Julie United States 7 Comments

Savannah, Georgia…this is where elegant mansions sit across from shady squares, art galleries and boutique shops dot the city streets, and restaurants and rooftop bars make great hang out spots for both locals and visitors. In this post, we cover 30 of the best things to do in Savannah.

We are frequent visitors to Savannah, visiting the town 2 to 3 times a year.

The more time we spend here, the more we fall in love with this city. Savannah is a city with a long history. Some of it is very bright, but some of it is dark and tragic…which is why taking a ghost tour is one of the best things to do in Savannah.

In some ways, Savannah is like Key West, with a long list of restaurants and bars, historic homes to visit, and nearby beaches. Key West wins in the beach category, but Savannah, with its shady green squares, Spanish moss dripping from the limbs of the live oak trees, is just as wonderful to visit.

Interesting Facts about Savannah

Savannah is the oldest city in Georgia. It was founded in 1733 on the Savannah River (for which it was named).

In 1778, during the American Revolutionary War, the British captured Savannah and kept it under their control until 1782. In the 1800’s, Savannah was an important seaport on the east coast. And during the American Civil War, General Sherman captured Savannah in his March to the Sea, but the city was saved from destruction.

Since Savannah was saved from destruction, its historic district is one of the oldest and largest in the United States. According to Savannah.com, the Savannah Historic District is the largest National Historic Landmark District in the USA.

22 of the 24 squares still remain today, and these are what sets Savannah apart from other cities. These small parks are a wonderful place to relax midday, take a break from the heat, and people watch from a park bench. They have even been featured in movies, with Forrest Gump being the most popular.

Best Things to Do in Savannah

1. Visit the Historic Squares

Without a doubt, visiting the shady, parklike squares is one of the best things to do in Savannah.

These small parks are located throughout the historic district and they are spaced out a few blocks from one another, so you never have to walk far to get to the next one.

Of the 22 squares in Savannah, there are a few notable ones to mention. For the full list of squares, click here.

Monterey Square

This square is located one block away from Forsyth Park. Sitting on either side of this square is the Mercer-Williams House Museum and Congregation Mickve Israel, one of the oldest synagogues in the USA.

Monterey Square

Monterey Square | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Lafayette Square

The centerpiece of Lafayette Square is an aquamarine-colored fountain. This square is named for the Marquis de Lafayette, who aided American troops during the Revolutionary War. The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist and the Hamilton-Turner House are located on Lafayette Square.

Lafayette Square

Lafayette Square | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Chippewa Square

For fans of the movie Forrest Gump, this is the square where Forrest Gump sat on a park bench and said, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.”

Since the movie filming, the park bench has been removed and replaced with landscaping but you can still see the location of the bench. On the north end of Chippewa Square, the park bench once sat just behind the Chippewa Square sign.

Chippewa Square Forrest Gump

The bench that Forrest Gump sat on is now gone. It was located right behind the Chippewa Square sign in this photo.

2. Forsyth Park

Forsyth Park is a 30+ acre park that was named for the 33rd governor of Atlanta. The fountain which sits in the center of the park is one of the most photographed landmarks in Savannah.

Forsyth Garden Fountain

Forsyth Park | Best Things to Do in Savannah

A farmers’ market is held here on the weekends, and numerous concerts and festivals are held here throughout the year.

Inside of the park is the Garden of Fragrance (a small garden that displays plants of certain fragrance and textures for those with limited sight) and the Civil War Monument.

Fragrance Garden Forsyth Park

3. Take a Stroll on Jones Street

It is said that Jones Street is the prettiest street in Savannah. On one of the ghost tours that we took, we were also told that it is one of the most expensive streets in Savannah to call home.

For several blocks, the long limbs of enormous live oaks arch over the brick-paved street. American flags hang from front porches and horse and carriages parade up and down the street.

Jones Street

Jones Street | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Jones Street is one of the best streets in Savannah to go for a stroll. And if you get your timing right, you can stop into Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room for lunch (open Monday through Friday from 11 am to 2 pm; expect to wait in line, or get here early).

4. Tour the Mercer-Williams House Museum

Construction for the Mercer-Williams House began in 1860. It was disrupted by the Civil War and then completed in 1868. This house was designed for General Hugh W. Mercer, who was the great-grandfather of songwriter Johnny Mercer.

