If you’re looking to add some southern charm to your life, there’s no better place than Charleston in my opinion. It is rich in history and is as darling as can be. You can easily fall in love with Charleston in an afternoon, here’s how!
First, you’ll want to start with a bite to eat and a few drinks to fuel up before you mosey down the gorgeous streets of the quaint historic district. Henry’s is full of vintage charm with great rooftop seating complete with shaded lounge seating and a porch swing (and it’s kid-friendly!).
Although they only offer “bar food” outside, it does not disappoint since the menu includes mini crab cakes, mahi mahi salad, and fried calamari. There’s also a full restaurant inside with reasonably priced, quality entrees suitable for everyone in your party. My niece is very picky and even she found something she liked 🙂 If you’re looking for something a little more high-end, Hank’s is your spot for seafood and Peninsula Grill for a great steak.
Rainbow Row & Waterfront Park
From there you can start your stroll through town. Our next stop was Rainbow Row, which is the iconic colorful houses. I recommend taking the long way to get there. An indirect route can lead you to witness some of the other charming streets in between destinations. There are some pretty adorable cobblestone roads, beautiful churches, and lovely little parks scattered throughout.
From Rainbow Row, you can continue to Waterfront Park where you can enjoy some shade. There are pretty fountains and lots of benches to enjoy some people watching, have a picnic, or just sit and relax.
After you’ve rested your feet you can extend your walk and head over to the Battery to see the stunning antebellum mansions. Although you get a great view of the architecture by walking across the street by the water, don’t miss out on some of the gardens that may be tucked in between! And there’s yet another picturesque park, complete with a large historic gazebo, at the tip of the peninsula known as White Point Garden. Bonus if you brought your dog along on the trip, the whole park is an off-leash area! Just make sure your pup is a good listener since there’s no fencing.
From the park, I recommend walking back up through town one of the streets just behind the main row (either Meeting Street or King street) to witness more amazing homes and gardens. You may even run into a walking tour or two and hear a little of the history. If you are interested in taking a full walking tour, keep in mind that they are usually about 2.5 hours so it may take up a good chunk of your time if you are just in town for the day.
If you have a little more time, you can also check out the following:
- Magnolia Gardens
- Boone Hall Plantation and Garden
- Charleston Tea Plantation
- The Charleston Museum
- Old Slave Mart Museum
- Confederate Museum
- Gibbes Museum of Art
- Nathaniel Russell House
I cannot wait until my next visit so I can experience even more of what this wonderful city has to offer. With so many landmarks, great art, culture, and dining experiences, it’s clear why it was named No. 1 City in the U.S. by Travel + Leisure! Have you had a chance to visit? If so, I’d love to hear about your favorite spots in the comments below!