a $275.00 monthly non-compliance fee to
the slip owner, and revocation of any parking pass. A live-aboard is classified as: Any individual that occupies a vessel more than any 10 days during any 30 day period, and/or consistently habitats on a vessel for 3 or more calendar months. Personal circumstances may be allowed but only with marina staff approval, for example: boat owner vacationing on their vessel.

The live-aboard moratorium does not apply to slip owner’s living aboard their personal vessels.
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Old 04-02-2018, 06:40 AM   #19
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I didn't go through all that; I just inquired whether they had long term space available... and their reply was yes, but no liveaboards longer than 3 months.

Could well mean they sometimes have space available and sometimes not, even if some of the slips happen to be empty.

Or.. maybe they used the "boat owner vacationing on their vessel" clause, since that applied to us.

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