Final week our household took a last-minute, 2-day-3-night journey to Charleston, South Carolina and it was *chef’s kiss*. It was our first time there, and we arrived having performed zero planning and no itinerary with the aim of exploring, having fun with the sights, and consuming some good things alongside the best way (spoiler: we achieved all three!). Truthfully, it might need been our favourite weekend journey but (tied with New Orleans). So listed here are all of the locations, actions, and meals that made our journey so nice.
Why We Picked Charleston As A Spot To Go to?
Ever since we moved to Florida three years in the past, our household holidays have modified a bit. We used to nearly all the time choose locations with a seaside and/or pool close by, however now that we’ve got each at dwelling, we discover ourselves extra fascinated by walkable cities or small cities with attention-grabbing sights, outlets, parks, eating places, and extra. And Charleston was nearly good for that! As our kids have gotten older – they’re now 9 and 13 – they get pleasure from exploring extra, and we now not discover ourselves in search of out playgrounds and kids’s museums. So whereas all the pieces we did right here was completely kid-friendly (and dog-friendly!) it might not be good for youthful youngsters.
The place We Stayed In Charleston, SC
A part of the rationale we booked this journey so final minute is that we got here throughout this awesome-looking Airbnb that occurred to be marked all the way down to fill a number of days between bookings (and you already know we love a sale). We stayed for 3 nights, and it was such an amazing spot and a well-managed rental, as the various opinions attest to, which is what made it straightforward for us to click on that guide button. It will’ve completely been definitely worth the full worth too. Be aware: this wasn’t paid or sponsored in any manner & they don’t know us from Adam.
We had the upstairs unit (“The Poppy Suite”) however the downstairs can also be accessible from the identical host, in addition to a number of different listings round Charleston. We are able to’t say sufficient good issues about it. It was effectively adorned, very clear, effectively stocked, and each kid- and dog-friendly. The one disadvantage for some folks may be that it solely has one rest room, however you all know that we’re fairly snug with that!
The center bed room pictured above is the place our daughter slept, and our son had a cute bunkroom within the again. Sherry and I took the entrance bed room as a result of it opened out to the entrance balcony, which we closely used and beloved. We spent a few hours on the market throughout each of the total days that we had in Charleston, simply hanging out and studying and having fun with the breeze. It was the proper spot to take a break from strolling round (particularly in the course of the hottest components of the day) as a result of it stayed shaded and I can’t promise you’ll expertise the identical breeze that we had, however it was there each days we had been on the market, and it was good.
And as a lot as we preferred the Airbnb itself, we largely picked it as a result of it was in an amazing location that was walkable to eating places, espresso outlets, and extra. It’s in a neighborhood referred to as Cannonborough / Elliotborough, for these aware of Charleston.
The place We Explored In Charleston, SC
Since we had been solely in Charleston for 2 full days, we determined to make use of at some point for exploring town and the opposite for trying out a few of the surrounding seaside communities (not only for the seaside – a buddy tipped us off about some nice meals and issues to do on the market too).
We opted for a go-with-the-flow type journey, somewhat than standard vacationer actions like visiting historic websites or museums so preserve that in thoughts. There are a lot of of these issues to do in Charleston if your loved ones is searching for that sort of journey as effectively. Throughout our metropolis day, we walked from our home on Spring Road all the way down to King Road – the primary road full of outlets and eating places that traverses Charleston – and simply kinda popped into outlets, ate, and loved the structure alongside the best way.
We in all probability might’ve spent an entire day (or extra!) simply strolling and taking a look at the entire historic houses. In addition they had guided strolling excursions that appeared fascinating, so if we ever went again I believe we’d strive a type of. I’ll share our favourite shops and eating places in a minute, however first I’ve to drop in a number of extra stunning houses. We beloved seeing all of those iconic Charleston aspect porches with their very own “hospitality doorways” alongside the entrance (they appear like an actual entrance door, however simply result in the open-air porch on the aspect).
Charleston felt like such a cool metropolis as a result of though there are such a lot of very previous houses and historic particulars, it was additionally colourful and energetic. It didn’t harm that we had been there when all the pieces was in bloom. And let me let you know, this metropolis LOVES window containers.
And simply have a look at this vivid pink church we wandered previous in Charleston’s French Quarter (sure, they’ve one too, identical to New Orleans, which is one other weekend journey we took & beloved this yr).
Talking of shade, we after all hit up Charleston’s iconic Rainbow Row, which is a row of brightly coloured Georgian houses alongside East Bay Road (don’t fear, “Rainbow Row” comes up in Apple and Google Maps, so it’s very straightforward to seek out).
We clocked about 6 miles of strolling on our first day and, after looping dwelling for a noon break, we drove again within the night to hit up a few of the additional spots from our home (like Rainbow Row and Pineapple Fountain). We do a whole lot of strolling round our neighborhood at dwelling, so our children didn’t bat a watch at this type of mileage – particularly because it was damaged up with meals, a few hours again at dwelling within the A/C (effectively, we had been studying on the porch however they had been inside with the AC), and loads of stops in outlets.
