Now that I have the Megan Molten Blog up and running, I’m finally putting together my Charleston Guide! I’ve had this saved in my notes on my phone for years because I get asked this ALL THE TIME! Everybody loves Charleston and loves visiting. I mean... can you blame them? It’s my favorite city in the entire world! I’m so fortunate to call this place home. I love being on the water, eating, drinking, listening to live music and shopping; there is truly no better place to be for all of it! If you are looking for a few places around Charleston to try, here are my favorites for now. Since this city is ever changing, we will keep this list updated as new places pop up. I hope you will try them out and love this city as much as I do!
Where to Stay:
This hotel is where my husband and I hosted our wedding reception. It is such a special place to us! You walk in and immediately feel like you stepped back in time. A lot of people say it feels very similar to the "Mad Men" era and I fully agree! From my personal experiences, I can tell you the service and attention to detail is impeccable. They make everyone feel so special and welcome. Also, be sure to check out their exclusive rooftop bar, The Citrus Club, which has the best views in town!
This is the most adorable little boutique hotel you will ever see. My sister and her husband always stay here when they come to visit. It’s very small and quaint, which makes you feel like you stepped back in time and are staying as a guest at an old Charleston estate in the middle of downtown. It's so accessible and close to everything. Not to mention, the staff is so friendly and accommodating!
What to Do:
We love renting bikes from Holy City Spokes and peddling across the peninsula. Head down to The Battery and South of Broad to see all the sites and the most spectacular homes. Such a fun way to see the city!
Tour a Plantation
Our three favorites are Magnolia, Middleton, and Boone Hall Plantations. They are all equally as beautiful and special in their own unique ways. Each is only a short drive from downtown and definitely worth the trip to learn about the historic Lowcountry.
Walk South of Broad
I love to stroll down all the little streets below Broad Street, with Tradd and Water being my two favorites. You can circle around and walk along the water, going through White Point Gardens. Eventually you'll hit Rainbow Row, which is a colorful historic collection of homes not to miss!
The Galliard Center
This is one of our favorite places to go and hear incredible music in a stunning venue, usually by The Charleston Symphony Orchestra or other groups coming through town.
Day trip to Kiawah Island
This is one of my favorite excursions! Going from downtown to Kiawah is the most beautiful drive with huge oak trees lining the road the entire way. Be sure and stop at The Angel Oak tree on your way and see the oldest living thing east of the Mississippi. It is truly breathtaking. Once you get to Kiawah, stop at Freshfields Village for a bite and some shopping, then head to The Sanctuary Hotel for a drink on the lawn or lunch by the pool. Stop by Beachcomber park and take a walk to see one of the most pristine beaches in Charleston lined with gorgeous homes. Finally, drive out to the 18th hole at The Ocean Course for a drink and take in the most amazing breeze and views!
Head over to Mount Pleasant and check out this fun little spot for dining, fishing, paddling, and so much more. Whatever you want to do, it’s probably here! We like going to Tavern and Table for drinks or brunch as well as sit on the water watching the boats go by and the dolphins swim. There’s also a park here where you can take the kiddos.
Arthur Ravenel Bridge
I love to walk/run this incredible cable bridge over the Cooper River, as it’s the only true hill in Charleston. Once you get to the top you see the most beautiful views of the city!
This is a fun spot to catch a funny improvised comedy show!
Downtown Farmers Market
Every Saturday from 8 am to 2 pm in Marion Square, I love going to this market and checking out all the local makers and artisans, while picking up fresh produce from local growers. There’s always lots of food trucks, entertainment and jump castles for the kids.
Get on the Water
Charleston Sailing Adventures offer different water tours of Charleston. The city is so fun to explore and it’s even more beautiful from the water!
Art and Antiques
Broad Street, Queen Street, and Church Street are all lined with art galleries and antique stores. It is always a treat to wander and treasure hunt for the best art!
