Driving about 25 miles, approximately ½ an hour, one way. Getting on/off a tram at the tea plantation. Angel Oak is walking around one of the largest and oldest oak trees ever recorded. Getting off the bus and walking into the area that is home to the oak tree is a very short walk. The bus stops right in front for unloading. Heyward Washington home has stairs and no elevator. Walking in the backyard of the Heyward Washington home around a private garden is sand and gravel path.
At the hotel.
A truly unique experience for the country, we’ll then embark on a field trip to the only tea plantation in the United States: The Charleston Tea Plantation. The home of American Classic Tea, tea grown in America, it is located on picturesque Wadmalaw Island in the heart of South Carolina's Lowcountry. Its grounds include 127 acres of Camellia Sinensis tea plants, a working Tea Factory and a charming Plantation Gift Shoppe. While here, we will embark on a trolley ride with a local expert to explore the many acres of tea bushes while learning more about tea the enterprise through on board commentary. A stop at the greenhouse will afford us the opportunity to see up close what it takes to care for young tea bushes and grow them healthily. Furthermore, we’ll walk the length of the tea production building where we will see all the equipment it takes to process tea from the field and prepare it for shipment. Large TV screens along the glassed-in gallery will illustrate the entire process. Afterwards, we will visit the Angel Oak tree with its long history. The Angel Oak is a Live Oak (Quercus virginiana) that is a native species found throughout the Lowcountry (Coastal Carolina) and it is believed to be in excess of 1,500 years old with its massive, draping limbs and wide spreading canopy presenting the aura of an angel. However, the naming of this tree was actually implemented by the tree's previous owners, Martha and Justin Angel.
At the Charleston Tea Plantation, enjoy a choice of sandwich along with pasta salad, chips, cookie, and iced tea or water.
We will return to Charleston around 2 pm. Stopping over in the historic district, we will end our day of adventure with a visit to the Heyward Washington home built in 1772. This Revolutionary War House was the town-home of Thomas Heyward, Jr., signer of the Declaration of Independence. The home features magnificent Charleston-made furniture and a formal 18th century garden.
At a popular restaurant within walking distance of the hotel, we will explore some of the area's distinctive coastal cuisine with a plated meal featuring signature Lowcountry dishes. Share favorite memories and toast to new Road Scholar friends over our special farewell dinner, with coffee, tea and water; other beverages available for purchase.
Be sure to prepare for check-out and departures in the morning.