Destination Charleston: 34 Items for a Southern Getaway

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Boasting beautiful stretches of beaches, renowned seafood, rich architecture, and a serious helping of genteel manners, Charleston is the perfect destination for those seeking measured Southern comfort. Immaculately preserved, the city is bustling with history while also experiencing a boom — it’s now a culinary destination with James Beard–nominated restaurants. And on historic King Street, you can find a number of antique or jewelry shops mixed with Lululemon and Billy Reid. JetBlue has also begun flying direct from New York to Charleston, so lose the typical Manhattan black wardrobe and opt for colors and floral prints. Click ahead for 34 items worth packing for a trip to Charleston, plus some items you may want to bring back home.

A floral dress or two is a must-pack item for a trip to Charleston. Think forties-inspired tea dresses and upholstery-like florals.

Folly Beach, Sullivan’s Island, and Kiawah are all nearby, so you’re best off packing multiple swimsuits. A classic one-piece can be later worn with a long skirt for a breezy summer look.

Go with beach accessories in neutral tones — this is not a neon beach party parade. A simple tote is also smart for walking around downtown. 

Charleston is a great city for walking, so pack some comfortable shoes. Checks and gingham add some color into your step while a white jean or a tailored linen pant keep it pulled together nicely.

Blouses are go-with-everything items, but lose the sleeves when the weather is truly hot and sunny.

What better excuse do you need to bring colorful printed pajamas? This top, from Sleepy Jones, is also a great beach cover-up.

A fun night out, perhaps dinner at Husk or McCrady’s, calls for opulent jewelry and metallics. Dress up a classic white cotton shirt (i.e., breathable) with a shiny pink foulard pant, a gold chunky heel, and a swipe of raspberry lipstick.

Your beauty kit needs only a few essentials for the humid weather: a good sunscreen; waterproof mascara; and a multifunctional moisturizer for hair, nails, and skin.

Food and drink are major reasons to travel to Charleston. While there, be sure to pick up some Jack Rudy Cocktail Co.’s locally made tonic water or a beautiful oyster knife. For a truer culinary history, opt for Charleston Receipts, the country’s oldest Junior League cookbook.

To Charleston! 34 Items for a Southern Getaway