Palmetto Carriage is the oldest carriage company in Charleston and offers private carriage tours. CONTRIBUTED BY PALMETTO CARRIAGE
Photo: For the AJC
Photo: For the AJC

South Carolina: Tour Charleston in carriage or find romance in cabin

A nice meal in Charleston, wine, intimate conversation, chocolate dessert, flowers — all will set the stage. Then, arrange a private horse and carriage for afterward. The stately clop-clop, the historic ambiance, the city all lit up … romance guaranteed! Palmetto Carriage is the oldest carriage company in Charleston and offers evening private carriage tours, tours to dinner and, on Valentine’s Day, the Sweetheart Special.

8 Guignard St., Charleston, 843-853-6125,


Columbia can provide a fine dining experience, a relaxing yet invigorating couples massage, and a nice hotel room for a not-too-distant romantic getaway. The Oak Table has a nice view of the striking South Carolina Statehouse, good food, an excellent wine list and complimentary valet. Afterward, Fuse Massage Therapy provides couples massages ranging in duration from 30 to 120 minutes. Then indulge in a nightcap at the Hilton Columbia Center’s Lounge Bar, before snuggling up in your room for the night.

The Oak Table, 1221 Main St., Columbia, 803-563-5066,

Fuse Massage Therapy, 3711 Seawright Road, Columbia, 803-553-9171,

Hilton Columbia Center, 924 Senate St., Columbia, 803-744-7800,

Devils Fork State Park and Lake Jocassee in Salem, S.C., make a perfect winter getaway. CONTRIBUTED BY PERRY BAKER
Photo: For the AJC


While a citified romantic getaway can be grand, sometimes it’s the countryside that pulls your heart strings. Devils Fork State Park and Lake Jocassee in Upcountry South Carolina offer just the right terrain and, particularly in winter, the seclusion for a romantic getaway. There are gorges, four mountain streams and several waterfalls in this neck of the woods, along with cabins that are available year-round. Enjoy the peace and quiet.

161 Holcombe Circle, Salem, 864-944-2639, 866-345-7275 (cabin rental),


The following seven tips will help you save money and avoid facing debt when you get back from your trip Look for a price-drop guarantee Sites like Groupon and CityPASS can help cut the price of popular attractions if you're visiting a major city When you book a hotel, Consumer Reports recommends bargaining for better rates The cheapest travel day is Wednesday, and you'll also save by avoiding weekend travel Sites like Priceline let you name a price you're willing to pay The cost of meals can add up quick

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