Are you looking for a quick getaway with kids? Charleston, SC offers so much history, charm, outdoor adventures, and good eats! I’m going to share our top 5 activities in Charleston, and a few of our favorite spots to grab kid-friendly food.
Earlier this month our family’s flights were cancelled to head out to Denver, CO. With no flights available for days on end, we decided to throw our luggage in the minivan, and start driving South. Charleston, SC was an easy choice for a spontaneous winter getaway! With lovely weather and all that glorious sunshine that we are missing up north in Delaware, tons of photo opportunities and activities for the kids, it’s the perfect destination for a family road trip!
For lodging, we grabbed a cheap off-season Airbnb as our home base in Mount Pleasant, SC, just about 15 minutes outside of the city. It was low-key, and even had a trampoline and tree-swing in the backyard for the kids. A kitchen is always important when traveling with kids so we can save money and prepare our own meals when we are at the home base!
With just 3 short days in Charleston, we packed the days in with lots of exploration around town. These are my top 5 family-friendly activities.
Boat Ride to Fort Sumter
2. Battery Park, Charleston SC
After the boat ride to Fort Sumter, we needed to let the kids get some outdoor playtime and we headed to Battery Park. This is a beautiful area in Charleston right on the water, with loads of old-growth oak trees and Spanish Moss. Makes for a beautiful photo opp! The kids had fun playing around the trees and running around the park.
3. King Street Shopping and Dining
We had some of our favorite food in Charleston at Hero Doughnuts! Walking along King St. was so fun to see many shops and restaurants. We were getting HUNGRY after all this outdoor time and so much walking. The doughnuts at Hero are pillowy, buttery, and fluffy. I’ve never tasted anything like them! Even better was the fried chicken sandwich on their homemade buns with their special Hero sauce. I’m still dreaming about that sandwich! Good thing I grabbed some bottled sauce to bring home that deliciousness with me!
When I heard that The Notebook was filmed at a plantation just 1 mile away from our Airbnb in Mount Pleasant, SC, I knew we had to check out this place. The entry fee may feel a little pricey, but it was 100 percent worth it for all of us to learn from their wonderful guides and presenters. We learned about the history of plantation and slave life, walked in the original slave quarters, and took a tour of the lovely property. Our kids learned so much about the difficult life for the enslaved people, and the unique Gullah culture of the region. The kids enjoyed climbing a 600-year old oak tree in the backyard of the main home, and we soaked up lots of sunshine and fresh air.
5. Folly Beach, South Carolina
Our trip wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the shore, even if the winter weather was still chilly. We had a blast searching for shark teeth and seashells at low tide. The day we were there we didn’t find too many shells, but I have read it’s possible to find many shark teeth at this beach so that’s why we chose it! It was still beautiful and made for wonderful photo opps to visit at low-tide and sunset.
Besides these 5 top activities for families in Charleston, just walking around town and exploring all the historic homes filled our days. Heres a few faves from our in-town adventures!
Kid Friendly Dining in Charleston, SC
We had some great meals in town, and I highly recommend checking out these places if you are traveling with kids!
Ru Ru’s Tacos & Tequila (E Bay St)
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams (King Street)
OMG Candy Store (King Street)
Hero Doughnuts (Calhoun St)
Mario’s Italian Ristorante – authentic Italian and wood-fired pizzas SO yum! (King St)
If you are traveling to Charleston SC with your family and are looking for a destination family photographer, I’d love to capture your family in this charming city. I specialize in lifestyle family photography wherever you may be traveling with kids.