Charleston Guide From A Blogger’s Perspective

CharlestonAs you may know if you follow Louella Reese on Instagram, twitter, or Facebook I attended the #SBScon {Southern Blog Society Conference} a little over a week ago in Charleston with 74 other bloggers. A weekend in my favorite city, hanging out with some seriously fabulous bloggers {including my roomies Corbin from Classy South Blog + Emily from The Style Hunter}, getting to meet my blogger gal crush {Cathy from Poor Little It Girl}, and learning a whole lot about blogging was one of the incredible experiences and one I cannot wait to repeat again next year! With that said, I had a few requests from y’all to share a little more about Charleston and all of my top picks for things to do and see while in the charming southern city. There is so much to see and even more to eat {it’s a foodie’s dream location} so I picked a few of my favorites and absolute must see places, things to do, places to eat, shop, and stay in my opinion!

Where To Stay


John Robinson Cookhouse – I came across this gem of a place last May on VRBO when Joshua, a group of friends, and myself headed to Charleston for a long weekend. The pictures don’t do this place justice! It is the coziest little house and the perfect location to everything. While it was too hot during #SBScon to walk to and from the event locations we did walk to shopping + out to dinner each day/night. Not to mention this spot is pure perfection for bloggers {you can’t beat the scenery and super easy access to the bathroom for reapplying make up + fixing the hair haha}. The cottage even offers an adorable patio for drinking mimosas in the morning and soaking the gorgeous surroundings!

The Mills House – this hotel is a dream! The outside walls are pink perfection with the prettiest courtyard you ever did see. Not only will this hotel take you back in time to experience old school Charleston but it’s decor, service, and prime location will make you feel like Charleston royalty, who wouldn’t want that?

Where To Shop


King St. – You absolutely cannot not go wrong spending an afternoon on King St. There are endless shops up and down both sides of the streets. Offering you both local boutiques and everyday brands such as J.Crew, Loft, Kate Spade, and more. I personally like to hit up the local boutiques that I otherwise wouldn’t get to visit while in Charlotte. I love picking out unique items and adding a little southern charm to my wardrobe!

My Picks: Finicky FillyDandy Boutique, Moon and Lola

Where To Eat


Two Borough’s Larder – my all time favorite Charleston restaurant! There hasn’t been a time that I’ve been in Charleston and haven’t ate here at least once. It’s honestly the place I head to first. There isn’t a single thing I don’t love about this rustic home to restaurant eatery! Each time I try to venture out and try something new {this time it was the Bowl-O-Noodles and it’s now officially my favorite} but I never pass up or venture out from the Cookies & Milk for dessert. It’s the cutest little dessert and absolutely delicious!

My Picks: Bowl-O-Noodle $10 + Cookies & Milk

Macintosh – one of the first restaurants I tried in Charleston during one of our mother daughter long weekend trips. After the first bite of my vegetable plate I was hooked, vegetables have never tasted so good! Macintosh has become a a definite go to one and a place we know will never disappoint! Also doesn’t hurt that the outdoor seating is amazing on a cooler evening plus Cocktail Club is right above {check below for more information on that}.

My Picks: “The Mac” Ground CAB Burger  $15 +  Candy Bar in a Jar $8

Cypress – my mom and I love this place! Mainly because of the upstairs bar that allows you to look out over the restaurant {we love people watching haha} and the fabulous cheese + cured meat plates they have to offer. We love sitting at a table upstairs with champagne and the cheese + cured meat plates while people watching and reminiscing on our gals weekend in Charleston {it’s usually our stop for the last night there}. They also have one of the largest wine collections – it’ll blow you away!

My Picks: Cheese Plate $15 + House Cured Meats $15 + Banana Split $9

Poogan’s Porch – my top pick for brunch! The home just screams Sunday morning brunch with family & friends. Whether you’re outside on the porch or upstairs sitting by one of the fire places. It’s the perfect cozy atmosphere that makes you want to eat some delicious {and sinful} southern fare. This is definitely one of those places that I really indulge and don’t have a single regret about 🙂

My Picks:  Cinnamon French Toast $10 + Biscuits & Gravy $5

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams – during #SBScon it was literally a mission of mine to make it to this ice cream parlor. I wanted to go the last time I was in Charleston but didn’t make it so there was no way I was letting that happen again after hearing so many amazing things. Well those rumors were right!!! Jeni’s may or may not {totally was} the best ice cream I’ve ever had. I honestly have day-dreamt about it multiple times since…it’s that good. So make sure you go!

My Pick: Brown Butter Almond

King Street Charleston

photo 4

What To See/Do

The Battery – this is one of those spots you cannot miss. From the view of the water to the gorgeous trees in the park to the lavish homes that will absolutely take your breathe away. This little section of Charleston is true Charleston charm that’ll take you back in time and fill your camera with dream home inspiration.

Carriage Ride – one of my favorite things to do in Charleston when the weather is just right! A carriage ride is one of the best ways to learn about Charleston and see a lot of the city. I’ve gone on carriage rides several times and each time I learn something new, I love it! The guides keep it fun and entertaining while giving you an incredible history lesson.

Charleston City Market – this is kind of like a bucket list item for Charleston. You HAVE to do it! It definitely can take up an afternoon but so worth it. The local artists are incredible with their paintings, jewelry, unique crafts, and more. Plus this is where you can pick up some authentic sweet grass baskets {and see locals weaving them right in the market}. So grab a cold lemonade {or Arnold Palmer} and hit up as many booths as possible!

Where To Grab A Drink


Cocktail Club – my all time favorite bar in Charleston. One because the atmosphere is amazing with the higher than high liquor wall with a library latter, open walls, cozy couches, and live music on the weekends. Two they have the BEST Pimm’s Cup around {which you have to try, it’s my favorite drink + the most refreshing liquor beverage you’ll ever try}. Three their bar fare is pretty creative and quite delicious!

My Pick: Pimm’s Cup

The Rarebit – this retro restaurant and bar is everything! The decor alone is worth the stop. Then there’s the famous Moscow Mules they serve is cooper mugs that’ll pretty much rock your world. They’re food is also out of this world if you want to grab a bite while cheers with your gang {or sweetie}. They also have a wonderful Pimm’s Cup if you decide that’s your favorite after hitting up the Cocktail Club 😉

My Pick: Moscow Mule $8

The Rooftop if you’re looking for a bar with a view, this is your spot! Allowing you to see shops, restaurants, and the water while sipping your favorite drink {a champagne spritzer is my choice here}. Dancing also occurs in the evening with live bands some nights + a pool with little fountains shooting across that creates a pretty fabulous atmosphere.

My Pick: Aperol Spritzer $9



  1. Sara
    July 7, 2015 / 3:46 pm

    Thank you so much for this guide! I really appreciate you taking the time to do this little recap & recommendations! I cannot wait to plan my trip, and I will definitely be stopping in to these places 🙂

    • Laura
      July 8, 2015 / 9:42 pm

      You’re so welcome gal, I’m really excited to see what you think of Charleston once you go. You’ll have the best time 🙂

      xo Laura Leigh

  2. July 8, 2015 / 3:21 pm

    My husband and I stayed outside of Charleston for a night on our honeymoon. We stayed at Middleton Place in the “penthouse” and it was incredible! If you like unusual architecture, old homes, and nature – I highly recommend it! It was about 30 or so minutes outside of the city though.

    • Laura
      July 8, 2015 / 9:53 pm

      Gal that sounds fabulous! I will definitely be checking that out – thank you so much for sharing

      xo Laura Leigh

Leave a Reply