No Mercer ever lived in this house as it was sold to John R. Wilder before construction was completed.

In 1981, Jim Williams shot and killed his employee, Daniel Lewis Hansford, in this house. The murder is documented in the non-fiction book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt, and retold as a movie in 1997.

Tours of the house last 20 minutes. Tour times vary throughout the year and you can get the schedule on the official website.

Mercer Williams House

Mercer-Williams House Museum | Best Things to Do in Savannah

5. Visit the Birthplace of Juliette Gordon Low

Juliette Gordon Low is the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA. She was born on Halloween in 1860 in Savannah, Georgia. In 1886, she married William Low, but their marriage was not a happy one, as he had numerous affairs. They separated but never divorced, and after William died of a stroke, his money and his estate were left to Juliette.

Following Williams’ death, Juliette Low became involved in the Girl Guides, an offshoot of the Boy Scouts, and spread the movement throughout Savannah and the USA. The organization was later named to the Girl Scouts.

Tours are offered of the Andrew Low House, which is where William and Juliette were married, and this house is now known as the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace. Get the tour schedule and book your tickets on the official website. 

Andrew Low House best things to do in Savannah

6. Visit the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist

Called the “Sistine of the South,” this Roman Catholic church was built in French Gothic style. It was nearly destroyed by a fire not long after construction was finished, but after a renovation project, it was re-dedicated in 1900.

Cathedral of St John the Baptist

Inside the Cathedral

Over the past 120 years, there have been several more renovation projects, including a project to fix cracks in steeple that occurred after an earthquake 500 miles away in Washington DC.

In 2020, Pope Francis issued a decree granting the cathedral the title of Minor Basilica.

This cathedral is one of the most photographed landmarks in Savannah and it is located on Lafayette Square.

7. Congregation of Mickve Israel

Located on Monterey Square, Congregation Mickve Israel is the 3rd oldest Jewish congregation in the USA. The congregation dates back to 1733 and the synagogue was constructed in 1820.

Condé Nast named Congregation Mickve Israel one of the 15 most beautiful synagogues in the world.

Mickve Israel

Tours of the synagogue are offered Monday through Friday. Get the full details here. 

8. Visit the First African Baptist Church

The First African Baptist Church is one of the oldest continuously operating African-American churches in North America. The congregation dates back to 1773, when the church was organized under the leadership of Reverend George Leile, a slave who was licensed to preach in Georgia. He was freed before the start of the American Revolutionary War.

In 1782, Leile and his family were evacuated by the British to Jamaica, where he founded another congregation at this new location. However, the members of the original congregation remained in Savannah and this church was constructed in 1859. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a speaker at this church.

Tours are offered several days of the week.

First African Baptist Church best things to do in Savannah

First African Baptist Church | Best Things to Do in Savannah

9. Tour the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters

Richard Richardson was a shipping merchant and slave trader. In 1816, construction began on his estate, which included his house, a carriage house, and slave quarters.

The Richardson family did not live here long, but in the few years they did, a fire destroyed half of the city and a yellow fever epidemic swept through Savannah. Richard’s wife, Frances, passed away, as well as several of his children, and then he relocated to New Orleans in 1824.

George Owens purchased the house in 1830, and he kept 9 to 15 enslaved people on the property. The house stayed in the family until 1951, when Margaret Gray Thomas died. She willed the house to the Telfair Academy of Arts and Sciences to be run as a museum.

To tour the property, you will download the self-guided audio on your phone. It covers the slave quarters, the main house, the carriage house and the gardens. Tours run every 10 minutes. You can get hours of operation here.

Owens Thomas House

Owens Thomas House best things to do in Savannah

Your entrance ticket also covers the next two items on our things to do in Savannah list: the Telfair Academy and the Jepson Center.

10. Telfair Academy

This art museum is located inside of a two-story mansion that was built in 1819. The permanent collection houses American and European art from the 19th and 20th centuries.

This is where you will find the iconic Bird Girl statue. She once stood in Bonaventure Cemetery but was moved to the Telfair Academy for safekeeping.

Bird Girl Statue

Bird Girl Statue | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Tickets to the Telfair Academy are bundled together with the Owens-Thomas House and the Jepson Center.

11. Jepson Center for the Arts

This modern building looks a bit out of place in historic Savannah and it is home to both traditional and innovative art. On display is modern art, an interactive children’s museum space, and technology based art.

