Savannah Historic District
Savannah Historic District/ Riverfront
Savannah Historic District
Savannah Historic District
Savannah Midtown

Some of our best childhood memories are made on vacation. From that funny nonsense thing someone said that made everyone laugh so hard they cried to the photos that say much more than 1,000 words, getting away from our day-to-day routines gives us the freedom to actually enjoy each other for a little while. So if you’re in need of some quality time but you’re short on paid-vacation time, a weekend with the kids in Savannah is exactly what you need. What will you do? Let’s just dive right in.

Consider this your à la carte reference guide to pick and choose what excites you and your kiddos the most. You could try to fit it all in to one weekend, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Instead, experience some this trip and leave some for the next (‘cause you’re gonna want to come back, I promise). In fact, one entire day could be spent exploring the city with an on-off trolley tour care of Old Savannah Tours. When they say “we bring Savannah’s history to life” they mean it as realistic looking and acting characters periodically join your tour so you can hear “first-hand” (so to speak) from the historical figures themselves.

This tour is perfect for kids thanks to the characters who infuse some excitement into the ride and the option to get off and explore and hop back on to the next stop as you please. Kids ages 5 and under ride for free and those ages 6-12 receive a special child’s rate. If it’s your first time in Savannah, I highly recommend making this a top priority to help you get a lay of the land and figure out what you want to do next – without asking for directions.

Speaking of next, let’s talk museums. There are multiple options for museums in Savannah but for the younger crowd, three stand out as top picks: The Savannah Children’s Museum and Georgia State Railroad Museum (all in one location); the Jepson Center for the Arts; and the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force.

If you love the outdoors, the Savannah Children’s Museum is all outside and filled with more than a dozen exhibits designed for imaginative play. It’s located downtown in the old Central of Georgia Railway Carpentry Shop and mere steps from the Georgia State Railroad Museum, where you can explore historic railcars and even ride an historic steam or diesel locomotive!

Also located downtown is the Jepson Center for the Arts on Telfair Square. The architecture of this stunning building will impress even the littlest of tourists but inside, the Jepson’s ArtZeum invites children to “rethink their ideas about art” with two opportunities to actually walk into the art on display.

Just a short drive from downtown is the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force with full-size aircraft to see up close and exhibits that help visitors recreate what the brave members of the Mighty Eighth faced in World War II. As educational as it is exhilarating, this is one experience young visitors won’t soon forget.

If you’re ready to explore our coastal ecosystems, Savannah also has plenty of opportunities – and amazing weather – to do just that. For your little nature lover, be sure to visit the University of Georgia’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium on nearby Skidaway Island all about our coastal waters and marshlands. There’s also the Oatland Island Wildlife Center, a favorite among kids and grownups alike with animal exhibits, walking trails, and special events throughout the year (check their Facebook page and website for updated information).

Who wants a boat ride? Savannah’s coastal location makes it ideal for having some fun on the water. Of course, nearby Tybee Island is Georgia’s authentic beach town and a great spot to laze away the afternoon. You could also reserve your spot on a dolphin tour with Dolphin Magic Tours to get out on the water and see these elegant acrobatic wonders up close and in their natural habitats. If a bigger boat is more your size, Savannah River Boat Cruises is just for you. With its larger-than-life paddle wheel and outside decks to take in the sights and salt air, you can book a narrated cruise that boards at River Street and takes you down the Savannah River and even past Old Fort Jackson for an added bonus (plus kids 4 and under ride free!).

Then there’s the beauty of Forsyth Park – complete with a fantastic playground! The jumping, shooting, oh-so-fun fountains to play in at Ellis Square near City Market! And who doesn’t love a pedicab; only the coolest way for a kid to ride from the hotel to dinner (cue the memories).

Let’s just say, if you thought you might run out of things to do on a weekend with the kids in Savannah, we assure you, you won’t! Unexpected adventures are yours to enjoy at every turn – the most unexpected of all is you throwing caution and routines to the wind and allowing yourself to be a kid again.

Ready to book your stay in Savannah and have some fun?

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Savannah’s art scene has steadily grown over the years, aided by a welcoming community that makes it simple for artists to put their work on display. Beginning at 4 p.m. three days a week – Thursday, Friday, and Saturday – a local artist is featured at the DoubleTree Savannah Historic District, while another sets up shop at the Homewood Suites Savannah Historic District/Riverfront.

Each artist has their own style, specialty, and unique background that is made apparent through their work. Here’s a look at a few of the creators.

