Did you know that Charleston is a dog-friendly city? We had no idea just how dog-friendly it was, but it turns out it’s one of the most dog-friendly cities we’ve ever been to.
We spent the week after Christmas through the New Year in Charleston for the second time this year. When we went the first time, we flew and didn’t even think about bringing our dog, Murphy. Sad, I know. We really do try to bring him everywhere. So when we decided to go to Charleston for a second time, we decided to drive so we could bring him and it was the best decision we could have made! Here I’ll share some of the best dog-friendly things we found, and stay tuned for a later blog post where I’ll talk more about the rest of our road trip.
So, without further adieu, the top things we found to do with your dog in Charleston!
HIT THE BEACH
This was by far Murphy’s favorite part of our entire trip! We stayed on Isle of Palms. The beach is amazing, and best of all, dog-friendly. Dogs are allowed on the beach at all times on a leash and can be off-leash during set windows of time in the morning and just before sunset. We brought him down there basically everyday and he went just crazy running up and down the beach, in and out of the water. These beaches are a dog’s and human’s paradise, for sure. Do be sure to double check the rules of each of the beaches and specifically for the time of year you’re going as some of the rules change by the season.
VISIT A TEA PLANTATION
Did you know that Charleston is home to the only tea plantation in North America? We had a full day set aside for seeing the sights, and we couldn’t have been more happy with our decision to visit the tea plantation. The only disappointment was we assumed that there were no dogs allowed, so we didn’t bring Murphy and it turns out they are in fact allowed! Lesson learned, we will now always check. This place is out of a story book. The plantation has history that dates back to the 1600’s, the building is adorable, the grounds are beautiful, and they have a trolley tour that you can take around the property. This is a perfect day trip that is filled with entertainment, education, and relaxation—think sitting back, sipping tea, and taking in the beautiful plantation all around you.
See the Oldest Tree East of the Mississippi
Ok, again we were bad dog parents and assumed that the Angel Oak tree was not a place that dogs were allowed. In fact, we did look and found conflicting information when we did. We decided to play it safe, so we didn’t get caught having to choose between skipping out or leaving Murphy in a hot car (which we would never do), but know that once you get there well behaved dogs on-leash are allowed. And, don’t miss this tree! It is incredible and if you’re in Charleston, it’s a little out of the way, but totally worth it. I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s also a famous tree…have you seen the Allstate commercial?
Like I said, at the beginning of this post, we were so pleasantly surprised with how dog-friendly Charleston is, and that includes downtown. Charleston is known for its food scene, trendy hang outs, and roof top bars. We spent a day exploring the city and didn’t feel restricted at all by what we could do having Murphy along. Many restaurants and breweries are dog-friendly. We were even able to take Murphy along on one of the classic horse drawn carriage ride tours around the city. He loved it, although I think he wished those horses would have gone a bit faster so he could take in more sniffs faster, like when he sticks his head out the car window.
Have you been to Charleston? Do you have any favorite dog-friendly spots? Tell us in the comments!
Hi! I’m Theresa. I live with my husband Travis, Goldendoodle Murphy, and cat Tonka in Minnesota. I’m a marketer, adventurer, and hobby photographer. We love to travel as much as we can, and spend most of our free time outdoors hiking, camping, skiing, or at our lake cabin in Wisconsin.