Charleston

Charleston's Plantations

Plantations were a staple of the economy, culture and lifestyle of the pre-Civil War South. Experience both natural beauty and history when you visit these 5 plantation destinations in Charleston.

Frank Kehren, flickr

Boone Hall

The Spanish moss-draped canopy of the majestic “Avenue of Oaks” leading to Boone Hall transports modern-day travelers back 250 years to Charleston’s plantation past. Major John Boone’s son planted the twin rows of evenly spaced oaks in 1743 to showcase the family’s prosperity, and they are just one of many unchanged features found at Boone Hall today.

Tour the Manor House and gardens, listen to traditional African tales from a Gullah storyteller, and visit 9 original slave cabins, some of the few still standing in the Southeast. Crops have grown continually here for more than 300 years. Today, visitors can pick strawberries in spring and pumpkins in fall, as well as buy seasonal produce at the plantation’s farm stand.
Boone Hall

1235 Long Point Rd, Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

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Phone: +1 843-884-4371

anoldent, flickr

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

The Drayton family founded Magnolia as a rice plantation in 1676, and several gardens date back more than 325 years. Boat tours usher visitors through flooded rice fields, providing glimpses of the alligators, herons, turtles and egrets that call the waterways home.

Or opt for a “nature train” that winds past slave cabins, 19th-century rice ponds and an ancient Native American ceremonial mound, while providing glimpses of rare wildlife. Encounter rarely seen animals and plants as you walk the network of wooden boardwalks and bridges that crisscross the haunting Audobon Swamp Garden, or get up-close-and-personal with furry, feathered and scaly friends in the Petting Zoo and Nature Center. Something is in bloom at Magnolia year-round, making any season perfect for a visit.
Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

3550 Ashley River Rd, Charleston, SC 29414

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Phone: +1 800-367-3517

Drayton Hall

Drayton Hall

Preservationists have kept this Georgian-Palladian masterpiece in near-original condition while avoiding the lure of modern conveniences, such as electricity, air conditioning and plumbing. The house remains largely undisturbed by modern life and has withstood wars, hurricanes and earthquakes since it was built between 1738 and 1742.

Enjoy a guided tour of the historic home, explore the nearby river and marshland, and visit A Sacred Place, the oldest documented African-American cemetery in America still in use. Interactive programs take visitors on a journey from Africa to America and from slavery to emancipation, and explore the 7 generations of the Drayton family who lived here.
Drayton Hall

3380 Ashley River Rd, Charleston, SC 29414

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Phone: +1 843-769-2600

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