Delightful Weekend in Savannah Itinerary

If you’re looking for a taste of Ye Olde American South, you simply must spend a weekend in Savannah, Georgia. Savannah (and it helps if you say it all drawn out like Suuuuvannuuuh) simply drips with history as the trees drip with Spanish moss.

And the food. Oh, the food. You could go to Savannah only for the food and come away happy. Enjoy a quintessentially Southern escape with my weekend in Savannah itinerary.

Key takeaways

  • Savannah is rich in history and Southern charm.
  • The city is known for its delicious Southern cuisine and iconic eateries like Leopold’s Ice Cream.
  • Forsyth Park’s famous fountain and the city’s 22 historic squares are must-visit landmarks.
  • Taking a historical walking tour, such as the one offered by Genteel & Bard, is recommended to learn about Savannah’s past.
  • Consider visiting during the shoulder season for fewer tourists and a quieter experience.
Large fountain in a park in Savannah Georgia
Don’t miss the famous fountain in Forsyth Park during your weekend in Savannah. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

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If you want to avoid the tourist hordes then I suggest Savannah in shoulder season. We spent a weekend there in October and were pleased to find the city quieter even than I was expecting.

Though we had also been hoping to avoid the heat, we didn’t quite manage that. Our weekend there was simultaneously overcast, muggy and drizzly for much of the time. And much warmer than we expected. I did not pack well for this trip. 

[Hangs head in shame.] 

Learn from my mistakes and check out my weekend packing list so you’re prepared for your amazing weekend in Savannah.

Related Post → Charleston or Savannah? Which to visit

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Waving Girl Statue 

After we settled in, we were anxious to get out and see some of the historic riverfront area. Just a few steps from our hotel we came upon the Waving Girl Statue in Morrell Park.

The statue honors Florence Martus who greeted every ship entering or leaving Savannah for 44 years by waving a handkerchief or a lantern at night.

According to legend, she did this because as a young girl, she had fallen in love with a sailor and she was trying to make sure he could find her, but there doesn’t appear to be any historical evidence to support this notion. 

The statue is the creation of Felix de Weldon, who also sculpted the Marine Corps (Iwo Jima) War Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia. 

Related Post → Romantic Getaways in the South that Couples Love

Waving Girl Statue in Savannah Georgia in the fall
Waving Girl Statue. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

River Street 

From the Waving Girl Statue, we continued along the river to explore River Street. I do have to admit it is a rather touristy area, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take a stroll down it once or twice.

Be advised that Savannah does have an open container law, so there will be people walking around (especially at night) with alcoholic beverages. 

Cars are permitted to drive on River Street, but there is very limited parking. We walked partway down River Street before cutting over to Bay Street to find our restaurant of choice for dinner. After dinner and dessert, we did the entire street. You know, to get the full effect. 

River Street in Savannah Georgia
Savannah’s famous River Street. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Dinner at B. Matthew’s Eatery

We stopped for dinner at B. Matthew’s Eatery (325 E Bay St). Their menu has some great vegetarian and gluten-free options on it, so it seemed perfect for us. We were surprised to walk in and see the restaurant almost empty. We were early, but surely not that early. The food was quite good.

I would recommend B. Matthew’s.

Try a Savannah food tour

Unsure about where to eat in Savannah or want to try a little from a lot of places? Savannah is a great place to take a food tour.

You might like this highly rated tour of six of Savannah’s specialty stores and restaurants.

Or try this tour of secret spots and secret bites.

Leopold’s Ice Cream 

After dinner, of course, we had to try Leopold’s Ice Cream (212 E. Broughton St.). Expect lines out the door if you visit Savannah during high season. Early in the evening on a Friday night in October there were only a few people in line ahead of us. 

Leopold’s has been a Savannah institution for more than 100 years. They’re probably most famous for their Tutti Frutti ice cream. I tried the Savannah Socialite which is chocolate ice cream with Georgia pecans and bourbon caramel. It. Was. Delicious.

We loved the ice cream there so much we wanted to go back the next day, but it just didn’t work out. Next time for sure! 

