We decided about a year ago that we wanted to take an anniversary trip since this year marked five years of marriage! We decided between international, tropical, local (we live in the coolest area and never take advantage of it), or elsewhere. We ended up picking Charleston, South Carolina – not international, kind of tropical (hello palm trees!), and not local, yet close enough to pretty easily drive there. We also chose this location because neither of us had ever been!
We left early Friday morning in order to get there by early afternoon and have most of the day still, then we stayed all day and night Saturday, and left midday on Sunday. I definitely think it was a good amount of time to explore the city. If we had stayed any longer, our adventures would have definitely taken us elsewhere outside of the city, but that wasn’t something we were interested in this time around.
Upon arriving in town on Friday we went directly to lunch at Hominy Grill. I had a fried green tomato BLT and it was one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever eaten. John’s had a po boy that he said was yummy too, and we shared a dessert of chocolate pudding.
From there we went to check in at our hotel and then hung out for a little bit since it had started to rain. I was stubborn and told John I wanted to go explore the city, rain or not. I did not come all the way to sit in the hotel! He agreed and by the time we got outside, the rain had stopped. We walked down King Street all the way to the Charleston City Market. We walked through the market to peruse and see all that it had to offer. (We planned on coming back the following day to actually shop).
From the Charleston City Market we went down to the harbor. It was so beautiful! I could have spent all day just there. Fleet, a restaurant we were recommended, was right there so we stopped in. We still weren’t hungry after eating such a huge lunch so we grabbed a drink. We had the coolest seat in the house which was a bar right at the water. We literally watched dolphins swimming and playing while enjoying our drinks.
From there we walked through Waterfront Park and came around and then down Rainbow Row. If you’re not familiar with Rainbow Row it is a row of colorful Georgian homes. I was told it is one of the most photographed areas in all of Charleston. From there we went to Broad Street and stopped every few minutes to read yet another historical sign. Broad Street was one of my favorites and the history there was so much more in depth and amazing than I imagined.
By this point we were hungry, thirsty, and quite sweaty. We wanted to stop for dinner, but it was still a bit early and we needed to freshen up. We decided a quick stop at a restaurant/bar would be good so then we could each get a drink, split an appetizer, and then head back to the hotel to get ready for dinner and a night out. We stopped at Republic and grabbed drinks and spring rolls. It was a fun, outdoor space and we were lucky enough to catch some live music while we were there.
From there we headed directly for our hotel where we showered and ended up (not planned!) taking naps. I guess the heat, miles of walking, and day of travel had finally gotten to us. When we finally left the hotel it was close to 10:00 pm. We randomly stopped at a place called HoM since it was close by and we knew we may be flirting with not getting dinner at all. HoM ended up being super fun and laid back, a place where apparently, a lot of locals hang out. I ordered a flatbread and John ordered a burger and they were both great! We hung out a bit there and went back to the hotel to get some sleep for a full day on Saturday!
We started off Saturday with a stop at Poogan’s Porch for brunch. Poogan’s Porch is a beautiful Victorian style home and we actually ended up getting a table on the upstairs balcony. We enjoyed the views and ate our weight in some awesome eats and then headed back towards Waterfront Park to find out info for the harbor water taxi.
We were thirty minutes early so we decided to check out a rooftop bar that had been recommended to us called Vendue Rooftop. (Right about now you’re probably wondering if all we did was eat and drink while we were there and the answer is “yes!”) We each ordered a refreshing mixed drink and hung out in the shade.
With just enough time to spare we headed back to the harbor to catch the water taxi. The water taxi was a bit late, but once it arrived we took it to Patriots Point. We got a closer look at three museum ships, the U.S.S. Yorktown aircraft carrier), U.S.S. Laffey (destroyer), U.S.S. Clamagore (submarine). We then walked through the marina to the Fishhouse Marine Store and the marina resort. From there we boarded the water taxi again and headed back to Waterfront Park (where we’d originally boarded).
Back on land, we headed back to the Charleston City Market to actually do some shopping (we got a gift to commemorate our trip) and then walked down King Street to do some window shopping! We headed directly to our hotel though because we needed to freshen up for dinner reservations we had that night at Bay Street Biergarten (review coming soon! Update: restaurant review here)
Bay Street Biergarten was amazing and definitely one of our favorite restaurants from the entire trip! We really stuffed our faces there. After leaving we decided we were going to have a good ol’ night out and the bar hopping began!
We started at John King’s and stayed much longer than we’d planned. Not only were there a torrential downpour that started right when we were about the leave, but we were also having a blast. When the rain subsided we headed for Star’s Rooftop. It was a fun place, but I was just totally spent! We were going to hang ’til last call, but this mama was tired! We headed back to the hotel and got our last uninterrupted night of sleep!
In the morning, John slept in while I enjoyed the lounge chairs at the pool area for a while. When he woke up, we packed up, and walked down the street to Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit. We filled up on our yummy loaded biscuits and then started the trek home to Virginia.
We had such an amazing anniversary trip, but we couldn’t wait to get home to see our little girl! (We’ve only ever spent one night away from her at a time, so two nights just seemed like foreverrrrrr)
Thanks for reading our trip recap!
Have you ever been to Charleston? What’d you think?