Southern Romance in Savannah
City Guides by Rewards Members
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Take a trolley tour of the city. A popular choice is the Ghosts and Graveyard tour (better if you have someone at your side in case you get scared). Not only will you see this historic city, but you'll hear some spooky legends as well. It makes for a fun night after a nice dinner at any of the great restaurants along the Savannah River.
Pick any one of the Marriott properties along the river or in the historic district (about half a dozen to choose from). Plenty of beautiful buildings and lovely squares are within easy walking distance. It's hard not to fall in love with the architecture in Savannah.
I agree with the trolley tour. We stayed at the Courtyard in Savannah, did the tour, and had a wonderful, romantic dinner at Elizabeth on Thirty Seventh.http://www.elizabethon37th.net/ Would also recommend, if not staying there, at least have a cocktail, if not dinner, on the roof of the Bohemian. Beautiful place and fantastic view. http://www.bohemianhotelsavannah.com/
The title of this thread is "Southern Romance in Savannah," so my recommendations may seem slightly off kilter, but these recommendations are for “lovers” of history, music, and horticulture. As the first settlement in Georgia, Gen. James Oglethorpe's original city layout is still seen in the historic district. The beautifully landscaped city "squares" are mini-parks, each only a short walk to the next. The original four squares were laid out by Oglethorpe in 1733, the year of colonial Georgia's founding. Originally, they were planned as community green space and militia drill sites, each the center of a city ward. Of the 24 squares laid out and constructed between 1733 and 1851, 22 remain, all of which occur within an area of one square half-mile. Statues of early Georgians and monuments to others adorn the squares. Guided walking tours are available, or you can take a leisurely self-guided tour.
Nestled among the squares is the historic Colonial Park Cemetery. Established in 1750, it holds 9,000 graves within its six acres. Burials continued until 1853, and it's the resting place of some of Georgia's most famous early residents. Many of Georgia's 159 counties are named after early Georgians interred there. And many of the tombstones are mini-biographies, providing details of the deceased's life, such as the number of round-trip trans-Atlantic crossings made in a lifetime—those early Georgians would’ve made excellent MR Insiders. You can spend hours reading those stones and marveling at the colonial residents’ exploits.
Maritime history enthusiasts should make a point of visiting the Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum, featuring a huge collection of exquisitely detailed models of ships, spanning from early sailing ships to the Titanic. Most of the models are on the same scale, 3/8": 1', so size comparisons are accurate. The museum also has a large collection of artifacts and maritime paintings.
The Savannah Music Festival, Georgia’s "largest celebration of the musical arts," is occurring right now (March 20 – April 14). With venues throughout the city, this year’s festival features performers that include the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Robert Cray, Ricky Scaggs, Vince Gill, Branford Marsalis, and many, many others. This festival makes for a wonderful springtime getaway to Savannah. Incidentally, the Ships of the Sea Museum grounds serve as one of the venues for the festival.
Just outside of Savannah lies the Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens. Begun as a private collection in 1890, the gardens, known to locals as “the bamboo farm,” features one of the largest collections of bamboo in North America, with more than 70 species, many of which were collected from all over the world in the 1920s, ‘30s, and ‘40s. The ultra-impressive Japanese timber bamboo reaches heights of 70’ and can grow to 7” in diameter. The USDA took over operations in 1920, using the gardens to research plant varieties that could be economically valuable to the Southeast. In 1983, the gardens were deeded to the University of Georgia, which still operates it today. Other garden collections include palms, with more than 40 species, crepe myrtles, hibiscus, daylilies, iris, and the orchid greenhouse. There is also a bamboo maze, which is a kids’ favorite. And finally, when Yun Yun and Lang Lang, Zoo Atlanta’s giant pandas on loan from China, arrived in Atlanta in 1999, the bamboo farm became the supplier of the bamboo for the pandas’ diets. Since their arrival, the pair has produced five cubs, including twins in 2013. There, I finally got a little romance in there, after all.
foxglove, I when I retire will have to resort to Wal Mart greeter, but you dear sir can most definitely be a tour guide for your home state. Thanks for the plethora of information. And I see the romance in all the things you mentioned.
I'm glad this love was for Savannah and not Atlanta because that place is pollen infested and hard to enjoy this time of year especially...but I have a feeling you could turn it around on a dime and set me straight
Thanks for the post
Thanks, madmax. We really do enjoy Savannah. They've done a marvelous job preserving the history associated with one of America's original colonies. And on every visit, we try to explore some things we haven't visited before. Fortunately, Bill Sherman presented the city of Savannah as a Christmas gift to Lincoln, rather than doing the job on it he did to Atlanta.( And you're unlikely to see any travelogues from me on the charms of Atlanta. As I've stated on this site before, the I-285 loop is the outer circle of hell. Hartsfield-Jackson (ATL) is the inner.)
I have alot of vendors out of the Atlanta area so have travelled to showrooms there quite often. Every time it has been a nightmare although the city is quite beautiful actually. Sad that it has the worst traffic of anywhere and I believe the worst pollen. When you can see yellow in every drainage ditch, something is amiss All other parts of Georgia I have visited are very nice though so I won't hold Atlanta against it.
For a romantic visit, stay at the Mansion on Forsyth - beautiful old world charm, right in the historic district.
Walk the historic district -- beautiful homes on quiet shaded squares. Meander and read the historic markers as you go.
For dinner one night go to the Bohemian - grab drinks on the rooftop bar overlooking the river. For a true touch of the south, get the chicken & waffle sliders!
Drive over to Tybee Island to see the lighthouse.
Browse several of the local art galleries, and independently owned shops around town.
You might check out this site: two queen beds and sofa bed (5 people):
Not too far from historic district, but little too far to walk to Bay Street, but could drive there and park on street, or one of the side streets.
We had a wonderful experience staying at the Springhill Suites Historic district when we went to Savannah. First thing when we walked in the door we were greeted by the front desk clerk "Lauren", who had enough southern hospitality and charm to make you wonder if you went back in time. Very helpful all the time, not just on checking in. They had some wonderful restaurant reccommendations, and told us the best tourist attractions to hit. We went on Old Town Tours tour around the city with a guy who called himself hollywood.We learned allot. Then we went on the riverboat cruise the next day.
Bring your walking shoes. People walk everywhere. The Citywalk area and the Riverfront were only blocks away.
We'd return to the Springhill Suites if and when we go back to Savannah again. Hopefully Lauren will be there.
We recently stayed at the Bohemian--great roof top bar, nice rooms, great head doorman, ate at Elizabeth on 37th, 700 Drayton (can bill it to your room and get points to boot) and would have liked to eaten at the Pink House(next time through). Nice lunchs at the Crystal Beer Palace and Six Pence Pub, took the hop on hop off trolly--nice overview--walked around thereafter. Skip paula deans joint. Trouble w/ phones/internet at the Bohemian