Kala Peper
Kala is a Tybee Island-based artist who, by her own admission, “accidentally” discovered how much she loved making jewelry when she and a friend who worked in the same office took a class atthe local arts and crafts store. Powered by a strong desire to get better at creating jewelry, what started off as a hobby eventually evolved into a means of livelihood.

One of Kala’s driving forces is the fact her jewelry is enjoyed – and portable. “I love that my jewelry travels with people,” she said. “And it can be passed on to future generations.”For any aspiring artists, Kala does have this advice: “There’s a difference between making art and making art marketable,” she said. “The latter is a whole different beast.”


C.O. Brown
C.O. initially tried woodcarving when he retired back in 2002, and carved decorative duck decoys, shorebirds, and fish. It wasn’t until 2012 that C.O. tried acrylic painting on canvas – a move that seemed to be in the making for a while: “I always enjoyed painting my carvings more than the actual woodcarving process,” he admitted.

His first painting – completed in May of 2012 – is a 24×48’’ canvas of 15 historical scenes of Savannah. It currently hangs over his fireplace and “it is not for sale,” but prints are available. His current work features landmarks from the historic district in Savannah and scenes of coastal life from Tybee Island. C.O. has been featured in Chatham County Living Magazine.


Joe and Nona Delgado
Joe and Nona are, in their own right, two separate artists, but they work together as a team that specializes in leathercrafting.

“I think it’s so elegant to make useful items out of top grain leather,” said Joe. “I love to see someone wear one of our items.”

Nona agreed. “I love the look, feel, and smell of leather,” she added.

Some of their leather creations have inspirational inscriptions that, for Nona, is a matter of wanting to “make a difference in someone’s life, even if it is as small as something they wear or use. For Joe, those inscriptions are a matter of “sharing things that matter to me with the world.”


Jessica Anderson
Jessica graduated from Armstrong Atlantic State University (now Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus) with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Art with a concentration in jewelry and ceramics. Her bead store, Epiphany Bead and Jewelry Studio, has been open for six years.

Jessica cited the beads and stones themselves as the biggest influences for her work. “I love designing with new beads and stones as well as with found objects from in the Lowcountry,” she said. “My style is very natural and earthy, and I like incorporating things such as sharks’ teeth, shells, and deer antlers into my pieces.”


The aforementioned aren’t the only artists you’ll come across in the lobbies of the DoubleTree and Homewood Suites. There’s David and Natalisa Strickland, a couple of beekeepers who also create stained glass artwork as the aptly named Tybee Island Hives. Donna Clark is unique in that she’s the only artist whose painting medium is watercolor. Or you may run into Tiffany O’Brien, who has a unique style you’d be hard-pressed to find replicated.

No matter which artist is set up in the DoubleTree or Homewood Suites, you’re sure to find something that will catch your eye. Are you ready to book your stay in Savannah?

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Planning a night out with the girls? Savannah is filled with amazing bars, restaurants, and activities perfectly suited for a ladies night (or weekend!) on the town. Whether you’re coordinating a bachelorette party, reconnecting with your sorority sisters, or just enjoying the single life, the Hostess City is the perfect place to cut loose with your girl gang and celebrate sisterhood!

Treat Yourself

Kick off your evening with an elegant dinner at the beautiful French bistro, Circa 1875. Here you’ll find traditional French favorites like escargot, fois gras, cassoulet, and steak frites. Don’t forget to save room for the crepes Suzette, served with a caramelized Grand Marnier sauce, oranges, and a scoop of vanilla ice cream! Traveling with a large group? No problem! Their charming, private dining space, the wine cellar, can host parties of up to 27, offering prefix menus for groups of 12 or more. Be sure to reserve this space in advance.

Have a Cocktail

It wouldn’t be girls night without a stop at Jen’s and Friends, also known as the Home of 300 Martinis. If you like your drink with a side of Swedish Fish, you’ve come to the right place. Their whimsical menu consists of ultra-sweet treats like cocktails inspired by Hostess Cupcakes, Bourbon Pecan Pie, and Klondike Bars, along with just about every candy you can imagine, from Pixie Stix to Snickers.

If you’re looking for something a bit more refined, we recommend the sublime Artillery Bar. At once modern and old-fashioned, this luxuriously restored landmark offers handcrafted cocktails in a sophisticated setting.

Or stop by Savannah’s best kept secret – the Alley Cat. This hidden gem is tucked away down an alley off West Broughton St., but don’t let the location fool you. Below street level you’ll find a dimly lit lounge offering exceptional libations. Flip through the newspaper menu to discover new twists on classic cocktails, like the Georgia Mule made with peach bourbon, lemon, and ginger beer.

