October 05, 2017

Weekend in Charleston

Spending my 20th birthday in Charleston was a dream! I have always wanted to take a trip to Charleston to experience their Southern Charm. What a blast this trip was! The architecture, the food and the atmosphere was incredible. Here's a recap of my adventure...

Where We Stayed
We stayed at the beautiful French Quarter Inn. It was the perfect place to spend a classy getaway. We stayed in a Traditional Queen Room that had two queen beds and a luxurious marble bathroom. Every room came with a seven pillow menu and a pillow concierge button on the telephone! Pillows range from Swedish massage to Snore-No-More! How incredible is that?! Every night we got in after a day of exploring we were greeted with Charleston treats and water in our room. It was a sweet little treat to end the day! I plan on staying at the French Quarter Inn when I visit again. It was conveniently located and was such a delight.


What We Did
My family and I scheduled a two hour walking tour around Charleston with Michael from Charleston Footprints. This tour was an easy way to see the city. We walked through the cobblestone streets, heard all the stories about Historic Charleston and viewed the beautiful architecture. We visited the French Quarter, South of Broad, Rainbow Row and The Battery. We saw colonial churches and graveyards, historic parks, classic architectural, gardens, etc. Our tour guide, Michael, is from Charleston and did an excellent job our showing us around his home. This tour is a must if you want to see the city in such a short time! 


One of Charleston's famous landmarks, Waterfront Park, was a must on my to-do list. We took our pictures with the famous Pineapple Fountain and had a blast. The Waterfront Park is along the Cooper River. Kids were playing in the fountain and local musicians were playing. There is also a walk way canopy of oak trees with many benches. This is a relaxing spot to hang out at! 


Of course we couldn't leave Charleston without visiting King Street. It is one of the top streets in America. It has antiques, shops, restaurants, lodging, art galleries, book stores, etc. We went to King Street on my birthday to do some shopping. My favorite stop was The Skinny Dip: Charleston Edition. The eclectic shop is a preppy dream. Not only does it have the cutest things to shop but it also has a rooftop bar. They are famous for their frosé (frozen rosé!) Upstairs was decorated beautifully. The upstairs deck had a porch swing, floral picture wall, palm-print pillows and boho decor. Bring your girls! It's a blast. 


College of Charleston is named America's Most Beautiful College Campus. If I traveled out of state for college, this would be my #1 pick. It is breathtaking! Even if your college years are over, it is worth the stroll. The oak trees, architecture of the building and overall Southern Charm atmosphere makes this spot one to see.


The Charleston City Market was located right behind our hotel. It was a great way to meet the locals and shop for souvenirs. Sweetgrass baskets are the most popular souvenirs in Charleston. They are pricey but they are an incredible Charleston treasure. My mom purchased one for our dining table. There are more than 300 booths to shop from in the market. The market is covered so this is a great thing to do if it rains. There is something to see, do, taste and buy at the market!

What We Ate
Oh boy...you better pack stretchy clothes if you are headed to Charleston! Trying to fit all of Charleston's "must-eats" in one weekend was a fun but painful one. This city has endless options but I will list a few of our favorites. The number one place I wanted to eat was Callie's Hot Little Biscuit. I am a sucker for biscuits so of course I had to stop by! We ended up visiting the location inside of Charleston City Market on our last day. We picked up a baker's dozen for the ride home. The country ham was my favorite!


For my birthday dinner, we ate at 82 Queen. This unique spot did not disappoint with their cuisine and hospitality. If it is not too hot, I recommend sitting outside. The scenery is beautiful. You have to walk down a tight cobblestone walkway to get to the restaurant. The courtyard is very elegant...perfect for date night. I had the Carolina Crab Cakes that came with Charleston Red Rice. This was my favorite meal of the entire trip. Yum, yum, yum! When I return, I will be stopping here!


Magnolia's is another must-eat place for Charleston. They are known for their traditional Southern cooking. For dinner, I ordered a typical Southern entree. I ate Buttermilk Fried Chicken Breast with mashed potatoes, collard greens, corn and a biscuit with sausage-herb gravy. I split this entree with my mother and I still couldn't finish it. However, it was amazing!


Other restaurants we ate at were Eli's Table, Brown Dog Deli, Cru Cafe, Jeni's Ice Cream, Glazed Gourmet Doughnuts, Peace Pie and the complimentary breakfast served at French Quarter Inn! You can't go wrong with any of these places! They were all incredible. 

Charleston is a beautiful city with thousands of things to see, do and eat! I posted some more pictures on my Instagram so make sure to check those out. If you ever head to Charleston, let me know! I'd love to see pictures and hear what you did. I already want to head back. Thanks for reading!

XO,
Hannah Claire

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