Charleston Day Trips - Penelope the Penelope Style

Penelope the Pineapple checked in last week to celebrate the opening of Charleston's newest breakfast and lunch restaurant, Kitchen 208. Penelope is accustomed to being the belle of the ball, but she was upstaged by Charleston Mayor Joe Riley cracking an egg for the crowd on opening day. Oh, well. During a lunch of chicken n' waffles on the Kitchen 208 patio, Penelope overheard lots of talk about easy day trips from Charleston. Penelope saw lots of great sites during her first Charleston vacation, but didn't do much exploring outside of downtown. So, she hopped in the car and set off for some off-peninsula sightseeing. Can you guess where she went? Stop One: Penelope the Pineapple visits Middleton Place Penelope went to Middleton Place in the fall and decided to start her excursion at another plantation nearby. After cruising on Highway 61 with the windows down, Penelope arrived here looking a little windblown. She went inside the plantation home looking for a place to freshen up her makeup, and quickly realized that this 18th century home is virtually untouched by time. Meaning: there is no powder room indoors. In fact, this large, lovely home on the Ashley River is completely empty. Where is Penelope? Penelope at Drayton Hall Penelope is at Drayton Hall, one Charleston's most beautiful and historic plantations - in fact it's the only plantation home on the Ashley River to remain completely in tact despite time, hurricanes, earthquake and developers! Construction started on this three story Georgian-Palladian style home in 1738. Seven generations of Draytons lived in the home until the National Historic Trust took over stewardship of the property in 1974. They have done an incredible job of keeping this gorgeous home looking... well - gorgeous!  Penelope took a private Connoisseur Tour with senior interpreters during her visit. She saw some very rare Drayton family photographs, documents, and sketches and fell in love with the home's amazing architectural features - especially those ornate plaster ceilings. Penelope loved her visit and admired those towering magnolia trees' bright white blossoms. A sign of sweet summertime in Charleston... Magnolia at Drayton Hall Stop Two: Penelope the Pineapple at Wadmalaw Island plantation Penelope got a hankering for a cold, refreshing Southern drink. She went straight to the source and paid this Wadmalaw Island plantation a visit. Where is Penelope? Penelope is at the Charleston Tea Plantation. This 127-acre farm just celebrated their first flush  - or first harvest - in May with an all-day music festival. The Charleston Tea Plantation is the only tea garden in America, and summer is the best time to take a tour. Production is now officially in full swing. Charleston Tea Plantation Penelope took a trolley ride through the gardens then ventured inside the factory for a tour. She now knows how her favorite drink gets from "field to cup." Tea taste testing at the plantation is not only allowed, but encouraged. Penelope's favorite flavor? Peach. Stop Three: Penelope the Pineapple at Johns Island On her way back downtown, Penelope drove through the beautiful, rural roads of Johns Island. She bought fresh tomatoes and watermelon from Johns Island's famous roadside farm stands and stopped to climb this 65-foot tree. Where is Penelope? Penelope is at the famous Angel Oak tree. Some say this towering live oak is the oldest tree in the south - others say it is the single oldest living thing east of the Mississippi River.  Experts estimate the Angel Oak is at least 1,400 years old. Live oak trees are abundant here in the South, but there is nothing comparable to standing beneath this live oak's 17,000 square feet of shade. Admission to see the tree is absolutely free. Penelope says this is a Charleston must see! Thanks to all who played along this week! Tune in again on Monday June 17th for the next round of Penelope's summer adventures! Remember- Penelope the Pineapple will be in Charleston until July 10th. If you guess where she is each week, you’ll be entered in a drawing to win a Charleston getaway of your own (an overnight package for two at the Kings Courtyard Inn and a $30 gift certificate to Kitchen 208)! Follow along on Facebook for updates. Learn more about the contest here.

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