The shop is full of all sorts of Hollywood memorabilia, and I wasn’t sure why, but it turns out the son of the founder had a dream to work in Hollywood, so off he went. He has credits as a producer or executive producer on over 20 films including The Sum of All Fears and Mission: Impossible III

Breakfast at The Collins Quarter Café  

Breakfast and coffee laid out on a table for two
Breakfast at The Collins Quarter Cafe. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

We had an historic walking tour booked for 10 a.m. the next morning that met up outside The Collins Quarter on Bull Street, so of course, that was the perfect place to enjoy a leisurely breakfast before the tour.

The Collins Quarter is a popular spot, but they do not take breakfast reservations. We arrived at about 8 a.m. on Saturday and were seated right away.

It didn’t start getting noticeably busy until closer to 9 a.m. There is also outdoor seating, but I loved the décor and atmosphere inside the café.  

The Collins Quarter has a lot of great gluten-free options and a few solid vegetarian options as well.

Hubby had the “Leo’s Big Brekkie.” It had three different kinds of breakfast meat, so he was a happy camper. I had the Banana’s Foster French Toast, which was delicious and surprisingly large. I couldn’t eat all of it, but I sure enjoyed what I did eat. 

I also tried the spiced lavender mocha. It was without a doubt the best mocha I have ever tasted. Yes, it does have tiny little lavender blossoms sprinkled on the top, and they are just perfection. 

I can’t say enough good things about The Collins Quarter and definitely would love to go back the next time we go to Savannah. 

Mocha coffee drink sprinkled with lavender blossoms in a green mug on a table
Spiced lavender mocha at The Collins Quarter Cafe. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Genteel & Bard Savannah History Tour 

I’m a little embarrassed to say that I didn’t know much about the history of Savannah before actually going there. That’s not usually how I roll.

I like to do pre-trip research, but this trip I just couldn’t find the time. Enter a historical walking tour. What better way to learn more about your destination than to have a local show you around and tell you all the best stories? 

Genteel & Bard’s tours come highly recommended, so I didn’t hesitate to book their Savannah History Walking Tour.

Man leading a guided tour of Savannah Georgia
Spend part of your weekend in Savannah learning more about the history of this remarkable city. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

T.C. Michaels is an outstanding and friendly guide. He truly brought the city to life, from its planning and founding up to the present. And where does all that energy come from?  

I’m kind of a wimp though and had my fill of walking after about an hour and a half, but would still recommend you give this great tour a try if you are at all interested in the history of Savannah or even if you just want to hear some good stories from a great storyteller.

It will most definitely make you appreciate Savannah more as well as the people who worked so hard to preserve it for future generations to enjoy. As an aside, Savannah locals will swear that theirs is the most haunted city in America.

Additional tours in Savannah

If you’re interested in a ghost tour you might like this Haunted History and Ghosts Walking Tour or this 2-Hour Paranormal Mystery Tour.

Lunch at Fox & Fig 

After our stellar tour, we were ready for some lunch and decided to give the local plant-based cuisine a try. Fox & Fig Café (321 Habersham Street) comes highly recommended and we were not disappointed.  

The dining room is quite small, but the food and service were great. There was also a steady stream of takeout customers at the counter.

I enjoyed looking around the other tables to see what they were eating. Judging by other people’s orders, it appears that the Fox & Fig pancakes (they do not serve these any longer, I think) were quite popular as well as their iced coffee drinks.

Hubby enjoyed a vanilla milkshake made with Leopold’s coconut milk ice cream with his lunch. I ordered the Fox Burger, and it was outstanding.  

Plant-based lunch on a table
Delicious lunch at Fox & Fig. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist 

After our Savannah history tour and lunch, we were only a few blocks away from the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist.

In addition to looking for all the best art when we travel, we enjoy visiting historical and prominent places of worship. St. John the Baptist is open for visitors. They suggested a $3 per adult cash donation, which we were glad to make. They do allow photography of the interior but for personal use only.  

Cathedral of St. John the Baptist exterior in Savannah, Georgia
Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Dinner at Vic’s on the River 

After a day of walking through Savannah, we were looking forward to a nice, quiet dinner with a view of the River. We made reservations for Vic’s on the River (26 E Bay St). They offer valet parking, which we appreciated to help us make our reservation on time. 

You can also get to the restaurant through Vic’s Coffee Bar on River Street. Just take the elevator up to the fourth floor. The food and service were outstanding, and I would highly recommend this restaurant, particularly for a special occasion.

