One might have a tougher time finding 10 unromantic things to do in Charleston! This 340-year-old city exudes Old South charm with its cobblestone streets, Spanish moss in the twisting live oaks, and nightly fog that flows in off Charleston Harbor. Once the largest North American port in the New World, Charleston has a fascinating history, and its visibly around you in this South Carolina favorite.
Check in to the Romantic Wentworth Mansion
There's no better place for a couple to get a true taste of Southern hospitality and tradition than the historic Wentworth Mansion. Although built shortly after the Civil War, this immaculately restored Charlestonian estate holds true to the spirit of the 19th century with all the luxuries of the modern age. Enjoy award-winning Southern cooking at breakfast and dinner as well as complimentary wine and champagne in the evenings.
Charlestonian Charm — Photo courtesy of Wentworth Mansion
Snuggle up in a Horse-Drawn Carriage
The best way to see downtown Charleston is the same as it was three centuries ago - by horse-drawn carriage. Fortunately for visitors looking for a scenic tour and an evening cuddle, Charleston is one of the carriage-ride friendliest cities in the US. While many downtown districts offer tours, Charleston's are more authentic since the age of the buildings match the mode of transportation and cars are more tolerant of their plodding predecessors.
Many different routes are provided and the city limits the number of carriages-per-route to ensure open passage. Drivers give a history lesson while passing local points of interest but the scenery speaks for itself. Outfitters such as Classic Carriage Tours depart from the Market area on a regular basis.
Horsin' Around Chucktown — Photo courtesy of Explore Charleston
Get on the Water
The second best way to get around Charleston is on the water that surrounds the city. Flanked by the Ashley and Cooper Rivers, Charleston Harbor provides a great place for visitors to see the city from a different angle. While tours are offered to Fort Sumter, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired, and other historically significant landmarks, but couples can snuggle in the cool ocean breeze and see all the colors of Rainbow Row on a basic harbor tour. Cruise ships like Spirit Line Cruises depart from the waterfront along Battery Park.
Explore Beautiful Plantations
Downtown Charleston is filled with historic buildings and sites, but the outlying areas are rich with old plantation homes that preserve the Old South culture. Former rice plantations have been restored to their original beauty with surrounding gardens and fountains. Boone Hall Plantation in Mount Pleasant and Magnolia Plantation & Gardens in West Ashley offer daily tours. For lovers of wine and spirits, make a day of it with a trip to Wadlamaw Island to visit Irvin House Vineyards the Fire Fly Vodka distillery.
Magnolia Gardens in Bloom — Photo courtesy of Magnolia Plantation & Gardens
Relax over a Romantic Drink or Meal
Charleston is famous for its seafood and Southern cooking, and there's no shortage of romantic restaurants and bars to enjoy a romantic meal and drink. You could dine like kings and queens every night of the week for a year in the city without going to the same place twice. Whether you want classic Charleston cuisine like shrimp and grits at 82 Queen or something new and upscale like tapas at Cypress, a romantic meal for two awaits throughout the downtown district. Enjoy a drink at the Vendue Inn's Rooftop Bar for a spectacular view of susnet and the city.
Dine like a Queen — Photo courtesy of 82 Queen