Historic Sites in Charleston, SC for a Romantic Getaway

If you and your partner are looking for a romantic getaway full of charm and rich history, the city of Charleston is a destination you’ll definitely want to add to your list. Perfect for history buffs, the Holy City is home to a variety of beautiful historic landmarks that offer visitors a glimpse into its remarkable past.

These local sites have endured the rigors of American history, some even with romantic stories behind them! From historic homes to beautiful gardens, here are some historic sites in Charleston that make the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway.

Cover image for historic sites in SC for a romantic getaway.
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Are history and romance on your travel checklist for Charleston, but you can’t decide what to do?

If only there was a website dedicated to crafting romantic getaways that included the best historic sites in Charleston as part of the package. Oh wait, this is it! We’ve covered all the stops, from romantic things to do to where to eat and where to stay. So pack your bags and get ready for a trip through time and love in Charleston!

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Dock Street Theatre

Charleston, South Carolina, USA cityscape in the historic French Quarter at twilight.
Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

For couples who enjoy a good theatrical performance, the Dock Street Theatre is a must-stop. Located in the historic French Quarter, it is one of the most historic buildings in Charleston. It has been around for centuries and has seen its fair share of events. 

While the original theatre is assumed to have been destroyed by a fire, it’s been rebuilt over the years and was even registered as the first building in the United States that was designed for theatrical use. It’s also known for having the very first opera performance ever in the country.  

Today, the theatre still puts on shows and performances for the public. You can even make it a date night and enjoy the shows, then head out and take a stroll down the cobblestone streets of the French Quarter. We highly recommend dining at one of the local restaurants so you can enjoy some of Charleston’s famous dishes and the local flavors the city is known for.  

Insider tip: Visit Waterfront Park after dinner for a romantic view of the sunset over Charleston Harbor. You and your love can sit on one of the swings and take in the stunning views while enjoying each other’s company. 

Favorite Places to Eat in Charleston

  • Glass Onion
  • Page’s Okra Grill
  • Bowen’s Island
  • FIG 
  • Rita’s
People on the terrace of a restaurant in a suburban neighborhood in Charleston, SC
Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

Magnolia Plantation

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Take a train or boat ride through the world’s largest collections of azaleas and camellias on one of the oldest plantations in the South. Magnolia Plantation is a beautiful and historic property that gives you insight into the daily life and culture in the early days of South Carolina. 

Named “One of America’s Most Beautiful Gardens,” the Magnolia Plantation is rich in history and a story of love. Built in the 1840s, Rev. John Drayton wanted to build something beautiful for his wife. The story is that she wasn’t too excited to pack up and move to Charleston, so in hopes of making his wife happy and somewhere that she would love to be, Drayton built the gardens for her.

After the American Civil War, Drayton opened the garden to the public. Today, you can take a history tour and learn more about African Americans who lived and worked as slaves on the plantation. The Barbados Tropical Garden, with its vibrant flowers and exotic plants, is perfect for a romantic stroll with your loved one.

Insider tip: For a true spectacle to behold, visit the Magnolia Plantation during Chinese New Year and witness the stunning display of lanterns, performances, and cultural activities. You and your partner will be enamored by the lights, colors, and traditions.

Charleston City Market

The historic Charleston City Market.
Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

Take a trip together to visit the historic Charleston City Market to check out some of South Carolina’s Gullah artisans. Basket weaving in South Carolina has lasted for over 300 years using bulrush, a strong marsh grass that grows in the Lowcountry. The marsh grass was originally used to separate the rice seeds but was then used to create the specialty baskets that the Gullah are known for.

People still make these sweetgrass baskets today, and at the market, you can find hand-woven sweetgrass baskets from local weaving artists. In addition to the baskets, you’ll find a variety of different products made by local artists. This is a great place to learn some history, support local artisans, and maybe even take home a unique souvenir!  

Insider tip: For a truly authentic experience, visit the market in the early morning when it’s quieter. You can watch the artisans create their baskets, and it’s also a great opportunity to strike up a conversation with them and learn more about their craft.

Most important tip: To find the best parking downtown, use the Parkopedia app or website. It’s easy to use and will provide you with all the available parking options in the area. This way, you can spend less time worrying about parking and more time enjoying your romantic getaway in Charleston!

Wentworth Mansion

Couple dancing under archway at Wentworth Mansion in Charleston SC.
Photo Credit: Wentworth Mansion

Take a step back in time as you stay in a hotel that’s been around for ages and even shares the beauty of Charleston’s art scene. While you’re there, you can enjoy fine dining or take a trip to the spa and explore Charleston as you ride in a 1928 Model A Ford Sport Coupe that’s exclusive to guests. 

The Wentworth Mansion has elegance, luxury, and impeccable service. Built in 1886, it’s historic preservation and top-notch amenities make it one of the best places to stay for a romantic getaway in Charleston. Plus, its location in the historic district puts you in the heart of all the action and makes for a convenient base to explore the downtown area and all of its historical sites.

Insider tip: Book a room with a balcony or terrace so you and your partner can enjoy a private outdoor space where you can take in the beauty of Charleston together. Order room service or grab a bottle of wine and spend the evening under the stars. It’s the perfect way to end a romantic day in Charleston! 

FAQs

What are the most historical sites in Charleston, SC?

Fort Sumter National Monument, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired, is considered the most historical place in Charleston, SC. Other significant historic sites include the Charleston City Market, Rainbow Row, and White Point Garden. 

What is the most historic bar in Charleston?

Big John’s Tavern is the most historic bar in Charleston. Originally built in the 1700s, it has stood through many major events and historical moments, including the American Revolution and Prohibition. It is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike to grab a drink and experience some history!

When is the best time to visit Charleston?

This depends on what you’re looking for! If you want to experience warm weather and beaches, the summer months (June-August) are a popular time to visit.

If you prefer mild temperatures and fewer crowds, spring (March-May) or fall (September-November) are great options. 

Winter (December-February) is the off-season, but the prices are lower, and the average temperature is about 60°F. 

Historical downtown area of Charleston, South Carolina cityscape in USA at twilight
Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

History and Romance Await

Charleston’s history has played an important role in shaping the city into what it is today. With these insider tips, it’s sure to play an important role in your relationship! 

Whether you’re exploring historic sites, indulging in delicious food, or simply enjoying each other’s company in a setting, Charleston offers plenty of opportunities for romance. So plan your trip, pack your bags, and get ready to fall in love in Charleston all over again.

Have you visited Charleston before? Share your favorite romantic spots in the comments below! And if you haven’t been, which spot are you most excited to visit? Let us know, and happy traveling! 

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History and romance await!  

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