If you’re an American or have been living in the U.S. for some time, and have never visited Charleston, South Carolina, stop everything you’re doing right now and just book a flight or plan a road trip there. I’m serious. I don’t say that only because I’m French and this city looks and feels like Western Europe with palm trees. They also have good food. It’s just the most beautiful city I’ve seen in America (I mean, America, the continent) so far and a perfect destination for a long weekend trip. It’s also very affordable.
If you’re traveling with a van on an extended trip like Henri and I, and are looking for the hardcore hobo cheapest / free options, you can camp in the Francis Marion National Forest about 30 miles north of Charleston. There are at least five options for campsites, including a couple that are good and free. We stayed in the Honey Hill Recreation Area, it was a very good free spot for a couple nights. It is then an hour drive to Downtown Charleston and there is a Walmart on the way to refill your cooler or get some cheap South Carolina gas.
Finally, if you want to see a plantation and don’t want to pay the $20 fee that most plantations in Mt. Pleasant charge, head over to the Hampton Plantation State Historic Site. The visit costs $7.5 but you can wander around the park for free.
It was a bit like traveling back in time.
We saw a lot of trees.
Some places REALLY looked like an interesting mix of Paris and Nice with more sun.
Some houses were not exactly straight.
Plants and trees everywhere.
My favorite house. It’s just so simple, so beautiful.
If you have any questions about Charleston or want to know more about the places we feature, write in the comments.