Savannah is one of our favorite cities in the USA, one that we’ll keep returning to for years and decades to come–and with so many incredible things to do in Savannah, GA, is it any wonder?
It’s not just that there is so much to do, though: Savannah has a vibe all its own.
With a combination of 18th-century city planning, stunning historic architecture, and a modern twist injected by local artists (the Savannah College of Art and Design offers some of the best art and design studies in the country), Savannah is a delightful combination of traditional and innovative.
Savannah is a quintessential southern city–or even more specifically, a quintessential Lowcountry city.
And, if you’re looking to get a taste of this very complicated and unique portion of the USA, you’ve come to the right place.
I’ve visited Savannah many times over, on mother-daughter weekend getaways and weeklong stays with my husband Jeremy (and now our dog Ranger) alike.
Looking for the best things to do in Savannah, Georgia?
Here’s what you can’t miss!
Table of Contents
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Overwhelmed By 50+ Things to Do in Savannah?
This Savannah blog post is something of a behemoth, and it has grown and been extensively edited over the years as I’ve returned to the city again and again.
If you’re looking for something more compact to plan a short trip, I highly recommend checking out our suggested Savannah weekend itinerary or guide to spending one day in Savannah.
We also have several other blog posts on Savannah broken down by topic, including a round-up of the best coffee shops, the best day trips, and the best photo spots in the city!
And, of course, most importantly–a full food and restaurant guide to Savannah that’s far more extensive than what you’ll find here.
I’ll link to the relevant guides where it makes sense throughout this post, but if you’re looking for more detailed guides or our coverage of the south as a whole, be sure to use the search bar in the top right of the screen (or on mobile, the search bar found in the menu bar).
For a full Savannah bucket list that will keep you busy for ages, though–this is the right place to be!
The Best Things to Do in Savannah, GA
Wander the 22 town squares.
Savannah is still home to 22 of its original 24 town squares, and they dot the historic center of the city.
Idyllic, beautiful, and full of gigantic oak trees dripping with Spanish moss, the squares are a welcome break from the oppressive southern heat during the summer and a delightful place to rest your feet and enjoy some people-watching at any time of the year.
It’s impossible to choose a favorite, but Chippewa Square (where the Forrest Gump bench scenes were filmed!), Lafayette Square, and Monterey Square are all near the top of our list.
Dine in style at some of the best restaurants in Savannah.
You can throw a stone in any direction and hit a place for a great meal in Savannah–from coffee shops to fine dining to barbeque joints, Savannah is all about the delicious Lowcountry food.
Make sure to save room on your list of things to do in Savannah for at least one gut-busting, multi-course, indulgent meal, though–it’s a Savannah experience you won’t forget anytime soon.
We have a more detailed guide to Savannah restaurants here, but if you’re looking for a classic Savannah restaurant, here are a few options that will be sure to impress.
Elizabeth on 37th
If you’re a seafood lover, Elizabeth on 37th is the fine-dining restaurant in Savannah for you.
Everything from the setting in the mansion the restaurant is housed in to the local seafood specialties that the menu is made up of will have you begging to come back.
Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room
Mrs. Wilkes is one of the most iconic restaurants in Savannah and is unique among these listed for serving all-you-can-eat, family-style meals.
Line up early (people often start lining up hours before the doors open for lunch at 11:00 AM), and then sit down to enjoy a delicious meal with several new friends.
You’ll pay your flat fee on your way out the door, $30/person, cash or check only.
Adventurous eaters need to be sure to add a meal at Alligator Soul to their list of things to do in Savannah!
With meats like ostrich, kangaroo, antelope, and (obviously) alligator available, you are guaranteed to find unique flavors on your plate.
For those less adventurous with their meals, don’t worry–there’s a broad selection of more typical meat and seafood offerings on the menu as well.
The Olde Pink House
Want to dine in an 18th-century ballroom under a crystal chandelier?
Head to the Olde Pink House for classic southern food with a modern twist, in one of my favorite settings in the city.
Be sure to order their Food Network-featured BLT salad with fried green tomatoes!
It easily makes the list of the most memorable dishes I have ever eaten.
Take a food tour.
Is restaurant sampling not enough for you?
Consider jumping on a food tour to learn all about food traditions in the Lowcountry… complete with enough tasty food to leave you stuffed for hours, of course!
