Welcome back, and welcome to Adventures in Charleston Part 2! In the last post (which you can find here), I talked about how much Connor and I loved our weekend getaway to Charleston, mostly because of the beauty and charm, and the proximity to the ocean of course!
We have many more stories to share with you from our weekend getaway, so why waste any time!
Day 2: our boat trip to Fort Sumter and celebrating our first Valentine’s Day
I love history. One of the coolest things about the east coast is how much American history there is here. Charleston is no exception. In fact, the Civil War started right there! On April 12th 1861, Confederate troops, led by General P.G.T. Beauregard, bombed Fort Sumter, a small island which sits only miles from Charleston. While the Union Major Robert Anderson (who, ironically, was a teacher of Beauregard’s at West Point) prevented any casualties, he did have to give up Fort Sumter, and thus, Charleston, to the Confederacy. That was the first day of the Civil War.
We knew that we just had to visit that historic landmark while in Charleston. So, Connor and I spent the morning of Valentine’s Day taking a boat over to Fort Sumter, and touring around.
I loved being on the boat while we were going over to the island. I love water and… we even saw small pods of dolphins swimming beside us!
Once we got to Fort Sumter, we walked around a little bit, but it was so windy that we spent most of our time in the museum. But we were ok with that because we learned so much! Between the boat ride and the history of Fort Sumter, it was definitely worth the trip.
After we made it back from Fort Sumter to Charleston, we explored two other historical landmarks. Like yesterday, we walked everywhere, and continued to be in awe with the beautiful architecture! You can tell from my pictures that the houses were beautiful… but what is amazing is that every single house in Charleston was just as beautiful and unique in it’s own way. I couldn’t possibly capture it on camera.
As we made our way through the streets, we came across a beautiful white church. You may have noticed the picture of it in my first post; St. Michael’s Episcopal Church. Not only is the church beautiful, it is also full of history. Inside the church, in pew 43, both George Washington and, some years later, Robert E. Lee worshipped. It was awe inspiring to see something with such history, and something that was important to two men who so greatly influenced America.
When you’re walking through Charleston, it is almost easy to miss significant historical landmarks, because everything there is historic. Fortunately, we knew where to look. Running perpendicular to Queen St., in between Church St. and State St., is a beautiful alley. Philadelphia Alley is made completely of brick, and has quite an interesting history. It is named Philadelphia Alley because, after a major fire in Charleston in the early 1800’s, the area was rebuilt with brick donated by the city of Philadelphia. To locals, this alley is also known as Dueler’s Alley, after the many men who settled disputes by dueling in the alley. It is also beautiful!
Because we had such an adventure-filled morning, we went back to our hotel to rest a little bit before our special Valentine’s dinner.
We had reservations at Magnolia’s, and amazing restaurant just blocks from our hotel. We got all dressed up for our first ever romantic Valentine’s dinner, and ate the night away. Connor had a steak, and I had flounder, which I had never tried before, but I loved it! Neither Connor nor I are big party people, so having a romantic dinner for two is exactly how we like to spend special occasions. This was one for the books!
Day 3: touring the Magnolia Plantation
During our last hours in Charleston, we did something that everyone has to do at least once while in the south… we toured a plantation.
There were a lot of plantations to choose from, but we decided to visit the Magnolia Plantation. It was beautiful! I’m sure it’s even more amazing in the summer when everything is green and all the flowers are in full bloom. Still though, it was very impressive. After all, it has had hundreds of years to blossom and grow, as the plantation was founded in 1676.
We started out the tour with a visit to a petting zoo on the plantation. This was honestly the most fun petting zoo I have ever been to! For starters, we were the only ones there, so we had all the animals to ourselves. There were probably twenty peacocks roaming around, lots of ducks and chickens, a turkey, a pig, and, my personal favorite, deer! We got to pet a deer! Obviously, that would never happen in the wild, so we were thrilled to have the chance.
Funny story… at the entrance of the plantation, we got these stickers (you know, they were like our tickets, showing everyone working there that we actually paid) so we stuck them to our coats. Well, when in the petting zoo, our friendly deer walked straight up to me, tore that sticker right off of my coat, and ate it! Like it was no big deal. We laughed at her for quite a while and soon pegged her as our favorite.
For the rest of the afternoon, we walked the winding trails through the gardens, over bridges, through Spanish moss, and over to the swamp to see alligators and birds. It was so peaceful and beautiful, I envy the people who once lived here.
Sadly, our visit to Charleston couldn’t last forever, and we had to make our way home to D.C.. We dragged our feet back to Columbia Airport, waited for almost five hours as our plane kept getting delayed due to freezing rain in D.C. (who wouldn’t want to go back to that), and finally made our way to our home.
It was so nice to get away for the weekend with my husband and explore a place we had never been. I’m so looking forward to all the adventures we will have throughout our marriage. And we will definitely be back in Charleston someday.