Posts in this series
A trip to Charleston wouldn’t be complete without an escape from the city to one of the palatial estates in the countryside. While there were several to choose from, we opted for a Visit to Boone Hall Plantation, because we recognized it from the movie The Notebook, based on the Nicholas Sparks novel.
You could easily spend the entire day soaking up the history and taking in the beautiful scenery while learning about how the plantation continues to function. Boone Hall is unique from several other estates I have visited. The owners of the plantation (a brother and sister), still live on the estate. The brother has built himself a house in a quiet corner of the plantation, while the sister still occupies the main house when she visits.
The first thing you will want to do upon arriving through the majestic Avenue of Oaks, is register for a house tour. We arrived early, on a poor weather week day, so we easily signed up for the first house tour of the day. We had a short wait for our tour, so we used that time to explore the gardens in front of the house. The garden is shaped like a butterfly, but you can’t really see the full image without an aerial view.
The tour was led by a young woman who shared both the history of the house and its various owners as well as information about the design and decor. While no photography is allowed inside the home, you are able to visit several rooms on the ground floor.Notice the blue paint on the ceiling. It was said this color paint kept spirits and ghosts out of the homes.
After the house tour, we took a tractor ride through the plantation. Due to rain we were not able to see all of the plantation. We were able to see a variety of fields, pecan trees, and even polo fields. My sister lives on a farm, so I’m sure she felt right at home as we drove by the many crop fields.
The tractor ride dropped us off right by the small cafe and gift shop. Here you can purchase homemade ice cream, and salads created with ingredients from the plantation. We took a short break to have a snack before heading over to the butterfly garden. I only found a few butterflies but it was worth a quick stop.
Following the butterfly garden, we had a more somber experience as we viewed the remaining slave quarters. These small buildings used to house the slaves who worked on the plantation. They are now home to several exhibits sharing information about the culture and history of the slaves.
Then we walked down by the water, to see the beautiful view. Blake Lively and many other couples were married in this very spot. Unfortunately, this is when the rain really began to pick up. We missed the outdoor show, which was moved to an indoor location due to the rain. In just a few hours, we were able to see a lot of what the plantation had to offer. We could have easily spent more time here, had the weather cooperated a bit better.
If you are interested in visiting Boone Hall Plantation, you can buy tickets in advance through TripAdvisor.
Boone Hall is different from other plantations in the area that charge for various activities. One admission ticket will cover all of the activities mentioned above.
Adults (13-64) $24
Seniors (65+) $21
Children (6-12) $12
We rented a car to get to Boone Hall from downtown Charleston. You can also take a tour that provides transportation or use Uber to get to/from the plantation. We were a bit worried about getting home via under, so we decided to rent our own car and make a day trip out of it.
For more information about my outfit, visit my article What to Wear in Charleston.
A Visit to Boone Hall Plantation should be on every Charleston itinerary!