Updated: Jun 5, 2020
A day is never a long enough time to spend fully exploring anywhere, but when a day is all you have, you sometimes have to make it work. Recently, my husband and I were on our way home from Miami back to Tennessee, and we needed a place halfway to stop for the night because we were EXHAUSTED. I had been to Savannah, Georgia once as a young child, but I was excited to see what the town had to offer as an adult.
I have always been a big fan of the paranormal, so visiting places that are notoriously haunted is a big deal for me. If you don’t believe in the supernatural, you will still appreciate some of these places because of the history alone. Although we only had one day, I am pretty good at planning things out and accomplishing as much as I can with the time I was given.
If you find yourself passing through Savannah, this post is for you. If you’re planning on staying longer, hopefully you can still draw inspiration from some of the things I did while I was here. Here are the best things to do in one day in Savannah, Georgia.
1. Eat at the Moon River Brewing Company
This building was first constructed in 1821 as a hotel, later turning into a post office. In the late 1900’s, it was a printing press and a store before finally becoming a brewing company in 1999. If the history itself doesn’t impress you, you should take a look at their menu. I enjoyed one of the best burger and fry combinations I’ve ever had in my life, and I’m not even really much of a “burger person.” My husband had the Low Country Crab Melt, and he was a huge fan as well. Along with the food, this brewery has a huge selection of original and local beer.
Following the course of many other places in Savannah, this brewery is said to be haunted. Several tours in the area stop in the basement to see Toby, a famous spirit who pushes staff. It’s also said that on the upper floor, there is the ghost of a woman who was killed when she was pushed down the stairs. You can see this stairwell while you dine at the restaurant.
2. Walk along the historic district and the riverside
River Street offers one of the most beautiful views in Savannah. The historic district is full of antique shops, restaurants, and even old cotton warehouses. The Savannah River boasts amazing riverboat tours that give you a view of the town. You can also stay in hotels that were once cotton warehouses, such as the Cotton Sail Hotel.
3. Visit the Kehoe House
In 1892, William Kehoe, a businessman from Ireland, had the Kehoe House constructed for him and his family. He and his wife, Anne Flood, had 10 children when they moved into the home. The story of this house is particularly interesting because it’s said that two of the children died in the home, but that was later proven inaccurate. Curiously enough, many guests of the house claim they hear the sounds of children playing.
It’s not exactly clear why this bed and breakfast is haunted, but you can actually stay there and see for yourself what YOU believe. I only popped into the house, and didn’t have the chance to stay there myself, but if you do, I would love to hear about any experiences you had in the comments. Click here to check out rates for the Kehoe House.
4. Stroll through the Colonial Park Cemetery
A cemetery might not seem like a fun place to talk a walk, but for history buffs like me, the story behind this location is legendary. Almost 700 of the people buried in this cemetery were victims of the Yellow Fever, which is said to be the plague that gave Savannah its haunted reputation in the first place. The cemetery is home to many mass graves and a ton of vandalized tombstones with incorrect dates, likely caused by Sherman’s Union Army during the Civil War.
5. Marvel at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
Steering away from the haunted stuff for just a moment, this Roman Catholic Church was built after the denomination was banned after the American Revolution. The church was built in 1873 and was rebuilt after it was destroyed in a fire in 1898. If you’re religious and a member of the Catholic community, visiting this church will feel spiritual, but even if you’re not, you’ll appreciate the agriculture and beauty of the structure itself.
6. Tour the Old Sorrel-Weed House
This last time I visited Savannah, the house was understaffed and wasn’t able to accept a tour. However, I went on a very memorable tour when I was younger and felt the need to share it with you all. This was one of the highlights that made Savannah so memorable for my young mind. The owner of this house, Francis Sorrel, cheated on his wife Matilda with a slave girl, and Matilda committed suicide, and not long after, the slave, Molly, committed suicide also.
There are several stories behind the house. One saying the suicides actually took place in the house next door, another saying the slave Molly never existed, and another stating that Molly was actually murdered. Whatever the real story is, it’s hard for visitors to shake off the paranormal feelings they experience here.
7. Enjoy the beauty of Forsyth Park
This 30-acre park is covered in beautiful Southern Live Oak trees. It’s home to gorgeous fountain, a Confederate Memorial Statue, and a Spanish-American War Memorial in the form of The Hiker. The fountain is featured in many movies, such as The Longest Yard, and it’s turned green every St. Patrick’s Day to represent the Irish influence in the town.
This park is a great place to take a walk and reminisce on the history of Savannah. It’s the last thing we did when we were in the town, and it was a great send off before we got back on the road.
Learn more before you go
I may be a bit of a nerd, but I'm a really big fan of guidebooks and reading up on cities before I visit them, and since you're reading this blog, you probably like to read before you go somewhere too. Depending on what you're interested in, there are a couple great books that I want to recommended about Savannah.
If you're looking for things to do, read A Traveler's Guide to the Best Places to Visit in Savannah, Georgia by Natasha Holt.
If history is your thing, check out Savannah in History: A Guide to More Than 75 Sites in Historical Context by Rodney and Loretta Carlisle.
Savannah is a very historic city with a lot to see and discover, and if you’re a fan of things that go bump in the night, I highly recommend you spend more time taking one of the haunted tours and seeing what there is to offer. If you only have a chance to pop in for the weekend, I hope these suggestions help you salvage your time. Let me know in the comments if you visit anything based off my suggestions.
*This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that I will get a small commission if you purchase from my link with no extra cost to you :)*