We base alot of what we do when travelling on the information provided in these forums. Here is our trip report for our two night stay in Charleston.
We booked the Best Western King Charles Inn on Meeting Street based on the location and the reviews on this site. We absolutely loved this hotel. The location was perfect. We parked our car and walked everywhere. The market was maybe 10 minute walk tops. Lots of great restaurants in the area, again only a 10 minute walk tops.
We had driven 17 hours straight and arrived at noon to the hotel. Our room was ready, so we unloaded our car and headed out for some lunch. We walked down to the market area and had lunch at the Charleston Crab House. Food was good as was the service. We went back to our hotel after lunch and a short walk for a rest. We headed back out again around 5:00 pm to tour the area. There was next to no one on the streets. We couldn't believe how empty it was..this was a Thursday night. We walked around for a couple of hours, the homes were all beautifully decorated for Christmas. We stopped into Sticky Fingers around 8:00 for some beer and wings. Beer was good and cold, but the wings were just okay. Not too impressed. They also close at 9:00 pm because business is slow.
Day two, we took the Palmetto carriage tour at 10:00 am. We had received a coupon package from our hotel at check-in that had a $4.00 off coupon if you took a tour prior to 10 am. What a great way to spend an hour. Can't remember our tour guides name (was a former history teacher), but he was excellent. Would highly recommend a carriage tour. We had route #2 this tour. We would probably do this again with the hopes of seeing another route. There is so much to see and so much history. We had considered a walking tour, but we didn't have enough time this trip.
After the carriage ride we bought some sweetgrass baskets and gifts from some ladies in front of the court house. Really nice items and reasonable prices. We stopped and had lunch at the Southend Brewery and Smokehouse. My husband likes to try local beers so we went in. The restaurant is very appealing, but the service was poor. They weren't very busy during the lunch hour, this was a Friday, so I'd hate to see what kind of service you'd get on a busy day. The food was okay, the beer selection wasn't great for a so called Brew Pub. We headed back to our hotel to drop off the things we purchased and back out to walk the streets. We went down to the waterfront park where the Pineapple Fountain is. This is a pretty area, would love to see it in the spring. The weather was a little cool while we were there, but we didn't mind it at all. A light jacket and scarf is all we needed.
We met up with some friends in the evening for dinner at Jestine's just around the corner from our hotel. We were a little disappointed with all the rave reviews, I guess we were expecting better. I had the pecan crusted chicken, was delicious, but my sides were cold. The others in our party had the seafood platter. Not all that good either, and their sides were cold. Not sure that I'd return there. We headed out for the evening stopping at a couple of different places for drinks. There were alot more people out Friday night, the streets were very busy.
The next morning we headed out looking for breakfast. Jestine's isn't open for breakfast, so we headed up to Toast...long lineup there, so we went back to our hotel and packed up. We had a buffet brunch at a hotel on US 17 (was across from the Holiday Inn Express), with our friends. Food was very good, hot and fresh.
We really enjoyed our visit to Charleston. It was a very short visit on our way to Florida for Christmas. We had stopped once before in Charleston and wanted to return to see more of this beautiful city. It was also an opportunity to see our friends who live nearby. The people are very friendly and make you feel welcomed, that we hated to leave. With so much to see and do here, we can't wait for our next visit.