Oh man, even today, I am still wishing I was back in Charleston—there's so much that we didn't get to see or eat or do, and I'm totally making a mental list for my next trip. In the meantime, here are three little travel tips (in lieu of my usual three Friday links) if you're planning a trip to Charleston yourself—and by the way, if you are, I'm totally jealous.
Plan your itinerary carefully. Next time we go back, we're making time to spend at least a few hours at one of the local plantations—Magnolia, Drayton Hall or Boone, for sure. We didn't have time this trip and I really wish we did. There's also a tea plantation (!) on Wadmalaw Island, just outside of Charleston, and I'm dying to go there, though I did pick up a box of its Charleston-made breakfast tea at a local gourmet store. I'd also like to hit some antiques shops; we didn't do that and I feel like there's probably a lot to be found.
Make restaurant reservations well in advance. I made our Thursday-night Husk reservations two (maybe even three) weeks in advance and I'm glad I did: There's no way we would have gotten in otherwise, or at least not until late at night. I couldn't get us into FIG, Chef Mike Lata's much-applauded restaurant, on Friday a week out, and Fulton Five, an Italian restaurant across the street from our hotel, couldn't seat us until 9:30 without a reservation, which would have been fine if we weren't starving. We ended up getting into another nearby restaurant without a reservation (although at first we weren't sure if we'd be able to), but I have to say that, compared to our other meals, it was by far my least favorite. So my advice: Pick where you want to go in advance (Charleston magazine is helpful for this, as is Olivia's blog and, of course, good old Google), and then make OpenTable your best friend or just call.
Walk everywhere. Seriously, it's worth it. Walk down Meeting Street to the Battery and gaze at the amazingly beautiful houses—seriously, they're jaw-droppingly gorgeous and impeccably maintained—and the stunning water view. Walk up and down King Street and shop. Walk through Charleston City Market, which bustles every day. Walk down little side streets, where you're sure to find tons of gems—I wish we'd done more of that. Walk to the Charleston Museum, or to the Old Slave Mart museum (and enjoy the feel of the centuries-old cobblestones beneath your shoes). Your feet might hurt at the end of the day, but you'll feel good.
Have a great weekend, friends! xoxo
P.S. We're thinking New Orleans for our next trip!
P.P.S. There're more Charleston photos on the Pink O'Clock Facebook page, too! Click here to see.
Photo: My own.