I took a field trip to the Magnolia Plantation and Gardens on Wednesday with my friend Hunter. He is in town for spring break and we wanted to do something outside and a little educational. Since I have never really visited any of the tourist attractions around the city, a plantation seemed like a lot of fun. Hunter and I both grew up in Rock Hill, near where Historic Brattonsville is located. As children, we visited this historic site many times, and I think Hunter was even a “costume interpreter” once upon a time. I remember women churning butter in historic dress, touring the blacksmith’s cabin, watching the sheep sheerer, and walking out onto the battle field of Huck’s Defeat. Needless to say we were not prepared for the Amusement Park that is the Magnolia Plantation and Gardens.
I enjoyed our visit though because it was so crazy. There were all sorts of animals running around in a petting zoo, a crowded tour of the big house, a brief, but amusing boat tour, and then acres and acres of camellias. The camellias, I’m guessing, are the reason tourist flock to this plantation. The swamp walk is really cool, and we were some of the last tourists of the day and had the entire swamp to ourselves. I think that the swamp walk is free to the public because the entrance is before the ticket booth, so I recommend taking an afternoon to walk it. I should have done a little more research though before we spent our $36 each.
It was a great experience for me. I live in a city full of history, but
I really don’t take advantage of the attractions. I am just now learning to appreciate the local history and how the city of Charleston promotes itself. I guess I’m pretty lucky to have lived once in house that was over 150 years old, even though it lacked all modern amenities.