Chillin’ in Charleston

The moment I decided to take a spontaneous road trip South to see my friend, I knew I could finally overuse the word peachy and fake a southern accent the whole ride down. #noregrets. My college friend Megha is often at Charleston for work, and for once, our schedules aligned! Our friend Taral joined the trip from DC onward. I started the journey from central Jersey, so it took about 12 hours total with a brief stop to stretch and breathe non Black Ice car freshener air.

It’s been a while since I’ve been to a city and had almost no complaints, considering I’m so critical of everything. (Yeah I see you nodding in agreement, friends). Charleston is charming, cute, friendly, clean, historical and hip. It embodies the term southern charm, in the form of a city and leaves you wondering why you waited so long to visit. It’s also a city that’s enjoyable with just one friend, or a group of 10. Here are some snapshots and thoughts from my day and a half in Charleston!

I roam


Not too long after sunrise, we entered South Carolina, the Palmetto State, and drove to John’s Island (20 mins outside of Charleston) to see the Angel Oak Tree. The park is free of charge, and the muse obvious: the bohemeth 400 year-old, 67-ft-high tree that’ll make you feel slim standing [or in my case awkwardly squatting] by it! The park opens at 9AM and I suggest going early to avoid the humidity that resides in the South.

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Angel Oak Tree, Johns Island

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I wander


The famous and picturesque Rainbow Row had me feeling like a Southern Belle navigating through dollhouses (dreams do come true). Charleston has a Havana flair to it (not that I’ve been to Cuba, but from all the pics I’ve seen!). It’s a walking city and isn’t hard to navigate through, and trust me, navigation is not my forte. Walk through Market and King streets to see these houses.

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Orange is the new black.

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The rant of the trip/when Murphy’s Law kicked in: I packed 3 pairs of shoes in addition to these boring, beige flats. I pull out the first pair of wedges out and see the strap is broken (must’ve broken when I aggressively swung it into the backseat…oops). I take the second pair of wedge[s] out to find that I only packed one shoe ugh! the other is still MIA btw.  The third are 3-inch heels so couldn’t walk around town in them and had to wear the beige ones all day/all trip…FWP.

Anyways, we didn’t walk through any churches, but there are a ton downtown (hence the name Holy City) I’d like to explore if I’m there again. There’s also a shopping strip and a bunch of places to eat or grab ice-cream at. We did walk along the waterfront by the Cooper River, it’s a nice place to relax on the swing sets or exercise along the pedestrian walkway. After strolling through the city, we drove to a few beaches and the sun made an appearance! Although, it was nice overcast because it was already so hot and humid.

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I eat


The two friends I was with are vegetarians, and as mindful as they are with letting me eat whatever and wherever around them, I try to go to places that offer more than just a seafood or meat specialty to accommodate everyone…which is why I didn’t check out any seafood places by the islands. But inland, we did eat great food and had great service. We went heavier for breakfast and lunch, and took it easy at dinner.

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Breakfast: Our first food stop in Charleston and right after a long journey…a new place called Hen and the Goat. Pictured on my plate: avocado toast and a crab cake on the side. The olive oil on the toast was bomb.
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TACOBOY. A Mexican restaurant with tons of outdoor space and filling tacos. I tried the sauteed shrimp, grilled fish and fried avocado tacos…I was SO FULL. My friend ordered the veg quesadilla and an avo taco. The guac was good and had a little kick to it.
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Tiramisu at a dessert bar called Carmella’s. SO GOOD that I took a bite before the picture. My friends got gelato and I kept eating theirs too 🙂 Hide yo dessert.
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The next morning we tried the Daily by Butcher and Bee. The ordering concept was super confusing, but once you get past that it’s fine. The cold brew was stronger than I like (yeah yeah I know cold brew is supposed to be strong), but the food was good! Taral ordered a beet smoothie (It’s tangy, if you like beets then order it) and egg on toast. We shared the home fries and I went basic again and ordered the avo toast…am I predictable or am I predictable?
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Megha and I at Barsa, where we ordered tapas and laughed a lot.
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A comfortable stay at the Marriott.

All in all, I feel like I made a mediocre dent in Charleston, exploring wise. I’ve been to SC before, and that’s also where my dog was born lol. When I go again, I’ll go for the historical aspect because it is, after all, the birthplace of many American milestones. I’ll also probably spend more time at the beaches. My next stop was Savannah, stay tuned for that post 😉

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