Over the past few years, Charleston has become a favorite destination for travelers in search of quintessential southern charm paired with an up-and-coming food scene. The South Carolina city has always been one of our favorite getaway spots — we even highlighted it as a must-take trip and published our Girls’ Weekend Guide this year.
Whether you’re planning your very first trip or a return visit to Charleston, these ten stops are our favorites to keep your Instagram feed brimming with pretty Southern snap. From sprawling plantations to colorful outdoor patios (with frosé!), we have something for every Charleston visitor.
The Darling Oyster Bar is located on King Street in downtown Charleston and features Instagram-worthy dishes, drinks, and menus. The popular spot is a must-visit for everything from a relaxing brunch in the teal leather booths to a late night happy hour at the perfectly vintage bar.
513 King St, Charleston
2. Rainbow Row
Rainbow Row is a cluster of a dozen historic homes in downtown Charleston known for their playful colors and Georgian architecture. Wander down East Bay Street past the colorful homes toward the waterfront for unparalleled views of historic Charleston and the Atlantic Ocean.
83 E Bay St, Charleston
Fried chicken is a must when visiting the south, and Leon’s serves some of the best in Charleston. Enjoy your indulgent southern meal with a frozen rosé on Leon’s colorful outdoor patio or indoors surrounded by vintage nautical artwork and a cozy fireplace.
698 King St, Charleston
4. 86 Cannon
86 Cannon is one of the prettiest boutique inns in Charleston. From the light blue bikes out front to the quintessential wraparound porch, the hotel is full of photo-worthy vignettes of vintage southern charm. Each room is unique, and there are two adorable dogs named Sully and Gus waiting to welcome you to the inn.
86 Cannon St, Charleston
5. Hampton Park
Hampton Park is located in the heart of the Charleston Peninsula and is an easy walk from the dozens of restaurants downtown. The park’s gardens are beautiful and feature fountains, walking trails, and a baseball diamond. It’s a perfect spot for a picnic beneath wisteria trees and peony plants.
30 Mary Murray Dr, Charleston
Right down the street from Darling Oyster Bar is Sugar Bakeshop, an adorable cupcake shop that sells fresh daily batches of baked goods made from local ingredients. Before even stepping inside, the exterior of Sugar is Instagram-worthy on its own. Inside the front door, you’ll find Tiffany blue accents and vintage display cases and cake pedestals.
59 1/2 Cannon St, Charleston
The Magnolia Plantation is located just northwest of the peninsula and is one of the oldest plantations in the country, dating back to the late 1600s. The grounds are now home to a museum and acres of land for guests to explore. The Long Bridge is one of the most photographed and dates back to the 1840s.
3550 Ashley River Road, Charleston
Is there anything more southern than warm biscuits? Any Insta-foodie would be remiss to not stop into Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit on King Street while in Charleston. After snapping a few photos of the front window and inside murals, order a few biscuits to share over a cold mint iced tea and sit outdoors to people watch on King.
476 King St, Charleston
9. Folly Beach
If you visit Charleston during the warmer months, head to Folly Beach and the nearby boardwalk just south of the peninsula. After spending a day on the beach wandering beneath the piers, pop into the souvenir shops and restaurants with water views for an early dinner to see the sunset.
Folly Island, South Carolina
Ellis Creek Fish Camp is a seafood restaurant with one of the best views of the quiet marshes of James Island, just south of downtown Charleston. Grab a table on Ellis Creek’s patio under a string of white lights and enjoy happy hour with fresh seafood and frozen cocktails.
1243 Harbor View Road, Charleston