Note: This is a repost of a blog from 2014, about a visit to our favorite city.
Miss Terry says I am head over heels in love with the beautiful city of Savannah, Georgia, but I think that’s an exaggeration. Enthralled? Yes. Enamored? Sure. But head over heels? Yeah, that’s an exaggeration. A tiny exaggeration maybe, but an exaggeration nonetheless.
But even if I am, who could blame me? What’s not to love in this historic city? Settled in 1733, Savannah has seen wars, wealth, poverty, drama, and comedy in her history, and like the classy Southern lady she is, she has handled it all with grace and dignity. With its beautiful park-like squares shaded by live oaks and magnolias, its historic waterfront, and streets lined with beautiful mansions, I don’t think anybody could help but be impressed.
During the Civil War, when Union General William Tecumseh Sherman arrived in Savannah after burning Atlanta and everything in his path on his “March to the Sea,” he was so impressed by its beauty that he could not destroy it. In December, 1864, he sent a telegram to President Lincoln, offering him the city as a Christmas present.
We could not be this close to Savannah and not visit, so yesterday we spent the day playing tourist. Our first stop was the Visitor Center to pick up a map, and then we set off to explore Savannah, just wandering around the streets admiring the grand old homes that have been so carefully restored. This handsome brick mansion is the Mercer House and belonged to General Hugh Mercer, the great-grandfather of singer/songwriter Johnny Mercer, and was made famous in the novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. If you have not read this classic by John Berendt, check it out. It really gives you a feel for Savannah.
Savannah is laid out around 21 squares, small shaded islands where people can relax on a park bench and admire historic statues, chat with a friend, or just watch the world go by.
The riverfront, with some of the oldest commercial buildings in Savannah, is a popular place with tourists and residents alike. The old cotton warehouses and ship outfitters now house shops, galleries, and restaurants.
The whole city is an artists’ and photographers’ delight.
Eventually, we left Savannah and drove a few miles to Tybee Island. The beaches were not nearly as crowded as on Hilton Head Island, but the people who were there all seemed to be having a good time.
We wandered out on the pier, which has a nice pavilion and is free to the public. There were a few fishermen, but nobody seemed to be getting any action.
The last time we were in this area we ate at The Crab Shack with Greg and Jan White and Peggy Krepelka and Dave Koehler. It was one of the most fantastic meals we ever had and we’ve looked forward to going back ever since.
They have several alligators in a pool at the entrance, and we had to stop and watch them for a while. A sign said they were born in captivity and will live in an exhibit for the rest of their lives, and also warned people that it is both illegal and dangerous to feed wild alligators. You might think that would go without saying, but again, we’re talking about people.
We sat outside, with a nice view of Chimney Creek.
Nothing is fried at The Crab Shack, which is usually my first choice for seafood, but that’s okay. The last time we were there we had the Captain’s Sampler for two, a low country boil that included Alaskan king crab, stone crab, shrimp, mussels, crawfish, sausage, corn and potatoes. And by the way, this picture was taken after we each took our first helping! It tasted even better than it looks, and there’s no way we could finish it all, but we sure had fun trying.
By the time we got back to Hilton Head Island Motorcoach Resort, after a stop at Barnes & Noble and WalMart, we were both worn out. But it was worth it for the memories we made on a beautiful day in a beautiful city. And I think Miss Terry was right after all; I am head over heels in love with Savannah.
Congratulations Howard C. Gordon, winner of our drawing for a USB drive loaded with all of the digital back issues of the Gypsy Journal RV travel newspaper for the years 2003 through 2017. We had 82 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with U.S. addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – Your bank account can be overdrawn, but it can never be overfilled.
We also LOVED Savannah when we were this fall 2020. I wrote a rather lengthy article about it for Escapees Magazine. I hope they publish it because it’s a city worth sharing.
Did you forget to sample the pralines in Savannah?