Solve a Puzzle

If your group of ladies love a challenge, book an adventure with The Escape Company! Choose between three escape rooms with distinct storylines where you’ll race follow the clues, solve a mystery, and beat the clock before your time is up! After you’re through, wind down at The Hideaway Lounge for craft beers, games, and trivia.

Let Us Entertain You

There’s nothing like an evening of live entertainment! Get your tickets in advance for a show at the Historic Savannah Theatre. Check out the two-hour variety show, Savannah Live, which includes eight performers and a live band playing everything from upbeat pop to Broadway hits.

Head to Savannah Smiles Saloon to see the famous dueling pianos! This laid-back location offers live music performed by talented musicians and reasonably-priced drinks. Arrive early to snag a great seat and feel free to make song requests. You may end up spending the whole night singing along to your favorite tunes!

Sing Your Heart Out

If you haven’t lost your voice yet at Savannah Smiles, there are plenty more places where you can prove your singing prowess. Relaxed dive bar McDonough’s offers weeknight happy hour specials and has been voted “Best Karaoke in Savannah” for the past eight years.

Pump up the jams on the Savannah Slow Ride, which offers pedal-powered excursions in the Historic District, including pub crawls, haunted ghost tours, and custom routes to suit any group! Speakers are provided, so bring your music, snacks, and drinks (see Savannah’s open container laws in their FAQ) for a mobile party!

Admire the View

There’s no better place to end the evening than the rooftop at the Homewood Suites Savannah Historic District/Riverfront. RTB! (rooftop bar) is a resort-style space that includes a heated pool, full-service bar, food menu, and firepit. Stretch out in one of the beautiful cabanas, or take in the riverfront views while you enjoy the nightly live music. RTB! is exclusively open to hotel guests, so be sure to book your rooms in advance. All rooms include fully-equipped kitchens and complimentary breakfast, making it the perfect place to recharge after your fabulous stay in Savannah!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Savannah’s riverfront has always played a huge role in commerce. A once large exporter of rice and cotton, Savannah inherited much of its wealth and popularity as a major southern port. While Savannah’s port is still very active, a stroll down the cobblestoned river walk, and particularly River Street, is completely different. Nowadays, River Street’s old cotton warehouses are occupied by local and specialty shops. Visitors come to Savannah to enjoy a wide selection of shopping, from sweets and treats to clothing and souvenirs.

Savannah Bee Company

Since 1999, Savannah Bee Company has been a city mainstay for all things beeswax. But what’s all the buzz about? The company grew out of a passion for bees, a creature that lives in harmony with nature and adds balance to all our lives. Since its early beginnings, Savannah Bee Company has been all about providing the very best local honey while contributing a positive impact. Try some something sweet, like their Tupelo honey or even some tasty whipped honey. You can even sample some of their honey-based lotions or browse their hair care and gifts. See how it all began and then take some of their products, straight from the hive, home.

Matter of Factors

Did someone say peach wine? A visit to Savannah wouldn’t be complete without a taste of the local and regional wines and spirits. Matter of Factors is famous for their Georgia Peach Wine, made from the premier muscadine grapes. Browse this emporium of carefully selected wines, accessories and gifts and stay for a free wine sampling. Don’t forget to pick up a a bottle of Peachshine (peach moonshine) to share.

Bob’s Your Uncle
It may seem obvious, but did you go to Savannah if you don’t have a Savannah shirt to commemorate the trip? Bob’s Your Uncle stocks a wide variety of t-shirts and knickknacks, including plenty of Life is Good® products. Come here for souvenirs and you’ll probably find something you weren’t even looking for.

Mad Hatter
Looking for something to don while you walk about? Look no further than this fun-filled haberdashery. Since 1991, The Mad Hatter has been a River Street staple, providing a very wide variety of hats. Stop by and try on a few hats. And, don’t worry – the hatter isn’t actually mad.

River Street Sweets

Satisfy your sweet tooth with a stop at Savannah’s original candy store. From pralines and specialty fudge to chocolates and gifts, this family-owned confectionary is home to Savannah’s most sought-after candies. Interestingly, their pralines are in such high demand that River Street Sweets has become the world’s largest producer of pralines. You can still get these and many more handmade candies right where it all started nearly 30 years ago.

River Street Market Place

Many Savannah visitors just love wandering River Street, looking for boutiques or souvenirs. A great place to wander is the River Street Market Place. This open-air market is the perfect place to browse specialties from local artists, leathermakers, farmers, and more, all along the water’s edge.

