10 Things a Visitor Must Do or See in Savannah


“Savannah’s Historic District is a wonderful place in which to stroll with no particular destination in mind. When General Oglethorpe laid out the city in 1733, there were just four squares; today there are 22, shaded by oak trees and lined by enviable redbrick mansions. (In 1864, Sherman’s troops were given the run of the city, on the understanding that they would leave it intact.) For me, Savannah’s 250 years of history have an almost palpable presence.” –Mr. Harper

  • Visit the Isaiah Davenport House this federal-style home houses a museum which received a Preserve America Presidential Award.

  • Walk through Savannah’s 22 urban squares, designed in the 18th and 19th centuries. “Don’t miss the beautiful fountain in Forsyth Park,” suggests Albert Wall, owner of the Stephen Williams House.

  • Check out the Telfair Academy of Arts and Sciences, the South’s oldest art museum. The museum includes “The Bird Girl” from “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.”

  • Go to the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist, “a magnificent example of gothic architecture and an impressive testament to Savannah’s 19th-century Irish community,” says Wall.

  • Drive through Bonaventure Cemetery, where ancient live oaks draped with Spanish moss line the roadways.

  • Explore Savannah’s waterfront. This 18th-century streetscape built of ballast stones and lined with 19th-century warehouses is now home to restaurants and shops,” Wall notes.

  • Discover Savannah’s architectural history on a walking tour by former preservation officer Beth Reiter ([email protected]), recommends Wall.

  • Visit the Owens-Thomas House, “one of the best examples of Regency architecture in America,” Wall says.

  • Take a ghost tour. “Savannah is known as America’s most haunted city,” Wall observes. “Several tour companies offer walking and trolley tours. One is even in an old hearse.”

  • Take a trolley tour through the Savannah Historic District, a National Historic Landmark.

4 Local Culinary Offerings to try in Savannah

  • Enjoy family-style Southern dishes for lunch at Mrs. Wilkes’ Dining Room, suggests Wall.

  • Sample a Chatham Artillery Punch, “a lethal concoction from an 18th-century recipe,” says Wall, who warns: “Just have one.”

  • Try a Lowcountry boil, available at several River Street restaurants.

  • Dine at Elizabeth on 37th, or the Olde Pink House, which also features local entertainment in the Planters Tavern in the basement.

  • Stop in Leopold’s Ice Cream, a fourth-generation, family-run ice creamery.

By Hideaway Report Staff