Welcome to Columbia
South Carolina's state capital, affectionally dubbed 'Cola,' is a quiet place, with wide, shady streets and the kind of old-fashioned downtown where pillbox hats are still on display in the windows of family-run department stores. The University of South Carolina (USC) adds a youthful vibe, and campus-side bars fill with college students whooping it up over football wins, and, more recently, basketball too (both the men's and women's teams made Final Four appearances in 2017, and the women clinched the title).
Columbia is a pleasant stop, with some decent restaurants, a renowned zoo and some interesting historical sites. But most visitors, like General Sherman's troops, charge on through to the coast.