Y’all, this post is very photo heavy, and I apologize for that. I just LOVE Charleston. I’ve been twice this year, and I’m incredibly sad I didn’t spend more time there visiting when I lived in Charlotte. Since Graham and I had two weddings, we have two anniversaries. Our real one is in April, but we had our formal wedding in December. We typically don’t do a whole lot for the December one, but since he’ll be deployed in April for our real one, we decided to go all out for this one.
We headed out bright and early Monday morning. It rained the whole drive, but I didn’t let that damper my enthusiasm. As excited as I was to explore the city, the history and to shop, the primary reason we headed to Charleston was for a little foodie vacation. We were initially going to stay one night, but then I realized I couldn’t narrow it down to where I wanted to eat and what I wanted to do. So, we stayed two nights (and one was free, thanks to a free night certificate from Marriott!). We arrived in Charleston around lunch time, and headed out to Husk for our lunch reservation (all the food details are coming in tomorrow’s post). After lunch, we bought another umbrella and spent the day shopping & exploring.
We headed back to the parking deck around sunset and ventured into this graveyard. I adore creepy old graveyards, and this one did not disappoint! But, while I love them, seeing names and years wiped away by time makes me sad.
The next day the weather wasn’t much better, but at least it wasn’t raining. So, we headed to Mt. Pleasant and toured Boone Hall Plantation. According to their website, this is the most photographed plantation in America, and has been featured in films such as the Notebook, North & South, Queen and more. While the house isn’t old enough to be truly interesting to me (the one currently standing on the property was built in the 1930’s), it was stunning. Unfortunately, photos inside weren’t allowed.
While the house was beautiful, and the history of the property was interesting, the real point of interest here were the live oaks surrounding the driveway. The “avenue of oaks” go on for nearly a mile, and were planted in the 1700’s. These trees were absolutely beautiful, and so majestic. I felt more southern just standing under the canopy of moss & leaves.
We had almost an hour to kill before we were allowed in the home for a tour, so we spent some time enjoying the gardens, and the rest of the grounds. The cotton fields interested me, as did the nine slave cabins, that are original to the property. The slave cabins were particularly interesting, because of their proximity to the main house, but some of the things that I read said that this would have been a way for Thomas Boone to display his wealth to visitors.
Once we left Boone Hall & Mt. Pleasant behind, we headed back into Charleston for more sightseeing & less shopping. We saw the pineapple fountain (and apparently Graham and I are the only two people in the world that were unaware that the pineapple is the symbol of hospitality), and walked through a couple of waterfront parks, but we really just spent the afternoon looking at houses. The homes in Charleston are stunning. And not even the massive ones that have water views. I was completely smitten with the small (but still stunning homes) that were covered in greenery. And the beautiful walkways just took my breath away. If the houses are going to be so close together, at least the space between them is pretty to look at.
Before heading back to Charlotte on New Years Eve, we went to John’s Island to check out the Angel Oak. I was in complete awe of this tree. I’d seen it in pictures, but it was so much more impressive in person. And luckily, Graham and I were the only ones there.
After seeing the Angel Oak, and before heading home, we made one last stop at the Sanctuary at Kiawah Island. When I was younger, my dream was to get married here, and seeing the resort in person, it surpassed ALL of my expectations. It was huge and grand, and unbelieveably beautiful. Since we’ve already had two weddings, I guess I’ll never get married there, but I’d love to vacation there someday…
Anyways. There’s part one of my Charleston recap. Keep an eye out for part two (the food part) tomorrow. We ate so much good stuff, I’m honestly surprised my jeans still fit!