Friday, July 01, 2005

Visitor's Guide

Well, this post has needing to get out of the gates for a while: In honor of the marriage (and honeymoon) of Ben Cozart and Sarah (soon-to-be) Cozart, we will be talking about activities for tourists visiting beautiful and historic Charleston, South Carolina (for about a week or so). Any additional suggestions are welcome.

First on the agenda has to be restaurants, and since we’re talking about Charleston, we must first talk about seafood. Liv recommends “The Crab House” downtown or on the Wappoo River. Mimi’s CafĂ© on Harborview Road in James Island is known to be good. I actually really like Gilligan’s, but only the John’s Island location. None of these are especially fancy. Neither are “The Wreck” or “The Trawler” in Mount Pleasant on Shem Creek, but these are known to be the best in Charleston. Nicer seafood places, such as Hymnan’s, or Hank’s, are more expensive, but not nearly as good. Don’t bother with A.W. Shucks or Bubba Gumps.

Our unanimous top recommendation goes to Jestine’s, for some Southern style food. Try the “table wine” for some great iced tea.

For a nicer meal, such as newly married husbands want to treat their brides to, try “The Boathouse,” “McCrady’s,” or our unanimous top choice, “Magnolia’s.” Also, “California Dreaming” may sound like a corny pick, but it is better than it sounds, and the view is great (also the prices are pretty good, while having a very nice atmosphere).

Make a whole meal of it at T-Bonz downtown. Good affordable food is to be had, alongside some good brews: try any of the following Market Street Wheat, Cooper River Red, October-Fest, or the Nut Brown Ale. Afterwards, go next door and inspect the desserts at Kaminsky’s. The cakes are very tempting, but I always fall for a milkshake, made even better with Bailey’s, or some other liquor.

As far as bars: I’m told Moe’s Crosstown Tavern is good. My personal favorite is Gene’s Hofbrau in West Ashley (I think it’s on 17, I can’t remember; it might be on 61).

For you history buffs:

Visit The Citadel, The bastion of military antiquity. Don’t be scared off by the guard at the gate.

I really like Fort Sumter, but the ferry ride is kind of uncomfortable. But this is Charleston, where the War of Northern Aggression began.

Middleton Plantation and Magnolia Gardens are great for the history and the beauty.

You can also take guided tours of the homes and/or gardens downtown. Ghost tours, while they may not be true history, are fun, I’m told. When going on these or the carriage tours, take what you hear with a grain of salt; not all of these things have any basis in fact.

Miscellaneous things to do:

Take a rickshaw somewhere.

Don’t buy the sweetgrass baskets. You can get the same things for a lot less in other cities.

An out-of-towner might want to make sure they park at a known parking garage, so they won’t be traipsing through the underbelly of Charleston to find their spot. Bad areas are mixed right in with good ones.

The beach:

Folly is really a surfer beach. There are usually a lot of kids there. Isle of Palms is nice but crowded in the public beaches. If you’re close to it, Kiawah is the best; it’s not crowded, and it’s beautiful, though they might charge for parking.

On Sunday:

Visit Island Community Church in James Island, or Church Creek Presbyterian in West Ashley. Tell them we sent you.

Congratulations and best wishes, Brandon and Sarah!

3 comments:

AnnneHamlin said...

Hey, don't forget Oackbrook Community Church in Summerville. We just got a new pastor Mark Turner! Exciting times for the church!!!

AnneHamlin said...

The serious surfers go to what is called the Washout while good waves are at the pier by the Holliday Inn at Folly. Don't forget to visit Berts Grocery Store. Before the fire they used to sell an awesome chicken sandwich.

AnneHamlin said...

A great place to eat is Saffrons. They have great sandwiches A nand awesome pastries. A nice place for lunch.