Things to do in Savannah, GA

IMG_0565We had three days to spend in Savannah, GA…. and that was enough for me.  I liked Savannah well enough, it was pretty, there were interesting things to see and I did enjoy the food, but it wasn’t one of those places that I’d want to go back and explore again and again.  Glad I saw it… I’d recommend going… but three or four days should do it.

I’d asked my friends and googled all the places we should see and things we should do… I was a bit dubious about a few, but in the end, those were some of the thing I enjoyed the most.

Trolley Tour

Everyone that I talked to suggested we take a trolley tour… and they all recommended a different tour company, so I just went with the one that seemed to have the nicer looking trollies.  Old Town Trolley Tours had a ticket booth right on River Street, which was within easy walking distance of our Bed & Breakfast (the Spanish Moss Inn).  We bought the Historic Homes package which included the standard trolley ride and admission to the Juliette Gordon Low House, the Owens-Thomas House and the Isaiah Davenport House ($60/person).  There are 15 stops on the tour and you can get off one trolley and catch the next at any one of the stops.  There was a new trolley every 15 – 20 minutes.  It was nice way to see the city and get a bit of the history of Savannah. If it hadn’t been such a rainy day I might have wanted to get off the trolley at the squares and take more photos…. but it was cold and rainy and I was happy to stay onboard.

I enjoyed the house tours, though I could have done without the Massie Heritage Center (the tour was dull and the house wasn’t restored quite as well as the others)…. the other two house tours were quite interesting. I like learning about the daily lives of people in earlier times… Brian liked all the architecture.  I really enjoyed the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist… so beautiful.

I would recommend taking a trolley tour.  I liked the Old Town Trolley tour, but I’m not sure if it really matters which tour company you choose… they all seemed to be in the same places.

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Shopping

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Savannah Candy Kitchen

People kept telling me that the shopping was so great in Savannah…. enh…. The shopping on River Street was mostly your basic tourist stuff…. great if you want another “Savannah” t-shirt, but nothing spectacular.  EXCEPT for the Savannah Candy Kitchen! Be sure to stop here…. they make the candy right there in the shop and it smells SO good… and they give SAMPLES!  We stopped there twice and I ended up buying more candy each time.  The pralines and the chocolate gophers are SOOOO good.  Eat them!  Don’t worry about your blood sugar… if it kills you… it’s worth it. 🙂

City Market was a little more like I’d been expecting from Savannah.  Unique little shops and galleries lined a few blocks.  There were a number of restaurants as well.  Beyond the main City Market were the more commercial stores… Gap, J. Crew, Anthropologie….. enh… I’ve got those at home…..

I wasn’t overwhelmed by the shopping options in Savannah.  I’m a bit spoiled by the historic towns and shops that I have back home in St. Louis.

Dining

Basically, this was an eating vacation…. I don’t even want to think about all the carbs and calories I’ve consumed!  Since Mom and I are very Gluten Sensitive and Dad and Brian are also eating Gluten Free these days, it makes finding a restaurant a bit more of a challenge.  We can’t just wander into any place and eat whatever looks good.  I use the Find Me Gluten Free app and read the reviews of other Gluten Sensitive people.  Just because a restaurant doesn’t have a dedicated GF menu, doesn’t mean that I can’t eat there…. a knowledgable staff and considerate chef can make all the difference.

IMG_0697The Olde Pink House was probably my very favorite.  I told the waitress that we were all gluten sensitive and she pointed out several items on the main menu that were safe for us and then got the GF menu and checked in with the chef just to be sure.  The food was delicious!  (Expensive…. but soooo worth it.)  I had the filet mignon and a sweet potato with a vanilla, brown sugar, bourbon, pecan sauce (OMG).  For dessert we shared (though I would have happily eaten it all-by-my-self!) Vanilla ice cream in a praline basket with a praline sauce and fresh berries.IMG_0698

The Olde Pink House is beautiful… we really should have dressed up more, but the staff pretended not to notice that we were wearing jeans and sneakers as they lead us through the beautiful, sparkling dining rooms.  (We weren’t the only ones who had wandered in off the trolley tour, but many of the other diners were dressed up.)  The house, of course, has its own haunted history and our waitress was happy to tell us the story as we waited for our meals.

This is a definite MUST

Tybee Island

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Tybee Island Light House

November probably wasn’t the best time to visit the beach….  I’ll admit, I didn’t do any research on Tybee Island before we visited Savannah.  I hadn’t thought we would have time to visit the island, but we left Atlanta a day early and I had an extra day on my hands.  I knew that there was a light house on the island, but I didn’t realize that there was also a museum.  We just lucked out and went on Monday… once we were there I discovered that they are closed on Tuesday (not a day you’d usually expect.)  I would have skipped the museum tour ($9/person), but Mom wanted to climb to the top of the light house.  (Mom and Brian are SO much alike!  They are both forever dragging me to the top of some outrageously high place with ten million steps….. why?)   I did enjoy the tour… I don’t know if I enjoyed it $9 worth…. It was interesting learning about other light houses and the lives of the light keepers…. It was really foggy the day we went, so I can’t even really speak to the view from the top either.  I can tell you that there were 178 steps.

IMG_0620Tybee Beach

It IS an island… so visit the beach!  It was a bit chilly for my taste (it is November), but that didn’t slow Mom down one bit.  She waded up and down the beach, collecting shells and other pretty bits.  I antagonized the sea birds for a bit with my camera, but I forgot to bring my big camera lens and they wouldn’t let me get too close.

The beach would have been more fun in the summer… duh.. but it was still pretty to walk up and down the beach and take photos.

Dining (On Tybee Island) 

My Aunt had suggested (strongly) that we try the Crab Shack if we visited Tybee Island.  I wasn’t so sure…. the Crab Shack?

Feed the Alligators!

Feed the Alligators!

Enh….. that sounded dubious…. Oh!  And they have alligators that you can feed while you wait for your meal….. yeah…. mmm hmmmm….. sure auntie…  (I do have other cousins… maybe I’m not a favorite niece?)  As it turns out… Auntie was right!  The Crab Shack was a fun, quirky place with really good food.  The alligators were in a lagoon in the front of the restaurant, so they weren’t watching us eat…. ’cause that would have been creepy.

We told the waitress that we were Gluten Sensitive and she warned us away from the few items that would have been a problem for us…. but there was still a LOT that was IMG_0639safe.  Brian and I ordered a Shellfish Sampler for two…. which would have been plenty for four.  Absolutely delicious!

The Crab Shack would have been more fun to visit if it hadn’t been rainy and cool… We ate inside….. which was nice….. but the patio area has live trees growing up through the deck and lights strung from the branches.  I bet it would be really pretty at night.  Day or night, the food was fantastic and I would definitely recommend it.

 

 

 

 

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