This popular food tour is a great introduction to both Savannah’s food scene and the city itself!
Tour a house museum (or four).
Savannah’s house museums are a staple of tourism in the city, and to be as small as it is, the city boasts an unusual number of them–nearly 20 in all!
Some are home to museums featuring art other than the house, some are the homes of other businesses, and some are open to visitors interested in learning some of the history of Savannah and its residents.
Most of the homes date to the early-to-mid 19th century and almost exclusively were built by Savannah’s elite residents of their day.
Not sure where to start?
Here are a few of the most popular house museums in Savannah.
If you only want to add one house museum to your list of things to do in Savannah, the Mercer-Williams house is a great choice!
Arguably the most famous house in Savannah due to its prominence in the book (and movie) Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, the Mercer-Williams house was the site of the 1981 death of Danny Hansford as covered in the book.
As the last owner of the home before it was turned into a museum, Jim Williams’ (the accused culprit in question) touch and eclectic style is found throughout the house.
What isn’t found in the house, though, is the scandalous story: the Mercer-Williams House is currently owned by the sister of Jim Williams, and as a result the tours focus more on the house itself.
Also: if you haven’t read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, you definitely should before visiting Savannah!
If you’re a big fan of the book, you can even add a Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil themed tour to your list of things to do in Savannah!
Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters
Owned by the Owens family for more than 100 years, this early-19th century home takes up a full city block and was donated to the Telfair Academy in 1951.
The home once operated as a lodging house that saw its share of interesting guests, including Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette.
Today, the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters has dedicated itself to showing the honest history of the property, including highlighting the extreme amount of forced labor from enslaved people that brought these Antebellum mansions their luster.
Furnished and decorated in the style of 1820s Savannah, the Davenport House serves as a look back to how the rich elites lived in Savannah in the early 19th century.
The Davenport House also holds the distinction of being the first classic Savannah home saved from demolition by what would become the Historic Savannah Foundation.
After being saved in the 1950s, the mansion was later restored and opened to the public as a museum, kicking off what would become Savannah’s tradition of house museums.
Considered to be one of the most haunted properties in Savannah, the Sorrel-Weed House is a magnet for those with a curiosity about the paranormal, from local ghost tours to paranormal TV shows!
Though you can take a typical daytime tour that will cover the history of the house as well as a bit about its legends, if you’d like a truly spooky experience, ghost tours are held at night in the Sorrel-Weed house.
Visit City Market.
Boasting candy shops, cookie stores, and ice cream shops (noticing a theme?) along with boutiques, art galleries for every taste, restaurants, and sometimes live music, City Market is a must-see in Savannah.
A couple of centuries ago, City Market was more need-focused, a place for locals to shop for groceries and other necessities.
Today, it is a fun place to indulge, relax, and a great starting point for seeing the sights in Savannah!
Be sure to stop into the Savannah Candy Kitchen while you’re there–if they’re busy making fresh pralines (and they normally are), you’ll often be offered a delicious sample that is still warm!
Indulge your sweet tooth at Leopold’s Ice Cream.
Nearly 100 years old and rightfully known for selling some of the tastiest ice cream in Savannah, no list of things to do in Savannah would be complete without a mention of Leopold’s Ice Cream!
Consider trying their signature Tutti Frutti (classic, but not for me) or Butter Pecan (absolutely delicious) flavors.
Or, try one of the dozens of other flavors available, ranging from the familiar to the downright inventive.
With dozens of shops to choose from, Savannah is an excellent city to try hunting for some delightful antiques.
Unfortunately, I personally confirmed with the proprietor that the incredible 4-story antique shop where I took the below photo, Alex Raskin Antiques, is now permanently closed.
It’s sad to say goodbye to a Savannah icon, however, the good news is that there are still plenty of remarkable antique shops to explore in the city!
Tour some beautiful houses of worship.
Like the rest of the architecture in the city, Savannah’s houses of worship tend toward the grand and beautiful.
If you’re looking for a few of the best ones to put on your list of things to do in Savannah, be sure to keep these three in mind!
First African Baptist Church
Thought to be the oldest African-American congregation in the USA, the First African Baptist Church was founded in 1773, and a full century later, the building was completed and opened its doors to worshippers.
