I’ve been to all fifty states—Georgia more times than I can count—and can you believe I’ve never been to Savannah? Well, me being me, you know I’m going to fix that. So, I did. I went. And I had a complete blast. I had way too much fun, if I’m being completely honest. My only real regret is that I didn’t have more time. (Hangovers are fleeting, after all.) But here’s what we managed to get in on our whirlwind Savannah weekend. And Global Debauchery’s formal recommendations for the most incredible things to do in Savannah, Georgia.
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Get Boozy At The American Prohibition Museum (Maybe My Fav Of All The Things To Do In Savannah, Georgia)
I’m normally not much of a “museum person,” but the American Prohibition Museum was pretty kick-ass. And, for the record, it’s the only museum in the United States devoted to the topic. It’s not just a space with some exhibits in glass cases, it’s a fully immersive experience from the moment you set foot in the door.
Learn all there is to know about the Prohibition era, from Walmart’s prescription whiskey racket to liquor-stashing in false-bottomed baby carriages. With talking pictures, debauchery posters, and a speakeasy to finish off your tour, it’s definitely one of the best things to do in Savannah, Georgia. What more could one want from a museum?
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Streets & Squares and Square & Streets…
#AllTheSquares. The city of Savannah was originally designed with 24 different squares, and 22 remain. I can’t say for certain, but I feel like I saw each and every one of them. They’re all beautiful. I was partial to Washington Square, where Savannah’s itty bitty Rainbow Row is. And Chippewa Square is where the famous “Forrest Gump” feather scene was filmed.
There are also one thousand and one Insta-worthy city streets. Among the ones I strolled were Broughton Street, Oglethorpe Avenue, Liberty Street, and Jones Street. There were others, too! That was my “narrowed down” list. It really doesn’t even matter because it’s all stoopid gorgeous. Those are just the highlights, y’all.
Take A Wander Through Bonaventure Cemetery (Probably Second Favorite Of My Things To Do In Savannah, Georgia)
Another one of my fav things to do in Savannah, Georgia is to stroll through Bonaventure Cemetery. It’s old. Like… really old. And just plain gorgeous. It’s also the famous cemetery featured in John Berendt’s Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil. But the Bird Girl statue on the cover of the book isn’t located there anymore.
You can do a nighttime ghost tour, but we went first thing in the morning and the way the light streamed through the Spanish Moss was truly second to none. Visitor’s parking is in the far, far back of the cemetery on the water and, if you’re lucky, you can catch the pelicans chilling.
Tour Endless Haunted & Historic Homes
Aye. Where to even begin with Savannah’s historic homes? Too many to count. There’s the Olde Pink House, where the brick color started to bleed through the white plaster turning the house pink. (True story.) It’s a high-end restaurant now, so… they wouldn’t let me in. (Totally kidding. We didn’t go.)
There’s the Sorrel-Weed House, a 16,000 square-foot mansion and museum that’s supposedly haunted. It’s one of the largest homes in downtown Savannah. Then the Mercer Williams House, which was the one featured in the movie “Midnight In The Garden Of Good and Evil.” And can’t forget the Andrew Low House, which is the actual HQ of thee Girl Scouts. Truly, any one of them would be worth touring, but there are just too many to list. Have fun!
Experience The Grand Entry Of Wormsloe State Historic Site
I’ll be honest that, for me, there’s not a whole lot to Wormsloe. But you have to go for no other reason than to drive down the oak-lined entry. It’s really extraordinary. Just breathtaking. There are some tabby house ruins on the property dating back to 1745, the oldest in Savannah. So… pretty damn old. Plus, pets are allowed.
Wormsloe State Historic Site has been a lot of different things throughout history, but it is indeed mainly a former plantation. I don’t know whether it’s called a “historic site” to be [honestly] all-encompassing, or to sort of “re-brand” itself, but… it’s something I wondered when I was visiting. Maybe a little Column A-Column B.
Admire The Grandeur That Is The Cathedral Basilica of Saint John the Baptist
The Cathedral Basilica of Saint John the Baptist is pretty spectacular. As old American churches go. Really. They were having mass and a wedding shoot out front when we stopped by, but the “heavenly” exterior looked imposing—and so perfectly peaceful—against the sky. It’s too bad we couldn’t see the interior because I hear the stained glass is something to see.
