Weekend Getaway in Charleston, SC

Well, it's safe to say that we had a fantastic weekend in Charleston! We went to celebrate our anniversary and my birthday (I'm 21 again! Can you believe it?!). We left Friday morning on an early flight from Columbus, had a layover in Nashville and finally landed in Charleston by noon. We had to catch an early flight on Sunday in order to make it home by mid afternoon (there are no direct flights on Southwest from Columbus to Charleston). Both sides of grandparents were willing to help with the boys while we were away. I actually haven't left Bennett for more than a night since he was born, so I was a little anxious. But, they had a great time with their grandparents!

Brace yourself for an over load of food and beverage photos... Now, excuse me while I go do a thousand crunches and run 18 miles... 

We stayed at the Hampton Inn in the historic district of Charleston, which was pretty close to the downtown area with all the restaurants, shops, bars, etc. We were also just a street away from King which is home of the major shopping area and lots of bars as well. Since our room wasn't quite ready when we got to our hotel, we decided to drop off our bags and head out to explore the area a bit by foot. It was a beautiful sunny day and in the 60s so we did not mind the walk. 

We found Prohibition which is right off of King street and decided to pop in for a few cocktails and some lunch. It actually reminded us of Prohibition that we've been to in Powell, Oh and figured that's where they got the idea for the one at home! I had the Dartery cocktail (vodka, St. Germain, blackberry, lemon and mint... so good!) and ordered the Cobb salad. Bill had beer and ordered a burger which he said was one of the best he's ever tasted! 

After lunch, we decided to walk back down King street for a bit. Of course, when we walked past the cupcake downsouth, we had to stop for a little dessert. The flavors were all so tempting it was hard to decide! I finally landed on the french toast (which did not disappoint! Three words, sweet maple frosting) and Bill got the southern red velvet.

By the time we made it back to our hotel, it was time to check in and get ready for the night. We had reservations at Fleet Landing at 7:30pm which was a recommendation for good sea food. We headed out of the hotel around 5:30 and decided to try to pop in one of the bars or restaurants downtown for a drink before dinner. Well, now I know why everyone told us to make reservations before we came! All the restaurants and bars were packed! We made it up to the rooftop bar at the Vendue hotel, but didn't stay long because it got pretty chilly after the sun went down! But, it would definitely be a great place to go in the summer months. After trying a few other places, we finally landed bar seats at Carmella's Dessert bar. This place is basically a grown up's ice cream shop with all kinds of fancy desserts, ice cream and boozy shakes and cocktails. They also have an assortment of savory meat and cheese boards and a large assortment of wines. Basically, my heaven on earth. I ordered a glass of wine and we shared a small cheese board that also came with fig jam and bread. I really wish we would have gone back there for after dinner desserts!

By 7pm, it was time to make our way over to our dinner reservations at Fleet Landing. The restaurant is actually the only one on the water in Charleston (which we learned on our carriage ride tour on Saturday) which surprises me since the bay is so pretty and there are so many restaurants in the city! The food here was so good! We started with the sea food stuffed hush puppies which were baseball sized corn breaded hush puppies stuffed with lobster, shrimp, leeks, corn and a creamy tomato sauce! These were enough for a meal, but of course we ordered more food...

I was told that I had to try shrimp and grits while in Charleston so that's what we ordered for dinner. I actually don't have any photos of our actual dinners because I think I went into a food coma after our appetizer! The shrimp and grits were so good! I had never tried grits before and these were so creamy and just melted in my mouth. The shrimp also had a good spicy kick to them, but not too spicy since I'm a bit of a wuss when it comes to spicy food. The sausage in the dish, however, was a bit too spicy for my taste, but Bill loved it! I'm glad I went out of my comfort zone and tried it!

After dinner, we decided to head back towards our hotel. We spotted a really cool looking bar down an ally close to our hotel earlier in the day and decided to go there for an after dinner drink. It's so crazy how the coolest spots are just tucked in little old ally ways everywhere! So, we had out nightcap drinks at The Victor Social Club which had a swanky feeling with a big marble bar top and leather sofas and high top chairs. It was definitely one of our favorite spots of the trip.