They have a large number of gluten-free options, but they’re a little light on the vegetarian options.

I was able to make a delicious dinner though out of a baby Tuscan kale salad with preserved lemon (resisting the temptation to lick my plate clean) and the fried green tomatoes with grits and goat cheese appetizer.

Hubby quite enjoyed their filet with sour cream and chive mashed potatoes.

Take a walk in Forsyth Park 

Large fountain in a park in Savannah Georgia
Forsyth Fountain is an iconic site in Savannah, Georgia. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

There’s a quite well-known fountain in Savannah, and you’ll find it in Forsyth Park (2 W Gaston St). Forsyth has 30 acres of walking paths, gardens, sports courts and fields, a half-shell theatre, and more. It’s truly a beautiful park and well worth a visit. 

Grab a treat at Back in the Day Bakery 

Please note: Back in the Day has announced they will close on Feb. 14, 2024.

Back in the Day Bakery comes highly recommended by my sister, who is quite the foodie, so there was no way I could NOT stop here. It was the last thing we did in Savannah before we pointed the car in a homeward direction. 

Back in the Day is best known for its biscuits. The biscuits fly out the doors until they are sold out for the day. It was shortly after 11 a.m. when we got in line and I was surprised that they were surprised they still had biscuits left.

I would have been disappointed to drive there and find there were no biscuits. I probably could have consoled myself with one of their enormous cinnamon rolls, but I was looking for a good Southern biscuit. And I sure found it.

large golden brown biscuit in a takeout container with a small plastic cup of red jam
Try a scrumptious biscuit from Back in the Day Bakery while you’re visiting Savannah for the weekend. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Other things to do in Savannah

If you have more time, you could extend your trip into a long weekend and explore more of Savannah and the surrounding area. Check out some of the city’s most important historic buildings and historic sites.

Visit Tybee Island

One of the most popular day trips from Savannah is Tybee Island, which boasts the oldest and tallest light station in Georgia. The 2.5-mile-long barrier island’s strategic location at the mouth of the Savannah River also made it an important military outpost.

Although Tybee is quite close to Savannah, it’s a great way to feel like you are far from the city. You could easily have a good time spending an entire day exploring the Island.

To explore the island, you can of course drive yourself there, or you could book a sightseeing tour like this one that includes a dolphin-watching cruise. Or perhaps just enjoy a day relaxing on a Tybee Island beach complete with beach chairs, umbrellas, and coolers stocked with ice.

Explore the squares

Savannah is known for its 22 squares that make little neighborhoods throughout the historic district, like Lafayette Square and Chippewa Square. Most are named for historic people or events and many include historic monuments or statues. 

I think they have the effect of making Savannah feel like a smaller city than it is…in a good way.

Historic Savannah square
Savannah is famous for its 22 squares. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Bonaventure Cemetery

About 3 or 4 miles from downtown Savannah, you’ll find the famous Bonaventure Cemetery. The cemetery rose to fame because of the popularity of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

If you’re looking for the Bird Girl Statue, it was moved to the Telfair Academy Museum to keep it safe. The cemetery is open to the public for free, and they offer free tours one weekend a month.

Please keep in mind that Bonaventure is a “working” cemetery, so if you see a crowd of people with a hearse and other vehicles parked nearby, assume that there is a funeral taking place. 

Owens-Thomas House and Slave Quarters

This historic mansion is operated as a house museum open to the public for touring. Marvel at the historic architecture and learn about the differences in the lives of those who were at the top of Savannah society and those who were at the bottom.

The house was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1976.

Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace

The Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace preserves the home of the founder of the Girl Scouts Movement, one of the most beautiful historic homes in Savannah…and certainly one of the most famous. And more importantly, it serves to preserve the vision of the Girl Scouts.

Facing possible demotion, the Girl Scouts of the USA purchased the home in 1953, creating a museum specifically for girls. Of course, it’s open to all who want to visit.

Wormsloe Historic Site

Located about 9 miles from downtown Savannah, Wormsloe State Historic Site preserves the Wormsloe tabby ruins. The site was owned by Noble Jones who came to the New World with James Oglethorpe (founder of Savannah).