Jepson Center

Tickets to the Jepson Center are bundled together with the Owens-Thomas House and the Telfair Academy.

12. Take a Ghost Tour

Taking a ghost tour is one of the best things to do in Savannah. With its role in the Revolutionary War, numerous yellow fever epidemics, a fire that destroyed nearly half the city, and a number of tragic deaths, it is said that Savannah is one of the most haunted cities in the United States.

There are lots of options for ghost tours in Savannah. You can take a walking tour of the city at night, tour a haunted house, participate in a paranormal experience, or tour the city in a hearse.

We took two ghost tours while in Savannah.

Genteel & Bard’s Dark History and Ghost Encounter Tour

Genteel & Bard is a highly rated tour company that offers a variety of walking tours in Savannah.

The Dark History and Ghost Encounter Tour is a 2-hour walking tour of Savannah that is offered at night. This tour includes 7 sites in the Savannah Historic District (the Sorrel-Weed House, Colonial Park Cemetery, the Foley House Inn, and the “Hanging Square,” just to name a few). You will not go inside of any of these sites but you will see them from the outside.

Our guide was wonderful. He was well spoken, a great storyteller, and he could remember the name of everyone in our group, which was about 15 people. We listened to his stories on provided headsets, so we could space ourselves out while walking through the squares and still hear him.

The tales are a mix of ghost stories and Savannah history. These stories weren’t creepy or scary…instead, it felt more like a historical walking tour at night. This is a great option for those who want to learn the dark history of Savannah, but don’t expect to get creeped out on this tour.

Sorrel-Weed Mansion Ghost Tour

This ghost tour takes place inside of the Sorrel-Weed house, which is one of the most haunted houses in Savannah. This house has been featured on Ghost Hunters, the Travel Channel, the History Channel, and HGTV.

This mansion can be toured by day, but by night, your guide will tell you chilling stories about the tragic events that occurred inside of this house.

The Sorrel-Mansion ghost tour takes an hour and a half. This one was much creepier than the Genteel & Bard’s walking tour, and during the tour, our guide provided visual and audio evidence of paranormal activity inside of the house.

Sorrel Weed House

Sorrel-Weed House | Best Things to Do in Savannah

More Ghost Tours in Savannah

There are two more tours that interested us but we did not have time for them on this visit.

Savannah Underground: Three ghost stories play out around you in a 360 degree theater set. This fully immersive experience sounds thrilling and more exciting than a walking ghost tour of Savannah. Learn more here.

Paranormal Investigations at the Savannah Theater. The Savannah Theater is the oldest theater in Savannah. Using 4K Night Vision cameras, EMF detectors, and other high-tech equipment, you get to become a paranormal investigator. These investigations occur nightly, starting at 10:30 pm, and last 3 hours. Learn more here.

13. Colonial Park Cemetery

This cemetery dates back to 1750 and was active for 103 years, with its last burial in 1853. In 1896, it became a city park.

The cemetery is open and free to visitors in the daytime. It’s a nice spot to add onto your visit to the Savannah Historic District, but the more interesting cemetery to visit is Bonaventure Cemetery.

Colonial Cemetery best things to do in Savannah

Colonial Park Cemetery | Best Things to Do in Savannah

14. Bonaventure Cemetery

A visit to Bonaventure Cemetery is one of the best things to do in Savannah. It is not located in the historic district. This cemetery is located just outside of town, about a 10-minute drive from the historic city center.

This cemetery became famous when it was featured in the movie Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. The statue of the Bird Girl attracted so much attention that it was moved to the Telfair Academy for safe keeping.

At 160 acres, this is the largest cemetery in Savannah. There is no admission fee and it is open to the public from 9 am to 5 pm.

This is a beautiful cemetery to visit, with its enormous live oaks adorned with Spanish moss and intricately carved statues and tombstones. Famous sights to see include the tomb of Little Gracie Watson, the Lawton Grave, the Theus Tomb, and Johnny Mercer’s gravesite.

Bonaventure Cemetery

Bonaventure Cemetery in February

Bonaventure Cemetery | Best Things to Do in Savannah

15. SCADstory & shopSCAD

We may be biased, but a visit to the historic Savannah Volunteer Guard Armory, the location of SCADstory & shopSCAD, is one of the best things to do in Savannah.

