We just got back on Sunday from a long weekend in Charleston and Folly Beach, SC. I will be sharing two separate travel guides with you. The reason for our trip was to attend a friends wedding. With lots of wedding festivities we didn’t have a ton of time to spend in Downtown Charleston, but I wanted to share with you what we did and how you could spend a weekend or 24 hours downtown!
We stayed in Folly Beach for the wedding, but on our way downtown we lucked out with our uber driver. He was a retired history teacher and was our own personal tour guide! We only had a couple of hours to explore, but wanted to share with you what we did, what was recommended to us and what we wish we had time to do.
There are a series of thirteen colorful Georgian historic houses. It’s definitely a popular tourist attraction and one of the most photographed streets in Charleston. When we got there, the sun was shining so bright and there were so many cars on the street. I would suggest getting their earlier so hopefully you can get some better photos!
Wondering why they are all so colorful? Our uber driver told us that the myth is that they were painted these vibrant colors, so the drunken sailors could remember which house they needed to come home to haha.
Where to Eat:
Toast has multiple locations in and around downtown Charleston. Aside from their location on Meeting Street, they have a location in West Ashley, Summerville and Mount Pleasant. Another great place to add to your list for southern cooking! If I had the chance to go back to Charleston, I would order their stuffed french toast it looks insanely good!
Rhys and I went here for breakfast and sat at the bar. He had a couple of bloody mary’s and he said they were some of the best he has ever had! This is located on Market Street right across the street from the historic Charleston city market.
This is your typical breakfast joint, with no frills but we were happy with our meal. I had a Belgian waffle, I wanted something a little sweet and Rhys had the crab cake benedict and cheesy grits which were delicious.
Callie’s has a unique story. Not only does Callie have a restaurant, but she has a cookbook, grab and go restaurants in Charleston and and also a location in Atlanta.
We stopped at one of her grab and go locations in the Charleston City Market and had coffee after breakfast. Since we didn’t get to eat here, but everything looked so delicious we can actually buy some of her products online! I think I am going to have to buy some of her biscuit mix and make Rhys and I a nice little brunch one weekend!
Hominy is open for Breakfast, Lunch and does not take reservations. If we had another day for breakfast I definitely would have gone here. I am disappointed I didn’t get shrimp and grits from here, which was recommended to me! Part of the main dining room was previously a living room. If you are looking for somewhere that makes you feel at home and has that southern home cooking, this place is for you!
One thing I always try to do when I am on a coast is eat as much seafood as I can, especially oysters! I found this place prior to going on our trip and our uber driver recommended it too. Rhys and I walked up and down king street shopping and decided to get a snack before dinner. When we got to the darling at 1:15 we realized and were totally bummed that it didn’t open till 4:00! Everyday they open at 4:00 with the exception of Sunday’s and they open at 11:00.
Oyster Myth: Only eat oysters in the months that have R in them! The worst time to eat oysters is in the summer! They are still safe to eat every month, but that you should eat Souther Oysters in the winter and spring and northern oysters in the fall and around the holidays. They are best served out of cold water and there is a seasonal difference in the flavor!
I heard from multiple people when we were in Charleston and a friend prior to the trip that this is the best steakhouse in town. Steak isn’t something I was looking to eat when I was on this trip, because there are so many in Chicago. But if that’s what you are looking for on your trip here, then this is a must to add to your list! They have locations in Columbia, Greenville and Charleston!
If you want to get some shopping done while in you can go to lower King street. Personally a lot of the stores there are ones we have back at home, so I didn’t feel the need to do too much shopping but I did stumble into a couple really cute boutiques I wanted to share with you.
Some of the shops we did stop in that I really loved were Skinny Dip (You can shop and have wine on their rooftop), Hampden, Dress up Charleston and pictured was my favorite store Ro Sham Beaux. They had a beautiful mix of clothes and interior decor. They had so many chandeliers I wish I could have taken home with me!
Also if you have time head to the Charleston City Market, that is four blocks long! You can find Jewelry, shoes, food, sweets, baskets and we picked up an ornament. When I was growing up every family vacation we went on, we made sure to buy an ornament. It was really wonderful over the years to see how many places as a family we had gone. I loved the tradition so much, so Rhys and I are starting to do it! We bought a pineapple ornament for our first trip to South Carolina!
The reason we visited Charleston was because we were invited there for a wedding! The wedding took place at Legare Waring House. They got married under the most beautiful moss draped oak trees and the reception was held outside under these twinkling lights. The cocktail hour took place under another set of beautiful trees located next to a pond. There was even an alligator on the property, but on the other side far enough away from the guests!
What we wished we had time to do:
Calhoun Mansion is a large historic mansion on 16th and meeting street. Our uber driver told us to walk down this street and take a tour here, but we didn’t have time! Walk down Meeting Street, the largest mansion in Charleston is located on this street.
You can book a tour here or bookmark it and add it to your list of places to walk by while walking through downtown Charleston!
The Battery is known for its Antebellum homes, located on the lower shores of the Charleston Peninsula. I am really bummed we didn’t get to go here. I love learning about the history of a city, seeing the beautiful homes and learning about the architecture. Our other uber driver told us that you haven’t seen Charleston until you go to The Battery, so this will be number one on my list when I go back one day!
White Point garden is located at the tip of the Peninsula of Charleston. We originally wanted to start here but when we were on our way downtown we were so hungry. Our uber driver advised us that this area doesn’t have any restaurants its more residential.
Founded in the late 1600’s and is one of the oldest public gardens located in the United States! It’s absolutely stunning from the photos, I can’t even imagine how breathtaking it is in person. We missed an opportunity here, but I will be back!
Obviously just to explore more, take day trips to the different islands and eat more of the delicious food! For the couple of hours we had to explore, though I was still happy that we were able to take in some of the culture! We spent the rest of the weekend at Folly Beach. I will be sharing that travel guide on Thursday!
Thanks always for stopping by!