Notably, the First African Baptist Church was a stop on the Underground Railroad, and while for obvious reasons no records were kept of how many formerly enslaved people passed through, the church was clearly set up to support high numbers.
When visiting, you can see holes in the floor that were cut to allow the former slaves hiding underground to breathe.
The entrance to the hiding place is thought to be through a tunnel, and it has not been located to this day.
When planning what to do in Savannah, bear in mind that the First African Baptist Church only allows tours at specific times–check the schedule here.
It’s worth the effort, though–the tour is truly phenomenal.
Congregation Mickve Israel
In 1733, 42 Jews arrived from England with very little to their names to found Congregation Mickve Israel–the third-oldest Jewish congregation in the USA.
The congregation has thrived and grown over the centuries in Savannah, and you can still view the 15th-century deerskin Torah that originally crossed the ocean in the 18th century in the Synagogue’s museum.
The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
The oldest Catholic church in Georgia is ornate and beautiful, boasting stained glass hailing from Austrian Tyrol.
The interior is exquisite (it’s one of the prettiest churches we’ve seen in the USA) and well worth a peek inside!
Check out the birthplace of the Girl Scouts.
Though it is technically one of Savannah’s house museums, as a former (I guess technically lifelong?) Girl Scout, I think that the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace deserves a special mention.
Juliette Gordon Low (nicknamed “Daisy”, a name that I’m sure will be familiar to any Girl Scout) founded the Girl Scouts as a widow in Savannah in 1912.
Clearly, the program was a huge success, and the Girl Scouts organization bought the founder’s birthplace in the 1950s.
Today, Girls Scouts visit from all over the country to learn the history of the founder and the Scouts, though you certainly don’t have to be a Girl Scout to appreciate Daisy’s story!
As a bonus, if you visit during Girl Scout cookie season in the spring, you’re almost guaranteed to find a troop outside willing to sell you as many boxes as you can carry.
Wander through Bonaventure Cemetery.
Widely considered to be one of the most beautiful cemeteries in the USA or even the world, Bonaventure Cemetery is located on what used to be a plantation south of Savannah.
Giant oak trees, beautiful Spanish moss, and incredibly intricate graves all contribute to Bonaventure’s hauntingly beautiful atmosphere.
I recommend visiting Bonaventure toward the end of your trip to Savannah because there are enough notable burials here that you’ll find yourself recognizing plenty of names from various house tours, history tours, and even ghost tours (including the burial place of who is arguably Savannah’s most famous ghost, Little Gracie Watkins).
Want to know exactly what you’re looking at?
Consider taking a walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery!
… And also Colonial Park Cemetery.
Dating back to 1750, Colonial Park Cemetery is the oldest cemetery in Savannah and is most notable for being the final resting place of 700 people who fell victim to the yellow fever epidemic of 1820, who was buried in the cemetery together in a mass grave.
Unlike Bonaventure Cemetery, which requires a drive from the historic district to reach, Colonial Park Cemetery is located within the historic center, near Chippewa Square.
The cemetery is also–like many places in Savannah–reported to be quite haunted.
Take a ghost tour.
If there’s one thing Savannah does well, it’s ghost tours.
Want a light-hearted ride in a hearse? They’ve got that.
A grisly late-night tour where drinking is recommended and kids are best left at home? Yep, got that too.
Horse and carriage ghost tour? Check. Paranormal activity tour? Check.
Whatever flavor of ghost tour is for you, and whether you’re a true believer or a die-hard skeptic like me, ghost tours in Savannah are a great way to get to know the legends of the city, and I highly recommend one!
If you want a solid, not-too-corny, not-too-gory Savannah ghost tour, check out this trolley ghost tour!
Meander down Jones Street.
Often called the prettiest street in America (and certainly one of the prettiest streets in Savannah), Jones Street is a feast for the eyes–all brick mansions, wrought-iron gates, and oak trees.
Be sure to add a stroll down this iconic street to your list of places to visit in Savannah, and be prepared to stay longer than you expected.
No matter how many times I visit Savannah, no trip there will be complete without a couple of strolls down Jones Street!
Pay a visit to the Wormsloe Plantation’s tunnel of trees.
Owned by the same family since the 1730s, the Wormsloe Plantation (also known as the Wormsloe Historic Site, though in my opinion that buries the lede a bit) is best known for its mile-long driveway of oak trees that have been carefully pruned over the decades into a stunning tunnel of trees (complete with plenty of Spanish moss, of course).
