Why You Should Go
To See What Everyone is Talking About
Greenville has made onto Top 25 lists for best downtowns, foodie destinations, and cities on the rise by Southern Living, Forbes, Travel + Leisure, and Money magazine to name a few. And they are not wrong. With its charming downtown centered on the Reedy River, Greenville has taken advantage of its natural beauty and built a charming downtown full of restaurants, local shops, and cultural offerings in a compact, walkable area. There’s even a lovely waterfall smack in the middle of downtown that the city has encircled with a showpiece park.
The Awesome Swamp Rabbit Trail
Besides its foodie reputation and lively downtown ready for easy exploration, Greenville is also known for its Swamp Rabbit Trail, a spectacular rails-to-trails project that follows along the Reedy River for 22 miles. When the weather is nice, join the locals on a 2-wheeled excursion 10 miles up the trail to Travelers Rest, a quaint small town with a burgeoning food reputation of its own. You’ll see families and college kids, hard core cyclists and seniors, all out enjoying a days ride on this scenic trail.
Scenes from Downtown Greenville
Where You Should Stay
Heads Up: We do participate in affiliate marketing with some of the companies that we personally use. They don’t pay us to write, we simply get a commission if you enter those sites through our “gate” as opposed to say a Google search. We never accept free gifts or comped stays. Full Disclosure Statement
The family-friendly Swamp Rabbit Inn is a comfortable, clean, and awesomely quirky inn just two blocks from Main Street but in a quiet area. Bike rentals are available, so grab a bite to eat from the fully stocked kitchen and head out on the trail. It is a unique stay in a lovely home with all of the amenities of a modern hotel but with a far more personal touch.
If you would like to be in the thick of things, try the Hampton Inn & Suites at RiverPlace. As the name implies, the hotel is situated overlooking the Reedy River. The location which is just steps from the heart of downtown and the Swamp Rabbit Trail can’t be beat. Adjacent to the hotel is The Lazy Goat, one of the many delicious restaurants giving credence to Greenville’s reputation as a food destination.
Maybe you are needing a bit more room for your family? Check out the Stylish Downtown House near Fluor Field Suite B. The upstairs unit in a beautifully remodeled house, this apartment has 2 BR/ 1 BA and a large living room/ kitchen area. It is walking distance to everything downtown and even comes with a washer/ dryer. If you are needing even more room (perhaps a weekend getaway with family friends?), look at renting the downstairs unit, Stylish Downtown House near Fluor Field Suite A. It has 2 BR/ 2.5 BA and is also recently remodeled with a fun and modern decor.
Other Accommodation Options
We recommend staying as close to Falls Park on the Reedy as you can
Where You Should Eat
This could be a list for the ages as Greenville is quite the foodie town but we have endeavored to pick a few must-do places.
Caviar and Bananas A gourmet grocery store and a fancy cafe that serves amazing sandwiches and very good coffee. A great bet for breakfast, picnic supplies, or a small something with a glass of wine to finish your day. The kids will ogle the pastries while you try to decide between the duck confit sandwich or design your own gourmet salad. Or maybe you just go for the homemade soup of the day. Whatever you decide, it will all be delicious. Next door to the Aloft Hotel in One City Plaza just off of Main Street.
Methodical Coffee Locals swear by this coffee and also by the cinnamon rolls. Opens at 7am during the week and 8am on weekends. In One City Plaza.
The Trappe Door is a basement bar and restaurant (underneath Barley's on Washington Street, half a block off of Main Street) that specializes in all things Belgian. The grownups will love the extensive collection of Belgian beers and their housemade mixers while the kids will love the bathrooms covered in Tintin comics. Only open for dinner and has a kids menu. Tends to get very busy so reserve a table online (link on their website).
Greenville is loaded with attractions that the whole family will enjoy-- between the parks, the Swamp Rabbit Trail, the proximity to the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the charming downtown that invites exploration, you won’t have any trouble filling your weekend getaway with good times. So load up the minivan, unplug those devices, and go have yourself a weekend of fun and family togetherness!
What Makes Our Travel Guides Simply Awesome?
If you want to visit Greenville but don’t have time to plan your weekend adventure, check out our Greenville Weekend Getaway Guide.
It highlights additional lodging and dining choices, highlights the best activities, and includes all the little things that can be so helpful in making a trip a success—detailed maps so it’s easy to find your way around, rainy day ideas, and helpful tips we discovered along the way.
We have done these trips with our own families so we know what works and what doesn’t. We’ll tell you what’s skippable and what’s a must do in this fun city.
Special Offer- Free Guidebook!
Special Offer for those who loved this blog and want to know more. Receive a Simply Awesome Trips “Weekend Getaway Guide to Greenville, SC” sent directly to your email. This blog content is available in the book as well as lodging, restaurants, and activities that everyone in the family will love. A $2.99 dollar value is yours for free!
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All Of Our Travel Guides Include:
Where To Stay
The lodging choices for each destination have been carefully selected for their ideal location, price point, safety, and proximity to the day’s activities. We tell you the best area to stay so you can minimize driving or walking distances and maximize your moments having fun. Knowing what part of town to stay in is a huge part of making a trip a success, and that’s hard to do when you are not familiar with a destination. We save you time and energy by doing all the research for you.
Where To Eat
Local dining establishments are highlighted. The kind where children are welcome but isn't necessarily a restaurant geared primarily towards kids. You won't find many restaurant chains in our itineraries, just good local food mirroring the destination's culture. This could mean a food truck, a pizza place, or a nice sit-down restaurant, but always delicious. If there are any local brews, specialty foods, wines, or coffee houses around, we'll mention those too.
Where To Play
The organization of each day has been thoughtfully planned in order to group activities together by proximity, ideal time of day to visit, and the best nearby dining choices. It’s all been laid out for you, along with directions, maps, travel tips, links to more info, and more. We cover the most worthwhile activities to do in a destination (based on our own family’s reviews) without forgetting that vacations are meant to be fun and relaxing, not a list to be checked off while hauling around whining children.
You’ll find plenty of outdoor activities for the family as well as cultural and historical sites unique to the destination. Many itineraries include easy hikes, bike rides, and float trips that have been selected for their kid-friendly length and ease of difficulty as well as their scenic beauty. (Always worth it!) We are all about getting families outdoors so we include as much fresh air as we can in our itineraries, whether it is a day-long trek in a national park or just the location of a fantastic playground perfect for a break from sight-seeing.
At the founding of Simply Awesome Trips, we agreed to travel as we always have with our families—on our own dime. No free nights, no comped visits, not even any swag. We continue to feel good about that decision. We do participate in affiliate marketing with some of the companies that we personally use (Booking.com, VRBO.com). They don’t pay us to write, we simply get a commission if you enter those sites through our “gate” as opposed to say a Google search. But we also recommend lodging, restaurants, and activities, where we don’t receive any commission, such as Airbnb or private rental companies. If it’s good; it’s good. We don’t change recommendations based on vendor.