We’re always up for dining and shopping, we love historical architecture and funky public art, and who doesn’t need to get in a good walk? Those are just a few things that make Downtown Charleston a great place to spend an afternoon.
Sightseeing? Start with Haddad Riverfront Park, the city’s amphitheater. Every Friday evening from Memorial Day to Labor Day, you can catch Live on the Levee, the city’s family friendly, free concert series. Bring a chair or blanket and come ready to have fun in this festive atmosphere.
Just a few blocks from the riverfront you’ll find the city’s newest project: City Center at Slack Plaza. This revitalized area features greenspace, a performance stage, and larger than life public art. The plaza connects to City Center Station and KRT public transportation.
From City Center, cross the street and cut through Brawley Walkway to Capitol Street. Here you find Charleston mainstays like Adelphia Sports Bar and Grill, Big Joe’s Bar & Grill, Sam’s Uptown Café, and Pies & Pints. You’ll also find some of the sweetest treats at Ellen’s Homemade Ice Cream, The Peanut Shoppe, and Rock City Cake Company, which also serves as a performance venue!
No trip to Capitol Street would be complete without a stop in Taylor Books. This independent bookseller is THE place to find titles of local and regional interest. Shoppers also enjoy the assortment of magazines, stationery, and gifts. Grab the city’s best “London Fog” tea while you peruse titles and check out the art gallery within the store.
A walk along Quarrier Street east takes you past woodworking shops, antique stores, and the newly renovated Art Emporium. Serving the Charleston community since 1985, Art Emporium offers custom framing services and original works of art from West Virginia artisans.
As you turn the corner at Hale Street you find a hidden gem of a downtown block. Specialty shops, like Stray Dog Antiques and Tony the Tailor, keep this block hopping.
Is it time for dinner yet? Stroll a few blocks along Virginia Street to Summers Street for two delicious destinations. Black Sheep Burritos and Brews, a favorite hangout for locals, features a tasty menu and beer brewed onsite. Noah’s Restaurant & Lounge (reservations recommended) offers eclectic fine dining in a modern and comfortable atmosphere.
Coming to town for a concert? The Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center is the “center of it all” for big name acts and huge indoor sporting events. Shinedown, Keith Urban and Carrie Underwood included a show at the Coliseum on their latest tours. The Coliseum also is a great arena for indoor sporting events like basketball, professional wrestling and professional bull riding. Sign up for the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center’s newsletter to get announcements on the next big artists coming to town.
Fun Fact: The first brick street in the world was laid in Charleston on Summers Street – and you can still see and walk on it.