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Overwhelmed!

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New Hampshire
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Overwhelmed!

Hubby and I coming for four days October 25-29 and having never been to Charleston I have spent hours on this site and must say WOW, I am overwhelmed with all there is to do! So I am seeking input on the top things an outsider would want to see and where to stay. The only two items I am sure we want to do is visit Fort Sumter (hubs is a history buff) and do a carriage tour. Other than that we are open to suggestions! We are interested in tasting the local fare, so restaurants are appreciated. Hubs likes to eat so that is usually a big part of any vacation. Also, unique shopping areas (ie, we don't need to see the same mall stores we have at home.) Lastly, night spots for cocktails, something lively and possibly outdoors. We are looking at staying in HD but really are open to suggestions. TIA!

Charleston, South...
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1. Re: Overwhelmed!

I would suggest that you stay in the HD and focus much of your attention in that area. That is where the highest concentration of unique shopping will be, as well as historic sites and the best restaurants. If staying in the HD, you will be able to walk to most restaurants, historic buildings, etc. Outside the HD, you might want to visit a plantation or two. You need to be looking for your hotel now, things do get booked up pretty far in advance and book restaurants 2-4 weeks out for the fine dining places downtown. The Gin Joint is a nice adult cocktail bar.

Edited: 11:41 am, July 22, 2013
Charleston, South...
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2. Re: Overwhelmed!

I would stick to the historical district but maybe add a 1/2 trip to Middleton Place. If you have a car you can drive there or rent a car for the day. Otherwise, there are tour companies that can be scheduled either through the Visitors Center or your hotel to take you there.

There is so much to do and see that you might not want to leave the HD! Check out the Heritage Passport at the Visitors Center for a significant savings on many of the places you will want to visit.

Goose Creek, SC
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3. Re: Overwhelmed!

Chances are, if you're from NH, you'd like to enjoy our great weather and beaches. Visit Isle of Palms, Sullivan's Island, or Folly Beach. Each one has their own style.

Isle of Palms...
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4. Re: Overwhelmed!

Love the Hampton Inn downtown for a place to stay-- staff is great and it's in a good location. A lot of Charleston's best restaurant's and bars are within walking distance to the hotel.

For Restaurants: Halls Chophouse (for a fancy dinner...and true southern hospitality!), FISH has a great bar scene and unique lunch menu, The Macintosh, Stars (also has a great upstairs patio), Pane Vino for Italian, Cru Cafe..the list goes on and on! ...and honestly you can't go wrong with many of our restaurants. Stay away from the "chain type restaurants" and stick to local stuff---and you'll be happy (and full!)

I would highly recommend a walking tour---i think it's a better way to see the city. Carriage is great---but you will only get a snap shot of the city (as you never know your route your going to get...until you on it!). Brian with Charleston Sole Walking Tours is fantastic. We've done several tours with him---and each time we learn something new and interesting. I also agree that Middleton Place is worth your time---great little restaurant there too for lunch or dinner. And don't forget to check out the farmers market on Saturday AM in Marion Square. Whatever you end up doing---ENJOY! October is a fantastic time to visit Charleston!

Charleston, South...
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5. Re: Overwhelmed!

With only 4 days, I would not bother with the beach, other than to maybe take a drive out for an afternoon walk one day. Late Oct weather is much warmer than NH, but it is still not sun tanning weather.

Boston
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6. Re: Overwhelmed!

Hi fellow New Englander. I have been in Charleston a lot since my son goes to school there.

FIG is a great restaurant and I think I would put that on your list. There are so many other great restaurants, that it is hard to recommend just a few. Others we have enjoyed include Husk, McCrady's, SNOB, Magnolia's, Mercato, Muse, Cru Café, Amen Street

For a nice casual setting by the water there is Fleet Landing -- nice for lunch.

The rooftop bar at the Market Pavilion is a great place for drinks.

And, yes, definitely stay in the Historic District.

Edited: 4:27 pm, July 22, 2013
Charleston, South...
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7. Re: Overwhelmed!

The Ordinary is a new restaurant owned by the chef at FIG, it was recently named as one of the best restaurants in the nation.

Maryland
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8. Re: Overwhelmed!

Do the USS Yorktown ! The best thing we did. We liked Ft Sumpter as well.

We loved Pearlz oyster bar. East Bay deli was excellent for lunch and had a very nice salad bar.

Loved the Charleston Farmers market on Sat am.

I wished we did a kayak trip on Shem creek and a walking tour.

If you want Tshirts, buy them from the vendors in the Market, best prices and selection.

We stayed in a nice 1 br condo on East Bay St and the location was perfect. I liked the area up this end as opposed to Marion Sq. it was between Waterfront park, the restaurants up this end and Marion sq. I found it on VRBO and preferred this much more than a hotel. There are alot of condos and cottages to rent in HD. Owner was excellent to deal with. http://www.vrbo.com/297959

Edited: 10:54 am, July 28, 2013
Charleston, South...
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9. Re: Overwhelmed!

What was the address? East Bay Street is very long and the points of reference are not very clear.

Dayton OH
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10. Re: Overwhelmed!

Condo looks very nice. I too would like to know address.