It’s simple to see why Aiken is one of the most visited cities in South Carolina.
The city offers a wide variety of indoor and outdoor entertainment options in addition to its many historical sites.
Several restaurants serving delectable food and other interesting stores complement this.
Downtown Aiken is bustling with places to eat, shop, and have fun.
Throughout the year, the city also plays host to a number of festivals that include world-class performers and culinary masters.
Read on to know the 10 best things to do in Aiken, Sc.
1. The Aiken County Farmers Market
Produce from local farmers, including fruit, beans, tomatoes, and maize, is sold at the Aiken County Farmers Market, which is listed on the city’s Historic Register.
Many shops offer visitors a variety of baked foods, meats, and cheeses.
More than fifty years ago, locals in Aiken, South Carolina began gathering at the weekly farmers market to trade recipes and stories.
All year long, between 6 AM and 12 PM on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, you may find local produce and handmade goods at the Aiken County Farmers Market.
Saturdays are busy days, with a wide variety of events and activities happening throughout the year.
Read also: The 10 Fun Things to do in Corvallis, Oregon
2. The Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Museum and Hall of Fame
The Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum honors the city’s and region’s contributions to the sport of thoroughbred racing over the years.
Forty Champion Thoroughbreds have been trained at the prestigious Aiken Training Track in Aiken, South Carolina.
The Iselin’s historic carriage house doubles as a Hall of Fame to honor these magnificent equines.
In the Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame, you may see trophies, photos, and other racing memorabilia from steeplechase horses and flat racers as far back as 1942 and as recently as today.
3. Yummy Treats at Cyndi’s Confectionary
Dick and Cindy Rudisill’s Cyndi’s Sweet Shoppe may be found in the vibrant commercial core of Aiken.
The small candy and chocolate shop has a wide variety of sweets, including chocolates, fudge, and candies, and is a perfect location to stop for a snack while out and about.
Cyndi’s Sweet Shoppe is a one-stop shop with something delicious and fun for everyone, and the staff is always happy to assist their customers.
The candy store has all the customer favorites, plus nice conversation and cold Coca-Cola in glass bottles.
4. Attend the Aiken Steeplechase and Have a Blast
The Aiken Steeplechase is an exciting long-distance horse race with obstacles and other challenges.
The city’s steeplechase, held twice a year in the spring and fall, is a pinnacle of its equestrian tradition.
After purchasing a ticket, visitors can access the grounds and take part in the many activities taking place there.
Probably the most well-known is the steeplechase, in which riders atop magnificent horses compete against one another while trying to navigate a course filled with risks and obstacles.
It’s exciting, especially when you’re standing near the track and can hear the horses’ feet approaching you.
The steeplechase is just one of several events at this festival; others include hat-making and costume competitions.
Throughout the grounds, you’ll find vendors selling regional specialties, Aiken-themed souvenirs, and other one-of-a-kind items.
5. Participate in a Creative Workshop at the Aiken Center for the Arts
The Aiken Center For the Arts is a great site to experience the city’s flourishing art culture.
The building itself is somewhat modest, but within you’ll find a wide variety of displays and collections by skilled local artists.
You can also take workshops to experiment with different mediums including watercolor, oil, and more.
During these classes, you’ll be pushed to discover your full creative potential.
You can spend a few minutes browsing the themed displays and pick something you like if you don’t have much time.
Most of the pieces on display are for sale, so you can take something new back to your own walls.
6. Boyd Pond Park is a great place to get in touch with nature
Boyd Pond Park is located in the southwest corner of Aiken and is a great place to relax and take in the sights.
The 210-acre park is ideal for individuals in search of a tranquil escape from their hectic life.
Solo travelers and families can relax in the tranquil atmosphere created by the dense tree cover, lush landscaping, and winding paths through the woods.
Boyde Pond, a 30-acre body of water in the park’s center, is one of the most notable attractions.
There’s a little pier made of wood that sticks out into the lake, and the fisherman love to use it since there are so many different kinds of freshwater fish down there.
This is also an excellent diving location.
Also, many different species of birds make the park their permanent residence thanks to its extensive forest cover.
7. Get in a Few Holes at the Aiken Golf Club
There are perhaps more impressive courses in the surrounding cities that can make the Aiken Golf Club look like a little attraction.
Although it has been operating since 1912, this course continues to be a fan favorite among golfing old-timers.
Certain elements of the course, then, might be seen as documentation of the original layout from the early 20th century.
Uphill shots and undulating ground provide for a hard playing field that may test the mettle of even the most seasoned pros.
It’ll put your short-game skills to the test.
However, the course’s cedar trees provide a pleasant backdrop, and the course’s straightforward layout and immaculate upkeep make for an enjoyable round.
You may get ready to sink an ace on the 18-hole course by warming up on the practice green.
8. Come to DuPont Planetarium and be Amazed by the Stars
The DuPont Planetarium is an exciting destination for space and astronomy enthusiasts.
The purpose of this educational center at the University of South Carolina Aiken is to show people from all over the world how beautiful the night sky can be.
More than fifty people can watch a film about the night sky at a time, so be sure to book your tickets in advance.
Recent upgrades to the dome and projectors have greatly improved the experience.
The stars, constellations, and the colors of space are just some of the numerous things you can study here.
If conditions allow, the team may welcome the public to the observatory for telescope viewings.
9. Henderson Heritage Preserve, in Aiken, South Carolina
In the Henderson Heritage Preserve, you can find a web of unmarked firebreak paths.
These paths encircle the serene and natural park.
In any of the two unmarked, steep parts, hikers can expect to encounter rutted roads, sandy paths, high vistas, lowland areas, and ponds, and may even spot turtles, among other species.
The bog spicebush is a unique plant that can be observed here.
Only hikers are allowed on the preserve’s routes. Fishing is allowed, but camping and hunting are not.
10. Restaurant: New Moon in Aiken, South Carolina
In 1995, locals and visitors to Aiken, South Carolina were treated to the grand opening of the New Moon Cafe.
The cafe’s proprietors have, over the years, maintained a commitment to serving the local community while keeping the vibe of the place youthful and unique.
At New Moon, they serve you a variety of homey dishes with a modern twist and fresh, regional ingredients.
The cafe’s main focus is on serving real, delicious meals.
The cafe creates its own soups daily from scratch, its bread and pastries from scratch every day, and it even roasts its own coffee.
At New Moon Cafe, you may have breakfast, panini sandwiches, salads, and soups.