With tree-filled historic squares, loads of cute shops and boutiques, rooftop bars with river views and James Beard-nominated restaurants, Savannah is an amazing place for the ultimate girls’ getaway. Here’s where to play, stay and eat to have the perfect girls weekend in Savannah and experience that southern charm and hospitality in the Hostess City of the South.
Stroll Through the Historic Squares
Savannah’s 22 beautifully landscaped squares, filled with live oak trees and dripping with Spanish moss, are all within one square mile – easy walking distance. Movie fans will want to check out Chippewa Square, where Forrest Gump sat on a bench and declared that “life is like a box of chocolates.”
With 30 acres, Forsyth Park is Savannah’s largest square. It’s where you’ll find Forsyth Park Fountain, an icon of Savannah, and a fabulous farmers market on Saturdays. If you’re into cathedrals, visit the stunning 19th-century Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist on Lafayette Square.
Shop ‘Til you Drop on Broughton Street
Art galleries, boutiques and gift shops line Savannah’s first shopping street. Some of my favorites include Savannah Bee Company, Spartina 449, The Paris Market and 24e Design Co.
For pralines, head to River Street Sweets, and for premium ice cream, you can’t beat Leopold’s Ice Cream, founded in 1919 and beloved by generations.
Explore Savannah City Market
A center of commerce since 1755, Savannah City Market is now a pedestrian-only area filled with shops and restaurants. Unlike Charleston’s City Market, which has stalls in a long brick building, Savannah’s City Market has small shops lining the street.
Pop into Byrd’s Famous Cookies to sample as many kinds as you want. I once walked out with two shopping bags filled with these tiny, tasty treats.
Visit the US Only Museum Dedicated to Prohibition
Learn more about the intended and unintended consequences (organized crime and the origins of NASCAR) of the Prohibition era (1920-33) at the American Prohibition Museum. There’s a fun 1920s-themed speakeasy where you can enjoy a cocktail like a Sazerac or Mary Pickford and toast to the legality of alcohol.
Wander Along River Street
You’ll want to leave those heels at home to explore River Street, the cornerstone of Savannah since its founding in 1733 by James Oglethorpe. The street is made of hand-laid cobblestones once used as ballast from 18th-century ships. It’s beautiful, but walking can be a challenge along the uneven surface. The once-bustling cotton warehouses that line the street now house shops, restaurants and inns.
Enjoy Views of the Savannah River at a Rooftop Bar at Plant Riverside
The once-seedy north end of River Street underwent a $375 million restoration and is now Savannah’s newest entertainment district, Plant Riverside. Here you’ll find shops, restaurants, a live music venue and two rooftop bars.
I loved the lavender pillows on the comfy couches on the rooftop garden at Myrtle & Rose where you can sip a botanically inspired cocktail. The more playful Moon Deck features an open-air adult playground with lawn games.
Take a Selfie with a Dinosaur in Generator Hall
Yes, it’s a hotel lobby but unlike any you’ve ever seen. The JW Marriott Savannah Plant Riverside District is more like a natural science museum where you can view massive geodes, an Ice Age bear skeleton, a prehistoric tortoise shell under the watchful eye of a 135-foot chrome dinosaur.
Take a Savannah Taste Experience Food Tour
Food tours are one of my favorite ways to learn about a city. What better way to learn about the culture and history of a city than through its food? Savannah Taste Experience offers four tours that range from two to three hours.
Sip, Shop and Stroll with the Sip ‘n’ Shop Savannah Tour
Enjoy wine (open container, y’all!) and discounts at boutiques during a three-hour guided Sip ‘n’ Shop tour that ends at Bar Bubbly with a champagne toast.
Take a Spooky Ghost Tour, if You Dare
Considering that Savannah is one of the most haunted cities in the country, it’s not surprising there are dozens of ghost tours. Narrow it down by deciding whether you want a walking tour, trolley tour, pub crawl or even a tour in a hearse!
Browse through shopSCAD and SCAD Museum of Art
Savannah is home to the Savannah School of Art and Design, a private art school. Dozens of members of the SCAD community sell their pieces at shopSCAD, a gorgeous shop with a rotating selection of one-of-a-kind items. The SCAD Museum of Art features works of established and emerging artists.
Tour Historic Homes
If you are into the ghost thing, you have to visit the Sorrel-Weed House, considered the most haunted place in Savannah. Former Girl Scouts will want to see founder Juliette Gordon Low’s home, now owned by the Girl Scouts of the USA. The Mercer Williams House is the setting for the infamous murder depicted in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and was used during filming of the movie.
