Monday, June 25, 2012

Summer Vacay Part 1: Chucktown

So our "Tour of the Southern Coast" summer vacation is going to broken up into a few posts here on the blog. It's just too much for one entry! I actually had hopes of putting together a vacation video in addition to all our photos, but I just couldn't do it. Being the travel agent/ tour guide/ navigator/ photographer (and... oh yeah, I'M suppose to be relaxing on vacation too!) was plenty to keep me busy without being the videographer/ producer/ editor too. :)

Our family of three spent the past week visiting a number of places along the southern coast of the U.S. including Charleston, Savannah, Cumberland Island, and St. Augustine. The first stop on our weeklong vacay was Charleston, affectionally called Chucktown.
I have always wanted to visit Charleston so I was super jazzed to finally check it out. Charleston is a great city, full of over 300 years of history and coastal charm. We stayed in a historic inn called The Andrew Pinckney which was originally built in the 1830's.

Fully renovated in 2008, this quaint, downtown, 41-room inn is the perfect place to stay within walking distance of all the downtown attractions.

Yes, that's a man walking a horse down our street!
(Disclaimer: All the pics will be Instagram pics. I could not bring myself to haul around my giant DSLR the entire vacation so I stuck to the iphone. I also used a new iphone contraption called the Owle Bubo to get the wide angle shots like the one above.)
Al outside the hotel.

Allie enjoying her comfy bed.
Our first stop in Charleston was for lunch and I had fried green tomatoes, a southern delicacy, for the very first time.
They were pretty good and tasted a lot like fried pickles minus the vinegar flavor. I also had toast, which is maybe my favorite food of all time.
Since we were on vacation I took a vacation from the FAID. I wanted to enjoy my time with family and not be stressed out trying to find clean (and rare) foods. Being able to eat thick toast made on white bread and covered in butter and jam was the perfect way for me to kick off vacation. :)

While in Charleston we visited a lot of historic places such as the old city market.

Local foods for sale.
While walking around downtown we saw all sorts of things including the world's largest pizza box on a motorcycle sidecar. Random!
Chillin' in a coffee shop.
And in a courtyard.
We also took a horse-drawn carriage ride through the city and learned a lot about the history and architecture.

Ike, our tour guide.
Ready for our ride to begin!

All three of us LOVE ivy especially when it is growing up walls and covering structures. We were happy to find out that this stuff you see below (and that is very common on homes and buildings in Charleston) is called Japanese creeping fig. It hugs walls like ivy, but doesn't destroy the brick like ivy. We totally want this stuff growing on our house!
Old city jail
King Street

Zach creeping around the creeping fig. Ha!
That night we went to a new restaurant for dinner called Lowcountry Bistro.
This restaurant is owned and operated by the same people who run 82 Queen, a well-known fine dining establishment. Lowcountry Bistro serves up a lot of the same dishes as 82 Queen in a more casual setting right off of Market Street.

South Carolina pride
Zach got the chicken and waffle, another southern delicacy, that I had never tried. This was incredible! So rich and flavorful. 
For the summer I have given Allie an old point-and-shoot camera of mine. Allie loves photography and I love giving her the opportunity to be creative and gain experience using a camera and composing shots.

She has rapidly become exactly like me, taking pictures of EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE. This sort of drives Zach crazy, but he's happy those cameras bring us joy. :) He took this shot of Allie and I taking pics of the same thing which was a common occurrence on our trip. :)
And here's what we were taking pics of... more Japanese creeping fig!
Me and my favorite girl in the world.
More of beautiful Charleston

After dinner we headed to one of our favorite yogurt chains, Sweet Cece's. We love this place and usually only get to enjoy it when we're around Nashville/Franklin, TN.
Their toppings were displayed in a silo. So inventive!

Yum. I love vacation. :)
Our hotel in the evening. So cozy!
Tuesday morning, Allie and I went and had breakfast on the hotel balcony overlooking the city. It was so fun to relax in the cool of the morning over breakfast while listening to jazz and watching horse-drawn carriages go by on the streets below. (Can everyday start like this? :))
I had granola with "real" milk. I actually love almond, soy, and rice milk now, but I felt like such a rebel having real cows milk. (My FAID has made me pathetic. LOL)
We spent half of Tuesday continuing to explore Charleston's charming landscape. Allie loved the alleyways in-between buildings. Here's here favorite.
The city of steeples.
Gas lanterns are everywhere.
Beat up brick
Waterfront Park

Cozy townhomes on cobblestone streets. We all loved walking the streets and looking at the gorgeous homes.
Rainbow Row

Lots of live oaks
Love this wall texture.
Walking along the battery

More houses
Calhoun mansion

Our favorite house, of course!

 More of Rainbow Row
 Zach saw one of his favorite cars on this street. We love old Land Rovers.
Carriages are everywhere!
For lunch we went to a mediterranean place called Tabbuli. It is definitely one of the coolest, open-air restaurants I have ever been to.

After our scrumptious lunch we said goodbye to Chucktown and made our way to Savannah, another gorgeous southern city. Stay tuned for more from our trip!

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