I am a planner. I love making lists, highlighting, color coding, and checking things off. As you can imagine everyday list's are real thrill for me, but researching, planning, and creating multiple rough drafts of the perfect list for an upcoming trip? Well I imagine that's the kind of high cocaine addicts feel. Too much? So I had two days off, less than 48 hours, to figure out how to pack all of Charleston's goodness into one trip. Well, I am happy to report all my planning paid off and I officially want to move there. Particularly here. Because it's pink and perfect. Now if only some generous soul would provide that 1.3 mill......Anyway, I'll stop babbling about lists and cocaine now. You can find my trip guide below. Please let me know if you have any other Charleston suggestions in the comments!
*We left our current hometown at about 8:10 and arrived in Charleston at 12:30*
Hominy Grill doesn't offer brunch reservations, but we decided to risk it based on all the good reviews. When we left our name we were pleasantly surprised to find an outdoor bar. So we grabbed ourselves a couple of mimosas and enjoyed the afternoon sun. It wasn't more than 30 minutes before we were seated, and considering the crowd, another pleasant surprise. Simple and southern. That is the condensed version of how I would describe the Hominy Grill's atmosphere. Vince ordered the shrimp and grits, and I ordered pumpkin gingerbread with a Charleston nasty biscuit. Our server was awesome and brought out some possibly even more awesome biscuits while we waited. Overall the food was delicious and hit the spot.
After brunch we hoped right into our car and drove over to King Street. It was pretty crowded due to the tax-free weekend, but still enjoyable. We walked probably a mile down and back. We didn't get to see every shop King Street had to offer, but if your wallet is burning a whole in your pocket, this is the place for you.
Historic Charleston City Market
The perfect place to pick up a quick survivor. A little while ago I started a tradition of picking up a painting wherever I traveled. I don't actually have a wall yet to display all my lovely painting on, but you know technicalities. *We drove here as well. I map-quested everything out while planning, and we easily could have walked here, but because we were short on time driving was our friend. If you are not short on time I 100% recommend walking.
After picking up my painting we took a quick stroll over to Waterfront Park. There was a cruise ship docked so not as peaceful as I imagine it typically is, but still nice. There were a few water fountains where kids were cooling off, and plenty of benches for people to sit down and enjoy the view.
The Pink House
We hopped back into our car and drove over to this beauty. It's one of Charleston's oldest buildings. I just loved the feel of this entire street.
Another short little drive and we found ourselves on Rainbow Row. Simply pretty to look at.
Town & Country Inn and Suites
We then drove and checked into our hotel. I purposefully planned out this time to shower and get pretty for dinner. Charleston in the summer = sweaty. We stayed at the Town & Country Inn and Suites. It was about a 15 minute drive from downtown. I was presently surprised by how nice the rooms were. Another good reminder to never judge a book by it's cover. *There are so many perfect inns to stay at in downtown, but unfortunately for us most inns require a minimum night stay of at least two and are a little more on the pricey side.
If you can, make a reservation and request to sit outside. I was good on the reservation part, but failed on the outside. The inside though was still beautifully decorated. We started with Mac & Cheese. Honestly, we could have ended with the Mac & Cheese too. It was that insanely good. Vince decided on shellfish and grits as his main meal, while I enjoyed something off the specials menu. For the life of me I can't remember what I got, but again, nothing but goodness. We ended the night with a strawberry shortcake biscuit. It wasn't as sweet as your typical shortcake, but I still enjoyed it.
Check out of the hotel
A short but pleasant stay.
We made brunch reservations at Husk. Another highly recommended Charleston foodie joint. I made the mistake of not requesting to sit outside again, but fortunately for me I'm dating someone who isn't irrationally terrified at the thought of making someone's day a little harder. Our waiter had to double check, but after a few minutes he came back and seated us outside. Husk does not have a set brunch menu, which I found kind of special. We started the meal with an order of pimento cheese “fritters,” with crispy country ham, and pickled peppers mayo. An A+. For my main meal I ordered wood fired pancakes, with plum syrup, whipped sorghum butter, and honey. Very tasty and huge. And predictable Vince enjoyed an order of shrimp and grits. *If it had been later in the afternoon I would have for sure tried the burger. I've read nothing but good things about it.
Because we had the time we decided to walk to the Battery, and I am so glad we did. So many charming drool worthy houses a long the way. The Battery itself is just insane, in a good way of course. Those house are some kind of ginormous.
Angel Oak Park
About a 20 minute drive from downtown, but in my opinion worth it. On Sunday's it doesn't open until 1. We arrived about 1:30 and it was already crowded. The tree itself is incredible.
It was about that time again where we felt the urge to stuff our faces. We decided to go to our trusty friend Yelp this time, and like usual, Yelp did not disappoint. Boxcar Betty's is quick, but delicious. Based on how fast Vince ate everything, I'm pretty certain this was his favorite meal.
After lunch we waddled to the car for our last stop. Cypress Gardens is about a 30 minute drive, but again 100% worth it. It's hard to say what my favorite part of Charleston was, but this was for sure at the top of that list. Honestly no picture will do it justice, so my recommendation: just go! This was the only activity that cost us money. With a military discount it was $18 for the both of us. That allowed us to stroll the gardens and take a boat out. A little tip: Get there before 4 if you want to take a boat out. We were kicked out of the gardens at 5pm and from there headed home.
And that my friends is how you do Charleston in less than 48 hours.
I asked on Instagram, but I'll go ahead and ask here too: I am looking at investing in a new camera. Something high quality, that travels nicely. If you have any recommendations or tips, I am all ears!