Known for its well-preserved architecture and rich, vibrant, history – Savannah, Georgia is a perfect location for a quick getaway. Since Savannah is only about 45 minutes away from my in-law’s home in Hilton Head, South Carolina, Jeremy and I have visited a few times and we adore this charming city.
Places to Stay
The first time we visited we stayed at the Westin, located on the Savannah River across from Savannah’s Historic District. While the Westin provides a free ferry shuttle, we didn’t like staying across the river. Thus, for our last couple of visits we stayed at the Perry Lane Hotel in downtown Savannah. The Perry Lane Hotel is one of Marriott’s Luxury Collection Hotels – and we highly recommend it. From the champagne offered upon check in, to the rooftop pool/bar, to the delicious restaurant/coffee/wine bar, to the perfectly curated boutique, and to the exquisite details of the hotel rooms – the Perry Lane Hotel will not disappoint. We even saw Mel Gibson at the hotel once. While there are plenty of other hotels and Airbnb options, I cannot say enough good things about the Perry Lane Hotel.
Things to Do
Part of the fun of visiting is just walking around Savannah’s Historic District and enjoying the cobblestone streets, Spanish moss, and perfectly manicured park squares and historic homes. Plus, you can take your cocktails to go! Here are things we’ve done and enjoyed; however, we also always make sure we have downtime to relax at the Perry Lane Hotel.
- East River Street – East River Street is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Savannah. There are more than 75 boutiques, galleries, artists’ studios, restaurants and pubs located on Savannah’s East River Street.
- Forsyth Park – Forsyth Park has over 30 acres with walking paths, playgrounds, tennis and basketball courts, and is home to the famous Forsyth fountain. Concerts and free movies are held during certain months and every Saturday there is a farmers market.
- Mercer Williams House Museum – The house, now a museum, is famous because it was the scene of the 1981 shooting and death of Danny Hansford by the home’s owner Jim Williams. This story is retold in the famous book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. This book is a must read if you haven’t prior to your visit to Savannah.
- Savannah College of Art and Design – SCAD has buildings all over the city and the SCAD Museum of Art features contemporary art from international artists.
- Ghost Tour – Known as one of America’s most haunted cities, attending a ghost tour at night is fun! While I don’t remember the exact tour company we used, we did a walking tour rather than a trolley tour.
Places to Eat
Dining out should definitely be a priority during your time in Savannah. We haven’t been to a place we haven’t liked (although there are places we like more than others). Below is a list of places we’ve tried and would recommend.
- The Emporium Kitchen and Wine Market – This is the Perry Lane Hotel’s signature restaurant, which also has a cute wine bar and Bowerbird coffee station. We always have breakfast/brunch here during our stay. For Sunday brunch they offer a lobster omelette and it’s to die for. Otherwise, the avocado toast and french toast (when I’m cheating on my keto diet) are worth the carbs.
- The Olde Pink House – The Olde Pink House is one of the most famous Savannah restaurants with southern-style cuisine. While the restaurant can get a bit touristy, the pink colonial mansion is a national landmark. So, it’s worth visiting at least once. You can also just grab a drink at the Arches Bar downstairs. The bar was designed after a carriage house and is super cozy with brick walls and gas lighting.
- The Grey – If you can get reservations at the Grey you must go – it’s one of our favorite restaurants in Savannah. The Grey is located in a restored 1938 art deco Greyhound bus terminal and offers exceptional food, wine, and service.
- St. Neo’s Brasserie – We had dinner here on our most recent visit and would definitely recommend for a date night. Located in the Drayton Hotel in the heart of Savannah’s Historic District, the restaurant has a French Brasserie vibe and the menu includes southern, low-country fare.
- Local 11ten – We also dined at Local 11ten on our most recent trip to Savannah. Local 11ten is located a block south of Savannah’s Forsyth Park and is in a restored 1950’s-era bank. The menu is suburb and we loved the cozy date night vibe.
- Cha Bella – Cha Bella is a farm to table restaurant, with all fresh ingredients sourced locally. We sat outside and the ambiance reminded me of a Los Angeles restaurant – with a small vegetable garden, rustic chandeliers, and outdoor swings.
- Husk – Husk is another southern-style staple located in the heart of Savannah’s Historic District. Husk is situated on what is known to be one of the most haunted blocks in the city. Originally built in 1898, the building has a vibrant history.
- Garibaldi – Garibaldi offers upscale Italian food in an 1871 firehouse and has been a popular Savannah restaurant for over 30 years. While this may not be one of my favorite restaurants in terms of the menu (not many keto/healthy options), the old firehouse provides an elegant and romantic ambiance.
- Collins Quarter – Collins Quarter is a famous café serving an all day brunch menu and delicious beverages. We’ve only been for brunch, but at night, the café transforms into a candle lit restaurant. The menu is inspired by the rich culinary diversity of Australia.
- The Grove – The Grove is a restaurant and rooftop bar located in the heart of Savannah’s bustling City Market. The Grove is a fun place to grab drinks and hang out for a bit on the rooftop.
- Vic’s On The River – We ate here during our first visit to Savannah. Located in a beautiful old cotton warehouse overlooking the Savannah River and Historic River Street, it’s a great place to dine in, or grab a drink thanks to its beautiful view.
There are a few other restaurants we haven’t tried, but came highly recommended from family and friends, including Gryphon (been dying to go but it’s hard to get a reservation), Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room, Prohibition, Alligator Soul, and Elizabeth on 37th.
Please leave a comment below if you’ve been to, or reside in Savannah, and have suggestions of things to do, or places to eat!