SCADstory is a short, interactive multi-media story about the founding of SCAD. It is extremely well done and it looks and feels more like you are in line for a Disney ride than getting a history lesson about an art school. If you are visiting Savannah with kids, don’t miss this! Even if you have no interest in SCAD, this is very entertaining and inspiring for all ages.

SCAD (the Savannah College of Art and Design) was founded in 1978. The founders of SCAD purchased this building, which was in ruins, renovated it, and opened SCAD. Over the years, the college has purchased many more old, dilapidated buildings in Savannah, renovated them, and expanded the college. SCAD has been instrumental in reviving the historic district of Savannah.

shopSCAD is located inside of the same building. In this small shop, you can purchase artwork produced by SCAD students.

SCAD Building best things to do in Savannah

Savannah Volunteer Guard Armory

16. SCAD Museum of Art

This contemporary art museum is designed to enrich the education of SCAD students but it also makes a wonderful place to visit for those with an interest in art and fashion.

Four times a year, the exhibits change, featuring international artists, including Vogue’s Andre Leon Talley. There are also permanent collections displaying contemporary art, African American art, photography, and costume design.

17. Have a Sweet Treat at Leopold’s Ice Cream

A visit to Leopold’s Ice Cream shop is a must-do in Savannah. They have been making their ice cream from scratch since 1919 and it is delicious! The ice cream sandwiches are very good and we are fans of the rum raisin and the Savannah Socialite flavors.

Leopolds Ice Cream

Leopolds best things to do in Savannah

18. Eat Your Way through Savannah

There are a lot of great restaurants in Savannah. Here is a list of a few we tried, a few that were recommended to us, and a few that we are hoping to visit on our next time in Savannah.

Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room. Wait in line for a meal at one of Savannah’s most famous restaurants. Located on Jones Street, this restaurant serves homestyle Southern cooking family style.

Collins Quarter (on Bull Street). We had our best meal in Savannah here. This Australia-style café serves gourmet dishes and great cocktails. We ate the specials, so can’t recommend anything on the dinner menu, but the Purroni cocktail and Lemon-Lavender Martini are awesome!

The Savannah Tequila Co. This Mexican restaurant is located on the JW Marriott property at the riverfront. Great guacamole, tacos and margaritas.

Where to Eat in Savannah

Savannah Tequila Company | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Ordinary Pub. Casual gastropub with great cocktails and dinner selections.

Ordinary Pub best things to do in Savannah

The Olde Pink House. We did not eat here (yet) but it comes up on a lot of other lists and was recommended to us by other travelers.

The Gryphon Tea Room. We had lunch here but should have had afternoon tea (the little cakes and biscuits looked amazing!). This restaurant is located across the street from SCADstory.

Gryphon Tea Room

Lunch at the Gryphon Tea Room | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Turbine Market + Café. This is our favorite breakfast spot. It is located on the JW Marriott property and the omelets are amazing.

Lulu’s Chocolate Bar. If you need to satisfy your sweet tooth, this is the place to go (although you won’t go wrong at Leopold’s either). Chocolate tarts, cakes, pies, specialty cocktails…everything we had was wonderful.

Other great restaurants include Fox & Fig Café, Alligator Soul, b. Matthew’s Eatery, Cotton & Rye, The Grey, and Husk Savannah.

Another option is to take a food tour of Savannah. This 3-hour food tour includes stops at six specialty food shops to taste the local cuisine, such as shrimp and grits, pork belly sliders and Sheperd’s pie.

19. Visit a Rooftop Bar

For drinks with a view, you have a lot of great options in Savannah. Here are our favorites but you can see the full list in our article Best Rooftop Bars in Savannah.

Electric Moon Skytop Lounge. This bar has both river views and views over the historic district of Savannah. There is an outside play area for kids and even a slide (great for adults once they had a drink or two). And the little tacos that you can order off of the bar menu are one of the best things we ate in Savannah.

Electric Moon Savannah

Rooftop Bars in Savannah

Electric Moon Skytop Lounge | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Myrtle and Rose Rooftop Garden. This very pretty rooftop bar has one of the best views of the Savannah River and the riverwalk area. It is located on the JW Marriott property, just a short walk from Electric Moon, so you can visit both of these on the same night.

