After a day kayaking, you’ll take it somewhat easier today. A 45-minute drive from Cottages on Charleston Harbor will bring you to the only estate where tea is cultivated in the United States. While attempts to cultivate tea in South Carolina date back to the late 1700s, they weren’t successful until 1888. The Charleston Tea Plantation
is now owned by the Bigelow Tea Company, which maintains it as a showcase to introduce visitors to the process of tea cultivation and fermentation. After you have toured the plantation, continue on to another unique farm—the Deep Water Vineyard
, the only winery in the Charleston area. After touring the operations and sampling some of its products, from dessert whites to fruity reds, you can enjoy a picnic lunch on the estate, accompanied by a bottle purchased from the winery.
After lunch, head back to Charleston, with a detour on the way to visit the Caw Caw Intepretive Center
. Six miles of boardwalks lead visitors over wetlands in this area that was once part of several rice plantations. It was also the site of important battles during the Stono Rebellion, a slave uprising in 1739 when South Carolina was still a colony. Now the area is best known as a prime bird-watching spot, rife with songbirds and waterfowl.
Return to Charleston for a casual Sunday evening dinner at Harold’s Cabin
, which opened in 2016. One of the restaurant’s co-owners is actor Bill Murray, but locals come not in hope of a celebrity sighting and instead to enjoy the delicious Lowcountry dishes which taste even better on the rooftop garden.