The driveway is absolutely gorgeous, even featuring in several movies, and it alone is enough of a reason to head to Wormsloe Plantation from the center of Savannah.
Keep in mind that the tour beyond that point leaves something to be desired: the information severely glosses over the history of slave labor on the property.
A visit here also doesn’t include a tour of the home, and the tour tends to focus more on the property’s natural landscape and movie appearances.
The property’s main home is still privately owned and occupied by the descendants of Noble Jones, who was the first Georgian owner of the property.
Last we heard, you can still visit the driveway without booking a tour of the property, which is what we’d recommend if you’d like to add this beautiful spot to your list of places to see in Savannah.
Check out Savannah’s speakeasy.
Curious about the prohibition era in the USA, or just want to grab a drink at Savannah’s speakeasy?
Right in City Market, you’ll find Savannah’s popular American Prohibition Museum, which makes for a fun afternoon of combining history with pleasure (in other words, partaking in one of the Hostess City’s specialties.
Go shopping on Broughton Street.
From delightful boutiques (including The Paris Market!) to national stores to Savannah’s most famous ice cream shop (looking at you, Leopold’s), there’s no better place in Savannah for a stroll and some shopping than fashionable Broughton Street.
If you’re looking for a classy southern souvenir from Savannah, this is the street for you.
Go see The Book Lady.
I love funky, independent bookstores that ooze intellectual curiosity and coziness and comfort and that yummy old book smell out of every corner. The more cluttered and the more haphazardly the books are stored, the better.
The Book Lady fits these tastes, with a bonus.
This adorable bookstore, overflowing with literature and comfortable places to sit and enjoy it, is also home to Cassidy the “shop dog”: a shaggy, friendly mess of a baby that was more than happy to receive my enthusiastic pets and hang out with us–at least until the shopkeeper came back around the corner when she went back to sticking to him like glue.
The sound of her claws going tap-tap-tap on the aged hardwood floors while I flipped through travelogues from the mid-20th-century was one of the highlights of my day when we visited.
If you’re a fellow bookworm, The Book Lady belongs on your list of the best things to do in Savannah!
Head to the Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum.
If you’re a fan of ships, seafaring, and maritime history, this is the museum for you!
Composed of nine galleries displaying ship models, the ships were primarily commissioned by the museum for the express purpose of telling the story of Savannah’s relationship with the water around it.
Hit the water on a riverboat cruise.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxed evening complete with dinner or a quick spin on the water, consider adding a riverboat cruise to your list of things to do in Savannah to ensure you get the best views of River Street while you’re there!
Depending on which tour you book, there are sunset and even dinner cruise options to choose from.
Book your riverboat cruise in Savannah today!
Take a day trip to Tybee Island.
A mere 18 miles from the historic center of Savannah sits a whole different kind of southern experience: Tybee Island.
Also known as “Savannah’s Beach”, Tybee Island is an easy day trip and a great excuse to climb a historic lighthouse and enjoy a day of sun, sand, and seafood!
Tybee is a small barrier island, and while you could easily spend a whole vacation here, you can also see its highlights in a short amount of time if you set your mind to it.
… And stop at Fort Pulaski on your way.
Built in the mid-19th century, you’ll find Fort Pulaski on your way between Savannah and Tybee Island, and it’s well worth a stop for any history buff.
The fort has seen exactly one battle in its life, which took place between Union and Confederate troops during the Civil War.
The fort later became a stop on the Underground Railroad, and at one point also served as a military and political prison.
Stroll through Forsyth Park.
Forsyth Park, with its stunning fountain and hundreds of oak trees dripping with Spanish moss, is easily one of the most recognizable features of Savannah.
No trip to Savannah would be complete without a stroll through Forsyth!
Be sure to stop by the iconic Forsyth Park Fountain, which is one of the most recognizable landmarks of the Hostess City.
If the weather is beautiful during your visit to Savannah, you might even consider bringing a picnic out to Forsyth Park–it’s an excellent place to kick back and relax with a delicious meal.
Alternatively, you can head to The Collins Quarter for an incredible brunch and/or cup of coffee–this wildly popular Savannah staple opened a location right inside the park a few years back.
