about us

The Forecast is Summersalt’s global content hub for all things travel, packing, style, and discovery, packed with informative and inspirational pieces for (and featuring!) women who are going places.

Finding Southern Charm in Charleston

Samantha Korenfeld

Charleston, South Carolina is all about history. If you’ve got an appetite for traditional shrimp and grits or gorgeous architecture, it’s all within walking distance in this quaint city. I went to Charleston for a mother-daughter trip and found the perfect balance between planned adventure and relaxation. If you’re looking for a charming weekend getaway, add Charleston to your destination wishlist.

Courtesy Samantha Korenfeld

Where to Stay

Downtown Charleston is walkable and safe. It’s hard to go wrong with any hotel or B&B near the Charleston City Market, but John Rutledge House Inn has a great outdoor space and is even pet-friendly. The hotel’s namesake, Rutledge, was a Supreme Court justice, who wanted to create a beautiful home for his wife, Elizabeth Grimke. Over 200 years later the exquisite marble features and delicate iron details of the home are still stunning (and totally Insta-worthy). Not to mention, the hotel offers complimentary afternoon tea and hors d’oeuvres—a sweet surprise that feels perfectly southern.

Courtesy John Rutledge House Inn

The hotel offers complimentary afternoon tea and hors d’oeuvres—a sweet surprise that feels perfectly southern.

Where to Eat

Normally I am not a tour person, but there are so many great places in Charleston that I’m glad my mom booked us a food tour with Bulldog Tours. My skepticism disappeared with that first bite of bacon-wrapped shrimp, and our guide did a great job of teaching the group about Charleston’s history and culture through each dish.

We also had an amazing dinner at Hyman’s Seafood, a family-owned restaurant started by a Jewish immigrant from Eastern Europe. The restaurant has fed tons of famous guests (Joe Biden! Phish! Cindy Lauper!) and is a well-known staple in downtown Charleston. Their food is affordable and delicious — whether you’re craving fresh fish, fried chicken, or surf and turf. They also have an entire gluten-free menu and Glatt Kosher offerings. Pro-tip: join their membership club for a free crab dip and start your meal off with some downright deliciousness.

If you want to do some on-the-go snacking, Market Street Sweets offers freshly-made pralines and candy. There you’ll find the old-fashioned charm of a penny candy store, where their amazing singing candy-slingers will draw you in from King Street with their flawless harmonies. Candy and karaoke? Yes please.

Courtesy Samantha Korenfeld

What to Do

Downtown Charleston is known for its indoor-outdoor market, where you can walk through countless blocks of artisans, crafters, and antique sellers offering unique souvenirs for anyone on your list (including yourself).

Courtesy Unsplash // Hayes Potter

My mom and I went to the Charleston City Market market every day because the vendors constantly change. One of the standout cultural aspects of Charleston is the influence of Gullah culture. The Gullah people originate from Africans brought as slaves to states like South Carolina and Georgia during the 1700s. This resilient and impactful group have done an incredible job keeping their African culture alive through traditional crafts, lowcountry cuisine, storytelling, and even a creole language despite suffering through generations of violence. We were in awe of their iconic sweetgrass baskets and bright, joyful art paintings and prints.

Courtesy Samantha Korenfeld

Another standout was JK Designs, a jewelry boutique that blew me away with their delicate pieces. You can choose your style of necklace (my mom and I both chose lariat), as well as the exact stones you’d like, and then they will custom make it for you on the spot. You can pick anything from freshwater pearls to summery turquoise for your one-of-a-kind piece and I haven’t stopped wearing mine since.

Another awesome surprise was improv at Theatre 99. Usually I feel awkward watching improv (because of the potential for second-hand embarrassment), but these guys absolutely killed it. They have a really solid team of performers and include audience suggestions without bringing  anyone onstage (phew). The show features an intermission so you can go to the bar to get a mid-show drink—where options include an entire bottle of wine.

Last but not least, if you want to spend some time near the water, take a 30-minute drive out to Folly Beach, where you can splash or surf in the water, or lay beachside with a cocktail and relax. Once your tan is just right, throw a little duster on over your suit to walk around the shops or grab some amazing food. Black Magic Cafe has the best huevos rancheros I have ever had.

Courtesy Samantha Korenfeld

Whether you’re looking for a great place to travel solo, with your partner (or mom!), or with your girls, Charleston provides the perfect balance of culture, cuisine, and charm for a great little getaway.