Saturday started bright and early with reservations at Poogan's Porch at 9am for my birthday brunch. I knew it would be a tough time getting out of bed that morning so I purposefully made reservations as soon as the restaurant opened knowing that it would be our only motivation to get out of bed. This was also a recommendation from several people I talked to that either live in or had visited Charleston.

I was really excited for my birthday mimosa to start the day and everything sounded so good on the menu it was hard to choose.

I landed on the chicken and waffles because 'when in Rome'. Bill got the lowcountry omelet and we shared the mac and cheese. Yes, we had mac and cheese for brunch... don't act like you're not impressed! Of course, the food did not disappoint! And I just loved the quaint sitting room with the fireplace. 

After our hearty meals, we decided to go for a walk to burn some of the million calories we consumed. It was a bit chilly, in the 50s and windy, but the sun was bright and the buildings and houses were gleaming! We headed over to rainbow row which is definitely a spot to see if you visit. The 200 plus year old houses are all painted beautiful pastel colors. Of course, I wouldn't be a true blogger if I didn't take a few fancy photos...

We also walked down to the battery which over looked the water all the way to white point garden.

We walked back up to waterfront park. The houses in this area are unbelievable! With 3 story buildings with wrap around porches on each level. 

We stopped by the waterfront park fountain and walked up the pier. 

After all that walking, we decided it was time to head back to the hotel to give our feet some rest and to catch the Ohio State game on TV.

After a rest and a buckeye win, we were ready to head back out for the night. We had heard great things about Magnolia's, so we decided to take a chance at grabbing some bar seats before the dinner hour crowds. We were lucky enough to snag a few by 4pm before the rush!

We just had drinks and a little snack of pimento cheese (another southern favorite I was determined to try). Of course, any cheese dish is a winner in my book!

After our little happy hour at Magnolia's, we decided to walk around the market and headed up to the rooftop of the Market Pavilion Hotel. It was a bit too chilly to stay there for a drink, but it was fun to see the whole skyline of Charleston right before the sunset.

(If you squint, you can see the Arthur Ravenel bridge in the background)

We needed to kill a little more time before our dinner reservations at 7:30, so we decided to take a sunset carriage ride tour of the city! I'm so glad we did this because we learned so much about the history of the downtown area and it's buildings. 

After our carriage ride, we headed to the Oak Steakhouse for dinner. We sat at the bar for a little while before we got our table. The Oak Steakhouse was the perfect way to end my birthday! Bill and I love a good steak meal and this was one of the best meals I have had in a long time! We started with the shrimp cocktail which is pretty standard for us if they have it on any menu. We both ordered the fillets and had whipped potatoes and crispy onions on the side. The steaks were cooked to perfection and the sides just rounded out the meals perfectly. I really tried to say no to dessert, but Bill insisted! 

We basically both needed wheelbarrows to wheel us home after that dinner. We decided to do the smart thing and head back to the hotel after dinner since we had to catch an early flight back home Sunday morning. 

All in all I am very impressed with how much we did, saw and accomplished in less than 2 days in Charleston! I knew I would love it and Charleston has been on my list of places I wanted to visit for a while. We both just fell in love with the atmosphere and southern charm of the city! Although, there is so much to do and see there I think we are both looking forward to visiting again in the future!

Here are a few places that are on my list for our next visit: Hominy grill, Husk (I tried to make reservations here 3 weeks out and they were booked!), Hank's seafood, The Darling Oyster bar, The Cocktail club, The Gin Joint (we actually tried to get in here twice, but the wait was too long!) to name a few. I'd also love to see a plantation like the Magnolia or Boone Hall

So there you have it! If you are booking a weekend getaway trip to Charleston, I hope this little recap of ours has helped! 


  1. What a perfect anniversary & birthday celebration trip! My mouth is watering at all the delicious food you ate!!

  2. Best anniversary and birthday trip ever! Isn't Charleston the best city ever? The food is all so ridiculous, but I need to go without kids and try all of these cocktails! Happy belated mama! XO

  3. GIVE ME ALL THE FOOD! Lol. It looks like you had the best trip - that city seriously looks like a dream.


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