Charleston's Best Outdoor Dining Spots

Charleston, SC, has a ton of outdoor dining experiences. We have compiled the ultimate list of the Charleston area's best outdoor dining locations!  

Red's Ice House

The original Red's Ice House is located on historic Shem Creek in Mount Pleasant. Red's has a casual vibe and is the perfect spot to enjoy the Lowcountry wildlife and scenic Charleston sunsets with friends and family.

 
 

Saltwater Cowboys

One of Shem Creek's newest restaurants, Saltwater Cowboys opened the last weekend in February and is here just in time for the beautiful Charleston weather. Located on the mouth of Shem Creek this locally owned restaurant has a killer view, massive outdoor dining area, and a beautiful rooftop deck. 

 
 
 

The Shelter Kitchen + Bar 

The Shelter Kitchen and Bar is one of the Mount Pleasant areas favorite hangout spots. Locally owned and operated since 2012, they have gained a reputation of offering an amazing locally sourced menu. Open for lunch, dinner, and brunch on the weekends The Shelter is the perfect location to grab a quick bite to eat or drink with friends. 

 
 

Poe's Tavern 

Located two blocks from the beach on Sullivan's Island, Poe's Tavern brings out some of the beautiful historic charm of the Charleston area. Poe's is known for their fabulous and fresh burgers, fish tacos, and salads with a laid-back beach vibe. 

 
 
 

The Obstinate Daughter 

Another one of Sullivan's Island top dining locations, The Obstinate Daughter offers the whole package. Beautifully designed and decorated, The Obstinate Daughter is a Southern restaurant that is influenced by French, Italian, and Spanish cuisine and supports the lowcountry by using fresh and local ingredients. 

 
 

Sullivan's Restaurant 

Sullivan's Restaurant opened in 1988 and has been family operated for over 29 years holding a special place in locals hearts. The casual atmosphere and affordable menu with a large selection of seafood makes it a great place to bring the family or go on a date.

 
 

FUEL Cantina  

Located at an old filling station in the heart of downtown Charleston, FUEL Cantina is an island inspired restaurant known for their authentic jerk sandwiches. In 2012, FUEL was on The Food Networks: Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. FUEL offers daily specials and a dog friendly patio equipped with TV's and music making it an attractive location for people of all ages. 

 
 

492 

Located at 492 King St. in a building that dates back to the late 1800's and is believed to have been a Leon's & Bluestein's clothing store, Four Ninety-Two holds a large historical significance and has a great story behind its restoration. In 1989, Hurricane Hugo wrecked Charleston. The building was damaged and remained abandoned, until a local restaurant group purchased the property. Restoration and preservation were an essential part of the renovation, including historic colors and reuse of any original materials to keep the aesthetic of the vintage building. Four Ninety-Two opened in 2015 and is the perfect place to enjoy award winning cuisine, cocktails, and mingle with friends and family. 

 
 

Leon's Oyster Shop 

Opened in the summer of 2014, Leon's Fine Poultry & Oyster Shop is another downtown Charleston restaurant. Located in a restored historic building that was once a body shop and belonged to Leon Ravenel who served the Charleston area for many years. The building revisits much of the original industrial design and also houses some remaining memorabilia from Leon himself. Serving Southern friend chicken, fresh oysters, soft serve ice cream, and an excellent selection of beer and wine Leon's is a great place to dine for lunch or dinner. 

 
 

Community Pizza House 

Community Pizza House in North Charleston located across the street from the Tanger Outlet Mall is a great place to grab a tasty bite during a shopping trip, work lunch break or even for dinner and drinks with friends. Community Pizza House is known for its craft pizzas cooked in a custom wood fired oven, with indoor, outdoor, and rooftop dining space.  

 
 

Mixson Grille

Mixson Grille is located within the Park Circle Community in North Charleston and is apart of the Mixson Club - a modern take on a fun and friendly social club with a pool and other activities for the entire family. Mixson Grille uses only fresh and local ingredients and has its own garden producing seasonal vegetables and herbs right outside the restaurant. The modern and beautiful atmosphere make Mixson Grille the ideal location couples, families and people of all ages. 

 

Madra Rua Irish Pub

Located near Park Circle in North Charleston, Madra Rua Irish Pub instills an authentic Celtic aesthetic making you feel like your in a pub in Ireland itself. With accents of dark wood and cozy nooks this Irish pub has gained a loyal local following and is the best hangout spot in the area for European football fans. With offerings of traditional Irish fare such as corned beef and Shepard's pie Madra Rua has been recognized as the #1 pub and bar in North Charleston by TripAdvisor.  

 
 

Triangle Char + Bar

Another local staple in the Charleston community is Triangle Char + Bar with locations in West Ashley and Mount Pleasant. Triangle Char + Bar has developed their vary own "trianglosophy" which has allowed them to stand out and be known for having one of the best burgers in Charleston. Using only local, grass fed beef from cattle raised in South Carolina as well as regional pastures they strive to serve fresh food and be productive members within the local community. 

 
 

Al Di La

Owners of Al Di La Giuseppe and Fabio left their native country of Italy in the early 90's and spent two decades producing world class Italian cuisine in Manhattan. Keeping their Italian heritage and roots the owners decided to move from the Big Apple and open an authentic Italian restaurant in West Ashley. With offerings of Italian wines, specialty crafted cocktails and fresh handmade pastas Al Di La is sure to bring you back time and time again. 

 
 

The Lot

Offering a modern twist on American fare, The Lot on James Island creates dishes using local ingredients and strives to make each meal a special experience for its guests. The Lot has great indoor and outdoor dining space and creates its menu using the seasons highest quality meats and produce. 

 
 

Bohemian Bull

Inspired by the local culture and lifestyle of James Island and the surrounding Charleston area, the Bohemian Bull has a casual relaxed feel that makes it the perfect spot for family and friends to enjoy great food and wind down. Open 7 days a week, Bohemian Bull offers excellent happy hour and daily specials and brunch on Sunday mornings. 

 
 

Tattooed Senorita 

The Tattooed Senorita located off of Folly Beach Rd. is a laid-back roadside gem serving creative Mexican cuisine and cocktails. Providing ample amounts of outdoor seating this hip spot is a locals favorite place to grab lunch on the way to the beach or stop for dinner and drinks on the way home.  

 
 

Pier 101

A beach lovers ideal restaurant and bar, Pier 101 is located directly on Folly Beach Pier offering beautiful ocean side views. Folly Beach Pier has been hosting beach lovers since the 1930's and it is Pier 101s goal to bring back those carefree beach vibes. The menu and decor is intended to reflect the decades past and allow visitors and locals to enjoy wonderful food and the beach side view.  

 
 
 

Loggerheads Beach Grille 

Loggerheads Beach Grille, is another excellent spot on Folly Beach with a great outdoor environment. Loggerheads is committed to providing a family-friendly atmosphere and serving fresh seafood, burgers, and drinks at affordable prices. With a great outdoor patio, scenic views and live entertainment daily Loggerheads is the place to be after a long day at the beach. 

 
 

Bowens Island Restaurant 

Proudly serving the Charleston area since 1946, Bowens Island Restaurant is one of the most local seafood joints you can find. Serving long time locals and visitors alike Bowens aim is to serve you simple, yet excellent seafood. Located 5 min from Folly Beach, this long standing business is famous for its local seafood and uninterrupted view of the river and its beautiful wildlife. 

 
 

Photo: Getty Images

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