This is my favorite beach in Charleston and a must-stop on any visit. Head out to the beach and check out Middle Street Market or The Co-Op to grab some snacks. Be sure to stop at Poe’s after for a Burger or Home Team for some BBQ nachos. This is a weekly occurrence for us around here :)
Charleston is becoming quite the craft beer town. You have Revelry, Fatty’s, Edmund’s Oast, Palmetto and Cooper River Brewery, just to name a few! All are fun spots to have a tasting downtown.
Charleston Music Hall
Such a fun, small venue to hear live shows! We have heard so many artists here in this little theater as well as seen many great movie screenings. There’s usually something fun happening here just about every weekend and covers many different tastes in genres!
Worship and Praise:
Charleston is known as the The Holy City for many reasons, one being the numerous steeples painting the skyline. There are a few dozens of churches downtown representing a wide range of different faiths. Many churches welcome visitors to tour their historic beauty and to learn more about their significant place in the city throughout the years.
St. Stephen’s Episcopal is our sweet little church in downtown Charleston where we got married. It’s over 200 years old and has a small congregation and beautiful music. We love the inclusiveness it extends and message it provides. We enjoy it so much and welcome you to visit!
My Comprehensive Lists of Favorites:
For the Kiddos
Riverdogs Baseball Game
Sullivan’s Island Beach
Farmers Market on Saturdays
Pedi Cab Rides (my nieces love this)
Shopping / Treat Yourself
Hampden/James-designer heaven for clothing and shoes
Half Moon Outfitters-brother in law's outdoor store for the whole fam
Beckett-feminine finds for the girly girl who loves to shop
Finnicky Filley-best jewelry and bags for the fashionista
Celadon-one of our featured sites! favorite home store with the best global imports
Croghans-all the jewels including my go to gold bug earrings
Mac and Murphy-cutest paper goods, they made our wedding invitations too!
Pink Chicken-where I buy all the cutest clothes for my nieces
II Brunettes-trendiest boutique in town with the best prices
Gwynns-one stop shop for clothing, cosmetics, shoes and home decor
The Shops at Charleston Place-pop into Elysium Salon while you're at it
Mylkbar-fun, fresh, non-toxic nail salon owned by one of my best friends!
Eating (including my orders):
Breakfast Bites and Coffee:
Callies- order the cheese and chive biscuit
Glaze- must try the raspberry donut
Daps- the breakfast plate
The Daily- cold pressed juice
Second State Coffee- honey latte
Halls- crab cake benedict
Husk- chicken and waffles
Leon’s- baked oysters and fried chicken
Cru Cafe- Chinese chicken salad
167 Raw- lobster roll
Home Team BBQ- pulled pork nachos
Poes- fish tacos or gold bug burger
Lewis BBQ- brisket
Butcher and Bee- whipped feta
FIG- tomato tarte, pate, ricotta gnocchi
The Ordinary- peel and eat shrimp, oyster sliders
The Obstinate Daughter- brussel sprouts, oysters, holy diver pizza
The Darling- raw oysters
Little Jacks- crudite and burger
Indaco- burrata, mushroom pizza
Chez Nous- changes daily!
Oak Steakhouse- beef tenderloin
Edmund’s Oast- charcuterie plate, salt chicken
Melfi’s- Ceasar salad, linquine
Renzo- Ceasar salad, johnny tsunami pizza
Minero- queso fundido, tacos
For Happy Hour:
Zero George- cutest patio
The Citrus Club- best with frozen drinks
Market Pavillion- rooftop with a pool
The Watch- best rooftop for sunset
Goat Sheep Cow North- best spot for wine and charcuterie plates
Rarebit- the moscow mule
Cocktail Club- the double standard
Husk Bar- the punch
The Thoroughbred Club- the dirty martini
Jennis- goat cheese ice cream with red cherries
Peninsula Grill- award-winning coconut cake
Sugar- grapefruit cupcakes
Charleston Food and Wine Festival
Southeastern Wildlife Expo
Tour of Homes and Gardens
Cooper River Bridge Run
Friday Night Art Walks
Volvo Car Open
Those are all of my go-to's around town! Now, I am curious what are some of your favorite spots in Charleston or, if you have never been, what are a few places you are eager to try? Drop a comment below or send me a DM on Instagram and let me know. Keep checking back for more blog posts coming soon!