Historic homes, rich history, unique architecture, and trees dripping in Spanish moss..Savannah, Georgia is truly the definition of southern charm. Add in the open container laws and location to nearby Tybee Island, it made the perfect destination for our annual sister trip. We were there in mid-April and heard from a few locals that it was the perfect time to visit before the hot, humid temperatures and bugs arrived. For being a major city, it certainly had kept its small town charm and it never felt crowded or stressful to navigate.
Keep reading to discover how we spent our 4-day getaway living the low country life.
Where to Stay
While there are plenty of great hotels downtown, I tend to lean toward the Airbnb lifestyle when I travel because I like to have the added space and the option to make our own breakfast most days. This adorable guesthouse was the perfect fit for the two of us and quite spacious. It was located within walking distance to a number of fun stops in the Starland district and a short drive downtown. It also offered easy street parking in a quiet neighborhood.
Day One - Starland District and The Grove
We arrived in Savannah mid-afternoon on a Saturday and after picking up our rental car, we headed to grab lunch in the Starland district before we could check in to our Airbnb. We always start our sister trips with margaritas and Mexican food so our first stop of the trip was Bull Street Tacos and boy we were impressed! This place has been voted the best tacos and margaritas in Savannah and they certainly get our vote as well. You'll order via counter service and can eat under their covered patio or at one of the tables on the sidewalk. Honestly, we talked about how good the burrito was our entire trip!
Next on our list was mural hunting and the walls near Starland Yard are the perfect place to find several colorful options including the "Explore Sav" wall. Across the street you'll find the colorful stairs leading to Starland Strange and Bazaar which is a boutique store offering a truly unique shopping experience. They also have an ice cream counter (complete with neon waffle cones) if you're in search of a sweet treat.
After changing at our Airbnb we headed downtown for dinner at The Grove which offers sophisticated casual vibes in the heart of Savannah's City Market. Reservations are available for their main dining room and they also have a rooftop patio with live music which is first come first serve seating. They are known for their creative cocktails including a giant Moscow mule which is served with a ladle for sharing and the champagne pop complete with a King of Pops popsicle.
We ended the night bar hopping which is made even more fun in Savannah as you can get any of your drinks to go and enjoy them while you walk to your next destination. The Rail Pub was our favorite stop of the night with its frozen lemonade slashes, outdoor beer garden, and karaoke.
Day Two - Historic District and River Street
Our second day in the city started with coffee and gourmet waffles from Mirabelle Savannah. The lemon zinger topped with lemon-lavendar curd and raspberry and cardamom jam was so delicious. But if you're not a fan of sweet, they also have a breakfast sammi which my sister raved about. If you dine on one of their tables on the sidewalk you'll have views of the breathtaking Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist which is open for tours throughout the week.
One of my favorite parts about Savannah was how walkable it was. Street parking if free on Saturday and Sundays so we were able to park downtown and spend the whole afternoon wandering around. Be sure the visit as many of the 22 squares as you can as they all offer their own unique aesthetic with each more beautiful then the next. Lafayette Square was one of my favorites and has a smaller fountain and Chippewa Square is where the famous Forest Gump bench scene was filmed. We also strolled along E. Jones Street which is lined with historic homes and has been named one of the prettiest streets in the U.S. The next stop on our walking tour was Forsyth Park which can't be missed. The park is full of Spanish moss trees and also home to the city's iconic fountain.
Next we walked to Peregrin which is located in the Perry Lane Hotel to enjoy a cocktail on their rooftop. This was one of the dreamiest spots with killer views including the Savannah theatre sign. They also have a rooftop pool for guests of the hotel. Be sure to try their frozen peach Bellini topped with rose. For lunch we headed back toward our Airbnb and stopped at the Starland Yard which is a great outdoor space with live music and a rotating food truck selection. Highly recommend the wood fire pizza from Vittoria Pizza which is the one stationary restaurant in the yard. If you like trying local brews, head next door to Two Tides Brewery. Located upstairs in a house like setting you'll find an array of unique seating options in different rooms. They have several delicious and fruity sours on tap - grab a flight to try several!
Dinner on day two was the meal I was most looking forward to at one of the most popular restaurants in the city - The Olde Pink House. You will most certainly want to make a reservation in advance to dine at this elegant Colonial mansion as the are booked up almost every night. We were seated in the cellar tavern where we dined by candlelight and enjoyed live music on the piano. Truly some of the best food of our whole trip - you really can't go wrong with anything on the menu but the seafood dishes we had were fabulous.
