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Charleston: Downtown Historic Area

Updated: Aug 1, 2019


Charleston has been named the #1 destination to travel to in the U.S. according to Travel + Leisure readers'. This gorgeous city is defined by its cobblestone streets, colorful antebellum houses, horse carriage rides, French Quarter and Battery District areas.

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Stay at the Francis Marion Hotel located Downtown on Historic Marion Square and by the magnificent gardens, house museums, antique shops, local boutiques and a block from all of the restaurants and nightlife on Upper King Street. The hotel rises 12 stories high, has 235 guestrooms, a complete day spa at Spa Adagio, fitness center, and offers classic southern cuisine in the Swamp Fox Restaurant & Bar.

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The Francis Marion - 387 King St, Charleston, SC 29403

Go to Charleston City Market where you can find souvenir shops, jewelry, Gulltah sweetgrass baskets and Callie's Hot Little Biscuits, well-known for their flaky and buttery biscuits and also featured on the Cooking Channel's popular series, Best Thing I Ever Ate.

Charleston City Market - 188 Meeting Street, Charleston, SC 29401

Walk by Waterfront Park, where you have a beautiful view of the ocean and see Pineapple Fountain, which is the focal point of the park. Pineapple motifs are popular in Charleston and represent hospitality.

Waterfront Park - 1 Vendue Range, Charleston, SC 2940

Continue down the waterfront to White Point Garden, one of Charleston's most beautiful spots featuring mansions, cannons, cannon balls, oak trees, and palmettos.

White Point Garden - 2 Murray Blvd, Charleston, SC 29401

Then head back up E. Bay Street and see Rainbow Row, which is a block of 13 colorful historic houses in Charleston, representing the longest cluster of Georgian row houses in the U.S.

Rainbow Row - 83 E Bay St, Charleston, SC 29401

See the "Pink House", which is one of the oldest buildings and is the second oldest residence in Charleston.

Pink House - 17 Chalmers Street, Charleston, SC 29401

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Dining options are abundant in Charleston and the food scene is incredible. A couple of notable spots to check out are Butcher & Bee and McCrady's Tavern. Butcher & Bee supports the local farmers and uses sustainable ingredients. It's a bit north from Downtown Charleston, but is worth the short ride. When coming, I suggest getting the bacon wrapped dates that's topped with parmesan, whipped feta with fermented honey, and crispy stuffed olives with anchovy, lemon, pesto and parmesan.

Butcher & Bee - 1085 Morrison Dr, Charleston, SC 29403

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McCrady's Tavern is an intimate, brick walled restaurant, serving locally sourced American food, located in a side alley off E. Bay Street. I recommend you trying the escargot-stuffed bone marrow. They do a good job at balancing the flavors by using ingredients such as parsley, onion and lemon, so that it's not as heavy as your typical bone marrow dish. Another must get dish is the rib eye steak. It's marinated in a shio kombu, making it incredible tender and flavorful.

McCrady'sTavern - 2 Unity Alley, Charleston, SC 29401

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With the endless attractions and places to eat, it's no wonder that Charleston has been voted again as Travel + Leisure readers' favorite city in the US.

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