The Indie Grits Festival and the Multicultural Medley of Columbia, SC

Sometimes there’s just not enough time to jet around the globe. Enter Columbia, South Carolina. In this bustling Southern capital city, visitors are treated to an unexpected medley of cultures, and it's only a 2.5 hour drive from Savannah.

One of the best examples is during Indie Grits, a wildly-popular, four-day food, film, art, culture and music festival, on April 20 – 23. This year, the festival is responding to the explosive growth of the Latino community in South Carolina and across the Southeastern US with a focus on Latino film, culture and arts through its new theme Visiones

Transporting visitors to cultures, identities and issues beyond their own, Visiones will explore Latino influence on Southern culture and empower Latino artists to re-define their evolving identity through film and art. Check out the full schedule of events here for details on the FREE opening night block party, an 80+ film line-up, a Puppet Slam, a Latin-American food truck event with live music, and so much more. 


Multicultural Experiences in Columbia, SC:

Decker Boulevard is Columbia’s beloved international district and home to several hole-in-the-wall yet deliciously authentic international dining experiences including Hancook Korean, Pho Viet, Boeshreen Libyan Cuisine and Harambe Ethiopian Restaurant.

Just down the street from Main Street’s Nickelodeon Theatre (host of the 11th annual Indie Grits festival) is the Columbia Museum of Art, which is highlighting the work of Salvador Dalí during their major spring exhibition.

"Every Saturday, the Soda City Market is THE place to be."

Every Saturday, the Soda City Market is THE place to be as locals and visitors alike shop a variety of fresh and funky food and craft vendors. International vendors include Fuperman’s Potstickers (Taiwanese), K&K Gourmet (Peruvian), Mary’s Arepas (Colombian), Mimie’s (West African), Not Just Buns (Chinese), Papusas Salvadorian Sandrita and more.


Dining Experiences:


Arepazo Latin Food:

The newest addition to Columbia’s vast and growing international food scene. Order the sinfully good cachapa, a corn “pancake” folded over with melted cheese
Find Arepazo on Facebook

Baan Sawan:

Thai influenced by Southern and French culinary techniques

Cabanas Restaurant: 

Locals in the know order traditional Honduran dishes such as Tajadas con Carne Molida

​Island Grill (Jamaican):

For an authentic taste of the islands, head to Island Grill for spot-on goat curry and oxtail
Find the Island Grill on Facebook

Manny’s Chamoyadas:

A family-friendly joint dedicated to Mexican beverages boasting dozens of salty-and-sweet chamoyadas.  
Find Manny's on Facebook

This vibrant city with it's multi-cultural food and festivities is definitely worth the trip, whether its a week long vacation, weekend road trip or day trip to attend this year's Indie Grits festival. Have fun and hit the road!

For more on the South's greatest destination, subscribe now or pick up the February/March issue of South Magazine.