Soothe your sore feet on a Trolley Tour.
Want to avoid some of the long-distance walks in Savannah while having a comfortable place to hear the history of the city?
Consider adding a Trolley Tour to your list of things to do in Savannah!
Trolley Tours are essentially hop on/hop off bus tours–they work the same way, taking you around to all of Savannah’s major sites–but have far prettier exteriors.
We’re not typically hop on/hop off tour people, but some of the distances you cover in Savannah can be long, and if you happen to be visiting during the heat of the summer, the air-conditioned Trolley Tour will likely seem like it’s worth every penny.
Check prices & book your Savannah Trolley Tour today!
Snap photos at Rainbow Row.
Okay, these wooden homes with adorable shutters are a bit more subtle of a rainbow than the famous Rainbow Row in Charleston.
… But they’re still gorgeous and worth adding to your list of Savannah attractions to visit!
Pay a visit to the Telfair Museum of Art.
Housed in a mansion-turned-academy-turned-museum, the Telfair Museum’s art collection is beautiful–and the setting is one you won’t forget anytime soon.
As a bonus, entrance to this museum is included with a tour of the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters, so if you visit one, it’s definitely worth checking out the other.
Slowly make your way down River Street.
Savannah’s River Street (which, unsurprisingly, hugs the river) was once a place of cotton warehouses and cargo boats.
Today, however, it’s a place of delicious restaurants, great antique shops, and boutiques of all kinds.
While you’re visiting Savannah, be sure to save time for ambling slowly down River Street, admiring the views as you go.
See a show at the Historic Savannah Theatre.
The USA’s oldest continually operating theatre sits in Chippewa Square, Savannah–and you sure can’t miss it!
The art deco facade doesn’t exactly blend in (it was added in the mid-20th century), but it does add a bit of snazzy personality to the square.
Shows play year-round, so if you’re a theatre lover, check ticket availability when you’re deciding what to do in Savannah!
Learn a bit of American History at the Old Fort Jackson Historic Site.
The east coast of the USA is dotted with brick forts, and Savannah is no exception.
The Old Fort Jackson Historic Site is the oldest brick fort in Georgia and was active during two notable American wars–the War of 1812 and the Civil War, when it was used as a headquarters for the Confederacy as they attempted to defend the Savannah River.
History aside, the ocean views aren’t bad, either!
Take a brewery tour at the Coastal Empire Beer Company.
Is there a city in the USA left without at least one of its own microbreweries?
If so, it’s not Savannah!
The Coastal Empire Beer Company has several year-round beers to choose from, along with seasonal brews.
Say hello to France at The Paris Market.
We already mentioned Broughton Street above, but the popular Paris Market is definitely worth an extra mention!
For a bit of variety in your plan for what to do in Savannah, consider adding a stop to The Paris Market in between all the places focused on southern culture.
As the name suggests, this boutique is primarily (though not exclusively) focused on Parisian and French goods, from furniture to soaps, and is definitely memorable enough to warrant a stop while in Savannah.
Once you finish browsing, consider sitting down in their small cafe for a coffee and a macaron (or two).
Tour Flannery O’Connor’s childhood home.
Flannery O’Connor is a celebrated Southern Gothic writer, known for her impressive short stories and fascinating imagination.
If you’re a lover of Southern Gothic literature, or even just curious about it, take a peek inside her mind and history with a visit to her childhood home in Savannah!
Support a local artist at shopSCAD.
Want to bring home a piece of original art from Savannah?
Selected students, alumni, and staff of the acclaimed Savannah College of Art and Design have their work displayed and available for sale at shopSCAD, a retail store in the heart of Savannah.
See a drag show.
If you’ve read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (and if you haven’t, get on that before visiting Savannah!), you know that the drag performances by Lady Chablis at Club One played a role in the book (and of course the movie, where she played herself).
Though Lady Chablis has since passed away, Club One lives on, and other queens regularly take the stage!
Indulge in a honey tasting.
Ever attended a honey tasting?
It might sound a little sticky (and it is!), but it’s amazing how different and delicious different kinds of honey can taste–and at Savannah Bee Company, they are very passionate about it.
In addition to delicious honey samples, you can also taste the Savannah Bee Company’s mead when you visit!
Not only are the owners of the Savannah Bee Company passionate about honey, but they’re also passionate about beekeeping in general.