Don’t forget to pack your shopping list! Book your trip to Savannah today!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

There are two types of Savannah vacations: the grown-up kind (couples, girl trips, guy trips) and the kind with wee ones in tow (Griswold-esque). Both vacations have their share of fun times, great memories and unique experiences but make no mistake, they are very distinct excursions. Unless your tike is a natural-born foodie (and if so, I’m jealous) chances are you’re going to need to select restaurants that will appeal to their pint-sized palate as well as your more adventurous one. Sound familiar? Then save those goldfish crackers for the trip home and choose any – or all – of these kid-friendly Savannah spots designed to leave the whole family delightfully satisfied!

Breakfast anyone? More like breakfast everyone – who doesn’t like breakfast? Well the folks at Funky Brunch Café have taken that winningest meal and added a heaping helping of fun – as in tables with built-in griddles! You choose the batter, from old-fashioned buttermilk to gluten-free and multi-grain varieties, and your toppings, like granola, fresh fruits and even chocolate chips, then you cook them right at your table for hot flapjacks like no other.

Prefer Funky Brunch to do the cooking? Then order up an omelet or any number of breakfast staples sure to fill you heartily. Going for lunch? Salads, sandwiches, and soups round out the menu to ensure there’s something for everyone. And since the kiddos are so happy, you can treat yourself to a mimosa, care of the restaurant’s full bar. Optional outdoor seating means you can relax if your bunch gets a little rowdy, and with all the fun you’re bound to have, you just might get a little rowdy, too! Funky Brunch Café is open daily from 8:00 am to 2:30 pm and if you’re going on the weekend, you might want to get there early as a line typically forms at peak times.

If it’s past breakfast time or you’re just in need of some afternoon caffeine – but you also want the kids to be happy – then look no further than Henny Penny Art Space and Café. Located south of Forsyth Park on Bull Street in downtown Savannah, Henny Penny is the creative combination of local coffee shop Foxy Loxy and Scribble Art Studio providing a haven of creative art projects for kids to enjoy while the grownups recharge with top-notch coffee and fresh-baked goodies (including the vegan variety).

“I’ve run Scribble Art Studio for eight years and several years ago it just struck me there was no connected space for parents and kids to be together,” shared owner Carrie Christian, who also operates the art space at Henny Penny. It was that realization that gave life to Henny Penny and today, the art space and café is buzzing with activity seven days a week from animal portraits on Saturdays to Play-Doh on Thursdays and even Petite Picasso on Fridays. “We always have open studio projects from 10 am to 5 pm seven days a week,” said Carrie. “For example, this week we’re building a little terrarium and we also have embroidery projects, which are great for older kids.”

Carrie is also planning for some upcoming special events including a book fair with a local publishing company and Superhero Saturday with instruction from a real-life comic book artist. To find out about those special events as well as the calendar of available art projects while you’re here, be sure to visit Henny Penny’s website and Facebook page for the latest updates.

Arrrrrgh you ready for an eating adventure? Then grab yer’ mates and head to The Pirates’ House for a truly legendary dining experience. “The restaurant was established in 1953 by Herb Traub whose vision was to create a place where families can gather, enjoy good food, and create memories,” said a spokesperson with the restaurant. One way the restaurant maintains Mr. Traub’s vision is with Pirates who roam the restaurant, visit your table, and take pictures with your crew of buccaneers. The menu is filled with tried-and-true go-to menu items like shrimp, chicken fingers, hamburgers, and pasta and when the ordering is done, the First Mate’s menu turns into a fun pirate hat to boot! After your meal, be sure to visit the gift shop upstairs where treasures abound to help commemorate your visit.

And then the best part – dessert! You’ll spot this next restaurant when you see the line that winds out of the front door and down the sidewalk on Broughton Street. Leopold’s Ice Cream has been serving patrons (including famed singer/songwriter Johnny Mercer) since 1919, offering award-winning ice cream, from-scratch soups, sandwiches, salads and freshly baked treats. The decor inside is a fun mix of nostalgic soda shop paired with movie memorabilia (care of owner Stratton Leopold’s illustrious 50-year career in the film industry) and you can’t help but smile as you walk around and take it all in. Get a head start on choosing your ice cream flavor and read all about Leopold’s history by visiting the website.

Rounding out our list of family favorites are two casual eateries you don’t want to miss: Vinnie Van GoGo’s and Crystal Beer Parlor. Vinnie’s is THE spot in City Market for New York-style pizza served with an artsy Savannah twist. Most seating is outdoors (great for kids to be free!) and it is a cash-only restaurant, but for laid-back pizza deliciousness, Vinnie Van GoGo’s is your go-to!

