May 1, 2023

Springtime is an excellent time to visit the Savannah Historical District. It isn’t summer yet and the weather is cooler and the humidity isn’t over-bearing. The days are warm and the nights are pleasant. You may have a shower now and then but they tend to be short and soon after it has dried up and you can walk around.

The historical district was laid out on paper and the result is evident. British General James Oglethorpe started planning the city in 1733 to give the British poor refugees a place for hope. The one thing that makes Savannah are its 20+ squares situated through the Historical District. These mini-parks contain a variety of monuments that honor the ancestors of the city and those who fought for it through the years. Culture and tradition are everywhere. These squares are abundant with huge live oak trees with hanging Spanish Moss and offer benches to sit and relax while you enjoy the scenery. The churches, mansions, squares, and parks are breathtaking with stunning architecture and probably the most wrought iron that you have ever seen.

One of my favorite places to visit is Forsyth Park. The park was established in the 1850s and can only be described as beautiful. It is named after John Forsyth, the 33rd governor of Georgia who donated 20 acres of land to build the park. It is populated by a variety of trees and flowering bushes. Forsyth Park is located on the southern edge of Savannah’s historic district and has a beautiful Persian-style fountain. It is lit at night so try to visit it after the sun goes down.

Savannah is a walker-friendly city. When visiting the area is very easy to navigate. Many points of interest are located near each other so a car of your own is usually not necessary.  Some congestion and the lack of parking places often deter some people for opting on having their private transportation. Savannah does provide several options of transportation that help the tourist and they are convenient and easy to use. Some of these are free. Do a phone search or ask at the desk of the hotel where you are staying, like me, you’ll find them friendly and eager to help you.

Two choices of free transportation are DOT (Downtown Transportation) and CAT (Chatham Area Transportation). They offer many pick-up and drop-off spots and are fairly easy to use for first-time users. They navigate through the district and come in handy especially if you are toting packages from the many gift shops. These buses operate seven days a week with convenient hours of operation.

Another option is paid tours. These consist of Trolley Tours as well as day and night Walking Tours. Find the company that you feel fits your interests and give them a try. We did a couple and we weren’t disappointed. Learn about the city from people who reside there and can offer detailed and interesting information about Savannah. The Bonaventure Cemetery tour is one that I highly recommend. The cemetery is located a few miles from downtown and contains the graves of many of the best-known individuals. The impressive funerary art lies among the live oaks draped with Spanish moss and numerous flowering azaleas that bloom in the spring.

Did you know that Savannah is considered the most Haunted City in America? If you enjoy ghost stories, and are a ghost lover or hunter, then Savannah is the place for you. There are many places in the city, historical buildings, and cemeteries where you may feel the presence or catch sight of ghosts. Several tours cater to the people that are interested in hauntings and ghosts. Before visiting Savannah you may want to read MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL, a 1994 novel written by John Brendt.

I am saving the best for last. FOOD! There are numerous places to dine throughout the district. Everything from casual to fine dining. If you have never had it, try Shrimp and Grits, yum-yum! River Street along the Savannah River has a good collection of eateries, bars, tourist shops, and several galleries nestled in historic former warehouse buildings. It is open carry (some restrictions) throughout the district. Enjoy sipping your favorite beverage as you stroll along and soak all the sights.