This is one of the most important historic sites in the state, preserving the oldest structure in Savannah. The ruins include part of an outer wall, a well, a brick chimney, and more.

Where to stay in Savannah 

I recommend staying in the historic downtown area. You’ll enjoy being in the heart of the city and it will also reduce the need to drive around from site to site. Street parking can be hard to come by and can be expensive. 

We stayed at the Marriott Savannah Riverfront (100 General McIntosh Blvd) in a river view room, which we loved.

The hotel is conveniently located at the end of historic River Street, just steps from the Waving Girl Statue. It’s quite comfortable and the staff is friendly. We recommend it highly. Book here now! 

Hotel room with a view of the Savannah River
We loved having a view of the river from our room at the Marriott Savannah Riverfront.
Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Final thoughts on your Savannah weekend getaway

Whatever you choose to put on your Savannah weekend trip itinerary, you’re sure to enjoy your time there. I think it’s one of the best places to visit in the American South.

The beauty, Southern charm, rich history, and (of course) the food all combine to make this gem of the Southern United States a great place for a weekend getaway. I know you’ll have the best time.

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A collage image of an old church, a fountain in a park, a table laid with breakfast food, and trees covered in Spanish moss with a text overlay.
Tips for a perfect weekend in Savannah, Georgia


  1. Lisa Tankersley says:

    I’ve spent the last 8 years in Savannah. You do NOT want to be here during the su.mers
    It’s blistering hot, and the humidity is off the chain
    I suggest coming over October thru March. Ooohhh…another problem here during the summers…the sand gnats and mosquitoes so big, they could carry off small children and dogs. (There were multiple outbreaks of Yellow Fever in Savannah’s earliest days, thanks to the mosquitoes. )

  2. What time of year did you visit Savannah Georgia?

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      It was mid-to-late October.

  3. Nicholl Spence says:

    Savannah is without a doubt one of my favorite cities! I couldn’t get enough of just wandering around through all the different squares, admiring the homes, the Spanish moss trees. Also such an amazing town for foodies, was fortunate to try so many amazing savannah restaurants we found on during our trip. My personal favorites would have to be The Collins Quarter and Huey’s. Will be back!

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      Yes! So much great food. We love the Collins Quarter so much!

  4. I love Savannah too! You should look into renting a house in historic Gordonston section far enough from the noise st night yet close enough to walk to the park and downtown action, under 30 minutes to Tybee Island. New home for rent coming soon (May) with grills, fire pits, hot tub, etc.

  5. Babs wilburn says:

    Savannah is our favorite US city, we go a lot and we think it’s one of the most friendly and great atmosphere. Be prepared to eat some great southern cuisines and it’s a good thing it’s a walking city to walk it all off. Plenty of beautiful old architecture and history galore. Plus tell-tale hauntings all over, it claims to be the most haunted city in the US. Most of the hotels are done in a historic fashion. We prefer the B&B’s
    with their small town charms. It’s a great town for young people since they’ve got a great Arts college and for families and couples anytime of the year. Definitely worth the trip.

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      Totally agree…especially about the food. Yummy!

  6. Savannah is so Beautiful breath taking I. Would consider moving there !

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      Oh, I so agree. It’s a great town!

  7. Savannah sounds like a lovely place to visit for a couple of days. The Collins Quarter Cafe would be a must as I’m intrigued by the spiced lavender mocha! The Forsyth Park fountain is just beautiful.

  8. Stephanie says:

    Your stay in The Marriot must have been amazing while discovering Savannah. You inspired me to discover the South!

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      I’m so glad! Yes, the hotel was great!

  9. The old American south always fascinates me. I guess I will have to add Savannah to my south American bucket list

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      Yes, you definitely do. It’s a great town.

  10. What a lovely way to spend a weekend in a city! I love foodie destinations, especially when you have great bakeries (since I’m vegetarian). I never thought Savannah would be such a nice place to discover food!

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      I don’t usually make as much time for food when I travel as I did on this trip, but I’m so glad we did!

  11. I’ll take two orders of the Bananas Foster French Toast please! I had no idea Savannah was such a foodie city (and it’s cool that there are vegetarian options too!).

    1. Darcy Vierow says:

      Yes, it was pretty great!

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