charleston

Charleston, South Carolina has a way with visitors. Those who adore traveling to destinations that are rich in history find the stories Charleston offers up intriguing. Others flock to the Holy City in the name of fine cuisine and the infamous barbeque recipes that the city holds dear. Those with a passion for pristine architecture are enthralled with the city’s many facades that have been restored to their pre-Civil War glory. Still, others come in the name of wartime artifacts, coastal adventures and the plethora of wildlife that call this destination home.

While it’s easy to pack an itinerary with must-see stops the first time you lay foot in Charleston, it is as much a city of hidden treasures as it is home to bold landmarks. Taking time to carve out a moment for off the beaten path adventures is a wonderful way to see Charleston through an entirely new lens. Here are 5 destinations to add to the list when you’ve arrived in the city and you’re looking for an experience that goes beyond the ordinary travel guide recommendations.

Serenity Tree Yoga

Charleston’s prime coastal location means visitors enjoy soaking up the sunshine, digging their toes into the sand and making the most of the pristine waves when they’re here. Taking part in a beach yoga class with Serenity Tree Yoga during your visit is an incredible opportunity to indulge in Charleston’s outdoor beauty with a focus firmly set on personal wellness. Classes are held on the beach weekly at Patriot’s Point of Charleston Harbor Resort and walk-ins are always welcome. Run on a donation-basis, certified and friendly instructors guide guests through postures that celebrate their inner strength alongside the beauty of the surrounding world. A yoga mat isn’t necessary as this sand-based class utilizes beach towels to keep participants comfortable. If you love the idea but prefer a smaller group setting, Serenity Tree Yoga can schedule private or small group beach yoga classes upon request.

Pacific Box and Crate Farmer’s Market

Sometimes the best way to get to know a city on a new level is to taste your way through its best and most natural fare. Visitors with a passion for pleasing the palate and a love for the ambiance of a charming market scene will want to make their way towards Kings Street if your trip matches up with a Saturday morning. Held in The Workshop courtyard, guests arriving as early as 9:00 am will find themselves immersed in an abundant farmer’s market hosted by Pacific Box and Crate. Enjoy browsing a multitude of stands and booths featuring leafy greens, colorful vegetables and fruits alongside a variety of local mushrooms. Feel free to ask for a sample before selecting those items that you can’t leave without. The Pacific Box and Crate farmer’s market is known for offering up a friendly environment and see less significant crowds than those commonly encountered at larger farmer’s markets throughout the city.

Unitarian Church Graveyard

The Holy City plays host to a vast number of churches beckoning believers of all faiths to their open doors. The Unitarian Church in Charleston has long been regarded for its beauty and longevity. Functioning on a foundation that was first laid in 1772, the church has been a staple of faith in Charleston for hundreds of years. While the towering arches, glittering stained glass, and intricate stonework are impressive to see, it’s the attached graveyard that provides its own piece of generally uncharted adventure. A walk through this overgrown cemetery provides guests with a look at aging headstones covered in a maze of vines and moss. Often cited as the graveyard that inspired Edgar Alan Poe to write the poem Annabel Lee, visitors who want more insight into the cemetery’s history can book a place on a night tour hosted by the company Tour Charleston.

The Charleston Tea Plantation

Plantation culture defines a significant portion of Charleston’s past and many visitors to the city make time to tour what remains of these sprawling estates. Instead of looking back at what once was, guests to the city also have the option of indulging in a modern-day marvel by visiting a fully-functional tea plantation. Just south of the city, the Charleston Tea Plantation provides visitors with an opportunity to tour a tea factory and enjoy views of tea bushes that stretch across lush scenery. Knowledgeable guides are on-hand to answer questions about the interesting equipment and complex process required to produce high-quality tea. Hop on the tea plantation’s trolley for a 45-minute tour of the ground and pick up some tea to go with a stop at the gift shop on your way out.

The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon

Points of historical interest abound in Charleston, but The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon is unique in its possession of a past that encompasses hundreds of years of history within the same stone walls. Built in 1771, the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon had various titles and purposes in time to Charleston’s most historic events. The building has been recognized as a post office, city hall, museum, house of customs and exchange as well as military headquarters through the centuries. When the building was under the control of the British forces during the Revolutionary War, a harsh dungeon was established underneath the building to house prisoners. When the war came to an end, the Old Exchange took on the role of entertainment establishment and became an elite destination for Charleston’s wealthiest looking to dine in luxury. George Washington himself spent time at this location in 1791. Charleston’s politicians regularly used the building to discuss the intricate details of the law and even argued about the merits of the U.S. Constitution in its earliest stages. Visitors to the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon can book a spot on a tour that lasts 25-minutes and includes an up-close look at the Dungeon as well as a comprehensive exhibit speaking to the building’s incredible past.

A New Point of View

For guests to this beautiful city willing to take a step off the road well-traveled, a visit to Charleston can be a completely unique and highly rewarding experience unlike any other. When you make time for uncommon stops that provide a new perspective on history, tradition and even wellness, you’re sure to experience a side of Charleston you won’t soon forget. Get ready to see the Holy City from the inside out!

Author Bio

Caitlyn Knuth is a travel writer whose personal adventures have motivated her to write about everything from the most delicious cafés in Paris to the captivating salmon runs in Juneau, Alaska. Working alongside Exclusive Properties, she has fallen in love with writing about the inspiring destination of Charleston in hopes that others will take to South Carolina in the name of history, travel, and off-the-beaten-path adventure.

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