Myrtle and Rose Rooftop Garden

Myrtle and Rose Rooftop Garden | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Bar Julian. This rooftop bar is located on top of the Thompson Savannah, a new hotel in town. It is located outside of the historic district, so from here, you get a great view of the entire historic district of Savannah.

Bar Julian

Bar Julian | Best Things to Do in Savannah


Bar Julian View

View from Bar Julian

Rocks on the Roof. Located on top of the Bohemian Hotel, this is another one of our favorites. It is located along the Riverwalk and it’s a great spot to take a break, have a drink, and enjoy the view.

Rocks on the Roof View

The view from Rocks on the Roof | Best Things to Do in Savannah

The Peregrin at Perry Lane. Located on top of an upscale hotel, this bar has a lovely outdoor lounge area with decent views of Savannah.

Peregrin Rooftop Bar best things to do in Savannah

The Peregrin | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Visiting the Rooftop Bars with kids. On our visit, Kara was 17 years old. She was permitted at the rooftop bars until 6 pm, but after 6 pm, you had to be 21 years old to enter.

20. The Baobab Lounge

This is one of our favorite bars in Savannah. With its African art and décor, unique appetizers, and great drinks, we loved this place, and you will see us here again on a return visit to Savannah.

Baobab Lounge

Baobab Lounge | Best Things to Do in Savannah

21. Visit the Plant Riverside District

The Plant Riverside District is a JW Marriott property. This area was once the power plant for Savannah, but it was recently renovated. It’s now one of the most luxurious hotels in Savannah, but it is much more than a hotel.

This property is home to several great restaurants and rooftop bars, a riverfront park, art galleries, shops, and a concert venue. Live music plays down by the Savannah River.

JW Marriott

You don’t have to stay here to visit the Riverside District. Have lunch at the Tequila Co., visit the Electric Moon Skytop Lounge or the Baobob Lounge, and enjoy the live music. Step into the hotel lobby and see if you can find the ice cave bear (and you can’t miss the shiny dinosaur skeleton that runs the length of the lobby).

22. Stroll along River Street

River Street runs along the Savannah River, from the Riverside Plant to Emmet Park. There are lots of shops and restaurants along this street and few notable places to mention.

Along River Street, you can see the 1996 Olympic Yachting Cauldron, the African American Monument, the Waving Girl statue, and the Cracked Earth Monument, which is a World War II Memorial.

African American Monument best things to do in Savannah

African American Monument | Best Things to Do in Savannah


Savannah Riverwalk best things to do in Savannah


Just behind River Street is Factors Walk. Climb the steps onto the bluff and you will see bridges leading to boutique shops and cafes. These small businesses are located in what was once the waterfront warehouses.

Factors Walk best things to do in Savannah

Factors Walk | Best Things to Do in Savannah

23. Take a Riverboat Tour

There are daily riverboat tours that leave from River Street. You can take a lunch cruise, a dinner cruise, or a sightseeing cruise. These last an hour and a half or longer, depending on the cruise you choose.

24. Take a Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour of Savannah

If you want to visit Savannah’s highlights without doing a lot of walking, take a hop-on hop-off trolley tour. Old Town Trolley Tours offers one and two-day tours that give you unlimited re-boarding at their 15 stops.

Trolley Tour Savannah best things to do in Savannah

25. Take a Stroll on Broughton Street

Broughton Street is one of the best streets in Savannah to go shopping. This is where you will find Leopold’s Ice Cream as well as The Paris Market (a lovely shop and café), the Portal Arcade, Chive Sea Bar and Lounge, as well as stores like Lululemon, Urban Outfitters, and Banana Republic.

26. Visit the City Market

The City Market is two blocks of cafes, restaurants and small shops. You can also visit the American Prohibition Museum, which documents the history of Prohibition.

City Market Savannah best things to do in Savannah

City Market | Best Things to Do in Savannah

27. Wormsloe State Historic Site

The Wormsloe State Historic Site is one of the best things to do in Savannah. It sits just outside of Savannah and to get here, you will need to rent a car.

If you don’t have a car, you can take a tour that includes Wormsloe with Bonaventure Cemetery.

This site was once the Wormsloe Plantation. It was founded by Noble Jones, one of Georgia’s colonial founders, on what is called the Isle of Hope. This site is 822 acres in size and became a state historic site in 1979.

