Monday, July 24, 2017

A Complete Guide to Charleston, SC


Today I'm talking alllll the details of my favorite parts of Charleston including where to eat, coffee, what to do, etc. I have spent the day in good ole Chuck at least five times this summer, so I feel like I've become quite the Charleston expert. 

COFFEE & DESSERT




Skinny Dip | This is hands down one of my favorite spots in Charleston! It's a boutique down stairs featuring brands like Sail to Sable and KJP, and upstairs there's gift-y items and a coffee and wine bar! They even have an outdoor patio area with palm leaf pillows and a porch swing! One of my favorite parts about Skinny Dip is that Ashley Brooke Designs makes the sleeves for the coffee cups. (as seen in the pic above)
I recommend: Caramel iced coffee with almond milk.


Black Tap Coffee | This coffee shop is off the beaten path a little bit, but I love the quite and cool atmosphere! The interior is very modern and hipster-y and makes for good instagram/vsco pictures!


Kaminsky's | We have a Kaminsky's in Columbia as well, but it's always one of my favorites especially if there's something to celebrate! This is a coffee and dessert cafe that serves HUGE 3-layer cakes, cheesecakes, milkshakes, and ice cream sundaes all in a dark, candle-lit night time atmosphere. (They also have a full bar, and are famous for their adult milkshakes.) 
I recommend: Brownie sundae, S'mores cheesecake or Death by Chocolate cake and a cappuccino.

Christophe Artisan Chocolatier | This is the cutest little french bakery on Society St (near King St) that serves all kinds of french chocolates and baked goods. I've only been here once, but they have the cutest mini macaroons in every flavor you could ever want in life.

Market Street Sweets | Chances are if you've been anywhere near the old slave market in Charleston, you've walked past this place and instantly smelled the heavenly scent that comes out of Market Street Sweets. This is a candy shop that specializes in candy like fudge and pralines. Stop by and watch them hand make the pralines, and get a free sample!!


Kilwins | Kilwins also specializes in candy and fudge, but I really love their ice cream and homemade waffle bowls!
I recommend: Dark Chocolate ice cream in a waffle bowl.

Belgian Gelato | This is right near Riverfront Park, and is the cutest little french gelato shop with a huge giant cone on the sidewalk! I don't know how belgian gelato is different from other types, but this place serves some of my favorite! 
I recommend: Pistachio gelato in a cone.



RESTAURANTS

Fleet Landing | I eat at this restaurant almost every time I go down to Charleston. It's located right on the water near Waterfront Park and the cruise port, so the view is always awesome! It's a small, local restaurant with local seafood and the best hushpuppies in the whole world! 
I recommend: Lunch: Charleston cobb salad or shrimp po boy. 
Dinner: Shrimp and grits or seafood platter




Water's Edge | This restaurant is in Mt. Pleasant (a suburb of Charleston) and is located on Shem Creek, so there are gorgeous water views here too. This was one of the restaurants we tried on my bday weekend, and it did not disappoint! 
I recommend: Glazed salmon and rice. And sitting outside!




Kickin Chicken | This is definitely a more casual, lunch type restaurant but it never disappoints! Think Zaxby's and Groucho's combined to understand the feel of this restaurant. They have such a big menu, and I've loved everything I've tried here. Above you see the grilled chicken ceaser salad and bobby fries in the first picture. The second picture is the "Kickin Chicken" sand which.
I recommend: Chicken tenders, Bobby fries, fried pickles. 

Jim 'N Nick's BBQ | I used to visit the more casual, sister restaurant of Jim 'N Nick's (which is just called Nick's) on King St. allll the time for the hands down best macaroni and cheese of my LIFE! Sadly, the Nick's King St location had to close because the building was too old (Charleston probs), but there is still a Jim 'N Nick's in Charleston! 


Five Loaves Cafe | This was another one of the restaurants I tried at my bday weekend last month. This is a very low-key little cafe that specializes in local and healthy foods. They have a great menu selection if you are gluten free or vegetarian, as well! There are three locations around the Charleston area, but I have only been to the downtown location on Cannon St. Above, you see the chicken paillard and garlic mashed potatoes. I ordered the tilapia piccata (which was amazing, but didn't photograph very well!) 
I recommend: Tilapia Piccata and Eggplant Fritters (!!!)



Charleston Crab House | This is a semi-touristy place, but they have a great location and offer rooftop dining (my fav!) This restaurant has all of your normal seafood options, and is actually where I tried calamari for the first time! (You may remember that from this post in the spring)
I recommend: BBQ Shrimp and Grits

WHAT TO DO & WHERE TO GO



Waterfront Park | This is usually one of the first places I make my way to when I come to Charleston! Like the name suggests, Waterfront park is right on the water and always has THE best views! There are a couple of different fountains, including the pineapple fountain you see above, that kids love to splash around in during the summer! It also has an extremely long dock that has picnic tables and porch swings to sit and enjoy a Charleston evening! One of my favorite spots in the city, for sure.

King Street | I've mentioned King St. a million times in this post, but this is probably the most well-known street in Charleston. This one-way street runs all through the city and is the perfect place to spend the day shopping. Stores range from local boutiques to Forever 21 to Louis Vuitton, and there are plenty of places to eat/treat along the way.

Cinebarre | This is technically in Mount Pleasant (a suburb of Charleston), but it is worth the trip outside of the city limits for sure! This is a movie theater that offers a full menu during your movie! You can order food/drinks before or during the movie by pressing a button right in front of you, and a waiter will bring you your food, so there's no missing any of the movie! It's such a fun experience if you've never been to a theater like it.





Isle of Palms | This is my favorite beach near Charleston, (Folly Beach is also near by). This is just your typical public beach, but I have such great memories at IOP, so I go whenever I get the chance! There are also good walk-up food options like Island Joe's (where the blue painted wall is above), Windjammer, and Ben & Jerry's.

Horse Carriage tours | I haven't been on one of these tours since I was in elementary school, but they are great if you are interested in learning about/seeing all of the history that makes Charleston what it is. This city has such a rich history and has been preserved in a way that is so special.

Whew! Hello longest post ever! As you can tell, over the past couple of years Charleston has made such a mark on me, and I can definitely see myself living there one day! I feel so lucky to be able to go down for a day trip whenever I can.

Thank you for reading, and check back Wednesday for another post!!
(Also, the giveaway winner will be announced via instagram later today!!)






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