The Charleston Wine and Food Festival has been a Charleston tradition for more than 15 years. This festival is a tribute to Southern cuisine and hospitality, and it's designed to delight and educate people on local food and dining. Throughout the festival, the world's top chefs, winemakers, storytellers, authors, and others come from all over to share their knowledge and inspiration. The events take place over several days on the first full weekend in March of every year. Many of the 300 artisans hail from the South, like Frank Stitt and Cheetie Kumar, and there are also 100 winemakers and beverage professionals and 100 culinary experts attending. The festival is an extravagant event with more than 130 classes, dinners, workshops, demonstrations and parties that are staged around Charleston's many regions.
The heart of the festival lies in the Culinary Village, which is located in Marion Square. This popular event opens on Friday during the opening ceremony and continues on through Sunday with five hours of chef demos, tasting, sipping, live music, shopping and more. Your ticket for this event is valid for all the offerings found at the Culinary Village. Other events during the festival include special dinners that are hosted by various chefs and famous restaurants, brunch events, workshops, excursions with a culinary theme and other food- and beverage-centric activities.
The Charleston Wine and Food Festival group is a nonprofit organization that gives back in many ways to the community. One such giving opportunity involves the ONE80 Place Training outreach, which is a program that supports local food sources and the culinary community. The participants receive a paid externship during the festival, and the program receives monetary contributions. Other community support involves the offering of scholarship programs and internships and partnering with the PR department students of the College of Charleston for various ongoing projects involving the nonprofit. Besides these direct contributions, the festival also has a significant economic impact on the region during the weekend.
The Charleston Wine and Food Festival is comprised of many types of main events. These include the Culinary Village, which is the main hub of the festival. The Culinary Village takes place on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and features five hours of food and beverage samples and tastings. Signature events are special dining experiences orchestrated in a dining room, and excursions lead visitors through the city on a culinary treat. Brunches and lunches are presentations of more fine food, and beverage workshops and hands-on classes lead attendees on educational demonstrations.
The Charleston Wine and Food Festival is a multiday celebration of food that is presented at many different locations throughout Charleston. The Culinary Village is located in Marion Square, and it opens Friday and continues through Sunday. The other events, dinners, and classes are presented at various restaurants and venues in Charleston, including the areas of North Charleston, Johns Island, Mount Pleasant, the Charleston Peninsula, and West Ashley.
The Charleston Wine and Food Festival takes place over several days, and you can choose any of the events to attend. While you are in Charleston, you will probably also want to see many of the historic sites and visit the harbors and beaches. Using a rental RV from RVshare or driving your own RV is one of the best ways to get around the Charleston area and see everything on your bucket list. The festival is spread out over many locations throughout Charleston, and there are no designated RV parks for the events. However, there are multiple RV parks and campgrounds all around the city and the outlying areas.
Lake Aire Campground - Lake Aire Campground is located only 15 minutes away from downtown historic Charleston. This 35-acre park has spaces for big rigs, and the lake provides fishing enthusiasts plenty of catch-and-release opportunities. Guests have access to a pool, a playground, picnic tables, ice, propane and tiled showers. The park has 84 back-in or pull-through full-hookup RV sites for either 30 or 50 amps. There is free Wi-Fi, and pets are allowed.
James Island County Park - This county park is quite large with 643 acres of lakes and trees. You can rent boats and bicycles, and the whole family can enjoy a dog park and a large playground. For an additional fee, there is a seasonal splash zone water park. There are even shuttles to take you to downtown Charleston. There are both back-in and pull-through RV sites that have full hookups and either 30 or 50 amps. There is a laundry facility, and pets are allowed.
Oak Plantation Campground - You will love the natural beauty of the Oak Plantation Campground, which has been family-owned and -operated for more than 40 years. You will enjoy being close to Charleston and also love the on-site lake. There are 200 back-in and pull-through RV sites that are fully hooked up and have 30 or 50 amps. You'll have access to a pool and free Wi-Fi, and you can bring your pets.
Mount Pleasant KOA - Mount Pleasant KOA has the unique distinction of being located on an antebellum plantation. There are lots of activities like hiking, playing cornhole and horseshoes, throwing discs in disc golf, walking your dog at the dog park and fishing. The campground offers propane and firewood for sale. There are plenty of pull-through sites that have full hookups and either 30 or 50 amps. Guests have access to a camping kitchen, a seasonal pool and free Wi-Fi. Pets are allowed.
Charleston is a large, urban city with all types of lodging available, such as hotels, bed-and-breakfast inns and hostels. The Charleston Wine and Food Festival hotel package page has various hotel recommendations.
If you are traveling in an RV, there are many RV parks and campgrounds that offer safe and comfortable RV sites. These parks are great for using as a base of operations and fun to visit in their own right. They can also be more affordable than a hotel.
Charleston is located in South Carolina between Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach. From Columbia, you would take Interstate 26 into Charleston. From Augusta, you would first take Highway 78 and then I-26. From Savannah, you would take I-95 and then Highway 17.
Once in Charleston, you have many options for getting around. The Holy Spokes bike-sharing program is a great way to move around the city and is a safe mode of travel. The Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority has multiple routes and stops in Charleston. Many of the events offer shuttles, and the city runs a shuttle service as well.
You can find parking lots and garages throughout Charleston, including across from Marion Square next to the Francis Marion Hotel where the Culinary Village takes place. There will be green "P" signs for parking. There is also metered parking on King, Calhoun, and Meeting streets and the nearby neighborhoods.
You can purchase tickets for the Charleston Wine and Food Festival directly from the event's schedule and tickets page. The events are easily sorted and filtered for your convenience. If an event is sold out, this page will link you to a ticket exchange area where you can trade, sell or buy tickets.
Many cultures coexist in Charleston, and it is an ideal setting for a festival that celebrates every nuance of food preparation and enjoyment. South Carolina is also a wonderful state to visit during the spring because of its varied environment of forests, mountains and coastal areas. You will no doubt find many opportunities to take photographs of your experiences at the festival and beyond. Share your best pictures with your fellow travelers by emailing your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may see your photos soon on the RVshare blog and social media channels!
Keep current on the schedule, news and participants for the Charleston Wine and Food Festival by following CHS Wine and Food on Facebook and Twitter and @chswineandfood on Instagram and Pinterest.