Every year in early June, Charleston‘s Sweetgrass Festival in Mt. Pleasant’s Waterfront Park (about a 15-minute drive from the historic district, on the other side of the Cooper River) provides a fascinating introduction to sweetgrass baskets and Gullah culture more broadly. (In 2017, the festival will take place on June 3.) Charleston’s beautiful sweetgrass baskets have a long history. The techniques used in weaving, or sewing, these baskets were brought by slaves from Africa more than 300 years ago. On plantations, the baskets were used to winnow grains; following Emancipation, they were crucial for storing dried grain, okra, fish and other foods during a time of extremely limited resources. At the festival you can purchase baskets from over 20 artisans, as well as learn more about the techniques used to make them and Gullah culture more broadly. The itineraries created by the AFAR Travel Advisory Council include six focused on the city’s most interesting celebrations and festivals. Read more at AFAR Journeys.