While you might question whether you want to take your kids to a “beer parlor” – trust us, you’ll be glad you did! Crystal Beer Parlor dates all the way back to 1933 and will absolutely transport you to those bygone days. The kids’ menu checks all the necessary musts (burgers, chicken fingers, spaghetti, and more) and for the grownups, there’s seafood, sandwiches, salads, and any number of house specialties that are all worthy of a clean plate. Of course with “beer parlor” in its name, you can be sure the full bar and other adult libations offer no shortage of lively spirits to choose from.

From pancakes to pirates to pizza and more, Savannah is filled with family-friendly establishments to please even the pickiest of eaters. So round up your crew and bring them to the Homewood Suites Savannah Historic District/Riverfront, an all-suite hotel that has a fully equipped kitchen and full-size refrigerator in each room to go along with a complimentary hot breakfast every morning and a year-round heated rooftop pool, for a kid-friendly stay in Savannah that will leave everyone full of good food and great memories.

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Savannah is a city steeped in history, so you’ll want to soak up all the knowledge you can during your next visit! There’s no better way to learn about Savannah’s rich history and fascinating folklore than by taking a tour. Whether you prefer to travel by trolley, Segway, or on foot, you’ll find a tour that suits your interests, activity level, and time constraints. Make your reservations now for a one-of-a-kind experience in Savannah!

Old Savannah Tours

Old Savannah Tours is the largest Savannah-owned and operated company, and their large white trolleys have been a Savannah staple since 1979. Voted best tour every year since 2003, their tours are developed by Savannah locals, with stops throughout the city.

  • The Historic On/Off Tour is their most popular option, as it offers guests the chance to hop off the trolley at any of the 15 stops in the Historic District to take a closer look around, or ride for the full 90-minute experience. With introductions to famous historical characters giving personal accounts in period-specific costumes, the Historic On/Off Tour (and its non-on/off counterpart the Historic Overview Tour) provide a fascinating, succinct, and immersive look into Savannah’s past.
  • If you prefer a more comprehensive venture, we recommend the three-hour Savannah Experience In addition to the Historic District, this tour covers Savannah’s Victorian District, Thomas Square neighborhood restoration, the Beach Institute, and Victory Drive. Give yourself permission to slow down and soak up all the sites during this thorough excursion through the city.
  • Interested in Savannah’s haunted history? Try the Grave Encounters Tour, departing nightly at 7PM, to meet some of the city’s most famous ghosts and ghouls.
  • Did you know that Savannah is the birthplace of Girl Scouts founder Juliette Gordon Low? Scouts of all ages are invited to learn more about the original Girl Guide as they explore the Andrew Low House and Girl Scout Headquarters on the Discover Savannah Girl Scout Tour.
  • Calling all lovers of historic art and architecture! The History & Architecture Package combines the perks of the Historic On/Off Tour with tickets to tour National Historic Landmark the Owens-Thomas House, as well as free admission to Telfair Academy Museum, and contemporary gallery Jepson Center for the Arts. Spend all day perusing Savannah’s rich culture and history, while you move at your own pace through the Historic District’s most beautiful museums.

Adventure Tours in Motion

If you’re looking for an up close and personal tour of the city but worry about dragging your heels in Savannah’s steamy weather, we recommend the Adventure Tours in Motion Segway Tour. With 60-minute and 90-minute options, and no prior Segway experience necessary, you’ll glide through the Historic District’s famous squares with guided instruction from your experienced local tour guide. The 90-minute version also offers a “bonus stop” at either St. John’s Cathedral, Forsyth Park, or Colonial Park Cemetery. They also offer a Tybee Island Tour, just 25 minutes from downtown Savannah, with transportation provided from their downtown location.

Hearse Ghost Tours

If you have a fondness for the macabre, you’ll be thrilled by the opportunity to tour the city after dark in a real hearse. Enjoy spine-tingling tales of the city’s paranormal side as you cruise through the city’s Historic District and cemeteries. With a dash of history and plenty of humor, you’ll love learning more about Savannah’s spooky past on the famous Hearse Ghost Tour.

Walking Tour with Steve Ellis

If you’re looking for a private, personalized experience catering to your specific interests, look no further than Steve Ellis’ private walking tours. This Savannah native is a passionate history buff with expertise in many areas of the city and its history, including the Civil War, Savannah’s Squares, and Bonaventure Cemetery. Steve’s tours are customizable and uniquely memorable, weaving storytelling with historical fact and offering personal anecdotes.

