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There is so much to see and do in Charleston.  We stayed a week and it just wasn’t long enough. We would stay longer but we have to move on to Myrtle Beach so Eric can enjoy his guys golf trip that was rescheduled by the floods last year.

Our first stop was to visit friends that were staying at Francis Marion National Forest. We arrived at the visitor center in time to watch the feeding of the red wolfs, an endangered species living here in captivity.

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We also spied a baby alligator in the pond as we walked by.

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There was a nice exhibit of local plants and animals inside the visitor center.

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The next day we toured downtown Charleston and the Charleston City Market Place.

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We got some delicious boiled peanuts and also some fried peanuts  (you eat them whole, shell and all).

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Watched some basket weaving. Then enjoyed a good southern dinner.

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Next we took a tour of the Charleston Tea Plantation. We learned that there is only one tea plantation in all of North America.

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After that we picked some super sweet strawberries. 

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Then headed off to tour Firefly Distillery and Deep Water Vineyard.

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This was the best distillery and wine tasting we have been to yet. It is on a farm and there are animals to entertain the kids, trees to climb, and picnic tables to have lunch.

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If you go ask for Charlotte. She did a fantastic job pouring samples!

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The next stop was Charles Pickney National Historic Site Who is Charles Pinckney?? We discovered he was a founding father of our country. He helped frame and shape our constitution and signed it. He is called the forgotten founder.

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The historic site includes a tour of his home on Snee farm. They show a great educational video and have a lot of displays full of information about his life and the constitution. They even had a mock constitution that the kids all signed.

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This was a very educational and informative historic site. Definitely recommend stopping here when you are in the area and it’s free to top it all off.

After a busy day we enjoyed a wonderful dinner with our sweet friends and had a great time playing Witts and Wagers to end the night.

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Fort Sumter

Next was a tour of Fort Sumter where the first shot of the Civil War was fired on April 12th, 1861. We had another family from Roadschool Moms join us and we had a great time.

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There are 2 locations to catch the ferry. Liberty Square is the best since it has a great visitors center loaded with displays and information.

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The ride to the island where Fort Sumter is located was a little pricey, but totally worth it. While on the ferry they give a narrative tour of the harbor. Once you get to the fort there is a museum with lots of information about the fort and the Civil War.

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The kids worked on their Jr Ranger books on the ferry.

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Here is an interesting quote from Abraham Lincoln from the visitor center.

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After the tour of the fort we walked around downtown Charleston and rode on the free trolley.

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There were some interesting houses downtown. So many were leaning and crooked, some were actually leaning on their neighbors houses.

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Walking downtown is a great way to spend a day in Charleston.

Fort Moultrie

Our next tour was Fort Moultrie located on Sullivan Island just outside Mount Pleasant.

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There is a lot of history here. This fort was used in the Revolutionary War and was still in use until just after WW2.

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This fort was a lot bigger than it seems. There were underground tunnels and storage rooms. The kids all had a blast exploring the tunnels and hiding places here.

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Fort Moultrie is the only area of the National Park System where the entire 171-year history of American seacoast defense (1776–1947) can be traced.

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They have a Ranger led tour or a self guided tour of the fort.

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The kids worked on their Jr Ranger books and we enjoyed a picnic lunch.

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Charleston was a city filled with history and a great place to visit. There was so much more to see and do!

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