Located in the middle of the Low Country of coastal Georgia and South Carolina, Savannah was the first city in Georgia when it was established in 1733 by James Oglethorpe as a buffer colony between the Spanish in Florida and the other English colonies to the north. Savannah lies 2 hours north of Jacksonville, FL, 2 hours south of Charleston, SC and approximately 3-4 hours southeast of Atlanta, GA.
Whether you enjoy history, architecture, shopping, movies, music or food, there is something for everyone in Savannah!
These are a few of my recommendations you might want to consider for your next visit to Savannah:
Start planning your visit by checking out the latest happenings in the city at: VisitSavannah.com
I think the best way to start a visit to Savannah is to take one of the trolley tours that highlight the major points of interest of the historic district. Old Savannah Tours, Old Town Trolley, and Oglethorpe Tours each offer a once-around or on & off option.
Architectural Tours of Savannah – Jonathan Stalcup came to Savannah to do his Master’s in Architecture at the Savannah College of Art & Design and ended up starting a tour company and writing a book on the historical evolution of Savannah’s nearly 300 years of structural history. Spanning the establishment of the Georgia colony in 1733 through to modern times, Jonathan explains the influences that helped distinguish Savannah’s style and set it apart from Charleston, as well as provide insight into the societal influences on various periods of structural history. This is a great tour for those that enjoy history as well as architecture.
Juliet Gordon Low Birthplace – Juliet was the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA. I’m particularly fond of this museum home because it was in the Gordon family from the time it was built for her uncle in the 1820’s until her younger brother Arthur sold it to the Girl Scouts in the early 1950’s and approximately 80% of the contents are said to be original to the family. It really is like a step back in time to see how the family lived.
Andrew Low House – Originally built for cotton factor Andrew Low, this was the married home of Juliet Gordon Low and her husband Willie Low. Built by noted architect John Norris, it was also where Juliet Gordon Low established the first chapter of the Girl Scouts of America in 1912.
Davenport House Museum – Built in 1820 by Isaiah Davenport for his family, this federal style home was the first of many structures to be saved by what eventually became the Historic Savannah Foundation. Open year-round, they offer seasonal presentations relating to the yellow fever epidemics from the 1800’s, traditional Christmas celebrations, and many others.
Telfair Museums – The Telfair Academy of Arts & Sciences is the oldest art musem in the south, opening in 1886 just a year after the death of its benefactor, Mary Telfair. Individual tickets can be purchased for each of the separate component: the historical art museum housed in what was formerly the Telfair family mansion, the modern addition known as the Jepson Center, and the Owens-Thomas house. They also feature a combined ticket which will provide admission to all three for a reduced price. If you’ve come to Savannah hoping to see the original “Bird Girl” statue made famous as the cover image of “Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil”, you’ll find it here where it now resides after being removed from the Trosdal family plot in Bonaventure Cemetery. Be sure to check out the original kitchen on the ground flour of the Telfair mansion to see a historical 19th century Savannah kitchen.
Colonial Park Cemetery – Colonial Park is the second oldest cemetery in Savannah and the oldest one still in existence (the oldest is now marked by a plaque on the buildings that now occupy that site). It was the heaquarters for Sherman’s troops during their occupation of Savannah during the winter of 1864-1865. Many historical figures prominent to the history of Savannah, Georgia, and the United States are buried here including James Habersham Jr. who was one of the “Sons of Liberty” during the Revolutionary War and Button Gwinnett, a signer of the Declaration of Independence representing the Georgia colony.