About a month ago, I had the pleasure of traveling to Charleston, South Carolina. This city, founded in 1670, welcomes its guest with its gorgeous trees, cobblestone streets, pastel antebellum houses, and old fashioned Southern cooking. I was not too sure what to expect of this southern city, but it turned out to be totally charming and the perfect place for a girls trip. If you are planning a birthday weekend, bachelorette party, or any other celebratory event, I would consider celebrating in Charleston. The delicious food, gorgeous sights, and Southern hospitality will make your trip one to remember.
The Mills House Wyndham Grand Hotel
One of the most important aspects of a vacation is choosing the perfect place to recharge and rest your head at night. On my trip to Charleston, my friends and I stayed at The Mills House Wyndham Grand Hotel. This bright pink building is nestled in the bustling streets of Charleston, and is central to all the must see sights. The bubble gum pink aesthetic is perfect for posing in front of, and its many features that include an on site pool, restaurant, and a charming courtyard, are just some of the amenities that make this hotel a great choice. In true Charleston fashion, there are talks that this hotel is haunted due to a fire that occurred…
The Rise Coffee Bar
The Rise Coffee Bar is a Charleston gem. It is located on Wentworth Street at the Restoration Hotel and has some of the best coffee I have ever had. Both times I went, I ordered an iced vanilla almond latte with almond milk and it was amazing. If I lived in Charleston, this spot would definitely be my go-to. Not only is the coffee great, but it also has a very fresh, fun vibe. The space is airy and bright with a patio area worthy of an Instagram post. Inside the coffee shop is a door labeled “The Restoration,” which leads to a sitting room in the hotel. Inside is a stunning study with a marble fireplace and couches filled with college students studying or friends chatting.
I stopped into Hero Doughnuts on a whim, 2 minutes before they were closing, and I am so happy I did. The sugar doughnut I got from here was most definitely one of the best that I have ever had. It was soft, moist, and perfectly flavored. They had an assortment of flavors ranging from old fashioned to fruity pebbles. If you have a sweet tooth, you will love these fluffy treats. My sister got a sweet and spicy doughnut, that sounded sort of strange but actually ended up being surprisingly very good.
The first place I ate at when I got to Charleston was 82 Queen, which is fittingly located on 82 Queen Street. This is restaurant is described as “a swanky bar & intimate courtyard [that] helps make this refined Southern spot a special occasion favorite.” This restaurant had a trendy, yet homey vibe. We ate upstairs and it felt like we were eating in the upstairs sitting room in an old, mansion. Next to us, charming fireplace had a light glow and waiters greeted the guests with warm southern hospitality.
For a cocktail I ordered the berry mojito, which consisted of bacardi rum, mint, fresh lime juice, berry purée, and soda. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the drinks in Charleston are not New York City prices, and I was able to enjoy this for just $10! For my meal I ordered the barbecue shrimp and grits. This was my first time having grits and it was amazing! At first, I wasn’t sure how I would enjoy this southern classic, but I ended up really enjoying it.
Bourbon N’ Bubbles
This restaurant is definitely a Charleston hot spot. This luxurious restaurant offers a dim lit, sensual vibe and delicious eats. They also have an impressive cocktail menu that did not disappoint. I was not super impressed by the food, but I did love the atmosphere and would go back to get dressed up and have drinks.
This iconic site dates back to around 1740 and it located along the west side of East Bay Street, between Tradd Street and Elliot Street. The name pretty much sums up what you will find here: 14 houses that are painted in the colors of the rainbow and fittingly named Rainbow Row. These houses are stunning and historic, and a close walk to the Waterfront Park. This is a fun place to walk and take photos.
My last dinner at Charleston took place at Husk, and it was a great way to end the trip. Located instead a Victorian styled home, Husk offers locally-sourced Southern dishes. Although Husk was the last place I visited, it was the first one that caught my eye. Being located on the street adjacent to my hotel, Husk had an energy that instantly caught my eye. This traditional Southern styled home was is lit up and looks so inviting. Executive Chef, Travis Grimes, does a fantastic job using locally sourced ingredients and flavors to create cuisine that is the perfect mix of upscale dishes and Southern comfort food.
Overall, Charleston did not disappoint. The city is both charming and romantic, making it the perfect place to getaway. Whether you are going away as a couple, group of friends, or a family, there is definitely something in this city for you.
Have you ever visited Charleston? Comment below what your experience was like and where your go-to spots are.
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