This local, Savannah-based company has now grown to include stores in several US states!
Check out the Forrest Gump Bench.
There are two ways to enjoy the Forrest Gump Bench in Savannah: to see the place where it sat for filming in the movie or to go see the bench itself.
Personally, I’m partial to the former: Chippewa Square in the center of the historic district, facing the Historic Savannah Theatre, is where Tom Hanks et al. filmed the scenes.
Even without the movie history, the square is still beautiful, and visiting it is worth adding to your list of things to do in Savannah.
The bench/movie prop itself currently calls the Savannah History Museum home, and you can see it there.
Also–if you haven’t seen Forrest Gump before, watch it before heading to Savannah!
Not only because of the fact that the iconic “life is like a box of chocolates” moment was filmed in town, but because the movie is amazing and well worth your time.
Where to Stay in Savannah
There’s only one place to consider staying when in Savannah: in the historic district (or at least as close to it as you can get).
Forget downtown–it’s a lovely place, but miles away from the tourist attractions that will fill up your 3 days in Savannah. Stick with the historic district, and you’ll be able to walk to most of the best things to do in Savannah!
From a haunted bed and breakfast to a modern hotel, here are some highly recommended places to stay in Savannah.
Unlike some of our city guides, these Savannah hotels are a bit closer in price than you might think!
Savannah has a shortage of extreme budget properties like hostels, but historical bed and breakfasts can be an excellent value for the experience you receive.
We’ve also included a stunning apartment rental that we’ve personally stayed in and can highly recommend!
Best Western Savannah Historic District — If you’re looking to stick to a budget during your weekend in Savannah while still being in a walkable area, the Best Western Savannah Historic District is the perfect spot for you!
Featuring parking onsite, an included breakfast, and easy access by foot to all the historic district highlights, we were completely satisfied with our stay in this hotel and would be happy to stay again if we were looking for something with a similar budget!
Check rates & book your way at Best Western Historic District!
The Marshall House — Located on trendy Broughton Street (and dangerously close to Leopold’s Ice Cream), the gorgeous Marshall House is a fantastic option for those looking to stay in a historical inn in Savannah while sticking to a reasonable budget.
Featuring a popular included breakfast, a fantastic location in the heart of Savannah’s historic district, and phenomenal reviews, you can’t go wrong with a stay at The Marshall House!
Check rates & book your stay at The Marshall House!
Foley House Inn — Easily my favorite place that I’ve stayed in Savannah, the Foley House Inn is absolutely beautiful inside and out, and has a perfect location right on Chippewa Square.
The included breakfast is delicious (as are the included afternoon treats–don’t miss the lemon pound cake!), the service excellent, and the decor absolutely gorgeous.
Though there isn’t parking onsite, street parking is plentiful and easy to find.
I’d be thrilled to stay here again–even if it is potentially haunted (the Foley House Inn is featured in many of Savannah’s ghost tours!).
Check rates & book your stay at the Foley House Inn!
Bird Baldwin Parlor — Housed in the historic Bird Baldwin House (built in 1838), this apartment is both absolutely beautiful and incredibly well-located.
Located on Liberty Street just steps away from Pulaski Square and Savannah Coffee Roasters, you can’t ask for a better location in a Savannah apartment.
The apartment has a full kitchen–perfect for cooking or, let’s be honest, leftovers–and onsite, off-street parking, a huge convenience in the historic center.
There is some street noise from Liberty Street, but we didn’t find it too bothersome and would love to stay here again!
If the parlor is booked, the Bird Baldwin House does also have several other beautiful spaces available, including the Magnolia Suite, Forsyth Suite, and Twelve Oaks, among others, but be sure to check the inclusions–not all of them have kitchens.
Check rates & book your stay at Bird Baldwin Parlor!
What to Eat in Savannah (Quick Guide)
I legitimately had to stop myself from turning this section into a 3,000-word diatribe on southern cuisine (I saved that for this guide to the best food in Savannah instead!).
But seriously y’all, Lowcountry food is some of the best in the world.
It’s in the running for our favorite cuisine ever, and after visiting 50+ countries and living abroad, we don’t say that lightly.
Here are a few dishes that should head right to the top of your list when eating in Savannah, with absolutely no illusion of being unbiased: these are some of my favorites.