Make Your Own Scrub at Salacia Salts
Select your favorite southern botanicals and fragrances to make a custom scrub at Salacia Salts. Or make your own clay mask formulated just for your skin type.
Take a Dolphin Tour on Tybee Island
Don’t dolphins just make you smile? I loved watching the dozens of dolphins jumping in the wake on Captain Derek’s Dolphin Adventure Tour on Tybee Island, Georgia, about 30 minutes from the Historic District of Savannah.
Wander Through Wormsloe Historic Site
The entrance to Wormsloe Historic Site alone is worth the short drive. You will cruise underneath the canopy of 400 towering moss-covered oak trees that were planted in the 19th century. Hit the nature trail, learn about colonial life in the museum then view the ruins of a tabby home from the 1700s. When you leave, be sure to view the gorgeous mansions overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway on Bluff Drive.
Where to Stay in Savannah
Part of planning the perfect girls’ weekend in Savannah includes finding a fabulous place to stay. Here are three suggestions, all located in historic Savannah.
412 Williamson Street
I stayed here on my last girls’ trip in Savannah and loved it. And not just because of the free cookies and cocktail at check-in. The hotel has complimentary bikes, a fantastic rooftop and a restaurant where coffee, fresh fruit and granola bars are included with your stay. Check out the Happy Hour at the Trade Room lobby bar from 4-6 p.m. Located just steps from the riverfront, the location can’t be beat.
256 E. Perry Street
This luxury boutique hotel has three bars and restaurants, yoga classes, rooftop terrace, pool and bicycle rentals.
102 W. Hall Street
If your taste runs more toward historic properties for your girls weekend in Savannah, try this 12-room Queen-Anne Victorian-style bed and breakfast built around 1893 near Forsyth Park. Enjoy breakfast served on the gracious front porch overlooking the park. Porch sittin’ is a cherished tradition in the South.
Best Restaurants in Savannah
102 Martin Luther King Blvd.
Budget range: $32 to $42
Recommended menu items: Dinner: quail with cornbread. Brunch: Fried chicken and hoe cakes. (Menu varies daily)
Don’t be misled by its location in a 1938 Art Deco Greyhound Bus Terminal. The co-owner, Mashama Bailey has two James Beard awards, including one for Outstanding Chef in 2022. The Grey is one of the most award-winning restaurants in Savannah. It’s also one of the most popular restaurants, so make a reservation early.
2740 Livingston Avenue
Budget range: $16 to $18
Recommended menu item: Crispy local shrimp.
We love this casual joint serving local seafood and farmed meats where you sit outside with a view of the backwaters of Savannah.
23 Abercorn Street
Budget range: $31 to $50
Recommended menu item: Low Country she crab soup.
You’ll want to dress up a bit to dine in this classic southern restaurant housed in a mansion built in 1771. It is said that the ghost of the original owner, James Habersham Sr, still occupies the home.
301 W Jones Street
Budget range: $31 to $50
Recommended menu item: The Bowl of Soul – creamy grits topped with pulled pork, pimento cheese, collard greens, two onion rings and served with cornbread.
Housed in a former grocery store, the Crystal Beer Parlor is a favorite with locals where you’ll find all types of dining and bellying up to the bar. And it was one of the first restaurants in the country to start serving alcohol after the repeal of Prohibition. Beer lovers will be in heaven, but I got a real (spicy) kick out of my spicy Bloody Mary.
12 W. Oglethorpe Avenue
Budget range: $36 to $45
Recommended Menu item: Quail with Carolina gold rice grit stuffing.
Every meal at Husk will be made with southern-grown ingredients, especially those in southern Georgia. In good weather, ask to sit on the front porch of the mansion built in 1898.
1215 Barnard Street
Budget range: $7 to $16
Recommended Menu item: Three Piggies Sandwich.
This is a fun place to grab a sandwich and eat at a table outside or take to a square in downtown Savannah for a picnic.
313 Abercorn Street
Budget range: $5 tp $10
Recommended menu item: Peach cobbler waffles.
Skip the chain coffee shop and get your coffee here along with the best waffles in Savannah. Housed in an 1800s-era building across from St. Johns Cathedral, Mirabelle is a not-to-be-missed spot for breakfast and lunch. It’s also a small boutique inn with f 2 king suites and 2 queen suites, available for rent on Airbnb.
With so many activities to choose from, fabulous restaurants and super fun places to stay, what are you waiting for? Grab your friends, find a date and make plans for your perfect girls weekend getaway in Savannah, Georgia. For more information for planning your girls trip, go to VisitSavannah.com.