The place We Shopped In Charleston, SC
A lot of the shops we popped into had been situated on or close to King Road, and we principally simply wandered into something that appeared attention-grabbing. Just like the tented rattan paradise that was this Amanda Lindroth retailer.
We all the time attempt to hit up an impartial bookstore every time we journey, so we had been comfortable to come across Blue Bicycle Books. By some means we missed the signal for Buxton Books additional down King Road, however that appears to be one other standard native bookseller.
We didn’t encounter a ton of kid-specific shops (apart from this toy retailer within the Charelston Metropolis Market) however at 9 and 13, our children love random issues like plant shops, artwork outlets, and even a stationery retailer (they purchase pens and felt tip markers like they’re connoisseurs). In addition they had a stunning quantity of enjoyable smelling soaps on the Outdated Whaling Firm (pictured beneath) and all of us beloved trying out the artwork within the Mitchel Hill Gallery furnishings retailer. We rounded issues off with a good time within the Mildred Newberry stationery store (see: they like markers and pens).
And naturally, Sherry made positive we stopped into Stitching Down South, which is the pillow retailer opened by Craig Conover from Bravo’s Southern Attraction. There have been no precise sightings of any Bravolebrities, however that was not for lack of effort (the hassle largely being Sherry randomly whispering “Craig?!” and “Paige?!” as we walked round city. Can’t consider that didn’t work…).
As a lot enjoyable as we had strolling round Charleston itself, our two favourite shops had been really over the bridge nearer to a few of Charleston’s seashores.
Exploring Charleston’s Seashores
As I discussed, hitting the seaside isn’t actually the primary purpose we guide a trip anymore simply because we dwell on the seaside full time, however we had been all excited to drive out to Isle of Palms and Sullivan’s Island one morning to verify them out, since we’ve heard such nice issues about these communities and a buddy gave us some recommendations on the place to eat and another enjoyable stuff to do and see on the market.
We parked close to The Boathouse at Breach Inlet in Isle of Palms to get pleasure from a pleasant morning stroll on the seaside since IOP gave the impression to be probably the most accommodating to canines on the seaside. After a pleasant seaside stroll (they’d some good shells & Penny beloved sniffing all the pieces) we went on the hunt to discover a place for espresso & brunch and stumbled upon a retailer in Sullivan’s Island referred to as A Maker’s Put up. It had the good mixture of artwork, housewares, and vegetation. And each of our children walked out with new books that they bought, so it was successful for all ages.
After posting about our journey on Instagram final week, the photograph above in all probability obtained probably the most curiosity – a lot in order that I’m positive Sherry’s fingers harm from typing “it’s referred to as A Maker’s Put up” again and again in her DMs. It’s fairly onerous to overlook from the street, however it’s subsequent to a vivid pink place referred to as The Co-Op (the place we ended up getting espresso) if that helps.
Our different favourite cease out that manner was a store we hit up on the best way again from the seaside in additional suburban Mount Plesant. It’s referred to as Plant Home and – after A Maker’s Put up was such successful for our complete household – I discovered it simply by googling “plant retailer.” I’m a hero.
We’ve since realized that it’s a sequence with 7 places within the Southeast (even one again in our previous hometown of Richmond, VA!) however it was completely new to us right here in Charleston and it’s in all probability the longest we spent in any single retailer the entire journey! They promote each plant and pot you could possibly think about, and the shop itself is simply crammed to the brim with stuff to have a look at. Plus there’s a very enjoyable exercise they provide anytime you cease in…
… they’ve DIY terrarium stations! So for $25 every, our children obtained to assemble their very own plant terrarium. They every picked out two small vegetation together with their spherical glass vessel after which the entire “toppings” on the worktable had been free: soil, sand, rocks, shells, moss, and so on. There was a girl who guided them by way of all of the steps, and every child had a lot enjoyable. Sherry additionally had enjoyable when our son often requested for a hand.
The workers was tremendous pleasant and useful, so the youngsters obtained nice steering for constructing and caring for his or her terrariums too. They actually allow you to simply stroll in and make one anytime – however additionally they have scheduled workshops for grown-ups, and there’s even a bar with booze within the retailer!
As a lot as we loved all of those outlets and actions, the true highlights of our journey had been in all probability the meals.
The place We Ate In Charleston, SC
We’re not at all high-quality eating folks and our trip MO is simply to seek out locations with scrumptious meals and a enjoyable ambiance. Charleston didn’t disappoint on this entrance!
Breakfast in Charleston
Each mornings we obtained breakfast at neighborhood spots inside a brief stroll from our Airbnb. The primary was Daps Breakfast & Imbibe which had nice espresso, big egg sandwiches, and much more big pancakes. Looking back, the youngsters might’ve shared an order (we knew they had been massive however we didn’t notice they’d be THIS BIG). I additionally in all probability might have gotten a “aspect” of pancakes with my order that will have fed them each! These had been the Fruity Pebble ones that our daughter obtained (our son went with one thing dusted with cocoa powder).