If you’re a foodie at heart, I strongly suggest jumping on a food tour while in Savannah to ensure that you sample the best food that the Lowcountry has to offer!
This food tour is a great introduction to the food scene in Savannah!
Practically the first thing I do when we go home to visit my mom in North Carolina is throw pimento cheese into the grocery cart (and if I were more inclined to cook these days, I would make my own)–it’s one of my favorites tastes of the south!
Made of sharp cheddar cheese, mayo, and pimentos, pimento cheese is rich and creamy.
It’s excellent in a grilled cheese sandwich… or with fried green tomatoes… or on crackers… or with a spoon.
Buttermilk Biscuits & Gravy
Buttermilk biscuits are one of the tastiest things in the world–add a great gravy, and they get even better!
Whether you try them for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or a midnight snack (or all of the above), be sure not to leave Savannah without trying some classic biscuits and gravy.
If you’re lucky enough to be in Georgia during peach season, rejoice and immediately resolve to eat some form of peaches every. single. day.
Even if you’re traveling outside the harvest season, though, you’ll find that southern cooks are excellent canners and that peach cobbler is a must-have at any time of year.
Rich and delicious (isn’t that how it usually goes in the south?), pecan pie is made up of a smooth, sugary filling topped with pecans, all served in a warm, flaky crust.
It’s one of my favorite southern desserts–you can add ice cream to the top, but personally, I prefer a simple whipped cream or even nothing at all.
If there’s one thing that we’ve learned from all of our travels, it’s that there is no such thing as a country without fried chicken.
But… I’m still partial to the stuff from the south.
Juicy on the inside, spicy on the outside, and well-battered, southern fried chicken is something truly special.
Fried Green Tomatoes
Everyone has heard of the movie, but fried green tomatoes are a real and delicious southern food!
Macaroni and Cheese
True southern macaroni and cheese is an incredible treat.
Think noodles saturated with heavy, thick, delicious cheese and cream, baked and possibly topped with breadcrumbs.
Don’t leave Savannah without trying at least one serving!
This is the only food on here that isn’t a personal favorite of mine (what can I say, I prefer hash browns), but if you’ve never tried grits, you definitely need to add tasting them to your list of things to do in Savannah!
Order them with shrimp or simply as a side with breakfast–both are extremely popular.
Tasty nuts coated in and stuck together with a sugar syrup (and sometimes cream): say hello to pralines, one of the most popular desserts in the south.
You’ll find these all over Savannah (they’re also very popular in New Orleans), so be sure to pick up several from a candy store and give them a try!
Getting Around When Visiting Savannah
If you stay in or near the historic district, Savannah is a surprisingly walkable city!
The historic center, complete with its squares, is made for wandering around on foot, and we spend most of our time in Savannah doing just that (all the better to ensure maximum hunger when it’s time to indulge in heavy southern cuisine for dinner).
There are a few exceptions–if you don’t want to book a tour, you’ll need a car to access Tybee Island, Bonaventure Cemetery, Fort Pulaski, and the Wormsloe Plantation, among some others.
Parking in the historic center can be very difficult/expensive as you get closer to City Market and River Street, so we recommend leaving your car near your hotel for most of the time you are sightseeing.
For those who would like to limit their walking a bit more, Savannah’s Hop On/Hop Off Old Town Trolley tour is the perfect solution and an easy way to get around during your 3 days in Savannah.
Grab tickets for Savannah’s hop on/hop off trolley tour today!
The Best Time to Visit Savannah, GA
Personally, I would never turn down a trip to Savannah, so if you only have one time available, go whenever it is!
If you have more flexibility on your dates, though, here’s what we suggest: avoid the worst heat of the summer in July and August, and unless you’re coming for the raucous party, avoid the week of St. Patrick’s Day as well (Savannah throws the second-largest St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the USA, right behind NYC).
Savannah summers are intense and very humid, and they tend to start early and stick around for a long time.
Late March, April, and May are excellent months to visit Savannah, as the flowers will bloom and the heat will (hopefully) not have set in yet.
September through November are also popular, though depending on the year it can be getting chilly by the end of November.
That being said, virtually all of the best things to do in Savannah, GA, are year-round activities–and the city is beautiful every month of the year.
29 thoughts on “55 Best Things to Do in Savannah, GA (+ Food Tips!)”
