It feels like it was just Christmas, but in reality, Valentine’s Day is approaching very quickly. Now, don’t panic if you don’t have plans yet, that’s what I’m here for. There is still time. Whether you are celebrating with friends, your significant other, “sneaky link,”* or want a quiet chill day to yourself, here are some ideas to think about. Valentine’s Day falls on a Monday, which means you get the weekend to choose when you want to celebrate (let’s not talk about the Super Bowl’s scheduling this year). But don’t feel pressured to get a date or feel upset if you don’t have one, all these ideas can be done with anyone you care about. Everything falls in place in due time.
- Address: 404 King St. Charleston, SC
- Hours: Monday-Thursday: 4pm-10pm, Friday-Saturday: 5pm-12am
- Website: https://www.hotelbennett.com/dine/camellias
Located in Hotel Bennett, this perfectly pink champagne bar is a fun place to get into the celebratory mood for Valentine’s Day. If you don’t like champagne, don’t worry, they have a variety of options including rosé, white wines, red wines, and more. There’s also plenty of options if you are not 21–they have non-alcoholic drinks and delectable desserts too! What’s Valentine’s Day without a bit of dessert?
2. Cypress Gardens
- Address: 3030 Cypress Gardens Rd. Moncks Corner, SC
- Hours: Open everyday 9am-5pm
- Website: https://cypressgardens.berkeleycountysc.gov/
If you are a fan of The Notebook or The Patriot, then you’re in for a treat. These beautiful gardens are home to many wildlife, such as alligators, herons, frogs, butterflies, and more. The gardens have a swamp in the center of them where you can go on a guided row-boat tour, where they will tell you history of the property and movies filmed there (you may even see a gator or two). There are lots of walking trails through the preserve to explore and take in the nature as well. If you have seen The Notebook, the iconic scene where Noah and Allie were on the row-boat, surrounded by swans was filmed here. You’ll also see plenty more filming sights around downtown Charleston too! If you feel comfortable enough, you can take a rowboat out on your own and go around the swamp yourself. Admission to the preserve is $10.
3. Kaminsky’s Dessert Cafe
- Address: 78 N. Market St. Charleston, SC
- Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 4pm-10pm, Friday-Saturday 4pm-11pm
- Website: https://www.kaminskys.com/
Kaminsky’s has been my go-to, all-time favorite dessert place since my freshman year of college. It is located right by the market in downtown Charleston. The atmosphere inside is very cozy. They have a variety of options to choose from: cakes, pies, ice cream, coffee/espresso based drinks, alcoholic drinks, milkshakes, and more. You can’t celebrate Valentine’s Day without the perfect dessert, so why not go to the best place?
4. Go out to dinner
We are lucky enough to live in one of the food capitals of the United States: Charleston, SC. The Holy City is full of various types of restaurants, so you have plenty to choose from. From casual to fine dining, you have a world of food at your hands. Grab your friends, significant other, or whoever you want, and support a local restaurant! If you are indecisive like me, here are some of my personal recommendations to try: Graze in Mount Pleasant, El Jefe on King St., Fire Grill on King St., Osaka Asian Bistro on Folly Rd., and Orlando’s Brick Oven Pizza on Daniel Island.
5. Stay at Home, have a Home cooked meal, and watch Rom-coms
If you are looking for a chill weekend or just feel like a night in, this a great option. You can never go wrong with home-cooked meal and some iconic romantic-comedies. If you are making it into a date night, you can find out your significant other’s favorite dish and attempt to make it or you can both choose a meal and cook together. If you are celebrating with friends, you can each bring a dish and make a potluck out of it. Here are some rom-com ideas: Just Go With It, Sweet Home Alabama, Overboard (the original), The Proposal (with iconic Betty White), 13 Going on 30, and A Cinderella Story.
6. Shopping Spree
Charleston is not only a food capital, but also a shopper’s heaven. There are stores galore. King Street is a great starting point. Why not take the day to pamper yourself, do some shopping, and grab a coffee? Make the day about you!
Valentine’s Day is not about being in a relationship. It is about celebrating love. Think about it, there are so many people in your life that you love: friends, family, pets, yourself. I know so many people who get sad around Valentine’s Day due to societal/social pressure because they are not in a relationship. It is ok to not be in a relationship and it is ok to be in a relationship! This day is not about relationships, it is about celebrating how beautiful love is, no matter the form. Take the day to celebrate those you love or give yourself a little extra love, but most importantly do what makes you happy, not what society says is supposed to make you happy. Have a Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! Spread the love <3
P.S. Go get some Love Potion #31 ice cream at Baskin Robbins, you won’t regret it!
*Sneaky Link: Eli Rallo’s coined term (@thejarr on tiktok)