The Perfect Weekend Getaway in Charleston SC

After visiting Charleston, SC twice for a weekend getaway, it’s safe to say it’s my new U.S. favorite. If you haven’t visited this charming city, I’m positive you’ll fall for it too. Charleston is one of the most “European cities” this side of the Atlantic. Plus, it has great weather year-round!

The neighborhoods have bold and inspiring homes, window boxes, cobblestone streets, and all the greenery you can imagine.

Not only is the town beautiful, but they also have some of the best food we’ve ever had.

We tried a lobster roll and a coconut cake that will definitely have us driving back to Charleston one day.

Where to Stay in Charleston, SC

I loved our stay at the King Charles Inn located in the historic district. Our second visit was in January and the weather was around 60ºF. At the same time, Chicago’s high was only 1ºF. Needless to say, I was in the mood for a fireplace.

source: kingcharlesinn.com

King Charles has a cozy lobby with a fireplace you can lounge by while enjoying a cocktail from their bar. They also offer complimentary parking with your stay which is rare to find in downtown Charleston. Since the hotel is within walking distance to many areas, we never had to move the car.

Check availability here: King Charles Inn

source: kingcharlesinn.com

Things to do in Charleston, SC

The downtown/historic area is easily walkable (or driveable). So, if you only have a weekend you can still cover a lot of ground. We’ve explored the city on our own, but I will also list some cool tours if you prefer a guide.

WALK THE HISTORIC DISTRICT- This is an outline of the route we followed. We walked those main points and lots of streets in between.

To find some of the prettiest spots head over to the French Quarter and walk toward Broad Street.

South of Broad has so many beautiful streets including the famous Rainbow Row, which cannot be missed if you’re in Charleston.

Here’s the ever so famous Pink House in Charleston. You’ll find it on Chalmers Street between Church and State.

Why You'll Fall in Love With Charleston | This Darling World

The even more famous Rainbow Row will be on E Bay Street between Tradd and Elliott.

You’ll find Philadelphia Alley nestled between Queen Street and Cumberland Street.

Why You'll Fall in Love With Charleston | This Darling World

Don’t miss the Pineapple Fountain located in the peaceful Waterfront Park.

If you’d rather a guided tour, this 2-hour walking tour with a city expert will take you all over Charleston’s Historic District: check availability here.

SHOP ON KING STREET- Their main shopping area located all down King Street is one of the prettiest I’ve ever seen, and it goes on for several miles.

BROWSE THE HISTORIC CITY MARKET- It’s one of the nation’s oldest markets located in the historic area. There you’ll find hundreds of vendors selling unique and sometimes handmade products. In addition, you’ll also see food stalls including Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit!

source: thecharlestoncitymarket.com

VISIT THE ANGEL OAK TREE- The legendary Angel Oak Tree is located on John’s Island, a 30-minute drive from Charleston. It’s hundreds of years old, 66 feet tall, and its longest branch is 187 feet.

Why You'll Fall in Love With Charleston | This Darling World

CHECK OUT CHARLESTON’S BEACH TOWNS- If you’re a beach-goer then you’ll love Charleston during the warmer seasons. Charleston has 5 beautiful beach towns offering a different scene for visitors. The towns are as follows:

  • Kiawah Island
  • Folly Beach
  • Isle of Palms
  • Sullivan’s Island
  • Seabrook Island

source: charlestoncvb.com

FUN TOURS TO CONSIDER- Cruise along the Charleston harbor as you learn the history of the city. You’ll hit 75 landmarks in this 20-mile trip. The tour is 90 minutes long: click here for the latest prices.

Similar to Savannah and New Orleans, there’s a lot of “documented hauntings” in Charleston. If you’re a fan of the ghosts, check out this cool 90-minute walking tour: click here to book.

Places to Eat in Charleston, SC

Second State Coffee– Jorge loves this cafe. He drops in anytime we’re in Charleston.

Sassyass Coffee– You’ll find them somewhere along the Charleston streets. Follow their social media pages to see where they’re going to set up for the day. They’re normally close to the historic district. Great coffee from an outdoor cart. They come with great reviews!

Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit– It’s our go-to breakfast when we’re in the south. Delicious biscuit sandwiches made to order.

Peninsula Grill– We decided to splurge on Peninsula Grill’s famous coconut cake. We only ordered one slice to go and that thing set us back $13, but it was the best slice we’ve ever had. It’s a hefty portion and it’s plenty for two. It’s been in tons of magazines and reviewed highly by many. We went back for seconds when we were in Charleston again.

Why You'll Fall in Love With Charleston | This Darling Worldsource: argusguide.com

167 Raw– BEST. LOBSTER ROLL. EVER. We’ve tried them in Chicago, Boston, and now Charleston and cannot deny that Raw is winning the game.

Smoke BBQ– Delicious BBQ in the middle of Charleston. Very comparable to our great spots in Chicago! Go for the combination platter to try a little bit of everything.

