Savannah, the charming coastal city in Georgia, is a treasure trove of history, culture, and natural beauty. With its cobblestone streets, moss-draped oak trees, and stunning historical landmarks, Savannah offers a unique and unforgettable experience to visitors.
In this article, we will explore the top 10 places to visit in Savannah, each with its own distinctive charm and allure. From serene parks to vibrant city markets, from historic sites to breathtaking museums, Savannah has something for everyone. So, let’s dive in and discover the wonders of this enchanting city!
Top 10 Places to Visit in Savannah
Below is a list of the top 10 places to visit in Savannah. Each of these places offer a unique experience for travel lovers:
- Forsyth Park
- Historic District
- Wormsloe Historic Site
- Bonaventure Cemetery
- Tybee Island
- Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
- Savannah City Market
- River Street
- Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace
- Telfair Museums
Let’s get into the details of each of these places now.
1. Forsyth Park
Forsyth Park, the crown jewel of Savannah, is a verdant oasis spread across 30 acres. Nestled in the heart of the Historic District,this lush public park offers a serene escape from the bustling city streets. Visitors can take leisurely strolls along the tree-lined pathways or relax on the benches, enjoying the picturesque scenery. The park features a stunning cast-iron fountain, dating back to 1858, which has become an iconic symbol of Savannah.
A favorite spot for picnics and outdoor gatherings, Forsyth Park also hosts various events and concerts throughout the year. Whether you’re interested in jogging, playing sports, or simply unwinding amidst nature’s beauty, Forsyth Park is a must-visit destination for both locals and tourists alike.
2. Historic District
Savannah’s Historic District is a captivating blend of 18th-century architecture, cobblestone streets, and beautifully preserved homes. Designated as a National Historic Landmark, this district spans more than 2 square miles and is home to some of the city’s most notable landmarks. Walking through its charming streets, visitors are transported back in time, surrounded by stunning mansions, quaint squares, and historic sites.
Highlights of the Historic District include the Owens-Thomas House, a masterpiece of Regency architecture; the Mercer-Williams House, made famous by the novel and movie “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”; and the iconic Madison Square, adorned with monuments and lush greenery. Exploring the Historic District is like stepping into a living museum, providing a fascinating glimpse into Savannah’s rich history and vibrant Southern culture.
3. Wormsloe Historic Site
Experience the grandeur of Georgia’s colonial era at the Wormsloe Historic Site, located just outside Savannah. Covering over 800 acres, this captivating site boasts a scenic oak-lined avenue, leading to the ruins of a colonial estate built in 1739 by Noble Jones, one of Georgia’s first settlers. As you stroll down the avenue, adorned with more than 400 live oak trees, draped with Spanish moss, you’ll feel like you’ve entered a fairytale.
The site also offers a museum, providing insights into the history of Georgia’s founding and the settlers’ way of life. Explore the nature trails and discover the diverse ecosystem of coastal Georgia, teeming with wildlife and native plants. For history lovers and nature enthusiasts alike, Wormsloe Historic Site is a hidden gem that should not be missed.
4. Bonaventure Cemetery
Bonaventure Cemetery, with its hauntingly beautiful landscape and evocative statues, has captured the imagination of many visitors. Immortalized in the novel “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,” this stunning cemetery is a serene place of eternal rest. Spanning over 100 acres, Bonaventure Cemetery is not only a burial ground but also a work of art.
Majestic oak trees, adorned with cascading Spanish moss, create a peaceful ambiance as visitors meander through the labyrinth of gravesites and tombstones. The sculptures and ornate monuments bear witness to Savannah’s rich history and the stories of its residents. A visit to Bonaventure Cemetery is an opportunity to pay tribute to the past, appreciate the beauty of life, and reflect upon our own mortality.
5. Tybee Island
Escape the city’s hustle and bustle and head to Tybee Island, Savannah’s beloved beach retreat. Just a short drive from the city, this barrier island boasts miles of pristine sandy beaches, gentle ocean waves, and a laid-back atmosphere. From sunbathing to surfing, fishing to dolphin watching, Tybee Island offers an array of outdoor activities for all ages. Take a leisurely stroll along the Tybee Pier and pavilion, where you can enjoy panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and savor delicious seafood at the local restaurants.
