July 21, 2015

Charleston Travel Guide


{Rainbow Row}
Charleston is one of those towns that will stick with you long after you've left; the incredibly friendly people, the delectable Southern cooking, and the gorgeous, historical architecture pouring out from every street you walk down. Also, one of the most predominant symbols of the city is a pineapple! They are everywhere- gates, homes, gardens, walls, and in the stores! Hello, a blogger's dream! When Brandon's family decided to go to Myrtle Beach for a little getaway I knew adding on a few days in one of the oldest towns in all of the United States, Charleston, would be the perfect addition to our trip. It turned out to be one of my highlights, because, well who doesn't love a little romantic getaway? 

With no real itinerary in mind, which is a shocker for me, we spent our days wondering the Historical District and French Quarter, gazing at all the beautiful, pastel homes, eating some of the most delicious Southern cuisine, and just enjoying the blazing South Carolinian heat. While I went trigger happy with my camera, stopping at every pastel pink and blue home to take a snap, B found a new love in the form of shrimp and grits. We only were in Charleston for two days but it seemed like just the perfect amount of time to enjoy much of this town's little pleasures, then head back in our rental car to meet the rest of the family in Myrtle Beach. Here are a few of my favourite snaps and some travel tips:


DO

Rainbow Row: What I was most excited for. The "row" is a selection of 13 colourful houses on East Bay Street. Most were built in the 1800's and were restored in the 1930's. Each home is unique, lovely and a photographer's dream. I was in pastel home heaven. 

The Battery: You will find some more insanely gorgeous houses along this promenade which was once used as a defensive seawall, and some pretty waterfront views. Stop for a few minutes and enjoy the much needed shade the park has to offer!

French Quarter: It's general borders are Market Street to the north, Broad Street to the south, Meeting Street to the west, and Cooper River to the east.  Home to more beautiful streets with stunning historical houses, like "The Pink House" and churches. Be sure to hit up Chalmers Street.

Plantation: We never had the chance to actually stop into a Plantation, but we did drive by. This is something I would have loved to do. On the drive from Myrtle Beach you will pass plenty, such as Boone Hall and Hopsewee. 
{sips at The Belmont}
{handsome fellow blending in}
EAT

Breakfast/Light Lunches: Park Cafe was our favourite breakfast spot. The menu consisted of avocado toast, almond milk lattes, and homemade granola… heaven! It's a tad out of the main city centre, but was worth the short drive from our hotel. They also serve lunch. With the heavy dinners and humid heat, we opted for light and green lunches. I fell in love with the customizable salad bar and fresh juices at Verde. Whisk is another great spot to get your smoothie, juice and/or ice coffee fix. They also serve up some pretty serious salads and yogurt parfaits. The décor is pretty sweet too (love the “whisk” ceiling fan”).  Hit up Black Bean Co. for more energy bowls, wraps and salads!

Sips: The Belmont is a cocktail lovers' heaven. Their menu is extensive, the vibe is ridiculously cool (black and white movies are projected on the wall), and the bartenders are relaxed and friendly. Start your evening here!

Delicious Dinners: The cuisine in Charleston is world renowned, so I was sure to do some research about where to eat before arriving. Reservations are a necessity! Some of the fabulous spots we dined at were Husk and Poogan's Porch (ironically side by side!). Husk prides itself on offering completely Southern ingredients and some of the freshest at that. It was here we indulged in our first dish of shrimp and grits! Poogan's Porch, which is inside a beautiful Victorian house, is one of Charleston's oldest and well-known restaurants. If you're feeling slightly more adventurous than I was, try the fried alligator! We had planned to check out another well known restaurant, FIG, however it wasn't open for a late lunch on our last afternoon.

Sweet Treats: Stop by Freddo for some true Argentinian gelato! You will need a scoop or two to beat the heat. Glazed Gourmet also serves up some pretty sweet doughnuts if you find yourself in the upper King Street area.

{candle library at Candlefish // pineapple accessories at The Market
{Villa Margherita found in The Battery}
{Charleston Market}
SHOP

King Street: Charleston is home to some of the most amazing boutiques. All you need to do is head down King Street and let your eyes do all the work. Upper King is home to the design shops and more trendy restaurants, mid King Street is the fashion section, and lower King Street hosts the gorgeous antique shops. I loved how King Street and Market Street are the two main arteries into the downtown core, and are parallel to one another. Hamden Clothing (every designer) and Candlefish (amazing homemade candles, great for souvenirs!) are among the notables in the fashion section. You'll also find your classics such as Cynthia Rowley, Kate Spade and Madewell along with other Southern/local delights. 

Historic Charleston City Market: When we first came across the market we were shocked at how large it was inside! So many fun, authentic and local vendors. You could spend hours in here! Play count the pineapples!
{The Mills House}
STAY

We were lucky enough to pay for our hotel with points, however, next trip to Charleston I would stay at The Mills House. This historic (and pink) hotel is stunning outside and in (yes, we ventured inside and around the courtyard). I can only imagine how the rooms are decorated! The hotel is situated in the heart of downtown Charleston and so close to everything! There are also many boutique hotels in the downtown area which would be just as lovely. 

{gorgeous pink blooms can be found everywhere}
{breakfast at Park Cafe}

{morning coffees at Park Cafe}
{dream home}
{shrimp & grits from Husk // more pretty buildings}

{spot the pineapples!)

{
{cooling off at Whisk}


Have you ever been to Charleston? Any plans to venture on South? I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into #GBtravels and have marked your travel wish list with another stunning, historical destination! 

Planning a trip? Check out my Travel Planning Guide


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11 comments

  1. Great post. Charleston looks and sounds like a beautiful place to visit. Lovely photos too!
    Emma Xx

    www.emmaslookingglass.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Emma! It was such a lovely stay!
      xx

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  2. Amazing photos! I think I may have to visit Charleston just to have a cocktail at the Belmont. Your man-friend and yourself look completely at home in this beautiful place.

    Joëlle
    La Petite Noob

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, you do! It's a old shop turned into a bar, so you can actually sit in the front windows! Which we did... had to get that natural light, and perfect for people watching!
      xx

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  3. Such a colourful place!! Charleston looks like a quaint little place for a getaway. And those shrimp and grits look delish!

    Kris | Love. Loft. Life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So colourful!! My eyes didn't know where to look first. I was so impressed with the food! Freshest fish I've ever had.
      xx

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  4. This looks so charming and lovely!

    www.littleblackpearls.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charming is definitely the perfect word!
      xx

      Delete
  5. I LOVE Charleston! I have only been once, but it is such an amazing place. I am dying to go back. Your pictures are gorgeous!

    Nikki
    thefashionablewife.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aww, thanks Nikki!
      I would go back in a heartbeat, too.
      xx

      Delete
  6. Charleston is one of my FAVE cities in the world. So charming, so Southern, so pretty. And your dream home is totally my dream home - roomies? ;)

    ReplyDelete

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