5 Reasons to Visit Greenville, SC

March 14, 2017 8 Comments

Listed as number 12 on the New York Times’ 52 Places to Visit in 2017Greenville, South Carolina is one of the top destinations to visit this year. Here are five reasons to visit Greenville, SC ASAP.

1. Downtown Greenville

The Liberty Bridge at Falls Park

Downtown Greenville has a quaint, small town feel with it’s tree lined streets, carriage rides and twinkle lights all year round. However, don’t let the “small town” feel fool you. Greenville has A LOT to offer. At the heart of downtown is the beautiful Falls Park which boasts both a suspension bridge and a waterfall. Falls Park is a great place to take a stroll or have a picnic.

Downtown Greenville is also home to the minor league baseball team, the Greenville Drive.  The Drive are affiliated with the Boston Red Sox and thus Flour Field has been modeled after the famous Fenway Park. During the winter months, an ice skating rink is set up in a little court yard off main street.

Greenville has attracted many unique bars, restaurants and coffee shops. Some of my personal favorites are:

  • Coffee Underground: Located in a cellar off Coffee Street, this quirky coffee shop has been open for over 20 years.
  • Jack n’ Diane’s Dueling Piano Bar is the place to go for a lively time. The show features live music (songs by request), pianos lit on fire and garbage can drumming. Everyone sings along!
  • Sip Whiskey & Wine is a rooftop wine bar, perfect for a relaxing summer evening.
  • Soby’s has the BEST Sunday brunch in town. The brunch is buffet style. Make sure to try the grits!

2. Proximity to Outdoor Activities

The Swamp Rabbit Trail

Greenville is known for being an outdoor lover’s city. One of the main outdoor activities in Greenville is the Swamp Rabbit Trail, a 19.9 mile walk/bike path, which connects downtown Greenville with Traveler’s Rest, SC. Visitors can rent bikes for the trail from Sunrift Adventures (Traveler’s Rest start point) or Reedy Rides (downtown Greenville start point).

Another popular attraction located in Greenville is Paris Mountain State Park. The state park offers camping, bike trails and several hiking trails. The park also has a swimming area that is open during the summer season. Lake Conestee Nature Park and Furman University are two other great locations for biking or walking in the Greenville area.

Pretty Place

If you feel like getting out of the city, I would suggest visiting Caesar’s Head State Park, Jones Gap State Park, or Table Rock State Park which are all between 40 & 50 minutes outside of Greenville. If you decide to visit Jones Gap State Park, I would highly recommend hiking the Rainbow Falls Trail, then hiking up to Pretty Place. When visiting Table Rock State Park, one must summit the mountain via Table Rock Trail (3,124 feet).

3. Downtown Travelers Rest

Tandem Creperie and Coffeehouse

Downtown Traveler’s Rest has become quite the hot spot for visitors and locals over the past few years. Traveler’s Rest, better known as TR to the locals, is a true southern small town located  15 minutes from downtown Greenville. Much of TR’s popularity has come from the establishment of the Swamp Rabbit Trail which runs straight through TR’s downtown.

Local boutiques and restaurants are another main attraction of Travler’s Rest. I would recommend Tandem Creperie and Coffehouse for brunch (they have the most amazing Crepes!) or Sidewall Pizza Company for lunch/dinner.

4. Historic Sites

The Poinsett Bridge

Greenville has numerous historic sites worth exploring. Greenville County is home to two of the the most important historical bridges in South Carolina. Campbell’s Covered Bridge is the last standing covered bridge in all of South Carolina. The Poinsett Bridge, built in 1820, is the oldest bridge in South Carolina. Both bridges are surrounded by small parks that visitors can explore.

South Carolina was also an important part of both the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. If you are a history buff, then you may be interested in visiting Cowpens National Battlefield, the site of a Revolutionary war battle, or the Museum and Library of Confederate History,  home to many Confederate artifacts.

5. Festivals and Food

Food from Fall for Greenville

Greenville has so many great annual festivals! The most popular (and my personal favorites) are Fall for Greenville, Artisphere and EuphoriaFall for Greenville is a festival for the whole family located downtown Greenville on Main Street. Over 40 local restaurants are present with their most popular menu items. Both a craft beer and wine garden are open throughout the festival. Live music is played at the seven stages staggered along Main Street.

Artisphere is a three day event with 135 visual art exhibits, live music, art demonstrations, food, and a wine/craft beer experience. Most of the art is for sale so visitors can bring a bit of the art home with them. Euphoria, named ‘Best Little Food Festival in the South’ by Southern Living in 2012,  is a four day festival all about food. Euphoria offers tasting events, live music, cooking demonstrations and more. Tickets are required!

Weekly Events

  • Greenville Saturday Market  is a local farmers market located on Main Street in downtown Greenville. The market is open on Saturdays (May-October) from 8 am-12 pm. Vendors offer everything from fresh fruits and veggies to coffee and breakfast.
  • Main Street Fridays is a weekly series that offers live music and dancing every Friday evening (March 17-September 29)  from 5:30- 9:30 pm. The event is held downtown Greenville on Main Street at NOMA Square. Beer and wine beverages are available for purchase.
  • Downtown Alive is a weekly series that offers live music every Thursday evening (March- August) on Main Street at NOMA Square in downtown Greenville. Beer and wine beverages are available for purchase.

Leave a Reply


This city sounds perfect for photography. The trails, bridges, waterfalls and historic sites would be where I would spend my time. And the food sounds wonderful as well!

Juliette | Snorkels to Snow

Would love to visit during some those festivals! Especially the Artisphere, I think that sounds amazing! Some great reasons to visit Greenville here, it’s not a place I’m very familiar with. But it appears to have some great history – the Cowpens National Battlefield would be very interesting to visit. As for TR – that sounds like a great spot!

Clive Andrades

First of all, i like the quality of pictures captured. You have done a great job with that. Meanwhile, the article is very detailed and definitely burns a fire within to go explore and capture on the cam. And how can I forget the food, looks delicious 😀

Only By Land

Falls Park with the suspension bridge and waterfall sounds very convenient in downtown Greenville. I would love to visit Traveler’s Rest too, the food options sound interesting and I would definitely visit the creperie. As a photographer I’m sure a drive around Greenville County would be very rewarding.


What a pretty spot! This looks like a great spot to spend a little downtime soaking in all the beauty and relax! Sometimes we just go, go, go too much on vacation!! Beautiful spot.


The Jack n’ Diane’s Dueling Piano Bar would be my first night out in Greenville, it sounds like a big party. The Sip Whiskey & Wine rooftop bar would be second, wow you found some amazing spots there. The signs on the The Swamp Rabbit Trail are awesome. Would love to visit Greenville one day and explore the festivals.


I have never heard of Greenville before but it looks like a pretty little town. I haven’t been to South Carolina before but I should certainly add it to my list for next time I visit the US. It looks like there are a lot of state parks around to do hiking which I love and I also fancy biking that trail and stopping at the crepe place 🙂

Iza Abao

Greenville sounds like a great place to explore. I like your photos. It reminded me of some movies that I have watched before. I cannot remember the titles but Greenville is an ideal location to shoot good movies. I also like the food selections that you have mentioned. The crepe looks so delicious.