Side note that I’m impressed with the cathedral’s extensive website, which includes a live stream and any number of social accounts (including Google+).
Brush Up On Your History At Fort Pulaski National Monument
Yes, yes, it would seem to me that Fort Pulaski National Monument is a bit overshadowed by its neighbor, Fort Sumter. But Fort Pulaski is well worth a visit for all you history buffs and National Parks Passport stamp collectors. It’s located on Cockspur Island, just between Savannah and Tybee and has all kinds of super cool canons and tunnels.
Fort Pulaski was a Confederate stronghold for a time and would eventually be taken over by Union troops. A major turning point in the Civil War, some 600 Confederate soldiers were detained as prisoners of war here. Ironically, it was also one of the most southern points on the Underground Railroad. And escaped slaves who reached the island were officially declared free. #KarmaKeepsReceipts. And that makes it one of the best things to do in Savannah, Georgia!
Climb—Or Stumble—From Bay Street Down to River Street
Bay Street has any number of historic buildings and, in between them all, you’ll find super treacherous, really steep, historic staircases making their way down to River Street. (All part of the experience.) The riverfront is a nice walk, especially at sunset, and there are lots of shops and restaurants to explore.
I’d never really considered a candy store for a fun photography location, but Savannah Candy Kitchen was pretty much the perfect Insta spot. Super colorful and it smelled divine, of course. A must-try are their pralines!
Get Some Fresh Air At Forsyth Park
I’ve already mentioned streets and squares, but Forsyth Park deserves its whole own section because, well, it’s a whole damn park. A 30-acre stretch, it’s one of the most well-known green spaces in downtown Savannah. And the fountain is over 150 years old. Sadly, however, the fountain was purchased from a catalogue and is not actually an original. Though it’s modeled after the fountains at the Place de la Concorde in Paris.
At any rate, it’s definitely a great place to have a picnic, let the kids play on the playgrounds, people watch, enjoy a cup of coffee, read a book, etc. etc. etc.
Eat, Drink & Shop ‘Til You Drop (Probably Third On My List of Favorite Things To Do In Savannah, Georgia)
When it comes to Savannah’s shopping, food, and booze scene, a single weekend just. won’t. cut. it. It won’t. You need like a whole year to really appreciate how extraordinary it is. And, if you’re a shopper, a foodie, or a cocktail connoisseur like myself, you’re gonna like Savannah. We got in as much as we could with our limited time (definitely as much drinking as I could), but I’m just left with the sinking feeling that I missed so. much. Just a reason to go back, right?
Of the places I kept coming across time and time again in my planning research… Alex Raskin Antiques, The Paris Market, Leopold’s Ice Cream, Abe’s On Lincoln, The Collins Quarter, Husk, the Olde Pink House, and Mata Hari. Insider bar recommendations from a legit Visit Savannah insider include Peacock Lounge, The Artillery, Congress Street Up, Starland Yard, Ghostcoast Distillery, Lulu’s Chocolate Bar, Myrtle & Rose, and Bohemian. With all the available options, it’s hard not to include eating, drinking, and shopping as one of the best things to do in Savannah, Georgia. Enjoy!
Where We Stayed…
We stayed at the Kimpton Brice Hotel on Bay Street and it was a solid choice. The location is gorgeous—just above River Street, right by Washington Square, walking distance from everything. Their rooms were fun and trendy and their common spaces were exquisite. There’s a pool and a large, peaceful courtyard. They have free bikes and allow pets, too. Not to mention their complimentary happy hour and on-site restaurant, Pacci Italian Kitchen. Book your stay now and have some fun.
More Excellent Things To Do In Savannah, Georgia?
Have you been? What were your favorite things to do in Savannah, Georgia? As always, definitely feel free to add to my list. Reply away in the comments right here, or shoot me an email via my Contact page. Have I not listed enough awesome things to do? Check out the options below for even more fun ideas, like trolley rides and spooky ghost tours.
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