Columbia SC Visitor Info

We sure are glad that you found us! If you're considering a trip to Columbia, perhaps you'd like a little background on what makes the heart of SC a city bursting with big ideas, forward thinkers and modern attitudes. From trip ideas to relocation, here's a little peek into everything you need to know so you'll feel like a local when you're in the capital city. And by all means, use #RealColumbiaSC while visiting or planning your trip.


With more than 800,000 residents across six counties, the greater metropolitan region (commonly referred to as the Midlands) has the second largest population in South Carolina. Columbia, the state's capital city, stretches across Richland and Lexington counties.


How'd this place get started? On March 22, 1786, a bill approved by the state legislature established Columbia as the capital, as a compromise location between the Upstate and Lowcountry (where Charleston was the previous capital).

The first planned city, Columbia continued growing for decades. On February 17, 1865 during the Civil War, General William Tecumseh Sherman and his troops overtook Columbia and burned much of the city.

In 1917, Fort Jackson (then Camp Jackson) was established for army training during World War I. The installation is now the U.S. Army's largest and most active Initial Entry Training Center.


Like much of the Southeastern United States, Columbia enjoys its fair share of hot days, especially in the summer, but this region doesn't slow down with a full slate of year-round events and things to do. Here you can enjoy mild winters with an occasional 70-degree day for good measure. Fall brings cooler sunny days and football games, and spring is beautiful with bold blooms all around.


If you need more information, request our visitors guide, sign up for our e-newsletter, or get in touch with our staff at the Columbia SC Visitors Center.

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