Wormsloe State Historic Site

This is the place to see live oaks covered in Spanish moss. You will enter the park through an old, stone archway. Beyond this entrance is the beautiful sight of the long lane, flanked on either side with large live oak trees. Their branches arch over the road, creating a tree tunnel.

There is no parking along this road and it is about a mile long. Kara and I walked most of it; Tim picked us up after we got the photos we wanted.

Wormsloe Savannah Georgia


Beyond the tree tunnel is a parking area. From here, you can walk to the Tabby Ruins, see the colonial life area, and the viewpoint of Skidaway River.

Colonial Life Area best things to do in Savannah

Colonial Life Area

28. Visit the Pin Point Heritage Museum

Pin Point is a small African American fishing village. It was founded in 1890 by freed slaves. This village is part of the Gullah-Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, which runs from northern Florida to North Carolina. This is where the descendants of enslaved people lived and farmed.

Pin Point is also the birthplace of US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

The museum can be visited on a tour. Tours run most days of the week and you can get the schedule here. 

Pin Point Museum

Pin Point Museum

29. Visit Tybee Island

Tybee Island is just 30 minutes from Savannah. If you want to get in a little beach time, this is the place to go. Visit the pier, have ice cream at the Sundae Café, and spend some time on the beach.

Tybee Beach in February

Tybee Island in February

30. Tour the Old Fort Jackson Historic Site

This National Historic Landmark is located on the Savannah River near the historic district. You can stroll the fort on your own, but the highlight is watching a cannon firing.

I liked this much more than I expected to. Our guide gave us a brief history of the fort and then fired a very small cannon. It was educational, it was entertaining, and it was LOUD! I can’t imagine what it would sound like if the cannon were any bigger.

Old Fort Jackson best things to do in Savannah

Old Fort Jackson Cannon Firing

Get the cannon firing schedule, hours of operation, and pricing on the official website before you go.

Things to Do in Savannah: On a Map

How to Use This Map: Click the icons on the map to get more information about each point of interest. Click the star next to the title of the map to add this map to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.

Best Things to Do in Savannah: Our Recommendations

Top 10 Things to Do in Savannah

From our larger list above, here are the 10 best experiences to have in Savannah.

  • Visit Forsyth Park
  • Visit the Historic Squares
  • Take a Ghost Tour
  • Enjoy the view from a rooftop bar
  • Visit Wormsloe State Historic Site
  • Stroll along Jones Street
  • Dine at Savannah’s best restaurants
  • Go for a walk along River Street
  • Visit Bonaventure Cemetery
  • Tour one of Savannah’s historic homes

Best Free Things to Do in Savannah

  • Visit Forsyth Park
  • Stroll along Jones Street
  • Visit the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
  • Explore the historic squares and gardens
  • Visit the Plant Riverside District
  • Go for a walk along River Street
  • Visit Tybee Island
  • Go window shopping on Broughton Street

Savannah at St. Patrick’s Day

Savannah is one of the best places in the United States to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. The St. Patrick’s Day Parade is one of the largest in the country, coming in behind New York City and Chicago.

The holiday is celebrated not just on one day, but over an entire weekend.

We were in Savannah to celebrate St. Patricks’ Day in 2024 which also happened to be the 200th anniversary of the parade. It was one of the biggest events in the city’s history.

In 2024, St. Patrick’s Day officially fell on a Sunday. The parade and most of the festivities were held on Saturday. We arrived on a Thursday afternoon. Hotels, restaurants, and bars were decorated in green, brilliantly green T-shirts were on sale throughout the city, and Savannah was in a very festive mood.

Savannah St Patricks Day Parade

Savannah St Patricks Day

The parade started at 10:15 am and lasted about 4 hours. People camp overnight for a good spot along the parade route. If that doesn’t sound like something you want to do, there are bleachers set up along the route. Make a reservation in advance and you are guaranteed a seat. We had prime seating right in front of the Cathedral of St. John.

After the parade comes to end, most people head down to the waterfront area, which becomes a sea of green T-shirts. Lines to get into the top rooftop bars are extremely long, with waits of an hour or more. Many bars and restaurants offer to-go cups and you are allowed to walk around with alcoholic beverages.

If you plan to be in Savannah for St. Patrick’s Day, make your hotel reservations at least 3 months in advance and be prepared for high prices. This is probably the most expensive time to visit Savannah.

