Perhaps no architectural feature of Charleston is more prominent than the Arthur Ravenel Jr Bridge, which spans between downtown and Mount Pleasant and serves as the track for the city’s famous Cooper River Bridge Run. It was named for former congressman Arthur Ravenel Jr., who helped raise funds for the project. The cable stayed bridge opened in 2005 and was created to replace two older bridges. Today, the new bridge has a walking path, which allows locals and tourists to trek the 6 miles round trip for the best views of the city.
If you’re walking the bridge on your own, you can park on either end. The Mount Pleasant side has paid parking at Waterfront Park. On the downtown side, there is free parking off of East Bay Street. The downtown stretch starts with a long walk over the marsh before you even reach the main part of the bridge. You can either go the full length and take the bus back, go halfway before returning to your car or go both ways. In either case, be sure to yield to bicyclists and stay in your lane.
There are no public restrooms on the downtown side, but there is a water fountain and restrooms on the Mount Pleasant side. I recommend bringing a bottle of water for your walk and starting around dusk to watch the sun set over the Ashley and Cooper rivers.