Visit the Tybee Island Light Station and Museum, Georgia’s oldest lighthouse, which has guided ships since 1736. With its refreshing coastal vibe and natural beauty, Tybee Island is the perfect getaway for those seeking relaxation and seaside fun.
6. Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist stands as a testament to Savannah’s rich religious heritage and architectural grandeur. Completed in 1876, this magnificent Roman Catholic cathedral is a stunning example of French Gothic Revival style. The intricate stained glass windows, towering spires, and ornate decorations make it a sight to behold. Step inside, and you’ll be greeted by awe-inspiring frescoes, intricate woodwork, and a serene ambiance that inspires introspection.
The cathedral also houses a remarkable pipe organ, which adds a celestial soundtrack to mass and concerts held here. Whether you’re a devout believer or an admirer of architectural marvels, a visit to the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist is sure to leave you in awe of its timeless beauty.
7. Savannah City Market
Immerse yourself in Savannah’s vibrant culture and lively atmosphere at the Savannah City Market. Located in the heart of the Historic District, this bustling marketplace is a hub of activity day and night. Housed in restored warehouses dating back to the 1700s, the City Market is a vibrant mix of restaurants, art galleries, boutiques, and street performers.
Explore the cobblestone streets, lined with colorful buildings and charming courtyards, as you browse through unique shops and sample local cuisine. Savor Southern flavors at the renowned restaurants and enjoy live music, showcasing the city’s vibrant music scene. From one-of-a-kind artworks to handcrafted souvenirs, the Savannah City Market is a treasure trove of treasures waiting to be discovered.
8. River Street
Stroll along Savannah’s iconic River Street and immerse yourself in its rich maritime history and bustling waterfront vibe. Spanning a mile along the Savannah River, this cobblestone-lined street is dotted with historic buildings that have been transformed into shops, restaurants, and galleries. Take in the scenic views of the river, bustling cargo ships, and the Talmadge Memorial Bridge as you walk along the waterfront.
Indulge in delectable Southern cuisine at the riverside restaurants or grab a drink at one of the lively bars. Explore the boutiques and art galleries for unique souvenirs or simply relax on one of the benches while enjoying the street performers’ entertaining acts. River Street is a dynamic hub of activity, offering a delightful blend of history, culture, and entertainment.
9. Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace
Visit the birthplace of a remarkable woman and the founder of Girl Scouts of the USA, Juliette Gordon Low. This beautifully restored Regency-style home, located in Savannah’s Historic District, provides a glimpse into the life and legacy of this visionary leader. Explore the rooms filled with period furnishings, personal mementos, and exhibits that showcase Low’s dedication to empowering girls and young women.
Learn about the history of the Girl Scouts and their profound impact on millions of lives. The interactive displays and engaging guided tours make the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace an educational and inspiring experience for all visitors. Discover the story of a remarkable woman who changed the world and the lasting legacy she left behind.
10. Telfair Museums
Art lovers rejoice at the Telfair Museums, a collection of three unique museums that showcase a range of artistic styles and mediums. The Telfair Academy, housed in a historic mansion, is home to a remarkable collection of American and European art, including works by renowned artists such as Childe Hassam and Frederic Leighton. The Jepson Center, a modern marvel of architecture, focuses on contemporary art and hosts rotating exhibitions that push the boundaries of creativity.
For lovers of decorative arts and design, the Owens-Thomas House and Slave Quarters offer a fascinating journey through time, exploring Savannah’s rich history and the lives of those who once lived and worked there. Whether you appreciate classical masterpieces or contemporary installations, the Telfair Museums offer a diverse and enriching art experience, showcasing the beauty and power of human creativity.
Savannah truly has it all – a rich historical heritage, breathtaking natural beauty, vibrant cultural scenes, and a warm Southern hospitality that welcomes visitors with open arms. Exploring the top 10 places to visit in Savannah allows you to dive deep into the city’s soul, immersing yourself in its fascinating stories, marveling at its architectural wonders, and experiencing its enchanting atmosphere.
From the tranquility of Forsyth Park to the lively streets of the City Market, from the monumental beauty of the Cathedral to the artistic treasures of the Telfair Museums, each place offers a unique and unforgettable experience. So, pack your bags, and let Savannah’s charms guide you on a remarkable journey that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime.