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10 Top-Rated Romantic Weekend Getaways in South Carolina

Written by Alison Abbott

Warm hospitality and charm abound when you head below the Mason-Dixon line. Nowhere is it more prevalent than in South Carolina. From the pristine beaches of the coast to the rugged landscape of the Blue Ridge Mountains, South Carolina sets the perfect backdrop for a romantic weekend getaway. Add into the mix a selection of sprawling plantations, which have stood for centuries, landscaped with perfectly manicured lawns. Bonus points for its temperate climate, allowing visitors to enjoy the Palmetto State year-round. Rich in history and genteel charm, tourists agree that the state provides the perfect combination for a romantic escape with your loved one. Adventurers, foodies, history buffs, sun worshipers, and sports enthusiasts rejoice; this is a state that checks all the boxes and offers something for everyone. Here are our top romantic getaways in South Carolina.

1. Charleston

Downtown Charleston

Downtown Charleston

There are many good reasons Charleston is voted year after year as the number one destination in the United States. Immaculately manicured, secret gardens lie hidden behind decorative iron gates. Colonial-era, restored mansions line the streets, and horse-drawn carriages offer tours along the cobbled stones. This is a city made for walking, and tourists can spend hours exploring on foot. Combine that with low country cooking from award-winning chefs, unique shopping experiences, historical museums, and a gorgeous beach within a short drive, and you've hit a winning formula for a destination that all but guarantees a romantic escape.

Charleston has been steadily raising the bar on low country cooking. Many award-winning chefs are opening new restaurants and garnering national accolades. You don't have to venture very far to find tasty menus featuring fresh and local ingredients. The food scene is outstanding. Biscuits and pimento cheese are part of the Charleston experience, and you'll find some of the freshest seafood in the country. Perfectly located, the Harbourview Inn is an excellent choice for your romantic getaway. Many candle-lit dinners are within walking distance. A free city trolley (in case of rain) stops right outside the hotel's door. Make sure to indulge in the quintessential Charlestown experience and catch a sunset from their outdoor rooftop space, which often has music in the evening.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Charleston, SC: Best Areas & Hotels, 2018

2. Beaufort

The Beaufort coast

The Beaufort coast

This laid-back southern town is a great setting for a romantic getaway for the couple that likes to spend time exploring a centuries-old city. It's located on Port Royal Island and is an architecture-lover's dream. The scenery is picture perfect in this historic town, where you will see an impressive display of antebellum architecture.Take a stroll around town, and you will find a ton of unique eateries and shops to pass your time. After fueling up at a local café, you can take a romantic stroll down along the waterfront; walk on the boardwalk at the Sands in Port Royal; or walk across the Woods Memorial Bridge, made famous for its cameo in the movie Forrest Gump. We recommend staying in a romantic bed-and-breakfast, and in this town, there are plenty of them, but none as special as the seaside B&B Anchorage 1770 Inn. This award-winning boutique property is made for relaxation and taking in the breezes from a perch on the beautiful front porch.

3. Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach pier at sunset

Myrtle Beach pier at sunset

Although many families return to Myrtle Beach for their family vacations each summer, in the off-season, couples head to the area for a completely different environment. From October through April, the laid-back Myrtle Beach comes alive, and twosomes have discovered a great destination for a romantic getaway. In the fall, many attractions, shops, and eateries are still open to enjoy, but without the many tourists and families that summer brings.

There are a few resorts where you can enjoy the beach, world-class dining, and entertainment without leaving the grounds. Try North Beach Plantation, where you can indulge in the luxurious spa; heated pools, both indoors and out; and many other amenities. Dine at the resort's excellent restaurants, and for the couple who loves to golf, Myrtle Beach doesn't disappoint. Grab a couples' tee time at one of the many golf clubs, like Arrowhead Country Club or Beachwood Golf Club.

Accommodation: Top Resorts in North Myrtle Beach

4. Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Rippling sand in Kiawah Island

Rippling sand in Kiawah Island

This pristine resort offers the perfect backdrop for an active couples' romantic getaway. With five golf courses to choose from, you can spend your days teeing off and spend your nights relaxing in luxury at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort. This is also the #1 tennis resort in the world, so even if you never picked up a racket, you can enjoy some couples time learning a new sport. There are also tons of other activities like kayaking, nature tours, beaches, and resort events that let you have fun while spending time together. It's also close to Charleston, where you can head for the day to explore.

5. Hilton Head

Boats bobbing at Hilton Head

Boats bobbing at Hilton Head

With its miles of sandy beaches, a laid-back coastal vibe, panoramic sunsets, and plenty of couples-friendly activities, any twosome will find a welcome retreat here. Natural beauty is a highlight. Walk along the beach or take a guided tour in one of the many estuaries, where you can see magnificent wildlife like shorebirds, dolphins, and river otters. If cruising is more your speed, take a trip through Calibogue Sound, where the sunset lends the perfect backdrop for romance.

Visitors can rent a villa and enjoy ultimate privacy or stay at one of the two dozen hotels on the island, like the luxurious Inn & Club at Harbour Town. Here, you will find a relaxing retreat brimming with five-star amenities. The 60 deluxe rooms are located within The Sea Pines Resort's 5,000-acre property.

6. The Blue Ridge Mountains

Table Rock State Park and Pinnacle Lake

Table Rock State Park and Pinnacle Lake

If the mountains are more your travel profile, there is nothing more romantic than a stay outside Salem, in the Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains. The beautiful and peaceful scenery sets the mood for a restful, relaxing stay with your partner. Vacation at one of the most beautiful resorts nestled in the mountains — Three Pines View. Close to Lake Keowee, Devils Fort State Park, and with proximity to town, this boutique lodge puts the focus on healthy living.

The unique guest rooms have spectacular views and lend to the romantic ambiance. A gourmet breakfast is included, and much of the produce comes from the property's garden. The Blue Ridge also offers a plethora of activities to choose from for the active couple. You can hike in Table Rock State Park or pack a romantic picnic lunch to enjoy in one of the many green spaces for which the area is known.

7. Folly Beach

Folly Beach

Folly Beach

Couples who share a love of the water and a lot of action, will love Folly Beach. From fishing off the Folly Beach Fishing Pier to walking along the beautiful shoreline, finding romance here won't be difficult. Strolling along the water is the perfect time to steal a kiss. Active couples can rent paddleboards and kayaks, or even learn how to surf, and there's a good chance you'll see dolphins during water activities. For a unique date night take a sunset cruise to the famous Morris Island Lighthouse. Book a romantic stay at the Water's Edge Inn, where you can soak in the hot tub and enjoy a relaxing southern sunset. The beach is only a quick golf cart ride away, and the friendly staff brings guests back again and again.

8. Greenville

Greenville skyline

Greenville skyline

Halfway between Charlotte and Atlanta lies the charming, romantic getaway of Greenville. As the city slowly reveals its charms, visitors discover a destination that offers everything a couple in need of a romantic retreat could ask for. There are delightful shops, couples-friendly activities, and so much more to enjoy year-round.

Walk the quaint downtown, where you can rent a bike at Reedy Ride and take a leisurely spin through Greenville and along the Swamp Rabbit Trail. After you work up an appetite, you can get a sampling of different restaurants with a foodie tour, always a great way to spend time with your partner and learn the inside secrets of a new vacation spot. The downtown Hampton Inn and Suites Riverplace is a great spot to finish off your romantic day and rest and recharge to tackle more of what Greenville has to offer. The rooms are spacious, the location is prime, and the hospitality is amazing. Be sure to ask for one of the rooms that overlook the Reedy River.

9. Columbia

The South Carolina State House in Columbia

The South Carolina State House in Columbia

Columbia is not only the capital city of South Carolina, it's also filled with romance, history, and charm. It's a great place for an active couple to visit. Here, you can take a canoe ride on the Columbia Canal, walk the trails of Saluda Shoals Park, or kayak in Riverfront Park with your partner. Visitors looking for history can stop by the South Carolina State Museum and learn more about life in South Carolina through the ages. You can also proclaim your love to each other by carving your initials in the "Love Tree" in Guignard Park in Cayce. There are plenty of spots to choose from for a romantic dinner for two after a day of exploring, including a plethora of dining and entertainment choices in "the Vista," a historic district with many restaurants and surely a menu for every palate and taste. For a stay in the hip, downtown area, choose Aloft Columbia Downtown. Rooms come with refrigerators and free Wi-Fi. 10

10. The Red Horse Inn, Landrum

Campbell's Covered Bridge in Landrum

Campbell's Covered Bridge in Landrum

If your idea of an escape is visiting a property that offers all the bells and whistles, consider the Red Horse Inn in Landrum. This destination, at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is made for couples looking to get away and recharge. Romance is practically guaranteed at The Red Horse Inn, one of America's Most Romantic Inns. In addition to numerous awards and accolades, for the last twelve years, it has received the coveted AAA Four Diamond Award. It is easy to see why. Between the extensive dramatic views and the couples-friendly activities, like horseback riding or in-house couples massages, you might never want to leave the grounds. Many of the six freestanding cottages and six additional rooms include fireplaces, so you can get cozy with your love. Some even have private decks with hot tubs. Turn up the romance. Set the mood by ordering roses or chocolate-covered strawberries to be waiting for you on your arrival.

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