Fodor's Expert Review Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

West of the Ashley River Garden/Arboretum Fodor's Choice

Sprawling, beautiful Magnolia Plantation was established in the 1670s by Thomas Drayton after he moved from Barbados. The extensive garden—the oldest public one in the country—was begun in the late 17th century to be an "earthly paradise," and has evolved into a Romantic-style green space overflowing with plants, including a vast array of azaleas and camellias, and a topiary maze. Take a train or boat to tour the grounds, or traverse more than 500 acres of trails by foot or bike (bring your own). The adjacent Audubon Swamp Garden invites a long stroll on its network of boardwalks and bridges. There's also a petting zoo, a nature center, and a reptile house. Five pre- and post-emancipation cabins have been restored and serve as the focal point of an interpreter-led tour called From Slavery to Freedom. Also be sure to visit the 19th-century plantation house, which originally stood near Summerville. The home was taken apart, floated down the Ashley River, and reassembled here. Leashed... READ MORE

Sprawling, beautiful Magnolia Plantation was established in the 1670s by Thomas Drayton after he moved from Barbados. The extensive garden—the oldest public one in the country—was begun in the late 17th century to be an "earthly paradise," and has evolved into a Romantic-style green space overflowing with plants, including a vast array of azaleas and camellias, and a topiary maze. Take a train or boat to tour the grounds, or traverse more than 500 acres of trails by foot or bike (bring your own). The adjacent Audubon Swamp Garden invites a long stroll on its network of boardwalks and bridges. There's also a petting zoo, a nature center, and a reptile house. Five pre- and post-emancipation cabins have been restored and serve as the focal point of an interpreter-led tour called From Slavery to Freedom. Also be sure to visit the 19th-century plantation house, which originally stood near Summerville. The home was taken apart, floated down the Ashley River, and reassembled here. Leashed dogs are allowed at Magnolia, including on the train and guided tours.

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Garden/Arboretum House/Mansion/Villa Zoo/Aquarium Historic District/Site Trail/Path Green Romantic Views Fodor's Choice Family Forest Farm/Ranch Tour–Sight Museum Village Historical Pet Friendly

Quick Facts

3550 Ashley River Rd.
Charleston, South Carolina  29414, USA

843-571–1266

www.magnoliaplantation.com

Sight Details:
Rate Includes: Grounds $15; house tour $8; tram $8; boat $8; From Slavery to Freedom exhibit $8; Audubon Swamp $8, Grounds $20; house tour $8; train $8; boat $8; From Slavery to Freedom exhibit $8; Audubon Swamp $8, Grounds $20, house tour $8, train $8, boat $8, From Slavery to Freedom exhibit $8, Audubon Swamp $8

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