Pearlz Oyster Bar– Charleston is right by the ocean so we couldn’t leave without trying their seafood. I had salmon and Jorge had a lobster roll with a side of oysters. We both enjoyed our meals and loved that they offered a happy hour.

Cane Rhum Bar– This bar was amazing! We had a whole nook to ourselves and loved the service, atmosphere, and especially the drinks. It’s a rum-based bar and they also serve Caribbean-inspired dishes. My favorite cocktail was the piña colada old fashioned!

If you’re into food tours, this guided small group tour is 2.5 hours long. They’ll take you to various Charleston hot spots while sharing more on the city’s history: check availability here.

Why You'll Fall in Love With Charleston | This Darling World

As you can see, Charleston is filled with Southern charm and incredible food. It’s worth a visit and usually leaves people wanting more. I know I’ll be heading down for a third time sooner or later.

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16 Comments

  • Reply julieovaltrades September 17, 2016 at 9:18 pm

    Yes isn’t Charleston the best? Just went there this spring, so upset I missed out on that coconut cake!! Next time.

    • Reply this darling world September 18, 2016 at 2:40 pm

      Yes! I loved it so much! And the coconut cake is just another reason to go back. 😉

  • Reply Sarah September 22, 2016 at 8:16 pm

    You did an amazing job covering a lot of the city in 2 days! I have yet to try the coconut cake from Peninsula Grille but it has officially been added to my list. If you are ever in Charleston on a Friday, go to Callie’s in the morning! On Fridays they get fried chicken from Rarebit {where some of the best fried chicken and waffles are served} and they create the best breakfast sandy ever!

    If you do get back to Charleston, don’t hesitate to reach out for suggestions! I’m so glad you feel in love with Charleston 🙂

    Best,
    Sarah

    • Reply this darling world September 23, 2016 at 1:45 am

      Thanks so much, Sarah!! And yes it’s a must try at Peninsula, but honestly I’d love to try coconut cake all over Charleston because I’m sure it’s👌🏼. Next time! And thanks for the Callie’s tip that sound so good!😋

  • Reply Silvia Mourelle October 5, 2016 at 8:40 am

    Hello, What an interesting blog you have! 🙂 I m from Buenos Aires, Argentina. I ll be visiting the South East for the first time next February and I ve noticed you’ ve taken many pictures of private houses. I ve been road-tripping USA for a long while and sometimes, specially in small towns and inner cities along the east coast, MA, CT, RI, I was kindly rebuked for doing so, unless it was an historical house. Police told me that owners don t like tourist taking pictures of their homes, and I get it. I don t allow people take pictures of mine, here. Is that allowed in Savannah, Charleston, etc? you did that without asking?Thank you!

    • Reply this darling world October 5, 2016 at 12:23 pm

      That’s a valid question, but honestly I’ve never ever heard of that. And, I’ve lived in the USA my entire life. Even when I travel abroad and get pictures of colorful homes or whatnot, I have no issues.

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  • Reply Annie March 23, 2017 at 10:05 am

    I’m surprised you didn’t try The Darling Oyster Bar! 🙂

    • Reply this darling world March 25, 2017 at 2:29 am

      Haha!! that would have been a perfect stop! Next time for sure. I’ll definitely be in Charleston again.

  • Reply a_estrada July 6, 2017 at 5:25 pm

    Hi!

    I know your blog and IG through my friend Josselly Peterson who recommended me to your beautiful photos! Been a follower of yours for a couple of years almost!

    Each year for our anniversary my husband and I travel to someplace we’ve never been in the US. We’ve done Boston, Clearwater, Nashville, Austin, Galena, and several other places. We did Costa Rica for our honeymoon and last year we did Vermont and the Berkshires in Massachusetts. This year he’s been settled on Charleston. I wasn’t too convinced yet until Josselly told me to check out the blog because you had also been there. Gorgeous photos and recommendations. Quite affordable to fly there, too! Thanks for this post!

    • Reply This Darling World July 6, 2017 at 8:40 pm

      Aw that means a lot! Thanks so much for following along on the adventures, and I’m glad this post helped give you some insight on how beautiful Charleston is! I really, really loved this city and cannot wait to go back. The architecture is very Europeanish and the food did not disappoint. Also, if you’re able to rent a car I recommend driving over to Savannah, GA (https://thisdarlingworld.com/savannah-through-my-lens/) as well! Totally different feel, but equally beautiful and only a 2 hour drive from Charleston!

    • Reply This Darling World July 6, 2017 at 8:41 pm

      By the way, love that you travel somewhere every year to celebrate that milestone! That’s such an awesome way to celebrate, we try to do the same as well. 🙂

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  • Reply Kelsey April 20, 2019 at 12:04 pm

    This is definitely making me want to visit Charleston! Thanks for sharing 🙂
    – Kelsey throughkelseyslens.com

  • Reply Amanda | Toddling Traveler April 20, 2019 at 12:11 pm

    Love Charleston! 167 Raw is my FAVORITE for lobster rolls too. You’re making me want to go back!

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