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Magnolia Plantation & Gardens, Charleston

4.1
#2 of 83 in Historic Sites in Coastal South Carolina
Must see · Garden · Historic Site
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One of the country's oldest plantations, Magnolia Plantation & Gardens dates back to 1676, when locals Thomas and Ann Drayton built a house and a small formal garden on this site. The family owned the rice plantation for the next 15 generations, utilizing slave labor to build a network of irrigation dams and dikes. Today, the estate operates as a museum, offering an interpretive program designed to teach visitors about the history of both slave and free black workers at this site. Explore the plantation's natural setting by taking a marsh boat tour or strolling through the gardens, where you can see centenarian cypress trees and camellias dating from the 1840s. Work out when and for how long to visit Magnolia Plantation & Gardens and other Charleston attractions using our handy Charleston attractions planner.
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Magnolia Plantation & Gardens reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
7,093 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Beautiful grounds and house (exterior only since we did not do the tour) Excellent for bird watchers Expensive as the general admission only includes the grounds, the house tour and other tours were.....  more
    Beautiful grounds and house (exterior only since we did not do the tour) Excellent for bird watchers Expensive as the general admission only includes the grounds, the house tour and other tours were.....  more »
  • Fascinating place to visit!!! We were a large crowd of (100) senior citizens but they easily accommodated us. The house was awesome, the gift shop nice. We did not have enough time to fully take.....  more
    Fascinating place to visit!!! We were a large crowd of (100) senior citizens but they easily accommodated us. The house was awesome, the gift shop nice. We did not have enough time to fully take.....  more »
Google
  • My family had a lovely visit to Magnolia Plantation. We came early on a Wednesday, and were able to quickly purchase tickets and get started with exploring the grounds. The plantation’s massive Live Oak trees are picturesque, and the house itself is well maintained. While waiting for our tour, we visited the conservatory which was lovely. We ended our tour in the gift shop which had a wide assortment of lovely items. We chose to pay for the Nature Tram since we had folks in our group who couldn’t walk far. It was a great choice since we were able to see the grounds and gain some historical perspective without walking a lot. On the tram we were able to see the slave houses, several rice fields, and many wild animals including alligators, birds, and turtles! Although we didn’t go into the house or take the From Slavery to Freedom tour, I imagine these are as well done as the Nature Tram and well worth their money!
  • Had a nice afternoon here with the family. It wasn't peak bloom for anything in late September but there were still plenty of flowers and the overall scenery with the Spanish moss draped trees was stunning. We did the rice field boat tour, which was very informative. The rice fields were given back to nature and are now just wetlands with a few remnants of the old farm. We saw tons of beautiful birds and alligators. The pontoon boat had a roof, so we were out of the sun. Definitely should be on your Charleston list. If you are a local, call ahead to learn about what's in bloom and what time of year is best to visit.

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