This is a beautiful time to visit the city, with warm weather and azaleas and flowers in bloom. We had such a great time we are planning to do it again, so maybe we’ll see you in Savannah on St. Patrick’s Day.

Forsyth Park Fountain Green Water

Green water in the Forsyth Park fountain for St. Patrick’s Day

Best Time to Visit Savannah

In general, the best time to visit Savannah is during the spring and fall months.

In the spring (mid-March through mid-June) the weather is warm and sunny. High temperatures during this time range from 70 to 90 degrees and rain showers are common. This is a beautiful time to visit Savannah, when everything is in bloom. In March, azaleas in the squares are in full bloom, making this a great time to visit Savannah.

Savannah hosts the second largest St. Patrick’s Day festival in the United States. If you plan to visit during this time, make your hotel reservations far in advance.

Summers are hot and steamy. High temperatures are usually in the 90’s, sometimes cresting the 100-degree mark. But what makes it even more uncomfortable is the high humidity.

Temperatures cool off in the fall, and like the spring months, daytime temperatures are warm and rainfall chances are slightly less than April, May and June.

Winters are cooler, but the high temperatures sit in the 60’s, which might feel quite warm this time of year, depending on where you are coming from.

We visited Savannah in mid-February. Daytime high temperatures were in the 70’s and at night it got down into the 50’s. I think this is a great time to visit, because crowds also tend to be low this month. But if you can go at the end of February into March, you can see Savannah while the azaleas are blooming, which I imagine is beautiful.

Things to Do in Savannah Georgia

Savannah in February

Getting to Savannah

The Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport is just a 20-minute drive from the historic district of Savannah.

If you have plans to rent a car, you can do so from the Savannah airport. When making your hotel reservation, inquire about where to park your car. Parking can be a challenge in some parts of the historic district.

If you do not plan to rent a car, there are a few ways to get from the airport to the city. You can use Uber/Lyft, hire a taxi, or hire a private driver. Click here for a list of taxi companies and limousine/private drivers.

Getting Around Savannah

The historic district is small and compact. It’s flat and easy to walk to everything, although you will log a few miles over the course of the day.

We primarily walked to everything in the historic district. Occasionally we used Uber to get to a place that was farther away, and to get out to the Savannah Thompson hotel (to visit Bar Julian, the rooftop bar here).

You can also book a ticket on the Old Trolley Hop-On Hop-Off bus and use this to get around the city, getting off at the stops that interest you.

Gingerbread House best things to do in Savannah

Gingerbread House | Best Things to Do in Savannah

Where to Eat

Earlier in this guide we listed some of our favorite restaurants in Savannah. For more recommendations, photos, and links to each restaurant, read our article Best Restaurants in Savannah.

Where to Stay

As far as location is concerned, the historic district is the best area to stay in. From here, almost everything on this list is within walking distance.

Historic Inns

Foley House Inn. The Foley House has an excellent location in the historic district. It’s also one of the most popular inns to stay in, since it is considered to be haunted (we visited this house on the Genteel & Bard’s ghost tour).

Catherine Ward House. At the time that I am writing this, the Catherine Ward House is the highest rated property in all of Savannah, getting a near perfect score. This bed and breakfast is a 2-minute walk from Forsyth Park. Children over 14 are welcome here.

The Marshall House. The Marshall House was built in 1851 and was used as a hospital for Civil War soldiers. It’s another property in Savannah that is considered to be haunted. The Marshall House has a great location on Broughton Street, very close to Leopold’s Ice Cream, and some rooms can accommodate up to four people.

Eliza Thompson House. Stay on Jones Street, the prettiest street in Savannah. Rooms are beautifully decorated with antique furnishings. Included with your stay are gourmet breakfasts, an afternoon wine reception, and dessert and coffee each evening. This is a place I would like to stay in on a return visit to Savannah. Children are not allowed.

Luxury Hotels

JW Marriott Plant Riverside District. This is where we stay when we visit Savannah and have had a great experience every time. This brand new, beautiful property is located at the northwest end of the historic district, so it is a longer walk to some sights (or just Uber there). But with its large, comfortable rooms, outdoor pool, and nearby restaurants and bars, this is one of the best hotels in Savannah.