I’m LITERALLY on the road driving to Savannah as I read this!!! Yours is the best post I’ve yet to come across for things to do, sadly, well only be there for a day! Found some great stuff in here!
Aw, that’s so good to hear!! We love Savannah, truly–hope you have a marvelous time! 🙂
I wish I could have squeezed in Savannah on my US roadtrip last time. It was on my radar especially because, like you said, of its antebellum beauty and artistic flair. And I’d totally wanna dine in an 18th-century ballroom under a crystal chandelier. Just pinned the post!
Haha, right? I would love Savannah for the ambiance alone. Hopefully you get a chance to visit one day!
I love the Cobblestone Haunted Pub crawl! It’s so fun and has some of the best tour guides of the companies in Savannah.
Good to know! 🙂
Thanks for the wonderful tips. Came to Savannah on a whim to use paid vacation time. Fell in love immediately! You guys have the best objective, comprehensive guide I’ve found on line. Much appreciated!
Thanks so much, Travis! Comments like this make our day. 🙂 So glad you’re enjoying Savannah–it’s one of our favorites. Enjoy all that tasty food for us!
This post was such a wonderful find, we’re planning our first extended trip to Savannah and I got so many ideas from your site! I can tell how much you love this beautiful city. I have read good things about the restaurants you recommended, but seeing a real couple recommend them, rather than just a tourist website, makes me excited to try them! And tips on the best area to stay in are so helpful. I’m very excited to visit Congregation Mickve Israel and go on a tour there, and hear more about the journey of their historic Torah scrolls. I just wanted to share that Shabbat is a weekly service, rather than annual 🙂 Thank you again for this amazing post, and safe travels!
Thanks so much, Leah! We absolutely adore Savannah and hope that you guys have the most wonderful time! If you end up at the Olde Pink House for a meal, definitely order the BLT salad! It’s one of the most memorable dishes I’ve had in the last few years.
Might need to update my wording on the Torah scrolls, you’re right–what I intended to say was that once a year, they use them in the weekly Shabbat service (understandable they wouldn’t want to use them every week, as they’ve got to be very fragile at this point!), but I’m honestly having trouble confirming that information online right now. May need to do a bit more fact-checking the next time we visit Savannah… which will hopefully be soon!
So sad to see we didn’t make your list. Please stop by the next time you’re downtown Savannah and let us wow you too!
Books on Bay
We’ll definitely make a note to drop by next time–we can never have too many bookstores in our lives! 🙂
Great article. Thank you so much!
Thanks so much, Molly! Hope you had a great time in Savannah.
Went through the sorrel weed house on your rec and the curator said it’s the Owen’s Thomas house with an oval library. Not theirs. Just an fyi
Interesting, thanks for letting me know, Nicole! I must confess the last time I was in either house was 2010, so it has been a while… went to Mercer-Williams more recently. I guess my online fact-checking led me astray on this one!
Thanks so much, Kate! It is definitely a good list for the savannah trip! I love the Olde Pink House restaurants because of their BLT salad! I cannot forget how it tastes and so far the best for me.
I love that salad so much! We’re always dreaming of our next Savannah trip.
Really appreciate you sharing this! Now I have some fine ideas on what me and my girlfriend will do on our Staycation at Savannah next week! I think a trip Downtown is a great idea on our first night there!
Is there a food tour that’s for celiacs? I need recommendations for gluten-free downtown and on Tybee.
Hi Mary Beth! Honestly, I’m not sure. I doubt there’s a whole food tour that is typically gluten-free, though some may be willing to accommodate your needs. In your case, it’s best to reach out to companies directly.
I just came back from Savannah. I would not suggest this city for anyone with a handicap. The streets are old, uneven and not easy to walk. The hope on/off was great. The 90 minute river cruise was a waste of time and money. Drinks and food could only be ordered on top level which could not be reached if handicapped. Only saw cranes along the shoreline. Dont take
The link to the weekend itinerary does not work. Would you please send me a new link that works
Huh, that’s odd! I’ll take a look. 🙂
Here’s the link: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/3-days-in-savannah-itinerary-weekend/
The next time you are in Savannah, you should check out Smithereens, downtown’s premier smash room where you can relieve stress and have fun by smashing breakable objects. It is a true Savannah experience in a historic building with local art on the walls.