"Now y'all surely know that all of Charleston is a garden," our guide says with a grin. "It's everywhere you look." She notices the enchantment in our eyes while we sidestep camellia petals coloring the sidewalk and wander fragrant secret alleys. The city's charm weaves seamlessly throughout its blooming streets this month like the wisteria twining its handwrought iron fences. But we don't just steal peeks at these gardens and homes. We're welcomed inside to enjoy the beauty.
61st Annual Festival of Houses and Gardens: www.historiccharleston.org or (843) 722-3405. Dates: March 13-April 12. Tickets: $45 for one day.
Tips for the Tour
- Wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
- Bring your camera, but remember you can't take any pictures on private property.
- Garden tours sell out more quickly than the home tours.
- Bring a notepad to record ideas.
- Pack bug spray in case the biting gnats get hungry.
- Restrooms aren't readily available on the tours.
A NOTE TO OUR READERS: "Charleston's Best Season " is from the March 2008 issue of Southern Living. Because prices, dates, and other specifics are subject to change, please check all information to make sure it's still current before making your travel plans.