Southern Flavors Savannah

Looking to experience the local Southern flavor? You’ve come to the right place! Southern Flavors Savannah offers three tour options to satisfy all your cravings. The Taste Tour is a fantastic overview of the food and history in Historic Downtown Savannah. You’ll sample plenty of authentic Lowcountry cuisine, including award-winning shrimp and grits, blue crab stew, and fried crab claws, while you learn about Savannah’s history and see the sites that served as locations in Forrest Gump. If you’re over 21, check out the Haunted Pub Crawl – a two-hour walking tour with stops Tondee’s Tavern, Factor’s Walk, and Kevin Barry’s Irish Pub. You might just bump into a ghost or two! Hungry for more? The Dessert Tour offers a taste of Savannah’s sweeter side, with stops at Mabel’s, Below Zero, and FreezN, among others!

Find more information on Savannah’s many tours here, and book your next stay in Savannah today!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Savannah boasts one of the country’s largest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, but there are historical elements of the holiday that can get drowned out in the sea of green beer.

Let’s start with the missionary himself.

Contrary to popular belief, St. Patrick of Ireland was not born Irish. He was born in what is now England, but what kidnapped by Irish raiders and sold into slavery. St. Patrick would later escape from captivity and return to England where he would become a bishop. When he returned to Ireland, he brought Christianity with him, effectively becoming the patron saint of the country. He used the three-leafed shamrock to represent the holy trinity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Now that we’re a bit more familiar with the Apostle of Ireland, let’s examine some of the more reverent aspects of Savannah’s biggest holiday.

Knights of Columbus
The Knights of Columbus, founded in Connecticut in 1882, is the world’s largest Catholic fraternal service, and the Savannah Council 631 was chartered in 1902 by Colonel Michael J. O’Leary, a Savannah native. Since there were no Knights of Columbus councils in Georgia in the early 20th century, it was O’Leary’s duty to find areas in Georgia with a sizable population of Catholic men who could join the fraternal organization. Along with Savannah, O’Leary also tabbed Atlanta and Augusta as cities that fit the bill.

Celtic Cross Ceremony

The Celtic Cross Ceremony is what jumpstarts the week leading up to the St. Patrick’s Day parade. Following Mass at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, a procession of Irish families, led by bagpipers and drummers, make the march to Emmet Park on Bay Street. Once the members of the procession arrive at the park, they place their flags around the Celtic cross monument, a gesture that is meant to honor Irish Americans from the past, present, and future. The ceremony is meant to pay respect to Savannah’s original St. Patrick’s Day celebrations back in the early 1800s.

Feast of St. Patrick Mass

Before the St. Patrick’s Day parade begins, Savannah’s Irish Catholic community gathers at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist for morning Mass. The religious service, which to open to everyone and revolves around keeping the spirit of St. Patrick alive, traditionally kicks off the highly-anticipated parade and ensuing festivities.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade

It should come as no surprise that Savannah’s St. Patrick’s Day parade in its current form didn’t come to fruition overnight. What’s considered the “first” St. Patrick’s Day parade, complete with an appointed grand marshal, took place in 1870 and the Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee, which handles all of the intricacies of the celebration, was officially formed in 1926. The parade has seen its share of visitors over the years, including former presidents Harry Truman and Jimmy Carter in 1962 and 1978, respectively, and most recently, Vice President Mike Pence in 2018.

St. Patrick’s Day Fire Ball

While not directly related to the holiday, the St. Patrick’s Day Fire Ball is an annual mainstay that coincides with the St. Patrick’s Day weekend. The event, which is open to the public, is the IAFF Savannah Firefighters’ welcoming of its newest members. The Fire Ball also honors those firefighters who have recently retired and recognizes the fire departments from around the world that will be join Savannah in celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.

Ready to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah? Book your stay now!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

Savannah is full of incredible restaurants and exciting entertainment, so it should come as no surprise that it’s also home to some of the finest craft breweries and distilleries in the southeast. From smooth whiskeys to tart sours and aromatic IPAs, our makers of nectar are always adding flavor to everything that the locals and visitors enjoy. Come and tour these fine facilities and sample a little bit of what keeps our whistles wet. Of course, you’ll have to take some home to share.

Ghost Coast Distillery

You might already know that Savannah is a spirited city. So, distilleries make a lot of sense. Ghost Coast Distillery is Savannah’s first modern distillery in downtown since Prohibition. Here, you can tour the facilities and get a thorough understanding of how craft spirits are made from mash to bottle. You’ll also learn the incredible history of distillation and the revival of this liquid gold. Following your tour, you can sample several different spirits like rum, whiskey or vodka, and you can even sample from a short list of specialty cocktails. By our observation, ghosts can handle their liquor, so there’s plenty to go around. Tours are free and open to all guests 21+.