After dinner we walked down to explore the famous River Street which is lined with shops, bars, and restaurants. Be sure to stop in to Savannah Candy Kitchen to sample the pralines or enjoy one of their many other sweet treats. It was a perfect way to end the night walking along the river at sunset and watching the Georgia Queen cruising under the bridge.
Day Three - Tybee Island
After walking from our Airbnb to grab coffee from the nearby Foxy Loxy Cafe (which has an adorable courtyard), we hit the road and took the short drive to Tybee Island to enjoy a day along the Georgia coast. If you have the time to spare during your trip I would suggest dedicating a full day to explore this charming and eclectic beach town.
As you're driving into town, be sure to stop at The Shoppes at 1207 which feature a number of galleries, gift and novelty shops, and artisans in colorful beach shacks that make up their own little village. Seaside Sisters and Tybee Cottage Art Gallery were two of our favorite stops. Located a short drive away you can't miss the historic Tybee Island Lighthouse which holds its claim to fame as the oldest and tallest lighthouse in Georgia. You can enjoy the views from the bottom or purchase a ticket to climb all 178 steps and take photos overlooking the entire island. There is also a museum and gift shop on site.
Next it was time to relax on the beach - the real reason we came! With over three miles of coastline to enjoy, there are several areas where you can park and have easy beach access. We chose to park closer to the pier so we could walk into town and grab lunch later in the day. All the lots and streets near the beach charge a fee seven days a week and you pay by how many hours you plan to spend. We went on a Monday so the beach was fairly empty, but on busier summer days I would suggest arriving early to get a prime spot in the sand.
Later in the afternoon, we made the short walk past the pier and in to town to grab lunch at Raw Ingredients. If you're a fan of sushi, you must stop here! Honestly some of the best sushi I've ever had. Be sure to try the rolls marked "raw" which are their signature items. Next door you'll find Wet Willies daiquiri bar which is the perfect place to cool off with a frozen drink. Similar to Savannah, Tybee Island has an open container law so you can get your drinks to go and bring them back to the beach to enjoy.
After spending the rest of the day soaking up the sun, we ended our night with fresh-caught seafood at the popular Crab Shack. Their outdoor patio feels like it was built right into the trees and is located on the water with a fabulous view. They are famous for their steamed seafood platters and boils which are perfect for sharing with the table. Be sure to order the key lime pie for dessert! They also have a lagoon of baby alligators which you can feed at certain times of the day.
Day Four - Broughton Street Shopping, Carriage Tour, Plant Riverside District
Keeping with tradition, our last day in Savannah started with coffee and shopping. Park near Broughton Street and start your morning at Starbucks, or for a more local option, head to the Coffee Fox. From there we popped in and out of a few different shops including the Paris Market which is an adorable boutique offering a range of antiques, housewares, gifts and jewelry. Savannah Bee Company is another fun spot where you can sample honey and mead or purchase a variety of honey-related beauty products, beverages, and candles.
I had been craving hush puppies our entire trip so when it was time for lunch we headed to Sorry Charlies Oyster Bar. You get a view of their oyster bar right when you walk in and the menu has a number of seafood and pub-style dishes. From there we headed toward River Street to check in for our carriage tour with Savannah Carriage Tours. This was something we booked rather last minute after seeing the horses navigate people throughout the city. It was a shorter tour but I thought it was worth it for the price and our tour guide provided a lot of unique history and stories of how Savannah was founded which is something I always love to learn when traveling to a new place. If you're looking for other tour options, there are several trolley companies and ghost tours to choose from.
For our last night in the city we went to Plant Riverside District which is a relatively new area and has been named Savannah's entertainment district. It has a much more modern feel compared to the more historic side of River Street and you'll find a number of bars, restaurants and shops to choose from. We had dinner at Savannah Tequila Company which has such a fun vibe and delicious Mexican food (order the chicken nachos)! From there we headed up to Myrtle and Rose rooftop garden which is the dreamiest space and offers great views of the river and bridge as the sun sets.
I love creating detailed travel guides to ensure you get the most out of your time. On this blog I'll be sharing some of my past trips in hopes that it helps you plan your next adventure. Pack your suitcase you never know where I'll be heading next!
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