Rainbow Row & the Historic District: Tour of the Colorful Houses in Charleston

April 9, 2018 32 Comments

I LOVE how colorful Charleston is! Last week I posted about the best places to shop and eat in Charleston, and I love that even the stores and markets are colorful. Charleston is the closest thing I’ve seen to Burano Island in the U.S. so far. So if you want to see some beautiful pastel-colored houses without paying for a flight to Italy, you should take a tour of the colorful houses in Charleston! 🙂

Rainbow Row & the Historic District: Tour of the Colorful Houses in Charleston

If you’ve seen my posts on houses in New Orleans and Mobile, Alabama, you’ll know how much I love historical houses. I’ve been to Charleston a few times, and seeing all the pretty homes is probably my favorite thing to do there! Charleston is known for its colorful houses, and you’ve probably heard of Rainbow Row– the row of colorful Georgian houses on East Bay Street. If you like taking tons of photos like me, I think you’ll like Rainbow Row.

You can take a tour of the area if you want, or you can just take a leisurely walk by the houses like my friends and I did. For a little history on the homes, they were built around the 1740s by merchants who would use the ground floors for their stores and lived in the floors above. During the Civil War, the houses were neglected until a woman named Dorothy Porcher Legge bought some of the houses and painted them pink. People started buying the homes and painted them other colors, but no one seems to know exactly why they were all painted rainbow colors. 

Purple house in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Green house in Charleston

Historic houses in Charleston

Blue house in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Rainbow Row is actually only 14 houses, but there are tons of other colorful historical houses in Charleston! We walked along the water and into the historic district to see some more houses.

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

These houses along the water were built “sideways” to help with airflow in the house before air conditioning was invented. The “front door” actually leads onto the porch before you go into the actual front door!

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Rainbow Row Charleston

Rainbow Row Charleston

Historic houses in Charleston

Historic houses in Charleston

Rainbow Row Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Alley in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Rainbow Row Charleston

Garden in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Pink house in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Recognize this building from the post where I announced my upcoming trip? 🙂

Colorful houses in Charleston

Colorful houses in Charleston

Restaurant in Charleston

Anyone else wish they could afford any of these gorgeous homes? Even if you can’t afford them, if you love beautiful historic houses as much as I do, I definitely recommend taking a tour of the colorful houses in Charleston! 🙂 It’s one of the best places to take photos in the city!

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32 Comments

  1. Reply

    Kate

    March 20, 2019

    These buildings are stunning! Need to add Charleston to my bucket list now! 😀

    http://www.violetdaffodils.com
    xx

    • Reply

      Julia

      March 20, 2019

      It’s such an amazing city! 🙂

  2. Reply

    Sam

    November 14, 2018

    Oh wow, they are such pretty houses! My Mother In Law has visited Charleston a few times and always said how beautiful it is, but this is the first time I’ve seen some pictures. Now I want a colourful house with a big wrap around porch! 🙂

    • Reply

      Julia

      November 14, 2018

      Charleston definitely has some great home inspiration! 🙂 I hope you’ll be able to visit, it’s even prettier in person!

  3. Reply

    Tyas

    May 30, 2018

    I am a huge fan of historical houses and the colorful colors in Charleston make me love them even more! You captured them prettily, Julia 🌷

    • Reply

      Julia

      May 31, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂 Historical houses are my favorite!

  4. Reply

    Char

    April 14, 2018

    I’d never heard of Charlestown before this post but it reminds me so much of the Caribbean! I am definitely adding this gem to my forever growing travel list now!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 14, 2018

      I can see the similarities! It’s definitely one of the more colorful towns in the U.S.!

  5. Reply

    Nana

    April 14, 2018

    Lovely pictures! Looks like such a pretty place! would love to visit one day.

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 14, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂

  6. Reply

    Mateja

    April 14, 2018

    It’s so interesting to read how one lady’s actions consequently transformed whole street! That’s so fascinating. Hope to visit Charleston one day and enjoy this unique place. Beautiful images! 💜

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 14, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂 Isn’t it awesome the difference one person can make?

  7. Reply

    Maggie

    April 13, 2018

    I LOVE Charleston! My brother went to college there so I’ve spent a lot of time there (lucky me 😍) You captured some beautiful pictures!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 14, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂 I wish I could visit more often!

  8. Reply

    Jayne

    April 13, 2018

    OMG these heritage homes are gorgeous. I had no idea there was so much colour in Charleston. I’d love to visit one day.

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 14, 2018

      It’s a beautiful city to visit!!

  9. Reply

    Sarah Shumate

    April 13, 2018

    Wow! Your pictures are stunning! I’d love to live in the little pink house with the black shutters! Or any of these actually… 🙂

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 13, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂

  10. Reply

    Shannon

    April 13, 2018

    Your pictures are absolutely stunning! I may have to add Charleston to my travel list. And living in one of those houses would be amazing!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 13, 2018

      Thank you! 🙂

  11. Reply

    Lauren Taylar

    April 11, 2018

    My mom and I did a horse and buggy tour when we were there a few years back and the houses were just incredible, especially the ones along the water. I’m hoping to take a road trip through the Carolinas soon and see Charleston again! Such a pretty and historic city.

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 11, 2018

      That sounds so fun! Charleston is definitely worth visiting again!

  12. Reply

    Morgan Ellis

    April 11, 2018

    This makes me so nostalgic! I lived just outside of Charleston for a few years and I really love how the colors contributed to its charm, you captured it so well!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 11, 2018

      Thank you! It must have been a great area to live in!

  13. Reply

    Rosie

    April 11, 2018

    Imagine if all the London instagrammers had just an afternoon here!! Insta would be transformed!! This is such a pretty Street I would absolutely love to visit!!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 11, 2018

      These houses to make fantastic photos for Instagram!! I’ve been posting them like crazy!

  14. Reply

    Chrystina

    April 11, 2018

    I’ve never been to Charleston, but I had no idea it was so colorful. I’ll need to add it to my list of places to visit!

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 11, 2018

      It’s definitely one of the most colorful cities I’ve been to in the U.S.!

  15. Reply

    tonya

    April 10, 2018

    I loved Charleston and hope that I am able to go back and visit again. Rainbow Row and the water district are beautiful.

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 10, 2018

      I hope you can go back, too! It’s such a pretty city!

  16. Reply

    Julia

    April 9, 2018

    Wooow, I had never seen pictures of Charleston but it looks so beautiful! A heaven for photographers. Rainbow Row looks awesome, and I like the unique way in which the houses were built sideways. What a dream it must be to own one of those! Thanks for sharing beautiful pictures of your travels as usual 🙂

    Julia x
    http://www.juliaspeaksbeauty.blogspot.co.uk

    • Reply

      Julia

      April 10, 2018

      Thanks! It’s a really beautiful city and you should visit if you get the chance!

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