Cocktail Room & Retail Hours
Tuesday-Saturday – noon to 9:00 PM
Sunday – noon to 5:30 PM
Monday – CLOSED

Service Brewing

Founded and operated by U.S. military veterans, Service Brewing offers high-quality craft beer for “the curious and experienced consumer.” Kevin Ryan and Meredith Sutton’s passion, which started as a simple love of beer, quickly became a Savannah classic with the help of dozens of Army, Navy and Marine Corps veterans. Come and sample their Compass Rose IPA or Rally Point Bohemian-Style Pilsner while you learn about Service Brewing’s history and unique brewing process. You’ll learn about their love for local ingredients and incredible beer that not only tastes good but also raises thousands of dollars to assist veterans and first responders. Service Brewing, we salute you!

Tasting Room Hours
Wednesday-Friday – 4:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Saturday – noon to 9:00 PM
Sunday-Tuesday – CLOSED

Southbound Brewing

Home to the Hop’lin IPA and the Scattered Sun Belgian Wit, Southbound Brewing is Savannah’s first production craft brewery. Their tradition is not wholly tied to beer, though. Inside, you’ll find a stage that is often occupied by local artists for nightly performances. They also host dozens of events including yoga classes, festivals, comedians and much more. Southbound is the perfect place to unwind after a night on the town, especially since it’s in downtown. Of course, come and try their beer, learn about the brews and stick around for a great show (and another round).

Taproom Hours
Wednesday-Friday – 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Saturday – noon to 9:00 PM

Two Tides Brewing Company

Craft beer is a well-trodden path, with tons of creative suds; however, in the case of Two Tide Brewing Company, staying off the path is more or less the goal. Starting with their simple love for craft beer in small batches, James and Liz Massey wanted to share their craft with others. In doing so, they developed some truly ingenious brews. These aleblazers remain dedicated to small-batch brews with tons of rotating beers, including many collaborations with other craft breweries. Two Tides has so many different kinds of beers that it’s hard to know what to expect, but you can definitely count on good beer. Check out their website and Instagram for more information on rotating taps and hours of operation.

Taproom Hours
Tuesday-Wednesday – 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Thursday-Friday – 5:00 PM to midnight
Saturday – noon to midnight
Sunday – noon to 5:00 PM
Monday – CLOSED

Are you ready to drink up in Savannah? Book your stay today!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

A limerick is both a city in Ireland and a poem in verse.

There is this city, Savannah
That isn’t so far from Atlanta.
You’ll visit in March
And never be parched.
‘Cause Guinness is basically manna.

The Rainbow Ends on River Street
It’s a long-held Irish belief that the city of Savannah would one day be overtaken by the Irish pride of half a million people. Okay, confession: That isn’t a long-held Irish belief. But it does happen. Each year, Savannah is home to one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in the country (America, not Ireland). Just for scale, that’s equivalent to over 10% of the population of Ireland descending on Savannah. When the green comes out, it’s definitely a sight to see. Here are a few things that you don’t want to miss:

Greening of the Fountain
Friday, March 9 at noon

A week before the draught beer turns green, the iconic fountain in Savannah’s Forsyth Park will receive a dose of green dye. For some, this inaugural event is what starts the week-long celebration of St. Patrick’s Day(s). This event is free and open to the public.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Saturday, March 16 from 10:15 AM to 2:30 PM

If you’ve never seen a sea of Kelly green, look no further than Savannah’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. With an attendance of over 300,000 people each year, the parade will be the second largest in the country. What will you see other than a bunch of red hair? Marching bands, dancers and totally decked-out floats will be, well, parading from Forsyth Park, down to Bay Street, passing City Hall, and back to Harris Street. Please, feel free to river dance, but maybe not in the Savannah River. It’ll be cold.

St. Patrick’s Day Festival
Friday, March 15-Saturday, March 16, 2019 from 10:00 AM to midnight

Most of the weekend celebrations will take place along River Street and at City Market. Join the masses for dancing, food from all kinds of vendors, live music and dance performances, giveaways and, of course, green beer.

St. Practice Day Bar Crawl
Saturday, March 9 from 4:00 PM to 11:00 PM

If you’re looking to turn St. Paddy’s into longer celebration, the thing to do is to start earlier. Starting at McDonough’s, you can wind your way through historic Savannah at your own pace and have a drink at several iconic bars and pubs. There will be plenty of drink specials and people clad in green along the way. Participants can also win prizes and take home some free swag.

Register here.

