There are places that definitely surprise you and take your breath away, Charleston, South Carolina, is one of them. Charleston is a unique, beautiful, charming, historic and pet friendly city. It is the perfect destination for a romantic weekend getaway or as a family week long vacation.
It’s cobblestone street, colorful houses, stunning plantations will make of your trip an unforgettable one. Charleston is the best place to get a taste of southern charm and hospitality.
We visited this fantastic city in March, and let me tell you it was the best time to visit! Spring is pretty beautiful as the flowers are blooming, it is breezy and there is not to many people. As a beach town, Charleston is very busy during summer and the weather can become hot and muggy.
Walking Map of downtown Charleston, South Carolina
The best way for us to describe Rainbow Row is a photography lovers dream, especially for a romantic photoshoot. This collection of 13 pastel colored Georgian-style houses is a beautiful block to walk down endless times during your visit to Charleston.
Walk along the waterfront towards the battery park, also known as White Point Garden. Once a strategic protection point for the city it now serves a relaxing green space to enjoy on a sunny day.
Charleston City Market
The current Charleston City Market has been serving as an open air market since the beginning of the 1800s. What began as a meat and vegetable market has transformed into stalls filled with everything ranging from the famous sweetgrass baskets to local paintings and souvenirs.
Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon
Since its construction, before the independence of the United States, the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon has been home to multiple institutions throughout its history. It now runs as a museum about its many uses including a commercial exchange, custom house, post office, city hall and military headquarters.
Old Slave Mart Museum
One of the most significant segments of Charleston history to learn about and learn from is its role as the entry point into the United States for nearly 40% of African slaves. The Old Slave Mart Museum stands in what was used as an auction point for slaves until the end of the slave trade.
The Confederate Museum
At the end of the City Market is The Confederate Museum, a small space filled with local civil war artifacts. The museum is run by the Daughters of the Confederacy and with its limited hours, the best way to tell if it is open is when there is a flag flying out front.
Historic Homes of Charleston:
Charleston is full of historic homes dating back over 200 years. Many of the homes have been restored to their former glory, highlighting the lives and impact of the owners. While there are half a dozen different historic home tours in Charleston, it is best to pick the ones that interest you most.
Edmondston- Alston House
Aiken Rhett House
Heyward Washington House
Joseph Manigault House
Nathaniel Russell House
Explore the ornate Charleston’s Gilded Age Mansion. The Calhoun Mansion is filled with extensive collection of antiques and historic objects in every room.
Horse drawn Carriage tour:
After a full day of exploring Charleston by foot, there is no better way to get some context and history than with a relaxing carriage ride through the cobblestone roads. We suggest riding with Old South Carriage Company or Palmetto Carriage Works.
While we had passed several of the stops on foot, most of what the live narrator had to say was new and informative for us. We also had the chance to explore some of the other neighborhoods of the city.
Plantations of Charleston:
The plantations are outside of Charleston, but they are well worth the visit. We tried to visit as many plantations as we could, including Middleton Place, Drayton Hall, Charleston Tea Plantation, Magnolia Plantation & Gardens and Boone Hall Plantation. You could easily spend hours in each of these plantations and have a total different experience in each of them.
Our favorite to visit is the Magnolia Plantation. This plantation will surprise you with their rich history, beautiful gardens and elegant architecture.
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