A long weekend in Charleston, SC is an easy drive from Hampton Roads. As a Charleston native I make the trip to my beautiful hometown every chance I get. In a city packed with so much history, fabulous shopping and world-class dining there is a lot to contemplate when deciding what to do with only a few days. Every visit I find new gems to love and always make time for a few of my old favorites.
Stepping onto the cobble stone streets lined with pastel buildings and palmetto trees automatically takes me to a happy place. Southern hospitality seems to float in the air. There is so much to see and do. The city is filled with antique shops, museums, art galleries, beautiful churches, lovely parks, water views and fabulous shopping. I love great shopping and Charleston has it all, from meticulously crafted sweetgrass baskets sold in The Market to luxury shopping on King Street and everything in between. Charleston is the perfect mix of the traditional south with a splash of modern style. My favorite way to see it all is by walking. A stroll through Water Front Park or along The Battery is the perfect way to get lost in the charm of the city. Around every corner you will see something new and shiny to explore or something perfectly kept and old to admire.
Finding the perfect place to stay is an essential part of enjoying the city. A hotel that allows you to experience the historic district by foot is ideal and Charleston offers a host of choices for every budget in walking distance to the cities top attractions. There are the usual chains, plenty of quaint boutique hotels plus lovely little Bed and Breakfast options. The pristine pink Mills House is my home for this weekend and it’s exactly what you envision in your dreams of a southern mansion where Belles and Gentlemen linger over sweet tea and benne wafers. This place looks and feels like the glorious south. I’ve enjoyed stays at several hotels in the city and I am always pleased with the options. With so many fantastic accommodation choices in the heart of downtown, there is something for everyone all just steps away from everything including the best dining in the south.
If “Virginia Is For Lovers” then Charleston is for food lovers. Low Country cuisine is a huge part of the culture, so I’ll consider my feasting this weekend “a part of the experience”. It’s Hank’s Seafood for dinner and a new favorite, Leon’s Fine Poultry and Oyster Shop for lunch. I actually want to try everything on these menus. Living in Hampton Roads we are spoiled with lots of great seafood and these restaurants are incredible. I’m convinced that I could be satisfied with seafood for every meal, but what’s vacation without a nice steak and an indulgent brunch? Hall’s Chop House and Husk are the perfect choices. The Hall’s dinner started with the Bacon Steak appetizer and ended with a flambéed bananas foster topped caramel cake. Need I say more? I could actually go on and on but I’ll spare you and instead move on to torturing you with photos from my amazing brunch at Husk because words can’t describe how wonderful it was.
The only bad thing about this terrific weekend escape is leaving so quickly. Luckily, for me I have a slice of the Peninsula Grill’s magnificent coconut cake to keep me delightfully immersed in the moment while I blog through snow flurries on my ride home.