Friday, June 18, 2010

The Charm of Charleston: What to See and Do

We've already talked about annual events and festivals, but- truth-be-told - Charleston has a lot to offer, regardless of when you decide to visit. There is the ever-enchanting aquarium, as well as tons of shopping, museums, state-of-the-art golfing, theaters and historic landmarks. Where else can you explore South Carolina's only distillery and see where the Civil War began?
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We've come up with three of our absolute favorite things to do: Getting lost in some of Charleston's gorgeous gardens, bronzing by the beach and taking a carriage ride down Charleston's cobblestone streets.

Gardens














We love the plantations and gardens in Charleston. Middleton Place is simply breathtaking. It's where you'll find America's oldest landscaped gardens and you can even stay right on the premises at the renowned Inn at Middleton Place. Down the road at Magnolia Plantation, we watched Jessica and Todd tie the knot just last month. With the gardens, a boat tour, a petting zoo and a nature train ride- this is the perfect place for adults and children alike. Boone Hall Plantation, home to the world's largest oyster roast, boasts that it's "America's most photographed plantation" and it always has something fun going on. Check out the Beach Blast on Saturday, June 26. Other great plantation homes and gardens to visit include Drayton Hall, Cypress Gardens and the Charles Pinckney plantation.
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Beaches
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You definitely can't come to Charleston without a visit to the beach. Folly beach, Sullivan's Island and Isle of Palms are all located within minutes of downtown Charleston. Folly beach- known for it's young, hip vibe- is home to Morris Island Lighthouse and is a great place for surfing. Both Sullivan's Island and Isle of Palms are laid-back and perfect for family fun. Seabrook and Kiawah are also great vacation spots, offering luxurious resorts with a plethora of relaxing amenities. If you see a beach wedding in your future, you'll definitely want to consider the Charleston area!
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Carriage Rides
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Taking a carriage ride is an absolute must when you're visiting Charleston. It's the best way to see sites and learn some fun facts that will surely impress your friends. You'll find a slew of carriages waiting up and down Market Street to take you on a majestic tour of the Holy City. There are also walking tours and ghost tours, but why walk when you can ride? Some carriage companies offer private rides and we happen to think that they are one of the most romantic ways for a couple to leave their reception!
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No matter the time of year, there is always something fabulous to do in Charleston. Check out the Charleston Area Convention and Visitor Bureau for more ideas on how to spend your time in the city!

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