With recorded history dating back to 1733, there are a number of sites and historical landmarks to see in Savannah. But the city is far from stuck in the past – there are also great contemporary museums and new developments that are well worth a visit. Many people touring Savannah like to make a trip out to the surrounding “low country” areas including Bluffton, Hilton Head, and Charleston. If a trip encompassing all of these cities in a short time frame is something of interest to you, you will need an itinerary of things to do – because there is such a lot to see in so little time. Here’s how to spend 24 hours in Savannah.
7:30am: Stop in at the Coffee Fox at 102 West Broughton St. for a delicious iced (or hot) “horchata” latte and something quick to eat that will fuel your busy day.
8:15am: Once you’re fed and watered, walk approximately half a mile over to Old Town Trolley Tour at 234 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd to board the first trolley. A trolley tour is one of the best ways to see all of the landmarks in a short time frame, and a ticket with on-off privileges is $27.90 for adults, $9.63 for children (four-twelve), and kids under four travel for free.
9:00am: Board the trolley for the first tour of the day. Stop by the Savannah History Museum, the Savannah Civic Center, the Roundhouse Railroad Museum, Battlefield Park, and Ralph Marks Gilbert Civil Rights Museum.
9:10am: Get off at the City Market stop and walk a block to the Telfair Museums. Spend some time in each of the Telfair Museums – The Telfair Academy and The Jepson Center, both located on Telfair Square.
12.00pm: Get off at Madison Square and walk a block to the delicious Mrs. Wilkes Boarding House (lines can be long here so an early lunch is advised). Enjoy a southern family-style meal surrounded by locals and tourists alike. This meal is the real McCoy – fried chicken, mashed potatoes, butter beans, squash, mac “˜n’ cheese and red rice. Your taste buds will thank you, but your waistband won’t.
1.00pm: Walk over to the Mercer Williams House Museum (near Mrs. Wilkes) and take a picture in front of this beautiful building where the movie Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil was filmed. If home décor strikes your fancy, spend a little more time in this area, “The Design District”, where many stylish boutiques await.
1:30pm: Back at Madison Square, continue the tour and see many more landmarks including: the famed Forsyth Fountain, the Victorian District, the Cathedral of St. John, the Flannery O’Connor House, the Colonial Park Cemetery, and Lucas Theatre.
2.00pm: Exit at the Lucas Theatre and walk around the corner to Leopold’s Ice Cream. You may be full from lunch, but this little ice cream shop is a must see, especially for movie lovers. Stratton Leopold, the shop owner and famous movie producer, has been involved in many big name films such as The General’s Daughter, Mission Impossible III, The Big Chill, The Sum of All Fears, and more – all of which you will see posters for on the walls
2:15pm: Walk along Broughton Street and enjoy the many shops and clothing boutiques, both local and international. A great spot for some retail therapy, this is Savannah’s stylish core.
3:15pm: Walk to Ellis Square and continue your journey to the final stop. Just across the street you’ll find the new SCAD Museum of Arts. A striking, modern structure with a new selection of Andy Warhol screen prints (donated in 2014 to the permanent collection from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts), there’s plenty to see and do at SCAD.
5pm: After a long day of touring, enjoy a 60-minute spa treatment at the Heavenly Spa at the Westin. You can take a water taxi from River Street to the Westin for just $2 per person.
6:30pm: Take the water taxi back to River Street and find yourself at the Cotton Sail Hotel, one of Savannah’s newest stays. Here you can enjoy a sunset cocktail at Top Deck, which offers incredible views of the Savannah River and Tallmadge Bridge.
7:30pm: Walk over to The Olde Pink House, one of Savannah’s premier fine dining destinations, and enjoy a leisurely five star meal. With a wide and eclectic menu, there’s certainly something here to suit all tastes.
9:00pm Stay to enjoy some post-dinner drinks at Arches Sidebar (in the Olde Pink House), or walk a block to Circa 1875 for a nice glass of wine, French 75, or whatever wets your whistle. If your sweet tooth starts calling you, wander over to Lulu’s Chocolate Bar for a chocolate martini or mousse tower nightcap. The perfect finale to your 24 hours in Savannah.
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Have you spent 24 hours in Savannah? What would be on your day’s itinerary? Let us know in the comments section below.
Written by Stefanie Dasher