You were searching for a life change, relocated due to a career opportunity, or you simply fell in love with Greenville, South Carolina and now you are a certified Greenvillian. First of all, welcome to this beautiful, diverse, and amazing family and community! Now for the next steps, finding your favorite local spots, easiest commute, or connecting with people and groups that share your interests. It is time to make Greenville your home!
Let's begin with commuting... do you live in one of the surrounding cities such as Greer or Spartanburg? If so, you may be experiencing the traffic nightmare that greets you most mornings on the Interstates. Don't worry, there is hope coming your way with the I-85/385 Gateway project and you can stay up to date on lane closures and other important information on the website or get email updates from the project. Construction is well underway and although the scheduled completion will not be until 2020, there are already improvements that are making the drive a bit easier. We are giving high-fives to the engineering and construction teams for keeping this project moving along! We will be celebrating with you when the rush hour traffic continues to move because even though manners are a hallmark of the South, you will find that those manners disipate when it comes to driving on the Interstates. If you are located in the suburbs of Greenville there are many other routes that you can take to completely avoid the Interstates. Remember, Google Maps can be a dear friend where you can explore the many options and drive times.
If you have already explored the Downtown area, you may have experienced the beautiful Falls Park, the Saturday Farmer's Market, or the live music of Main Street Fridays. Each of the mentioned attracts tourists, but you may be happy to know that each also still attracts locals. We love going to Falls Park to walk the bridge, watching the ducks, and relaxing on the lawn while adoring the waterfall. It is also worth noting that most locals heed the warning signs along the Reedy River banks and do not wade in the inviting waters. The bacteria levels are just too high to risk getting ill from playing in the water, so we prefer the viewing only action of the falls. We still take pictures in front of the famed Medusa Tree, grab coffee or a cone at Spill the Beans, and exclaim while pointing out each time we pass one of the Mice on Main. That's one the greatest things about Downtown, no matter how many times you traverse those tree-lined streets, it never gets old. Locals truly embrace this city and we think it is perfectly okay to keep that touristy awestruck feeling with what becomes every day life for residents.
Dining options abound in Downtown and surrounding areas, so why not try one of the established local restaurants that you many not have visited? Tommy's Country Ham House has not only been providing great food for over 50 years, but has also been known to welcome a political candidate or two. Tommy's serves up meat and three dishes along with delicious breakfasts. You can venture outside of Downtown a little to Pleasantburg Drive to sample autentic Middle Eastern cuisine at The Pita House which is a cash only establishment that has been drawing locals for lunch and dinner since the 1980's. This family owned restaurant offers fresh made pita, falafel, shawarma, pastries, and much more. Staying on Pleasantburg Drive, you should stop by Tanner's Big Orange for a locally famous hot dog or a Tannerburger. After all, this establishment has been serving up good food to Greenville for over 75 years now, so there must be something that keeps all of the locals coming back for more. These are only a few of the places where locals congregate to share food and laughs and we encourage you to keep exploring and venturing out to gain more knowledge on local hang outs.
Based on the beautiful view while driving down Interstate 385 toward Downtown, it should come as no surprise that Greenvillians are often beckoned to partake of a relaxing drive, day trip, or a weekend stay into the surrounding mountains in any season of the year. A short drive will lead you to Table Rock State Park to hike to the top of Governor's Rock, Caesar's Head State Park where you can easily experience the view from the Devil's Kitchen, or visit Fred W. Symmes Chapel, also known as Pretty Place, which offers breaktaking views of the Greenville County mountains. The choices are many for the outdoor adventurer and will not disappoint whether you seek hiking, water adventures, or simply relaxing strolls through small mountain communities. In the fall season, masses of Upstate residents drive 30 minutes north to visit apple orchards such as Sky Top Orchards or Justus Orchards, both located just across the North Carolina border via Highway 25. A full day's visit is often in order for either location to explore the orchard, pick apples, sample cider, and stand in line to grab a dozen or two hot apple doughnuts. Yes, it is worth the wait in line, trust us on this one! Exploring the surrounding towns for dinner is also a great way to end your trip into the mountains.
These are only a few tips for navigating locally and we hope that it helps you. We encourage to venture out into your neighborhood, ask your new coworkers, and learn what makes Greenville home to you. In our humble opinion, Greenville is truly one of the greatest cities and areas to live in and we hope that you feel the same way. With that stated, there is only one thing left to say....