Perry Lane Hotel. This 5-star hotel is more centrally located in the historic district. It is also home to the Peregrin Bar, one of the rooftop bars mentioned earlier in this guide. The Perry Lane Hotel has an outdoor pool and fitness center.

The Alida. This hotel also has a great location in the historic district. Rooms are beautifully decorated and can accommodate up to 5 people, so this makes a good choice for families or small groups of travelers. We visited the rooftop bar in this hotel, the Lost Square, but it wasn’t one of our favorites.

Mid-Range Hotels

Homewood Suites Historic District/Riverfront. The Homewood Suites is located on the eastern end of River Street. It has a rooftop area with a heated pool, a fire pit, and a rooftop bar. It’s another great pick for families.

Justine Inn. If you want to stay in a historic inn that does not have a big price tag, this is a great option. The Justine Inn is located only two blocks from Forsyth Square. It is a small property with five rooms and all are decorated with antique furnishings. Children are not allowed.

DoubleTree by Hilton. The Doubletree is located in the northwest corner of the historic district, very close to the JW Marriott. Rooms are contemporary in design and the hotel has a private pool and fitness area.

Budget Hotels

Holiday Inn Express – Historic District. The Holiday Inn is located on Bay Street, just a few blocks away from the riverside district.

Green Palm Inn. This bed and breakfast is located in a historic Victorian house. Rooms are decorated with British-Colonial furnishings. Breakfast is served daily and in the afternoon, you can enjoy the complimentary wine social.

More Ideas of Things to Do in Savannah



If you have any questions about the best things to do in Savannah, or if you want to share your favorite experiences, restaurants, or rooftop bars, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to Georgia

SAVANNAH, GEORGIA: We cover the top places to eat in our Savannah Restaurant Guide and the top rooftop bars in our Guide to the Savannah Rooftop Bars. Savannah also makes a great place to work remotely.

ATLANTA, GEORGIA: Tour the best bars in our article Best Bars in Atlanta.

CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA: Learn about the top experiences in our article Best Things to Do in Charleston. In our Charleston Restaurant Guide, we cover the top restaurants and rooftop bars in the city.

KEY WEST, FLORIDA: For a list of top experiences in Key West, read our article Best Things to Do in Key West. We also have guides on renting a Tiki Boat in Key West, Where to Eat in Key West, and Where to Stay in Key West.

VISIT MORE CITIES IN THE USA: Explore more American cities in our guides to New Orleans, Key West, Las Vegas, New York City, Nashville, Boston, and Washington DC.

USA TRAVEL INSPIRATION: For more great ideas on where to go in the United States, check out our article Best USA Road Trips, which has 18 sample itineraries for your next big adventure. You can also see more travel itineraries on our Travel Itineraries page and our National Park Itineraries.

Read all of our articles about Georgia in our Georgia Travel Guide.

Savannah Georgia Best Things To Do


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Comments 7

  1. Avatar for Leonard

    I thoroughly enjoy your posts, especially on destinations that we have visited which includes Savannah. We had the opportunity to spend a week there a couple years ago and saw many of the sites you list. It is fantastic!
    When people ask me what Savannah is like I tell them I feel like I am in the middle of a John Grisham novel!
    Keep up the great work!

  2. Avatar for Rona Dinsmore
    Rona Dinsmore

    Hi Julie,

    I am a long time follower of your blog! In fact, we have a trip to Italy this November using one of your itineraries. I was delighted to see that your daughter is a student at SCAD, as my daughter is a Sophomore there! We live in the suburbs of Atlanta, but love visiting Savannah. Cheers to a good Fall quarter 🙂

    Rona Dinsmore

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Rona. Thanks for writing in! We just flew home a few days ago and we are super excited for Kara. Maybe our daughters will cross paths at SCAD. I hope you have a wonderful time in Italy. Tim and I are returning to Italy later this month…our first trip as empty nesters. 😊 Cheers, Julie

  3. Avatar for Edward Reeves
    Edward Reeves

    It’s always a treat to visit Savannah Georgia! I particularly love their beach attractions! Would you happen to know of great hotels near beaches there? Hope you can feature some on your blogs because I’ve been looking far and beyond and browsing sites like https://visittybee.com/beaches and I need to do more research to find the best ones to stay over at when I get there!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post
  4. Avatar for Don Davies
    1. Avatar for Julie Post

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