What You Should Know About Drinking

When you’re in Savannah, please have a great time, but before you can say “pour me a Guinness,” you should know this. During the St. Patrick’s Day Festival, if you want to drink outdoors, you will need to do so in the “control zone.” The east and west boundaries are East Broad Street and MLK Boulevard, respectively. The north and south boundaries are the Savannah River and Broughton Street, respectively. Wristbands are available for purchase on the day of the event for $10.

What You Should Know About Parking

Please be aware that St. Patrick’s Day will bring several road closures. So, unless you want to end up in the parade, be sure to check for road closures before you venture out for the day. A common spot to park will be at the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center. Here, you can pay $20 to park, then ride a free ferry over to all the action. Just pretend like you’re an Irish immigrant landing on Ellis Island.

Are you ready to go green in Savannah? Book your stay today!

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!

True story: I was born on St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah and my mom actually went to the parade THAT morning. Her doctor delivered me in his tuxedo around 10 pm having come straight from the annual Hibernian Society dinner (Savannah’s oldest Irish society and originators of the parade). In case you hadn’t guessed, in Savannah, we really, really love St. Patrick’s Day. So, if you haven’t taken part in Savannah’s Irish festivities yet, it begs the question: what are you waiting for? It is, officially, the second largest St. Patrick’s Day parade in the world (did you see that, the world!). Now I realize I’m partial but there is absolutely nothing more invigorating than a spring morning in historic downtown Savannah, surrounded by honorary Irish who create a sea of green-wearing spectators. You’ve really just gotta try it!

So, to help you kick up your leprechaun heels and head to the parade, we thought we’d provide some fun tidbits of information to debunk the most common myths surrounding the festivities and tell you what you really need to know about St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah. Erin go bragh!

Myth #1: You have to book your hotel room WELL in advance.

This is soooo not true. Granted, the early bird does get the worm. Or in this case, a larger availability of rooms at early-bird rates. But you can still get a room for St. Patrick’s Day even as late as the day of. “The best rates are found about 6-8 months before the event,” explained Stacy Sturgis, director of sales for Stay in Savannah. “Our DoubleTree by Hilton, Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites by Hilton and Quality Inn are all within walking distance of the parade route and festival zones.” Hoping for something a bit more removed and family friendly? Stacy recommends the Fairfield Inn & Suites in Savannah’s midtown as the perfect location.

Myth #2: St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah is really only for the party crowd.

There’s no doubt that throughout the days preceding St. Patrick’s Day, the party atmosphere can reach amazing heights – but that’s not the whole story. “There are two sides to the leprechaun’s gold coin when it comes to the festivities: the parade and the nightlife,” Sturgis told us. “The parade is family friendly. Locals and tourists of all ages set up along the route and in the squares to watch. Once the sun goes down, the adults-only party begins on River Street and in the other festival zones.” So whether you want family friendly or a little more loud and crazy, there’s definitely something for everyone to enjoy in Savannah.

Myth #3: They dye the Savannah River green.

“You know, they tried to do that once years ago and it was a total failure,” laughed Lawrence “Bubba” Edgerly, the 2019 Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee Vice Chairman. “The good news is, the water is already naturally green – so it works!” The city does dye the famous fountain in Forsyth Park green each year – and for 2019 that ‘greening’ takes place on Friday, March 8 starting at 12 noon.

Myth #4: There’s nowhere to sit at the parade.

Bleachers anyone? The Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee works with Kelly Tours to provide bleachers throughout the parade route. You can buy individual seats on those bleachers or corporate seating for up to 50 people. “There’s plenty of room on the bleachers still,” said Edgerly, “and you can always come early, bring your own chairs and set up on the curb all along the parade route.” The squares in downtown open for spectators starting at 6 am on the day of the parade and the best spots are often occupied early, so if ‘early’ isn’t your cup of tea, be sure to check out the bleachers for a prime spot:

Myth #5: You have to be Irish to attend.

Seriously? Come on. You didn’t really think that, right? All you need to be part of St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah is something green to wear (it’s not required, but trust me, you’ll be glad you did), some good walking shoes, and maybe a little bit of an adventurous spirit to branch out and try green grits to start your day (they’re delicious!). Take it from Edgerly: “Chill and have fun,” he says with a brightness to his voice. “It’s a family day, so bring your chairs and get ready to enjoy a beautiful parade.”

For more information to help with your St. Patrick’s Day stay in Savannah, visit

The Lady & Sons Restaurant

Paula Deen’s famous Lady & Son’s Restaurant, as seen on the Food Network, is open daily for lunch and dinner. Choose from the southern buffet or order off the menu. Looking for some memorabilia? Paula Deen’s store is located on-site as well!