A complete guide to Charleston
Let’s begin with some of the top restaurants you should visit when in Charleston, followed by popular activities and hotel options.
Food is one of the greatest draws in Charleston. Some of the best restaurants in the country are here. Some of our favorite restaurants are:
1) High Cotton
High Cotton is unbelievably good. They have nightly specials … my favorite is the prime rib special, which also comes with a delicious squash casserole.
Anson’s … wow. Order a filet mignon at this restaurant and you’ll wish that you could lick your plate in public.
If you want really creative Southern fare, go to Magnolia’s. They have great Southern takes on traditional dishes … For example, “Fried Chicken Cordon Bleu” or “Banana Budding Napoleon.” A must-try is their pimento cheese dip appetizer.
Other Popular Spots
As for some of the other popular restaurants in Charleston … Hymen’s is ok, but it’s mostly a tourist attraction. I personally love fried fish, but you can get good fried shrimp throughout the Carolinas, so this place is mostly only interesting because of all the famous people who have eaten there.
The Peninsula Grill is excellent and world-class, but it’s a little too swanky for my tastes.
Two popular restaurants I think are decent but overrated are S.N.O.B. and 82 Queen.
Stop Here if You Have Time
If you have time, also try to make it to Hank’s (great crab cakes!) and Bocci’s (delicious Italian)
If you ever visit for a charleston vacation, you will see that restaurants in charleston are some of the best and most delicious in the united states
I’ve stayed in some of the historic inns, and they are very beautiful and quaint. However, many of them have a musty feel due to the nature of Charleston and the nature of old buildings. Hand’s down the BEST place to stay in Charleston is the HarbourView Inn.
The HarbourView Inn isn’t historic, and it’s a little pricy (though not much more than any place else in the city … and certainly lower than a few), but it is in THE best location. Beautiful view of the river. Very close to anywhere you want to go downtown, but unlike most of the inns that are on Meeting Street or right on top of the Market, it isn’t in such a busy or noisy area. I love this inn. The location, the service, the views, the amenities … I could go on. Also they serve wine and cheese every afternoon, and milk and cookies every night. I would live there if I could. It’s also beautifully designed and overlooks the riverfront park.
These and several other great options for hotels in charleston are more reasons why a vacation to charleston are so popular
Charleston contains an unbelievable amount of history … history significant to our country’s formation. There is no shortage of historic tours. I do the carriage tour almost every time I’m there. It’s always a pleasant excursion, and I learn some new, fun fact every time. The walking tours are awesome too! You can get very specific about the kind you want to do: pirates, civil war, ghosts. If you do the ghost tour, do one at night. It’s very fun and a little spooky!
The Aquarium in Charleston is very popular. It’s great for kids and is better than most Aquariums I’ve been to, but beyond that it’s not a huge draw for me.
The Market is another big attraction, and I do go through it at least once each time I’m in Charleston. But it’s not the end-all-be-all. Definitely go through it, but don’t make it the centerpiece of your visit. You might find a few neat items, but it’s basically a flea market.
As far as shopping goes, you have to spend some time on King Street. It’s filled with unique stores and antique shops.
Don’t forget to spend some time just wandering around in downtown Charleston. It is so beautiful. The architecture, the palmettos, the waterfront battery … It’s all like something straight out of a movie. Some of the graveyards are interesting to walk through as well. You’ll find that many famous people from history are buried behind some of those churches … including some signers of the Declaration of Independence!
Don’t forget that there are many surrounding beaches and plantations in the Charleston area. Many of these are great to visit. However I hate leaving the downtown district for any reason once I’m down there!
Almost anywhere you go or anything you do in Charleston is going to be fun and memorable. It’s a beautiful, charming city. The people there are incredibly nice and helpful. The food is the best anywhere, and the scenery and architecture are stunning. It is also steeped in history and legend. Have fun!