One of the stops on our Fall Carolina Tour of 2015 was Charleston, SC. Porter had been there many times but this would be my first real visit to this historic city. We stayed outside town at Lake Aire RV Park located in Hollywood, SC. We’ll have a campground review on the park in a separate post.
One of the big Charleston attractions for me was the photography opportunities. With all the history, parks and islands it’s no wonder photographers travel to Charleston from all over to get their fix. Even if you are not into photography just experiencing these places is amazing. Here are some of the places we visited and recommend for anyone visiting the area.
- The Angel Oak – This a Live Oak tree located on John’s Island and is estimated to be 400-500 years old, some say it could be 1,500 years old. It’s absolutely gorgeous and worth a visit. Plus it’s free.
- Historic Downtown – The downtown is filled with historic buildings, cobble stone streets and beautiful parks.
- USS Yorktown – Located just across the river from Charleston is Patriots Point where the USS Yorktown is located. One ticket gets you into see this WWII aircraft carrier plus a destroyer and submarine. If you’ve never had the opportunity to explore some of these great ships, it’s well worth the time … I had a blast.
- Folly Beach – This beach is an easy drive south of town on Folly Island. Not only is it a great photography opportunity but just a nice beach to spend some time embracing Mother Ocean. There is a park with a big parking lot but be warned when they say they lock the gates … they mean it. Then you have to call police and wait for them to let you out when they get some free time. Not that I know anything about that.
- Botany Bay – There is a wildlife management area on Edisto Island south of Charleston. It’s an old plantation that has a great beach called the Boneyard. It’s a long stretch of beach filled with driftwood and the remains of trees that are still standing strong against erosion. It’s a hauntingly beautiful sight … and free.
- Charleston Tea Plantation – This wasn’t much of a photo experience but definitely worth a visit, especially if you are a tea drinker. Of all the tea in the world this plantation is the only place in North America where tea is grown. You can see the process, tour and processing plant and sample some tea … all for free (mostly).
- Plus there are many other places worth your time like The City Market, Fort Sumter, Boone Hall Plantation and Magnolia Plantation.
The Food – For whatever reason we didn’t really explore much of the food scene in Charleston, but we did find a few great places to eat.
- The Thai Elephant was my birthday surprise while in Charleston. Nothing better than sushi and nothing better than exploring a new place. This place was OMG sushi and Thai Elephant Roll blew my mind.
- The Angle Oak Restaurant was small little place close to our campground and was great. Sunday brunch was great along with their fresh ravioli, buttermilk chicken and shrimp and grits.
- A big surprise was the Stono Market and Tomato Shed Cafe. It’s a cafe, general store and vegetable stand all in one. It’s only open for lunch but try the tomato pie and the Hummingbird cake.
- Magnolias is a famous restaurant in downtown Charleston. It’s southern food taken to the next level. It’s all good.
Overall, we enjoyed our visit to Charleston but it won’t be high on our places to revisit. It was hot, humid and it rained and rained and rained. Plus everything was a drive and the traffic is a real problem. Many love visiting Charleston but for us we just didn’t fall in love with it.