Our different breakfast was at Holey Metropolis Bagels which, to begin with, earns factors for a high quality pun in its identify (Charleston’s nickname is “the Holy Metropolis”). The bagels themselves are the closest factor we’ve needed to a New York type bagel shortly and the hooked up espresso store was nice too.
Lunch & Dinner In Charleston
One other couple of nice spots inside strolling distance of our Airbnb had been Pink Cactus and Gas Cantina, each with Mexican menus. Pink Cactus appears to be like fairly unassuming from the road (the patio is kinda plopped into a few parking areas) however the meals was scrumptious and generously sized. They don’t have a child’s menu and like to not make substitutions, however each of our children loved what they obtained (they’ll every deal with a little bit of spice which was positively current). We later met somebody who labored at Plant Home who stated her buddies drive 40 minutes to go to Pink Cactus, so apparently it has many devoted followers.
Gas Cantina positively beat Pink Cactus within the outside ambiance division. It’s situated in an previous gasoline station and the again patio, the place we ate, was the proper place to relax on a gorgeous summer season night. Suppose strings lights, TV, massive followers, together with bocce and big Jenga to maintain the youngsters entertained.
I took the above photograph the next morning on our stroll to Holey Metropolis (therefore it trying closed… as a result of it was). However I snapped the pic beneath the earlier night time on our manner out to the patio. They actually leaned into the previous gasoline station factor by turning some gasoline pumps into sconces!
One other tremendous chill meal we had that was massive on ambiance was our dinner on the Port of Name Meals Corridor. The meals corridor gave us a number of choices – I obtained Greek, one child obtained seafood, and the remaining obtained smash burgers – and the seating space was good and shady. For dessert, all of us tried pineapple comfortable serve for the primary time at The Pineapple Hut.
In all probability our favourite meal food-wise was throughout the bridge in Sullivan’s Island at a spot referred to as The Obstinate Daughter. A buddy beneficial this as a spot with unbelievable meals the place we might “gown up a bit”, so initially we wrote it off (none of us packed something remotely dressy). However then we occurred to drive by round 11am and noticed a number of households consuming on the patio in very informal apparel, so we determined to have an early lunch. And boy are we glad we did.
I obtained the particular of the day, a peach flatbread pizza with balsamic drizzle, and it completely hit the spot. The children break up a cheese flatbread and a few pasta, which they each declared: “the very best.” Sherry obtained some scrumptious ahi tuna particular with a cream sauce and potatoes. This was the one meal we didn’t have leftovers from, as in, we licked every of our plates clear. Sure, that complete pizza went into my stomach.
There’s a gelato store in the identical constructing referred to as BeardCat’s Candy Store, which we obtained for dessert. You get to pick two flavors even for a small dimension, so Sherry and I break up a darkish chocolate + olive oil and salt gelato. They actually drizzled olive oil on the highest, which I wasn’t so positive about at first, however it ended up being extraordinarily good.
Was Charleston Canine Pleasant?
Sure! Aside from a number of shops that stated “service animals solely,” we discovered all the pieces in Charleston to be extraordinarily canine pleasant: our Airbnb, the seashores, and the outside eating places. As a result of we had such good climate throughout our keep, we had been in a position to eat each single meal outdoors. For some meals – just like the breakfast locations and the meals corridor – it meant certainly one of us staying outdoors with Penny whereas the others positioned our order, however that’s no massive deal and one thing we do at eating places again dwelling too.
Since Penny’s a small canine, we sometimes choose her up every time we go into a store simply in case. That is extra for our & her security than anything (that manner she doesn’t attempt to eat one thing beneath a show, get spooked by a store cat, or unintentionally knock one thing over along with her leash). We additionally sometimes ask an worker “is it okay to deliver our canine in right here?” simply to be secure. Everybody was more than pleased to have her! She was additionally the one member of the family who requested to be carried a number of instances outdoors when she didn’t really feel like strolling. #spoiled
As our Airbnb hosts identified of their booklet, many of the Charleston space seashores are canine pleasant too – however the guidelines fluctuate by space and time of yr, so be sure you verify earlier than you go. In Could we had been in a position to take Penny on the Isle of Palms seashores with no drawback.
Our Journey To Charleston, SC: A Abstract
For Charleston first-timers who did little or no planning for this 2-day-3-night weekend journey, we had a good time. For comfort, I believed I’d bullet the locations talked about on this submit multi functional spot for you.
- Our Airbnb: The Poppy Suite on Spring Road
- Strolling down King Road
- Visiting Rainbow Row & Pineapple Fountain
- Exploring the French Quarter
- Trying out homes on Cannon Road
- Strolling on the seaside in Isle of Palms
Thanks for an amazing journey, Charleston. We’ll be again!
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